If you ever wondered if there is any limit to corporate stupidity, we now have our answer. We are in the midst of a pandemic. In December of last year, a doctor in Wuhan, Li Wenliang, tried to warn fellow medical professionals of a potential coronavirus, but he was silenced by police. If he had been supported rather than stifled by the Chinese authorities, the last three months might have progressed very differently.
Yesterday, an emergency room physician working at a Bellingham hospital was terminated by his employer for criticizing the adequacy of protective measures for health care workers at the hospital. As we try to make sense of what is happening to our world, Dr. Ming Lin has an important message for us to hear. You can assess for yourself Dr. Lin’s Facebook page criticism of the safety practices at PeaceHealth Bellingham. Now consider this:
- In the middle of a pandemic;
- During a time when everything possible should be done to protect health care workers on the front lines;
- During a time when we need voices who call for help to protect those health care workers; and
- During a time when–let’s face it–we need every possible emergency room health care professional to be working and well-supported;
this doctor’s employer has made the decision to elevate corporate loyalty over public health.
This cannot stand. Dr. Ming Lin should be reinstated, and the hospital should do everything possible to ensure that its employees are provided with adequate procedures and equipment to help get us through this pandemic.