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willray last won the day on March 21

willray had the most liked content!

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About willray

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    Columbus, Ohio
  • Occupation
    Your friendly neighborhood physics professor
  • Interests
    Never met much that didn't interest me, other than Accountants and Lawyers
  • Biography
    I've changed a few diapers, butchered chickens and the occasional squirrel, designed and built buildings, written some sonnets, balanced accounts, built short and tall walls, set a bone, did a poor job of comforting the dying, I take orders ok, give orders better, cooperate with cooperative people, go around the uncooperative when necessary, I've got a Math degree, several patents, a farm, and another degree in Computer Science, people seem to like my Chili, Im not much for fighting, but less for losing, and when I died they tell me I thought it was amusing. I'm still working on the invasion plan.

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  1. I would suggest that it's appropriate to note that the requirement says to "Use GPS" - not an embedded GPS-enabled navigation system. The requirement says to use the GPS to find and follow the route. It does not say to use the embedded navigation system in a TomTom navigation system, or in Google/Apple's Maps/etc, to find the route. Clicking the "directions to..." button on a GPS-enabled navigation system is to "Use a GPS to find and follow a route", as "phoning in an order for takeout" is to "planning and preparing a meal"...
  2. willray

    Privacy of Health Forms

    We're a bit far afield, but I'm going to guess that you use EPIC in a "normal" practice or hospital setting? If you're managing to make it even remotely useful for clinical trials/research data retrieval, you've managed to do something that's eluded Nationwide Children's and OSU's medical centers! If we hadn't had access to medical history information, we probably would have felt obliged to hit the panic button on our Garmin InReach and called in a life-flight. Having a few details from the medical history helped us decide that we could responsibly go with getting the individual to personal vehicle and bugging out in the direction of an ER. To be sure, we rolled the dice on this one. Having been dead before, I take cardiac symptoms rather seriously. If we hadn't had someone saying "look here at this, it's plausibly X instead", I would not have been comfortable with that risk. I don't know enough about epilepsy, and particularly your variety, to know whether there's something different that should be done for first aid for it, compared to other medical emergencies that might look the same to someone giving first aid. If there's absolutely no difference in what should be done for you, and anyone else who happens to have a non-epileptic seizure, and whatever information that would help EMTs is on your dog-tags, then I don't see how sharing information about your condition would be helpful on your medical history. Dog-tags might be a good solution. I'm not well-educated on what information can be encoded on them, what is required to access it, and whether there are any impediments to retrieving that information in areas without cell-phone/wireless coverage. It's also not clear whether they satisfy the requirements of whatever state laws that BSA apparently feels they need to satisfy, regarding camping regulations. Certainly, if they carry all the necessary information and satisfy legal requirements, having the person's medical history on the person would be a lot more helpful than having it in a binder of forms locked back in the troop van at the trailhead!
  3. willray

    Privacy of Health Forms

    Oh come on, it's too early in the day for blindsiding people with that kind wit. I now need to clean the coffee out of my keyboard. We've been on EPIC, I think pretty much from the start - probably 15? 17 years now? And our physicians still need to keep backup paper copies of their charting records because EPIC so reliably loses or corrupts them. My PCP, as well as a couple specialists, have been re-entering the same data about a cardiac event I suffered, at every visit for going on 4 years now, and the fact that I have a stent still comes as a surprise to every new clinician I interact with, because EPIC just keeps losing the data. Don't trust EMRs to provide accurate information. Not now, and probably not any time in our lifetimes. The bureaucratic purpose for EPIC is as a billing system, not as a system to enable clinicians to provide care. Unless you believe that some day bureaucrats are going to prioritize something other than their own interests, I wouldn't hold out much hope that it's going to improve. Will
  4. willray

    Privacy of Health Forms

    I think the difference, is that generally at Church, Work, and your Children's School, there is an expectation that an essentially immediate medical response is available. Even on normal weekend campouts, even if they're car-camping, Scouts and Scouters are likely to end up far enough from an immediate response by emergency professionals that the unit adults/scouts may have to provide emergency care for 30 minutes or more. That care could require access to some health history information. I suspect you'll find that most organizations, Church, Work, School, etc, if they're going to put you in a situation where they are obliged to take responsibility for your health for any period of time, will also require that you give them the information that they'd need to do so, if necessary. At the end of the day, I do agree with the "minimum necessary" information requirement though - which, since Part B is filled out by the individual, really is all that you're required to provide. If it's irrelevant that you had your wisdom teeth removed, you probably don't include that in the history on Part B. If there's something that might actually affect whether we can keep you alive long enough for professionals to arrive, it's up to you whether you include it or not. At the end of the day it comes down to "A Scout is Trustworthy". If you don't trust me to maintain confidentiality with whatever information you choose to include on your Part B form, you probably shouldn't trust me enough to go on a campout, or let your child go on a campout with me anyway.
  5. Don't just come back and read, tell me what works, or doesn't, with your unit!
  6. willray

    Privacy of Health Forms

    I'm afraid I have to differ. Having had one of our adults go down, with what looked like a heart attack when we were on an overnight weekend campout, I'm grateful for the medical history details in our adult medical forms. We weren't at Philmont, we were just at a small state park campsite in Ohio, 20-minutes dead run from the nearest cell phone signal, and about an hour from the nearest emergency-response team that could launch an ambulance. You don't need to be in the backcountry to need information now, and for that information to be critical for keeping you alive. "They're an adult, they can tell you what you need to know if you need to know it" doesn't work, when they're unconscious.
  7. willray

    Privacy of Health Forms

    I think there's room for differing opinions with respect to whether that's treating adults as adults, or as spoiled children who will take their ball and go home if they don't get their way 🙂 That aside, it sounds like you're suggesting that we add a requirement, in addition to the 2-registered adults, for an EMT to be present at all scout activities where health-forms are required? I think Scouting can probably survive with those adults who are unwilling to trust a unit leader with their medical form, staying home, better than it can survive a requirement that units have an EMT on-site at all campouts/etc. ... I'm also not sure why you think that an adult who omitted a detail that only they knew in their medical history from the voluntary-disclosure on Part B, would be barred from participation in a scouting activity.
  8. willray

    Privacy of Health Forms

    Parts A and B, the only parts required for standard activities, do not require a signature by a health-care provider (except in a few states where apparently a health-care provider's signature is required to permit someone else to dispense medications to youth).
  9. willray

    Leadership Disagreements

    To the do-ers go the rights to decide how to do: "We have to do X for the Blue and Gold meal, that's how it's always been done!" -> "Great! Thanks for volunteering to take care of the B&G meal! Would you like any help with that?". Or, if you're planning on doing something different -> "Well, Jim has already volunteered to take care of that this year, and I think he's planning on doing Y instead, but if you'd like to do the meal for next year, we can put you down as our lead volunteer right now!"
  10. willray

    Privacy of Health Forms

    I should actually say - a large part of the reason for HIPAA in the first place, is that you have very little control of what's in "your medical record" as your doctor accesses it. On the other hand, you have complete control over what goes on the Part A and Part B health forms. If there is something that you don't want anyone to know about, don't put it on the form. If you're absolutely certain that no-one has any legitimate need for the information, why include it on the form? Now, if you leave something off, and either you are harmed, or harm someone else because of the omission, that's clearly going to be on your head, but with the BSA forms that's a choice you get to make : are you more worried about someone knowing X from your medical history, or about you coming to or causing harm by them not knowing X?
  11. willray

    Privacy of Health Forms

    Oh, my no. You can't even get Medical doctors and nurses to up to full compliance with regular mandatory trainings and a giant cudgel to bash them if they step out of line.😖 And yes, you absolutely do train the janitors and receptionists regarding data safeguarding - at least up to the level of "under no circumstances may you ever do X". A janitor who snaps a selfie with a patient, or a receptionist who tweets "guess who just walked in the door", is going to be in for a world of hurt. 20 minutes of training would be perfectly fine for "don't be an idiot, the medical forms are private and should only be divulged to emergency personnel, etc when absolutely necessary", which BSA has already done in the form of the quoted policy. To actually "make BSA HIPAA compliant" would require treating BSA, its units, and presumably the scouters and scouts, as covered entities, which would turn a scout at a troop meeting saying "Wow, you should have seen how well scoutTom bandaged up scoutJim's finger last weekend!", into a legally actionable statement with mandatory reporting and disciplinary consequences.
  12. willray

    Privacy of Health Forms

    It doesn’t appear to me that the current system costs anything for exactly that level of service? You you do understand that if BSA literally required HIPAA compliance, your out-of-pocket cost to participate in any BSA event would increase by probably at least $50, more likely considerably more, per person, per event? Unless you actually know what you’re asking for there, I would caution against you recommending it. You would like medical records to be more private - I don’t disagree with that at all - but your comments suggest that you have no idea of either the required burden of HIPAA compliance, or the dramatic changes that HIPAA compliance would enforce upon the scouting program.
  13. willray

    Privacy of Health Forms

    Your doctor probably spends 20% to 40% of the total insurance-billed-cost of your exam, exclusively on HIPAA compliance. Would you like to pay an additional $50 or so per BSA event that you attend, to have BSA handle your medical information similarly?
  14. I guess I'll carp about a couple other things as well: One is that the lack of specificity of things like "show evidence" leads to people being willing to sign off on requirements like that, without the scout actually doing what the requirement intends. I can "show evidence" of 10 different kinds of native plants with a handful of soil and leaf-litter from the forest floor. I can actually do what the requirement intends, and explain something about why the evidence supports there being at least 10 different kinds of native plants represented too, but the typical scout or adult signing off, isn't going to ask me to demonstrate that I actually have some knowledge of the topic, they're just going to say "yup, that's evidence" and sign my book. We can't "require more than the requirements", but we can darned well require that they actually can convince us that they've met the requirements. Second, neither you, nor your senior scouts need to be able to do the requirements, for your scouts to satisfactorily complete the requirement. Part of the meta-requirement inherent in the requirement, is that they learn the material necessary to complete it. That doesn't mean that you need to teach it to them. In fact, it's almost certainly better if you don't. It's also almost certainly better if your senior scouts don't. What your senior scouts should be teaching them, is "this is how you go learn the material", not the material itself. If you, or your senior scouts teach them the material, you deprive your scouts of the opportunity to learn how to learn. Teach them how to learn, and then let them come back and convince you that they learned. You'll know it when they've learned enough to complete the requirement, whether you can do it yourself or not.
  15. Heh - it's all helpful from my point of view. In an economics sense, your tootsie-roll-box at the campsite is a form of trust game, so it's possibly helpful to think about other formulations of the same underlying principle. Usually (in the economics sense) in a competition, trust-games are better at pointing out sub-optimal behavior, than at encouraging good behavior, but It's additionally (possibly only academically) interesting to think about whether there are trust-game based competitions that positively reinforce good behavior. At the end of the day, my goal is to collect ideas that units could try, to increase the day-to-day living of Scoutly values, and to catalog some specific implementation details that empirically work, or that should be avoided. "Use the patrol method" is great, at least for relationships with the patrol-team, but it's not terribly specific, and it's obvious that a lot of units struggle with it. "If you're going to do year-long inter-patrol competitions, provide daily feedback on the points awarded and the standings" is specific, and while some might think it's obvious, clearly, at least my troop hasn't figured that out. I'd bet that others are in the same boat. So, I'm happy to hear, and discuss any thoughts anyone has regarding what has worked with their units. This is a bit afield of the idea-harvesting, but, I'm curious what advice you have for dealing with expectations that aren't met. I'm styling my particular experiment here in terms of Scoutly Values reinforcing activities such as campfire-program content, scoutmaster-minute-and-thirty discussions, and games/competitions that could be embedded in the normal program (even if it doesn't look like a game, like your Tootsie Pops), but, I'm also generally interested in how to maximize the utility of the normal program/methods as well. One challenge that I see (and for which our boys troop has a couple specific exemplars) are scouts (and patrols) that "just don't care". You set the expectation that they will be up at 7:00AM, prepare their meal, break camp and be on the trail by 8:00, and you get a scout who simply refuses to get up. No amount of talking to, etc, from his patrol leader, SPL, or even SM, gets him out of his tent. When he finally does get up, he goes over to where his patrol is just finishing cooking breakfast, grabs the plate of pancakes and takes one bite out of each one. When he finishes eating, he just stuffs his dirty dishes into the patrol mess-kit (that the rest of the patrol just finished washing). By the time the rest of the patrol and troop have broken down camp and are ready to move, he hasn't even started to pack. This is an extreme example, but it's one of the things that I, personally, really struggle with. Professionally, I do a lot of mentoring (slightly older) youth, but I get to do it in a capacity where my expectations have teeth. I'm not sure how to implement teeth in most Scouting expectations, and the teeth that are the most readily available, don't seem entirely appropriate. The scouts that have the most trouble being good patrol members, are the ones who need scouting the most, so saying "you blew it, you don't get to X" just deprives them of whatever growth they could have gained. You seem to have some wisdom in this area that I lack, so I'd appreciate your insights into how to push patrols to meet uncomfortable expectations and actually have the scouts try to achieve them.