Continuing with my 30 Days of Gratitude, I revisit my post from Saturday where I talked about the importance of regularly seeing your doctor. Some of the comments made me grateful for something else:
Day #5 – Great Luck With Doctors Who Care
Now don’t get me wrong – we’ve had some lousy doctors over the years, including one who seemed to regard Lisa as a test subject rather than an actual person, and a pediatrician so distracted by her own life that she totally missed diagnosing our son who when he was 2.5 ended up at the doctor’s office 5 times in 7 days before being admitted to the hospital!
In my response to one of the comments I said I could have had a ‘#0’ assumption:
“Having a trusted professional who knows you and what you do makes a huge difference.”
It is totally true. And by and large we have had some excellent medical professionals who have actually cared about our health and wellness.
I look at Dr Heinser, back in Massachusetts before we moved as perhaps the best of all of our doctors. He never ignored our concerns, always took the time to ask questions and listen to the answers, and went out of his way to be sure we were OK.
I have mentioned that he ordered non-standard thyroid tests on my for my last physical before moving to New York. I wanted to make sure to use up the residual healthcare from my previous job … and I am glad I did. What I took as ‘post layoff blues’ was actually the beginning of my thyroid crashing.
And while our first primary care doctor here in NY was ‘good’, she was also very busy with a young family and pared her hours back until she left to be at home full time. As it turns out, that was best for both Lisa and I – we got different doctors this time, but both of them are excellent and have really worked for our health these past couple of years.
The other day Lisa reminded me of other factors that are non-doctor:
– The “Gilderoy Lockehart Effect” (yes, too much Harry Potter on ABC Family last month!) – the doctor who is so busy and frazzled that unless you are a top priority they have no mindspace for you and each meeting feels like the first. Her allergist was like that – when he was doing her nasal surgery and other things it was all very social and familiar, but earlier this year dealing with her worsening allergies … well, never going back THERE again.
– Learning to navigate the system in place at the office: basically there are people in place to keep you away from the doctor unless necessary, which can be annoying if you are the doctor. Last year when Lisa was really sick she saw all sorts of non-doctors before finally getting into the doctor, who was annoyed – and was glad to finally deal with the problems.
– Dealing with insurance: last year we ended up with hundreds of dollars in extra testing charges because the lab on the bottom floor of our doctor’s off is affiliated with the hospital rather than the doctor, meaning the charge structure was different. Fortunately that was changed, so my bill for this year’s round of tests? $12.
And of course, I have to make sure you know where I got that title reference …
Have you had one great doctor in your life?