TAMPA BAY, FL – 56-year-old Michael Finnerly has been volunteering his services to the local medical school’s standardized patient program for several years. Last week he was diagnosed with prostate cancer when he visited his local physician for a routine check up and was told the mass had been slow growing and present for at least 5 years.
Finnerly was caught completely off guard. “I have provided practice prostate exams to the medical school for over 3 years now,” said Finnerly. “Every year I end up receiving 3-4 hundred prostate checks depending upon the number of medical students.”
Doing the math, Finnerly has received approximately 1200 prostate exam checks in the past 3 years. Finnerly asked, “You are telling me that not one of those med students felt any abnormalities? I’m suing them!”
In a surprise twist of fate, the medical school is counter-suing Mr. Finnerly. A school spokesman said, “We are upset that one of our standardized patients have taught hundreds of our students to feel an abnormal prostate and lead them to believe that it was a normal prostate. Think about all the patients who were misdiagnosed from this one patient.”
The local medical school has decided to actually start screening standardized patients first, to insure that they are normal before letting them start their jobs.
Dean of the school, Dr. Janet Robbins, said, “We just can’t let patients with prostate or breast cancer into our standardized program anymore. We have them sign a form that clearly states that they are only to participate in our program if they are normal. Mr. Finnerly obviously broke the contract.”
She went on to say, “I think it is selfish, greedy, and rude for people to try to slip through the system as a standardized patient, when in fact they are carrying disease. Once again, patients just thinking about themselves.”