It has become apparent to me over the past couple of weeks that there are individuals extremely unhappy with the current healthcare system. Well, it has not been recently apparent, I mean I have seen this growing over the past few years and it is becoming worse. I see patients who for the most part are disappointed with some aspect of medicine, but for the most part they understand it is an imperfect system. Most patients will voice their concerns whether it be we didn't call them back soon enough, or the wait time in the waiting room was too long, and I truly listen because I want to improve my office.
I want to use this blog as a means for you to voice your concerns about the medical system and how you can think we can make it better. Maybe we can bring this issue to a higher level by having many of you bringing your concerns to this forum.
I have my own concerns with the medical system, on both sides of the coin. My wife brought our seven year old to the emergency room a couple of weeks ago and checked him in. She waited for 3 hours and was not seen and she eventually left the emergency room. Obviously our son did ok, but we are both physicians and were able to handle his issues, but so many people have huge waits to get in to see a physician and then they are strapped with a large bill and with little to explain for their visit. Sometimes it is a lab bill that was not covered by their insurance and they call us to figure things out. The labs charge inordinately high amounts for labs and things we order may not be covered, but it is difficult for us to know the 57 plans at our office and what they cover. We go to bat for patients all the time and will cal LabCorp to see if they can either waive the fees or give a discount, but many times it is for naught.
What is your story and what do you think could make this medical system better. Where do we start? Will ObamaCare help or will it hinder? SHould we be focusing on preventive care and nutrition or is the current system of treating the disease better at this point? Finally, what about self-care and how do we all improve our own health to the point where some of these diseases like high blood pressure, cholesterol, obesity, and diabetes begin to decrease?
I hope we can keep the discussion civil.
Shawn Tassone, MD is a board certified OBGYN. He graduated from the Integrative Medicine fellowship at the University of Arizona with Andrew Weil, MD and is currently in the dissertation phase of his PhD in Mind-Body Medicine. He is also the Director of Research for the World Institute of Scientific Exploration in Compelmentary and Alternative Medicine