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20091128

Perception

Entry 1616 posted in: 1. General Mish Mash


Last week a Belgian governmental institution published some HIV statistics. In 2008 1078 new cases of HIV have been diagnosed (other sources say 1079). It has been established that, concerning unprotected heterosexual encounters; there is an almost infinite small chance of getting HIV in Belgium, 1 in about twenty thousand. Strange enough the government and its affiliated partners refuse to confirm that we may all screw now like horny rabbits, in their minds protection and safe sex are still the standard when sexual encounters are involved. We are also informed that whenever we think there is something wrong with our reproductive systems we should go to hospital to have our tubes examined. Now here is a strange advice and I’ll tell you why…

Some statistics are harder to find than others but in 2006 it was made public that – yearly - 2500 to 3000 people die in a Belgian hospital bed of hospital-disease, an unhealthy collection of bacteria, viruses and fungal infections that have become resistant against antibiotics. The numbers are somewhat vague and not as well defined as with the HIV infections for the simple reason that hospitals don’t like to brag around that they have killed another patient thanks to their lack of hygiene. It was believed (in 2006) that this number would increase by 8% a year, so the annual hospital-bacteria-death-toll for this year could be anything between 3150 to 3750. I haven’t found any triumphalist hurrah-messages that these numbers went spectacularly down although apparently simple hand-hygiene from doctors and nurses in between patient-care, in other words: washing your hands, could lower hospital-disease with 40%.

Although over one hundred thousand patients a year get MRSA (and other resistant infections) in Belgian hospitals there aren’t dozens of subsidized organisations around to promote its prevention, as for HIV. In Belgium this results in 445000 extra hospitalisation days and as these extra days are paid for by the Belgian health insurance (and unfortunately the patient) we have the uncanny effect that the hospitals get more money out of a patient by being less effective.

The risk of catching a deathly disease in hospital is about 100 times larger than contracting HIV by screwing around. For every AIDS-related-death in Belgium, and my statistics are getting rather cynical now, 50 persons will die in a hospital-bed of a disease they didn’t come to hospital for.

I find it very strange that, at the entrance of every hospital, there isn’t a very big sign, in unfriendly letters, reading:

WARNING
ENTERING THIS HOSPITAL
MAY BE LETHAL

This post is meant to be satirical, although I fear that the numbers are correct. But statistics will prove anything, so said the scientist who drowned when he tried to cross a river with an average depth of 30 cm.

AIDS is a very serious life-threatening situation, especially in less-developed countries, and it is of course better to avoid it. While Belgian heterosexuals are rather safe, even when practicing unsafe sex, statistics for gay encounters are very worrying. The chance for a male homosexual to get an HIV infection is 1 in 20, thousand times larger than for heterosexuals. This is not something to act funny about, but - warning: here comes satire again - at the other hand I’m still wondering why some organisations find it discriminatory if one says this is a buggers disease?


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