Medical Committee Meeting Minutes 3/14/2012

Medical Committee Meeting Minutes 3/14/2012

Postby La Javelina » Wed Mar 28, 2012 11:36 am

OCCUPY MEDICAL COMMITTEE MEETING 3/14/2012 (Glenwood Restaurant on Willamette St.)

Members attending: Barbara Forrest-Ball, Dr. David Knowlton, Sue Sierralupe, Dr. Leigh St Louis*, Jerry Zook, Lina Howison, Jim Davidson*
*New to meeting for the first time

Sue Sierralupe called the meeting to order at 7:10 p.m. Lina took minutes.

Sue called the meeting to order with introductions. Each member provided some information about him- or herself to the group. Sue then described how to keep the meeting efficient and reminded us to remain respectful and remember our shared values even if in some ways we differed in approach.

FIRST-AID KIT: Sue described the location of the first-aid kit. It contains a form to note what has been used, the date, what’s needed. Jerry asked if a key was needed and Sue said that if OE V is open, the kit is accessible in the metal filing cabinet. The hours are from 2-7:00 p.m and when meetings are taking place in the building. Jim added that sometimes people stayed there after 9 PM.

WHITEAKER BLOCK PARTY: Sue said that we have agreed to provide first-aid/medical services for the Whiteaker block party in August and our conditions are that we will have a donation box and jar as well as a table there describing the Occupy movement.

LEGALITY: Dr David addressed the legality of providing free medicine and the risk to doctors. He said that he found out that ordinarily we should have patients sign something that shows they understand that liability is limited and there is no “deep pocket” malpractice coverage for free medicine. He added that for this kind of work, he was covered under his regular malpractice insurance and presumably so were the other docs. He also said that he preferred not to “stick a form in every person’s face who wants medical care.” However, there is a state requirement that you inform the Medical Board. He sent them a letter to that effect and suggested that Dr Peter and Dr Leigh do the same thing. Leigh noted that she had “run into this” while working at a free clinic in Milwaukee. She said that such a lawsuit would not necessarily come from the patient but anyone who was concerned about the care administered, such as an ambulance driver. A doc might be at more risk if there was no medical chart documenting continuity of care. Dr David said that he took “impeccable notes” to demonstrate continuity, but that he had recently considered that there should be something “normal” for patients to call after hours like a normal office. Jerry asked if we should take turns taking call, and David responded that “you need a whole new infrastructure that brings it to a whole new level.” Leigh said that in her practice they just give out a cell phone number and she would be comfortable doing that as long as the number is given to people she has seen and not total strangers. She said that she preferred a model with some kind of continuity of care because she doesn’t like the idea of being an ER doc and “never finding out if that person got better.” David said that there might be degrees of discomfort with the street medicine model “but you may have to be outside of your comfort zone” and added that he did not always enjoy it and encouraged Leigh to do whatever she felt was right. Leigh said that she was not concerned about getting sued but that patients deserve to have accountability and not be “left hanging.” Her daughter is a midwife and in ORegon “they’re dealing with this a lot and some people are saying that if you’re not licensed you’re not [sufficiently] accountable.” David said, “I think we’re here for that, they know where to find us, we’re licensed and insured, it’s just that we’re not on the phone.” Lina then suggested we table this discussion.

VETERINARIAN: Jerry said that he and James are still looking for a vet and have some leads; Sue said that her vet is retiring and might be willing to help out.


FORMS: Barbara distributed a copy of the new intake form to every one. Discussion followed. Leigh suggested there should be more room for the assessment notes. Lina said she preferred the form with the “stages” on it. David concurred, saying that “you can hand this form [to someone] and say, here, do this.” Leigh said it was nice for data gathering as well because information is divided by stage. Barbara said if everyone liked that she had wasted her time making a new form. Sue moved that we use the two forms in parallel and then discuss via email how we felt about the two forms . Barbara seconded, motion carried. Barbara noted that if we can have a good charting system we can be a model for other street clinic.

DENTAL VAN: Jerry reported running into two people at St Vincent de Paul’s who were “into dental care.” He found out that there is a dental day scheduled for April, and picked up flyers to distribute and left some at OE V. Dr David pointed out that we are seeing a lot of dental problems at our street clinic every week so dental care is essential. Sue then said that she talked to Dennis at St Vinnie’s about getting a dental van to come in once a month and having it paid for, which costs $700 each time, using a van available in the Medford/Roseburg area. To make this work as an Occupy event, Sue said we needed to do this once a month regularly. Jerry said that it has always been the case that we can go to St Vincent’s and obtain a referral voucher to have patients seen for dental care at White Bird, just as with the prescriptions; all we need is name, date of birth, telephone number for a given patient and St Vincent’s pays the dental fee at White Bird. The thing about the upcoming dental clinic in April is that, according to the flyer, people have to sign up by March 23rd to be selected. Lina asked if the selection process was random, or according to certain criteria, and Jerry said that he would check on that by calling the Dental Society who is sponsoring the van. Barbara also said that she would pick up new dental supplies and give them to Jerry, who will then bring them to the Sunday clinic. Sue said that, in order for the dental van to function, we needed to recruit volunteer dentists and then publicize the event as Occupy-sponsored. Jerry said that he had talked with the director of the Dental Society who suggested we write a one-paragraph description of our event to go in their monthly newsletter. He added that Dennis will stop by the clinic on Sunday.

ADDITIONAL SERVICES: Sue said that Benjamin Hunt, a retired stylist, is offering free haircuts [at the upcoming Sunday clinic] with the hair to be donated to Locks of Love. Lina asked if we could use a different donation agency because her family had found out that Locks of Love does not always use the hair for cancer victims. Sue said that was fine. Benjamin would like to offer free haircuts not only to the homeless, but also to distressed moms with kids, etc. Other thoughts are to offer vouchers for free clothing from St. Vincent’s, and the library offering talks on job-hunting. David commended Sue for these efforts to branch out with ancillary services because we are getting positive publicity. Sue confirmed that she has a bigger vision for what we are doing even if at the moment we may think of ourselves as small. Lina asked what we are to call this “extra” service, and Leigh suggested “Medical Plus” and the group assented to this label for now. Medical would be reliably every week, with the other services varying. Leigh cautioned about people showing up randomly to offer their services and Sue agreed that “we have to stay on Occupy’s page.” She added that Jim (present), who is a chiropractor, could talk about chiropractic, back care, etc. Barbara said that as a Reiki practitioner, she had friends who would be glad to be involved as well, and has already contacted the instructor in charge of community outreach which all Students have to do the last term, and will be meeting with her again. She would also get in touch with Jan Locke, director of internships, and her teacher, Laura. Sue said that we should plan our “Medical Plus” events one month at a time and see how it goes and not limit our volunteers. Barbara asked if students were welcome to provide such services and Sue said that of course they were. She then proposed that we hold a separate meeting for Medical Plus events. She added that she would write out a press release and has already gotten permission from Benjamin, the hair stylist, to do so. Sue moved that we introduce “Haircut Day” on clinic day, March 25th or April 1st, depending on Benjamin, David seconded, motion carried. Sue then moved that we should have a “Back Day,” with Jim and Barbara, on a Sunday in April, after getting feedback from Haircut Day and having a meeting about backs first. Leigh seconded and motion carried.

OPEN HOUSE: Sue announced OE Open House on Saturday, March 25th, at OE V. We needed to set up and man a table there with information. David added that we needed something for donations, a volunteer signup form, and general information. Barbara said she would produce a volunteer signup form. Jerry offered to contact the single-payer movement and involve them if possible. David said that he should contact Ruth Duemler, which he could help with.

Sue: There is a meeting on Tuesday, with Bill, about a possible grant.
Lina asked who would hold the clinic open while the group is at the Rose Hip Medical training in Portland on April 20-22. David said he would be and Leigh said she might be able to provide backup as well.
Med Student volunteers: Jerry wanted to know if we should stay in touch with the students originally contacted by Terry, and David suggested we put that on the backburner until we “know more about what we’re doing, then we can say exactly who we are and invite people” to participate.
Sue announced that LCC has a CPR training coming up on “First Aid Health Care Day” for Health Care professionals. David added that he can bring an AED to the clinic in the future.
Leigh will participate in the clinic on Sunday and will bring her handout on pain referrals. She can be found at

Next meeting scheduled for Wednesday, March 28th, at 7 PM at the Glenwood Restaurant on Willamette.

Meeting was adjourned at 9 PM.

La Javelina
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Joined: Sat Mar 10, 2012 1:50 pm

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