Care for THIS

I have complained about health care here and on Facebook a number of times. As I have said, I don't have the energy to read through over 1,000 pages to figure out what this reform is all about, especially knowing the final bill will look different from what is out there now. But I am all for making things better in the health-care industry.

I am a pretty open person, but when it comes to complaining about medical care, I tend to keep my mouth shut. Why? I pretty much blame it on an episode of Seinfeld, when Elaine complained, and a doctor wrote something in her file. I seriously worry that if I say something, I will have a black mark on my file.

I have a litany of complaints with the ob-gyn practice I have been going to for about 10 years. It started when I was pregnant and one of the doctors told me I could have two mixed drinks a day. What doctor, in the 21st century, would give you advice like that?! Don't enough doctors get sued? Only one doctor in the practice bothered to look at my chart to see that I use my middle name, not my first name. Another doctor dismissed something I was complaining about, only for me to go to the ER at Magee, be treated, and then to have that same doctor tell me at my next appointment I really should not have been treated. Huh?

Last year, a doctor I saw did not even know I had a kid. How is the information not in my chart? Assuming it is, that means she did not bother to look at it, which makes her appear clueless. When I went back to the same doctor this year, she was going to give me a test that my insurance did not pay for, thinking I had not had it in a few years. I told her I thought I had had it in the past two, and after she finally looked at my chart more closely, she realized I did not need it. And she kind of laughed it off, saying something like it was a good thing she noticed it. You might wonder what it will take for me to go elsewhere. Read on.

My mom recently had a test done. A doctor from the same practice (not the same location) called her to say everything was fine. But the next day, someone else calls and says there is a problem that requires surgery. Lovely. I am so angry at this incompetence that I finally have the kick in the butt to find another practice. But not before Magee hears my complaint. I can let the other things go. But when you mess with my mom and lead her to believe she is fine, only to tell her otherwise the next day, all bets are off.


Mel said…
yikes. sounds like a rather incompetent practice. yet, I am a firm believer that you and you alone are your best defender in the world of health care. I have had to push for a couple of things in the past few years, things that docs did not think were necessary. I asked for and ultimately got them, and was glad I did. we must speak up on our own behalf b/c the docs are overworked and/or distracted by 50 drug sale reps wining and dining them. and that was uncool, what they did to your mom. re: the kindness post, I think people are just too busy and too self-absorbed; they forget that there are equally human people in all the other cars, walking on the street, etc. we are all so wrapped up in our own little worlds that it's easy to compartmentalize people and perhaps feel a bit superior or more deserving. we've all done it; and you're right, we all need to stop doing it.
chris h. said…
Facie, find a new practice for sure! I had my annual OB/GYN visit last week and, as always, just love my doc and the simple way her practice runs (she's a solo practitioner). Ditto the last two PCPs I've had -- nice, caring, competent professionals. There are good docs and well-run practices out there and you and your hard-earned money deserve to have them.
Facie :-) said…
I know I need to go somewhere else. And I tend to get names, etc., right after I see my docs, which is not so timely.

I think the other issue is I hate to ask for my records. I feel guilty for leaving a practice. Thus, since I graduated from college, I have records at three ob-gyn practices, three dental offices, and six eye doctors.
Mel said…
ask for those records, girl! and if they ask why, TELL THEM. we all need to stop apologizing for expecting people to do their jobs well. we as patients are not rights, we are privileges. if a doc stinks, he/she will lose patients. that's capitalism. please, find a new practice for that fool O and his silly sidekicks rope us all into regulated healthcare. much harder for them to take stuff away from us once we have it...

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