Charles E. Sepich
Richmond VA Medical Center

Dear Director,

Thank you for your response a copy of which is attached to optimize your recollection of my original correspondence. At the minimum, and in a larger sense, I hope my concerns were not only valid but may have tightened up an area for better service to veterans. For me personally, my offer of paying more in funds and time to have my bloodwork done elsewhere was not mentioned in your letter.

There is a simple reason why I cannot go back to the outpatient blood clinic which I believe contributed to my ill-treatment recently. The reason is captured in these annecdotes.

  1. When I started high school, I told my grandfather I was going to take French. He quickly said I should first learn to speak English.
  2. The rejection reason given by three Naval Academy grads in the final interview for admittance as a mustang to Annapolis from the enlisted ranks was my speech impediment--not a lack of intelligence or motivation.
  3. During college I worked hard to enunciate which resulted in a memorable voice of which only speech pathologist can guess the origin.
  4. In grad school, a voice from the back of a crowded elevator said, "I'll be, Bob Barnett. I'd recognize that voice anywhere."
  5. In the early 1990's a call to 911 on my business having burned up in the night elicited the following. "Well, Bob Barnett ... " "Excuse me, how do I know you." "Well, I recognize your voice. I was the 911 operator who took you call after you were robbed a few years ago."
  6. In the early 2000's I was standing and talking on a corner in Minneapolis waiting for the light to change when a person behind me asked, "Aren't you from Richmond, Virginia?" "Yes" "I recognized your voice. You did my resume fifteen years ago."
  7. These are some but not all, e.g., a 35-year no contact span that began a telephone conversation with "How have you been, I know who this is."

Having previously in the outpatient clinic had a verbal exchange about my missing my number, I believe the second interaction with the outpatient staff contained some baggage from the first encounter because they recalled my voice. Because they were petty, inconsiderate and unprofessional. I won't trust my health to the care of the outpatient blood service.

If your adminstration did do an investigation, the staff's recollection of the "voice" will not put me in better standing the next time I appear for bloodtesting. Afterall, I can't remain moot, for they ask patients to verbally confirm information. I have had my fair share of "marathon trippers" in my life. If I am going to be sick, it is going to be by nature or by my choice, not the incompetence of questionable medical persons. I have had a lucky life. Luck comes to the prepared and to the cautious.

I proposed alternatives with my bearing the higher costs. I understand your need to have a standardized, streamline process. So it is the conundrum.

So, without an alternative path for a keystone in the V.A. logical and efficient treatment process, I will continue to make appointments for physicals without doing the bloodwork. I hope I remain in good health, for the medical costs of in-bed, in-patient treatment from delayed discovery of gross symptoms is far greater than early detection, treatment and prevention by blood tests.

As I said, I am willing to pay extra for blood drawing elsewhere. You could bill it under the psychiatric unit as a charge for "paranoia" treatment, to wit, "the guy is unrealistically afraid of the outpatient blood service."

I have also enclosed my resume. I refresh your memory that I am working on a universal health care plan modeled after the V.A. Currently, I have several people in different states and one other country (Russia) reviewing tenets of it. Under my present unresolved situation, I would not be available to answer any questions that you might have should my plan gain currency in the present political climate. As we both know, healthcare reform is an issue that has not had any news coverage nor political action nor is there any interest in exploring new models.

Sincerely with a dose of humorous sarcasm for your entertainment, I am an overall very happy veteran,

Robert S. Barnett

CC: Dr. Abouhisira

P.S. I have also enclosed a copy of an essay I am shopping around major news sources on the immediate effects of CO2 based on an organic thesis of its molecular behavior in the atmosphere. My first paper on CO2 and global warming was 1982 when I said the more immediate impact would be not warming but precipitation changes, e.g., the recent New England mad flooding is a worsening worldwide phenomenon.