Palliative Team: Do you know anything about or have ever considered hospice?
Patient: I know what it is but I am not interested.
Palliative Team: May we ask why that is or what you understand about hospice care?
Patient: Once you are in hospice, you are dying.
Distinction: Being in hospice does not initiate the process of dying. Death is being driven by the underlying disease. This is a common misconception and the role of hospice in the care of dying is an arbitrary distinction. The care of the dying can happen in hospice, in hospital, or at home.
Patient: I swore to myself, "You better live to be 150!"
Me: That's a ripe old age! Why 150?
Patient: It's because of all of my pension, medical benefits and coverages. I figured, for all the years I paid my taxes, I cannot die before the government pays their due diligence and covers me for all of my future medical problems.
Me: I see.
Patient: I did all of the math already, you see?
Me: To break even? At 150?
Patient: *Serious tone* That's right. If I die before that, the government wins.
Surgeon: So before I do the colonoscopy, you will have to do some bowel prep.
Patient: What does that involve?
Surgeon: We give you something to drink and you will need to continue drinking plenty of fluids the day before. This stuff will help you go to the washroom and clear your bowels of any stool. There is no point for me to scope you if I cannot see anything.
Patient: That sounds like fun.
Surgeon: Oh yes, it is a blast. Take the day off work that day because you will be tied to your toilet.
Patient: Well we will need to book it a little later in the month then.
Surgeon: Why is that?
Patient: I am getting my toilet replaced right now. I will not have a toilet for a bit. It is current backed up.
Surgeon: Yes, you probably should. The toilet is sort of the required piece of equipment for this procedure.