Bureaucracy is a strange beast. We have health cards in this province. We use them when we visit the doctor or go to a hospital.
For a long, long time, I carried my red and white health card with me. I did this for so long that it got rather broken down and needed replacing. Cuppa still has that old version of the card, and it's still in pristine condition because ladies don't sit on their wallets as most men tend to do.
Several years ago, and that's all that it was, medical offices began to plead with me to get a new card — one that was in one piece. Being a good citizen and an obliging kind of guy, I did just that. The new cards were green and white rather than red and white, and they included a photo, seemingly a good idea as health card fraud was becoming an issue. It was alleged that out-of-province or out-of-country folk were using fake cards to obtain free health services here. Who knows whether or not it was true?
Then, just this past summer, I was obliged to update my relatively new card. This required filling in a form and getting a new photo — also not a bad idea. Meanwhile, Cuppa held onto her original card to which no updates were required. Ever!
A month or two later, when we moved, we had to notify the bureaucracy of our change of address — another good idea. This required another very official updating of my card. Meanwhile, Cuppa's original card remained the same.
Doesn't this strike you as odd? The newer card, the one with the photo id, must be continually re-processed and updated while those who hold the older, much older, non-photo card need never update theirs. I simply don't understand.
This topic resurfaced in my mind last week when the doctor's office called after a recent visit. They said that my card was invalid. Did I have a new one? I was confused. I recalled getting the new one but couldn't recall what I had done with it. If it wasn't in my wallet, where the heck could it be?
Then, I realized that the new version was probably in my wallet but they hadn't asked to see it on that visit. Turns out that was the problem — an easily solved one. But I had a moment of trepidation when I received that call because I had just submitted my Hemoccult Test. The doctor's office was calling. Could the test have shown a problem? Could I have colon cancer? I didn't really think so, but these thoughts crossed my mind in those seconds.
I did blog about this Hemoccult Test once before. It was over a year ago before anyone was reading my blog. Perhaps, just perhaps, you might get a slight kick reading my earlier account: Getting My Shit Together.