1601 N. Tucson Blvd. Suite 9
Tucson, AZ 85716-3450
Phone: (800) 635-1196
Hotline: (800) 419-4777
Association of American Physicians and Surgeons, Inc.
A Voice for Private Physicians Since 1943
Omnia pro aegroto

A Window of Opportunity

by Lawrence R. Huntoon, M.D., Ph.D.

Although most of my Lampoons are quite visually oriented, today I had one of those ideas that is totally beyond my ability to draw or create on my computer.

As I sat in our medical staff meeting at the hospital and listened to the slick, nattily dressed hospital CEO give his speech on why we should all join Managed Care, this cartoonistic type image gradually arose in my mind...sort of a ``mental cartoon.'' The one phrase that kept repeating itself in his well-rehearsed speech was that Managed Care has presented us with this ``wonderful Window of Opportunity.''

Picture this. Our hospital CEO has called all of the physicians in the hospital together for a Managed Care Recruitment meeting on the 125th floor of the Managed Care Company's opulent new marble-faced building. The meeting room is vast. The walls are decorated with the finest wallpaper; the carpet is an expensive Burgundy blend. Crystal chandeliers hang from the ceiling. Priceless antique pottery filled with exquisite roses graces fine mahogany tables placed along the walls. There are rows and rows of leather chairs for the invited guests. Classical music plays enchantingly in the background. The mood is set for a very refined meeting event.

In the street below there is a curious line of special black limousines, one behind the other, chauffeurs patiently standing by to transport their respective recumbent VIPs to their final destinations. The small lettering on the sides is invisible from the room above, but it reads ``Our job isn't done until you're completely covered.''

Back upstairs, all eyes are focused on the tuxedo-clad CEO at the podium of the elevated platform, which is adorned with velvet. The CEO begins his presentation, calling our attention to the ``Window of Opportunity.'' It is the most beautiful window anyone has ever seen. The solid gold casing is hand-engraved with scenes portraying joy, serenity, security, wealth, and success. The draperies are pure silk.

The window, measuring 6 feet by 6 feet is open wide. There are no window panes. It is just a magnificently adorned opening. From the vantage point of the doctors in the audience, one can look through the window and see a picture-perfect day. The sun is shining, the sky blue and cloudless.

As the CEO describes the Window of Opportunity in rapturous tones, I note a small, simple portable set of steps that has been strategically placed right in front of the window. This was obviously done so that members of the audience could get a closer look at the window frame and the skyline of the city beyond.

Toward the end of the talk, the doctors are cordially invited by the CEO to avail themselves of the spectacular view through the Window of Opportunity by forming a single file line in front of the window. They are promised that if they follow the CEO's directions to the letter, they will automatically find themselves on the ``ground floor'' of a most successful enterprise.

Reprints available from:
Association of American Physicians and Surgeons
1601 N. Tucson Blvd. Suite 9, Tucson, AZ 85716
Pamphlet No. 1048, April, 1996