Wednesday, June 12, 2013

Monitoring the Mechanics of Mankind

I didn't do a post yesterday as I had an early morning appoinment at a medical centre in the suburbs of Angoulême.

Some two months ago I received a request advising that I'd been apparently randomly slected and asking if I would be interested in participating in a French State-run study of the health of a cross section of adults. Having responded in the positive a large envelope with several detailed questionaires on work history, lifestyle choices and other generalities arrived in the post. Among the info given was the fact that this survey was intended to include around 200,000 French adults up to the age of 69. I informed the organisers by e-mail, that I did not feel I qualified being English, but was informed I was welcome to participate, so duly went along yesterday morning.

The "Centre d'examen de santé" for the Charente is one of 109 such across the country and processes some 10,000 people a year of which only around 16% turn out to be in good health, read a report on their 40th anniversary in French linked here.

My impression was as of it being a kind of MOT testing station for humans. From a central reception hall and waiting area, individual examination rooms lead off where, blood and urine are first extracted, thereafter sight, sound ECG and other vital functions are monitored and recorded.

Such I pondered, is where the French revolution seems inevitably to have led, aped almost everywhere nowadays by modern mankind. Nowhere in the questions that I had answered at great length was there any mention of the hidden joys that fulfill and enrich our lives, our pets, access to nature and the beauties of the countryside together with its wildlife can bring.

Here, within this purpose built human processing facility, as I waited for one intrusion to follow the next, so the time passed and my blood pressure rose to once again in my lifetime  fulfill and demonstrate Eintsein's well noted dilemma, that the observer effects that which he tries to assess, often with unquantifiable results!




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