Sunday, February 07, 2010

Just How Far Have We Gone In The Invasion Of Privacy?

Some of my patients ask me what information an insurance company can get when their labs are done. I hadn't really put that much thought into the process until recently. One of my patients had a urine drug lab done and I received a copy of it. I was shocked to find out just what is being screened for in the test.

Think about it for a minute. One would think that just the illicit drugs are looked for, but the following also shows up on the test.

Antibiotics, Diphenhydramine, Caffeine, Ephedrines, Nicotine, Phentermine, Salicylate, Cimetidine, Antidepressants, Antihypertensives and Diuretics.

Mmmmmm aybe I don't want my insurance company to know that I have seasonal allergies and that I take a baby aspirin as a preventative because my Mom has hypertension. How about whether or not I have reflux when I eat spicy foods? Maybe I bloat a little around my menstrual cycle and I want to pee off some fluid? I live on Pepsi. I know it's not good for me, but I am actually shocked that it could be detected.

There has been talk of trying to ban foods and drinks that cause us to be obese and I understand the health reasons as a provider. I don't want anyone in the government telling me what I can and cannot eat. No one but me puts the food in my mouth. Only I am responsible for my own actions.

It's already bad enough that people can be banned from having insurance due to their health conditions and yes, some are their own fault, but what do you think about this issue?

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