A Funny But True Experience at Work

There was a time when I was working in a hospital as a financial analyst. My work required, among other things, setting the prices of various medicines, medical procedures and basically every supply you would find in med carts that a doctor or medical personnel needs to treat a patient.

Since I did not have any experience in the medical field, I’m practically lost when I read all those medical jargon. Since the hospital was just starting then, we basically started pricing everything from cottons to executive check up procedures.

One of the funniest thing that I remember was charging the whole pack of cotton in a certain procedure when it only takes a few cotton balls to complete the procedure. Well, I asked the department concerned about the supplies that they needed for a certain procedure and when they said that they would need a pack of cotton, I included the cost of the whole cotton pack to the procedure cost.

I know it’s not funny especially if you were the patient who would have been shocked with your bill but that’s how we do it in accounting: we compute unit prices according to unit. I still stand by my decision then that those filling up my survey should have been more specific re: unit of quantity that will be used because in Accounting, we usually just run the formula on Excel (and leave all those medical details, lingos and jargon to the medical people). If you supplied the wrong info, naturally the result will be wrong as well.