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Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Facing my own crisis w/ healthcare

This is not a diatribe about how expensive it is, what's covered and what's not covered - believe you me! there are far better writers out there who have extensively covered that subject!!!  This is about my own personal problems w/ dental healthcare that I bunked into yet again today.  It is not so much a fault of one dentist or one secretary - if that were the case, you would just change dentists (which I've done, and which you'll see in my bullet list below, why) -- its more of a global problem with how healthcare looks at patients:

(1)  Antibiotics
       (a)  Just because I ask for antibiotics, does not mean I'm a drugseeker, for Chrissakes!  It means I know what it feels like to have an infection in my mouth, and what I need to do to treat it.  
       (b)  And then there was the dentist in Lexi who told me that the reason this is, is because of all these resistant strains that are coming around because of the overuse of antbiotics... when I started to say it was more caused by what is fed to cattle and chickens, I was expecting someone like my previous dentist, Dr Richard Noel, who looked at dentistry like a ministry, a two-way relationship - that even if he disagreed with you, he would respectfully listen to you.  This guy in Lexi started yelling at me - OH YOU'RE ONE OF THOSE!  While there were sharp instruments in my mouth and I was in horrific pain.  At the least it was a preliminary visit, so I was able to exit quickly enough and not go back there!
   (c) So here's my question: if it hurts now, and that means its infected, and I need an antibiotic, but you won't prescribe without seeing me, does that mean I have to wait a week until you look in there and agree with me, for pity's sakes?!  Does anyplace in dentistry have what doctors do - a nurse practioner type who can look at you fast if you don't need "the whole works"?
  (d)  You are aware, because I filled out your form, that I have preexisting healthcare conditions ... and one of them, at least, I feel, predisposes me to be suspectable to bacteria.  You don't know this?!  How educated are dentists???  If you do know this, why haven't you given me a standing order for antibiotics at my pharmacy?
(2)  $$$
 I realize you are a professional, who deserves to be paid ... but can we at least discuss $$$ when I'm not writhing in pain at your reception desk?!  (Of course, if Medi-nothing paid dentists the going rate, we wouldn't even be having this discussion ...)

(3) In Practice
When I first went to this particular dental office, there were two dentists.  I saw the woman.  We got along well; we developed a treatment plan that I said I needed time to think it over - my problem wasn't money, as I explained, but not having anyone in my life who could watch over me and help me out, post-surgery ... a short while later, I was stunned to see in the paper my dentist now in a different practice!  Never received a notice from her in the mail, nor did I receive a notice from the practice ... When it flared the time before this, I was in a desperate state and not wanting to travel over 16 miles one way by myself to an emergency dentist, I called the practice.  The dentist there - while never having seen me before - was very good about things ... but, still -- why did she leave?  why weren't the patients notified?  are you planning on getting someone else in your practice (because as a 'one-man-band' you are overwhelmed!)?

It just makes me feel like I'm in one of those old HMO plans where they assign you a doctor and you don't get a say in your own healthcare ... which I guess takes me roundabout back to the whole antibiotics issue!  For me, that's a larger problem with our healthcare: how every advertisement and book screams at you to advocate for yourself ... but when you do that, you bunk into:

(a) being patronized "you don't know what we professionals have gone to school for..."  attitude
(b) not being helped, anyway, until and unless it meets there specific protocols - which generally involves coming in for another office vi$it, at least

Socialized medicine???

Honey, all I want is healthcare that treats me like I have a brain and a say !!!!!!!!!!

1 comment:

  1. Ah yeah. You describe the new socialist economy quite well. No say in doctors, no say in treatments. I've had an emotionally unstable neurosurgeon describe to me briefly the procedure for a bone graft in my neck while no diagnosis or reason why was ever given. The dentists? MMM kay.. yep. I've had medi-crap say "OK" to treatment and services one day to "Oh.. no." the next day. When I ask questions they give me a telephone number to a non-existent nurse line. Cut-backs. Meh.