Friday, August 07, 2009

For No One Dose

While sipping morning coffee (French-pressed,) in the proximity of spectacular Bell Rock, this occurred to me:

A few weeks ago at work I gave a patient an injection of Epogen, a drug frequently used by hemodialysis patients and others at risk for chronic anemia. It was a high dose, 40,000 units, but that's not unusual.

As I prepared the dose in the nurses' medication room, I recall thinking that one dose costs over $500, which is more money than I earn in a 12-hour shift of work. One single dose.

So when people talk about "holding down the cost of health care," I bristle at the thought that cutting nurses' compensation may be on their minds. Or at least reducing the meager yearly increases we are fortunate enough to get.

Us nurses, yes, we really are a bunch of lucky duckies.


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Anonymous said...

I'm an oncology nurse, and I give this shot all the time. I never looked into it; but I suspect there is only one manufacturer for this drug. If that is the truth then I am so happy for that ONE company that would spend research money to find a product like this. And I don't begrudge them the $$$ that they get for it. I mean with all of the insane cleanliness laws that "they" have to follow to produce this stuff; no wonder it costs so much! (snark)