Universal Health Care in America? Don’t Make Me Laugh… You Get an “Assumed Doctor” and Like it or You Choose to Die.

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 Foolin’ the People About America. Better Off Than Fifty Years Ago? Part Four: But Do You Get a Doctor?

 starve the beast

And Do You Get a Doctor?

102792692praying-with-open-hands2_thumb[3]Do you get a doctor, though? Not in this decade you don’t. When I was a child we went to the doctor’s office and paid $7 for a doctor’s visit. Even on my Dad’s $50 a week, that was affordable; and that was the least he made. When you now have doctor’s visits that cost a hundred to three hundred dollars if you pay out of pocket (or more), do you realize how much you’d have to make for it to be as affordable as it was for my Dad? Figure $700 to 2 to 3 thousand a week. Some people make that nowadays, but not the poor. Remember, my father was dirt poor, getting by on $50 a week with six kids.

Beast1

House Calls in the Past; “Pretend” Doctors Today

But we got to see a real doctor. We even got a doctor who made house calls. Today? Well you get a pretend doctor who confers, along with a gaggle of other pretend doctors, with an actual physician, then gets back to you as you wait…and wait some more.

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And You Wait

955830597_092af7676dRecently, it took four hours for the visit and another four hours to get the prescriptions at the same hospital in another place…and the prescriptions didn’t all come through until after two weeks and a number of phone calls, as at one point they had to order a common prescription and then lost the order (had no record that it had ever been made; though on several phone calls they referred to it) and had to make it again. And this experience has been common. I’ve experienced it a number of times. I’m trying to acquire health care elsewhere, believe me.

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You Get an “Assumed” Doctor

OliverTwist_6957Did I get a doctor? No. Oh, they call themselves doctors. The last one was more honest and announced when he came in that he was so and so who was a “student doctor.” I didn’t hear him correctly. My mind scanned thousands of files in an instant and what it came up with I just had to ask. I said, “Did you say you are an ‘assumed doctor’”?

And You Like It

tumblr_lv1gf21YZO1r6m1z5o1_500And  being “processed” like a piece of meat this way, you get a different “assumed doctor” every time. There is no continuity. You don’t bother to keep track of their names, for it doesn’t matter. You start all over on every visit. The only thing they know of you is what has been electronically recorded from previous visits; nothing human or relational is carried forward. They will tell you it is because all the “assumed doctors” are equally competent and qualified, so it doesn’t matter. Of course that is a rationalization for a system so “starved” of funding the personal touch has long ago been squeezed out in favor of assembly-line efficiency. 

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Or You Choose to Die

So what is the upshot of all this. It is that many folks have to weigh getting health care in America—which is claimed to be “available”—against the complications and time of getting it. I don’t have a job, so I was able to persevere. What of folks who have to work full time or more? I was well enough to stand around and coherent enough to make notes and make phone calls. What of folks who are sicker than that?

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The Unspoken Costs of Health Care

2008_09_25_wall_stThe upshot is that many folks are weighing THESE costs of health care when choosing whether or not to seek help. And their decision is leaving many of these folks dead. I know of a number of people who have made such a decision; many of you also do.

Some Are Choosing a “Soylent Green” Escape

I know of one instance where it was even done consciously, for the person did not want to spend what might be her last time on Earth struggling with an insensitive and mean-spirited medical system, so she just opted to let her cancer take her in the serenity of her home and surrounded by loved ones. (Why am I thinking of that movie Soylent Green again? Well, maybe you remember that scene as well.)

Others Are Risking It

passion-of-the-christ-3.lrgrI know I myself weigh these costs in time and suffering and inconvenience whenever I feel I might need to be looked at for something. And very often…most of the time actually…I put off being looked at. ht_pepper_spray_meme_12_nt_111121_ssvI postpone doing tests that are made more time consuming and painful for poor folks (don’t get me started on that); and I often give up in pursuing the treatments and medications that I am prescribed…figuring that putting up with the suffering of the ailment is better than the suffering incurred in its cure. And I am not alone. Will it cost me my life? Perhaps.

Universal health care in America? Don’t make me laugh..

America—Best Health Care in the World
…Before Them

reagan1Now, compare all this with the way it was fifty years ago. hc-gop-prescriptionA friend of mine on Facebook shared how her brother was treated when he had a life threatening injury. This was that long ago and she relates they were poor. She says, they flew in a specialist from Australia to perform the delicate operation. I repeat, they were poor. But then this was all before Reagan…and Nixon. I’m getting to that.

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Continue With With the Excuse of “The Game,” Small-Hearted Folks Can Now Flaunt Their Mean-Spiritedness – The Compassion Gap…Better Off Than Fifty Years Ago? Part 5

Return to Aren’t America’s “Extermination Policies” Just More Undetectable Than Nazi Germany’s? Starving the “Beast”—That Means You: Your Money or Your Life




The Rise and Fall of “Obvious Truths,” Part Three– an Audio Reading by SillyMickel Adzema

Here is an audio of the author’s impassioned reading of this part. Though it is of the first, unedited and unpolished version, and it does not contain all the detail of its current form below, it does capture the flavor of it all. I offer it here for your listening pleasure. For the reading of this part, “The Rise and Fall of ‘Obvious Truths,’ Part Three,” click on the link to the audio site above or click the link to the audio player below.

http://cdn.hark.com/swfs/player_fb.swf?pid=gjhxqmkbdn
“The Rise and Fall of ‘Obvious Truths’ Part 3”



Continue With With the Excuse of “The Game,” Small-Hearted Folks Can Now Flaunt Their Mean-Spiritedness – The Compassion Gap…Better Off Than Fifty Years Ago? Part 5

Return to Aren’t America’s “Extermination Policies” Just More Undetectable Than Nazi Germany’s? Starving the “Beast”—That Means You: Your Money or Your Life

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  1. #1 by J. Mike Welling on June 6, 2012 - 4:31 pm

    So amazing how our lives have paralleled. I picked up an amoeba while traveling through Mexico City, I was in bad shape by the time I reached my destination where I went to the pharmacy and explained my symptoms to an 18 year old clerk who glanced back at the pharmacist for approval before handing me a packet and instructed me to take every single one of the capsules (two or three a day for ten days) as instructed on the package, asking me to return if my symptoms didn’t greatly improving by the next morning. I did feel much better and was back to normal after two or three days so, not liking drugs, stopped taking the medicine. As a result, the affliction returned about a day before pulling into the train station in Nogales Sonora. The next morning in Phoenix I went to a doctor, explained what I had (he didn’t like that) after waiting for two days for tests to confirm what I told him he gave me a prescription ~ it read 3 tablets, three times a day for three months, stop for one week then another 3 for 3? that’s well over a thousand tablets .. Yikes!! I turned him down went home, took a large head of garlic and tossed it in the blender, pushing it down in the blades with a stalk of celery, fed it to myself by the spoonful and was better by morning. After about three days and convinced I was cured, I returned to that doctor to tell him, actually believing he would want to know my discovery .. Ha.. He accused me of going to Mex for the cure and booted me out of his office as I admitted that if the garlic hadn’t worked I would return to Mex rather then back to him .. ‘~’

    • #2 by sillymickel on June 7, 2012 - 2:34 am

      I can soooo relate. I have so many times come up against this kind of arrogance of doctors. This makes me think of so many other stories; but then I would be writing here for a long time. Yes, our lives have paralleled. My guess is there’s lots of folks who’ve had experiences like ours.

      One little example, though…not exactly alike, but it’s on my mind. I had chest pains and went to the hospital in Hemet, CA. I was there for a week hooked up to a heart monitor machine. They gave me EKG’s, etc. (no stress test, though). I kept being told the doctor would see me in a few days. About four days in, the doctor showed up while I was eating, said, go ahead, no problem, asked a question or two and left. It was nothing like a consultation. On about the sixth day, he was walking through my room and the nurse said something, and the doctor said loudly, “He doesn’t have any money!!!” Then to me, he said, “Do you?” (in an angry tone). I said something about how I’m applying for it (which I was). He left in a huff. The nurse afterwards admitted that was inappropriate (under her breath).

      You see, the doctors there work as independent contractors. Pretty standard nowadays I understand.

      Anyway, they let me go a few days later saying they found nothing and with prescriptions which I had no way of filling and which had nothing to do with my heart. (they gave me drugs to dope me up)

      Fast forward three years to Eugene Oregon and to a free clinic (haven’t had to pay a penny; and I get free Rx’s there on the spot). On my first visit they do an EKG. They study it for a long time and tell me that I had had a heart attack at one point. (I was pretty sure I had, a few years earlier and even prior the the Hemet Hospital time). They prescribe a mild hypertension/beta blocker medicine. I’ve gone there since and they’ve followed up on it; apparently I’m all right, but I did have that one incident, and I need to do some lifestyle things, which I knew I had been lax about.

      What the hell was all that crap at the Hemet Hospital?? It’s all about money. I could’ve died and they would have said they couldn’t find anything wrong with me.

      Thanks for your most excellent comment, my friend.

  2. #3 by sillymickel on June 7, 2012 - 2:37 am

    Mike Welling –
    ‎…”I often give up in pursuing the treatments and medications that I am prescribed…figuring that putting up with the suffering of the ailment is better than the suffering incurred in its cure.”
    Me too. I don’t even go anymore, my friends that do, end up with a mail box full of drugs every month. I enjoyed the $8 to $12 visits to my doctor while living in Mexico. He was very hesitant about prescribing any drugs, especially for children, allowing our own defense system handle the problem, whenever possible.

    The human body is a community of approximately fifty trillion cells. Everything the body does, the cells do as well. The cells have respiratory and excretory systems, they think, replicate, feel and communicate with other cells. They too endeavor to maintain the body in a preferred state of homeostasis. (The only thing that interferes with that process is us, and the medical profession)

    • #4 by sillymickel on June 7, 2012 - 2:38 am

      yes. good points. and interesting that you and others are ending up doing the same as me– simply saying, screw it! Also, can relate to your experience in Mexico. I’ve got a long story about how I was given free medical treatment for my dysentery in India, but when I came back to the U.S. they didn’t know how to help me and I ended up curing myself with natural means (hydrogen peroxide). thanks for your comment, Mike.

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