BIRMINGHAM, AL – Hospital administrators have been searching for better ways to educate patients prior to being discharged. Administrators may have found their answer in a new ratio developed by education specialist Dr. Henry Soothers.
Dr. Soothers noticed a trend of patients with numerous tattoos combined with a decreased number of teeth, demonstrating below average intelligence. Specifically he developed the tattoo-to-tooth (Ta/To) ratio and studied it extensively.
Multiple tattoos combined with a small number of teeth lead to a large Ta/To ratio and correlate with poor intelligence. Small Ta/To ratios could be accomplished with either having lots of teeth or minimal tattoos and correspond to better intelligence. Someone with no tattoos will produce a score of zero and it actually becomes very dependent upon the number of teeth, where less than 10 teeth correlates with decreased intelligence.
The worst case scenario is anyone who has one or more tattoos and no teeth, which equates to an infinity score. The score ratio has amazing precision and accuracy for pure stupidity for patients less than 60. After 60 it loses specificity due to more elderly people requiring dentures for various reasons.
“I can’t stand dealing with young infinity score patients,” said ER nurse Peter Jacobson. “I can’t even tell these patients to take Tylenol since they will find a way to screw it up.”
“Ahhh, infinity score patients are the worst!” proclaimed EM physician Derricka Peters. “Usually they are repeat visitors, drunk, combative, and call me ‘hun.’ I hate that. I wish there was a way for them to go away.”
Dr. Soothers might just have a perfect plan. He plans to make different discharge paperwork instructions and dispositions based upon the Ta/To ratio. “Patients with greater than 10 teeth with a small ratio or zero can be given the detailed instructions and can be trusted with medications and follow up.”
“Patients with large scores or even the dreaded infinity ratio, well, their discharge instructions will consist of a picture book with crayons, a happy meal voucher, and a one way bus ticket far away. Whatever it takes to get them out of the ER.”