Bureaucracy and Technocrats

The Cherub is allergic to wheat, corn, and eggs- not gluten, but wheat.   However, the dietary staff won’t let us order oatmeal for her in the morning (she’s allergic to literally *every* other thing on the breakfast menu). I have stood in the room with the nurse while the nurse tries to fix that and tells them over the phone it’s not a gluten issue, it’s wheat, but it never gets changed.

I am the one who told the staff about this allergy in the first place- so it would not be in their computer at all if it weren’t for me.  Nobody asked me what tests she has had or how we know about these allergies, they just took my word for it.

So this just kind of cracks me up in an obnoxious sort of way-
Every single time we place the order, the dietary staff has to have our floor nurse ‘over-ride’ the erroneous gluten error tag. They cannot take my word for it that my child can eat oatmeal.

The nurse, of course, is taking our word for it. Who do you think tells the nurse that the Cherub can eat oatmeal? Li’l ol’ me.

So I call the kitchen, state our room number, place the order for oatmeal, hand the nurse the phone, tell her to tell the kitchen staff that the Cherub can have oatmeal, and the nurse dutifully repeats what I told her to say, hands me back the phone and I finish our order (applesauce, juice, hot water, and fruit).

This is what happens in a technological society run by technocrats. 

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  1. Karen in SC
    Posted March 17, 2014 at 10:59 am | Permalink

    My daughter used to be allergic to milk. She grew out of it, but never liked it. When she started kindergarten (before we started homeschooling), she came home and told me I needed to send in a note so that she’d be allowed to drink water with her lunch instead of milk.

    A note to be allowed to drink water?

    (Congratulations on your daughter’s wedding and continued prayers for the Cherub!)

  2. Kim L.
    Posted March 17, 2014 at 11:26 am | Permalink

    I’m curious. Did she have dextrose IV? Did it bother her?

    When I had my hospital stays for the babies, I told them I am allergic to corn, and informed the nurses that the IV bags they wanted to hook up contained corn products. I had to explain several times (each baby) that I know what happens when I eat corn, and it is bad; I do not want to find out what happens when I have corn products IV. All of the doctors and nurses I have come across seem surprised that dextrose (a sugar) had to come from somewhere (corn, as written directly on the package).

    • Headmistress, zookeeper
      Posted March 17, 2014 at 12:20 pm | Permalink

      Her only IV has been antibiotics.

      • Kim L.
        Posted March 22, 2014 at 9:15 am | Permalink

        In case you did not know, and in case it ever comes up again: Dextrose IV (hospital slang “D5”) is considered “just fluids” in many cases. When I requested no dextrose IV, I later found out that they had to make a special batch of penicillin for me in saline not D5.

        Sorry this is so much after the fact. I came back to this post to keep the comments together. I don’t often have time to load the comment page, comment and post. I usually just scan your posts. I’ll keep praying for a full recovery.

        P.S. Your skillet granola is a wonderful recipe.

        • Headmistress, zookeeper
          Posted March 22, 2014 at 1:50 pm | Permalink


  3. Donna
    Posted March 17, 2014 at 9:25 pm | Permalink

    Went through horrible menu issues when Chris was in the ICU. He made an off-hand comment in the ER about being “pre-diabetic” and they put diabetic on his chart. Then when he had fluid around his heart that could be completely removed after several stabs (similar to Cherub) they put “heart diet” on his chart. The food they tried to serve him was hideous tasting. I thought he was exaggerating so I tasted it and nearly puked in the sink! The nurses told me to bring in our own food since it was impossible to get the kitchen to bring something “against what was in the chart.”
    Kind of scary with electronic charts….once something is in there it will be impossible to change.

    • Headmistress, zookeeper
      Posted March 18, 2014 at 7:52 am | Permalink

      Good point. It was strange to me that when our other daughter was in the hospital for her broken leg, they kept asking us questions about whether anybody in the family had a history of mental illness (?). They didn’t ask us those questions here.

      • Lady M
        Posted March 18, 2014 at 1:16 pm | Permalink

        Considering the case in MA where the child was removed from the family, that is downright frightening.

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