One of the ironies of life is that those most able to pay for something are often the ones who get it for free. Movie stars and celebrities regularly get “gifted” with designer ware and products. Manufacturers know that the rich and famous are trendsetters. How better to advertise a new handbag than have Paris Hilton carry it? As for the free upgrades and complimentary goodies millionaires and billionaires get when they check into a hotel or make a purchase or heck, just show up somewhere? Just another one of the perks of having tons of money, I guess.
Well, now you can add another one to the list: VIP hospital care. In Dallas, anyway. The state-funded UT Southwestern Medical Center has been revealed as keeping a special list of 6,400 high-profile folks they would like to see as patients. While many hospitals keep such lists for current board members and donors, UTSMC is the only one known to keep a list of potential invites for top-notch treatment.“
People in the program know they are on the list, because they are sent a letter informing them about the special services they can receive. To make appointments, they can use an unlisted phone number to reach the Special Assistance Office. The hotline is also available for reaching a doctor on weekends and after hours.”
While the state-funded institution admits it essentially has two tiers of service, it insists those in the lower tier get the same quality care. They just don’t get the personal escort who greets them upon arrival and bids them a fond goodbye on departure, making sure they enjoyed their stay.
And maybe no extra mints on the hospital pillow, either.
For more on this:
HOSPITAL DEFENDS VIP LISTS
by David Tarrantt, Katie Fairbank and Gromer Jeffers Jr.
The Dallas Morning News
November 10, 2007