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Old 12-06-2013, 11:49 AM   #1
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New Doctor - Ha-bloody-ha!

My doctor in Hyde has retired so I have signed up with a practice in Marple where I now live. (NB Over here you go to the General Practitioner/Family Doctor as the first port of call and then you are referred if necessary to the specialist department at the hospital).

Went for first visit to new Doctor yesterday. Nothing serious - just a repeat prescription for my gastric reflux and advice on my foot which is causing shoe problems (16 year olds may look glam and trendy on a hot summers day wearing sheepskin boots with a cotton frock but at my age you just look slightly mad.)

Doctor was about fourteen years old and didn't look further than my silver hair. Started going on about me being on the verge of a "serious" age change. Eh? What? Apparently, in February next I will be 65 and I will instantly start falling apart at the seams. In order to fend this off I need 'flu and pneumonia vaccinations IMMEDIATELY. If I didn't have them NOW I will DIE. I discovered how seriously he was taking this when I took the prescription to the pharmacist and discovered he'd only given me 4 weeks tablets. I've always had 8 weeks-worth in the past. Perhaps I'd better start putting my affairs in order.

He wasn't the least interested in my foot (which hurts and I can only wear my sheepskin boots or my wellingtons). Just burbled on about dangerous operations and danger of scarring (on my foot - who cares?) and DEATH! The fact that I'm going to have to walk round on it for the next 30 years didn't seem to be important.

I can see I'm going to have my work cut out in training this one! I deliberately went wearing (clean) riding breeches, etc., so he wouldn't write me off as just another senile old bat who is going to be a drain on resources but I got the distinct impression that he was mentally measuring me up for my coffin!

Come out of retirement, Dr Proctor, PLEASE! (He always treated me like an intelligent woman.)
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Old 12-06-2013, 01:06 PM   #2
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Finding a good doctor is so hard.
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Old 12-06-2013, 02:03 PM   #3
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Oh my! You have my sympathy. Here when you turn 65, (if you are on Medicare) you can go to any doctor you want and you don't need any referrals for specialists. We also have Medicaid which pays for anything that Medicare doesn't. Or the balance of what Medicare received. Medicare never pays the full amount of what a doctor charges.

The day I turned 65, my phone rang all day cancelling all my appointments. My Blue Cross/Blue Shield private insurance was cancelled automatically on my birthday. All the doctors wanted to make sure my Medicare had kicked in. So I had to make all new appointments for the following months. What a PITA! With the health care organization I am with now, EVERTHING is taken care of for me and I have no worries about any medicines or procedures I may need. The make all my appointments, provide all my medicines, provide all transportation to and from appointments, etc. Good luck in training your new doctor. Make list of what you want to talk to him about and have it in your hand. That is if you can stay alive that long. Should I be shopping for a black dress?
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Old 12-06-2013, 03:47 PM   #4
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Oh my! You have my sympathy. Here when you turn 65, (if you are on Medicare) you can go to any doctor you want and you don't need any referrals for specialists. We also have Medicaid which pays for anything that Medicare doesn't. Or the balance of what Medicare received. Medicare never pays the full amount of what a doctor charges.

The day I turned 65, my phone rang all day cancelling all my appointments. My Blue Cross/Blue Shield private insurance was cancelled automatically on my birthday. All the doctors wanted to make sure my Medicare had kicked in. So I had to make all new appointments for the following months. What a PITA! With the health care organization I am with now, EVERTHING is taken care of for me and I have no worries about any medicines or procedures I may need. The make all my appointments, provide all my medicines, provide all transportation to and from appointments, etc. Good luck in training your new doctor. Make list of what you want to talk to him about and have it in your hand. That is if you can stay alive that long. Should I be shopping for a black dress?
Addy, your health care may be free to you, but it's not the case for everyone over 65 in this country, and that needs to be made very clear. Most of us on Medicare either pay out of pocket for what it doesn't cover, or pay for supplemental insurance to cover what's not included in Medicare. I wouldn't want for you to give anyone who doesn't live in this country the impression that everyone over the age of 65 receives all your benefits free of charge because it's just not so.

MC, I so agree about how young doctors seem to be these days. I'm reminded of what Erma Bombeck said in one of her books..."I'm looking for a doctor older than my cookie sheets".
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Old 12-06-2013, 04:05 PM   #5
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Is he the only doctor you can see there? Maybe someone else would be a better fit.
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Old 12-06-2013, 04:12 PM   #6
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Addy, your health care may be free to you, but it's not the case for everyone over 65 in this country, and that needs to be made very clear. Most of us on Medicare either pay out of pocket for what it doesn't cover, or pay for supplemental insurance to cover what's not included in Medicare. I wouldn't want for you to give anyone who doesn't live in this country the impression that everyone over the age of 65 receives all your benefits free of charge because it's just not so.

MC, I so agree about how young doctors seem to be these days. I'm reminded of what Erma Bombeck said in one of her books..."I'm looking for a doctor older than my cookie sheets".
Kayelle, you know how you have plan A,B on your Medicare card and Plan D is for your prescriptions. I have Plan C. It is the plan that patients in nursing homes have. But it also is for the elderly that don't need nursing homes and is designed to keep the patient in their own home as long as possible. Yet I have seen many of the patients in my own situation that eventually had to leave their home for extended care in a facility that give 24 hour care. Some are returned to their home with extended care of a housekeeper, meals on wheels, and other services. But that is not the norm. Most do not return to their home. And it is always a last resort.

It was not my intention to say that everyone has free care.
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Old 12-06-2013, 04:33 PM   #7
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I'm glad you expanded on that Addie, but you began before by saying "Here when you turn 65", which certainly sounded like all your benefits you described are free for anyone over 65 yrs.
Again, thanks for making it clear this time.
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Old 12-06-2013, 04:42 PM   #8
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What I think is that we all wish we had our best health. And when we need a medical service, we prefer we have the best qualified and knowledgeable care possible.

Mad, I don't think I quite understand if this is the only physician available to you or within a reasonable distance. I think one of the advantages you have is being able to look over the tops of your glasses, shake that head of silver hair you have and then bring out your best smile and with your most patient aura you can transmit, start training him. Consider your first visit is just a start, and hopefully he will listen to you in the future.
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Old 12-06-2013, 04:46 PM   #9
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what Erma Bombeck said in one of her books..."I'm looking for a doctor older than my cookie sheets".
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Old 12-06-2013, 05:23 PM   #10
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I'm glad you expanded on that Addie, but you began before by saying "Here when you turn 65", which certainly sounded like all your benefits you described are free for anyone over 65 yrs.
Again, thanks for making it clear this time.
Reading back over my original post, I can see where you are coming from. Thank you for bringing that to my attention.

There are folks here in the elderly housing that have to pay exorbitant amount of out of pocket money for their medications. I was talking to one today that was going to pick up her meds and had to make sure she had the $85 for her co-pay. I have suggested to several residents that they apply for Medicaid or assistance from the pharmaceutical company. A couple have done just that and got a lot of help that they didn't know existed.

I don't know how it came about, but it seems I am the "go to" person for information in this building. Why aren't the doctors and medical pros telling their patients about the services and help that are out there?

There are only two on us in the building that have computers. The other person only knows how to play games on his. So when anyone wants information I look it up for them and print it out. No wonder I like to hide in my apartment. It is quiet and peaceful in here.
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Old 12-06-2013, 05:33 PM   #11
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Oh my! You have my sympathy. Here when you turn 65, (if you are on Medicare) you can go to any doctor you want and you don't need any referrals for specialists. We also have Medicaid which pays for anything that Medicare doesn't. Or the balance of what Medicare received. Medicare never pays the full amount of what a doctor charges.

The day I turned 65, my phone rang all day cancelling all my appointments. My Blue Cross/Blue Shield private insurance was cancelled automatically on my birthday. All the doctors wanted to make sure my Medicare had kicked in. So I had to make all new appointments for the following months. What a PITA! With the health care organization I am with now, EVERTHING is taken care of for me and I have no worries about any medicines or procedures I may need. The make all my appointments, provide all my medicines, provide all transportation to and from appointments, etc. Good luck in training your new doctor. Make list of what you want to talk to him about and have it in your hand. That is if you can stay alive that long. Should I be shopping for a black dress?
Crumbs - health insurance cuts out just when you start to need it. It sounds as though you're lucky with your care. The British National Health Service may not be perfect but at least no-one dies because they can't afford to go to the doctor!

I was lucky enough just to slip under the barrier before they raised the retirement age for women and got my pension when I was 60 so I don't have to pay for my prescriptions but even when I did it was only 7 (about $10?) an item regardless of its actual cost and I think if you are under retirement age but you're on certain welfare benefits you may get them free too, but I'm not sure. Of course, children get free meds on prescription.

I didn't understand what all the kerfuffle about "Obama Care" was about as most of the reporting on the news here was about the political ramifications and when I researched it I was even more confused. Was it supposed to make health care more accessible for the poor or less accessible?
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Old 12-06-2013, 05:44 PM   #12
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I signed up for Obamacare and will find out how it works January 1 2014. The plan I selected is very similar to the one I have now, we'll see!

I made the change for purely financial reasons. The premium on my current plan is going up to $940.00/month next year, the Obamacare premium is $465.00/month. My major concern is that when it renews the premium will skyrocket if enough people do not sign up, only time will tell!

At times I find myself getting sick from worry about my health insurance!
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Old 12-06-2013, 05:54 PM   #13
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Crumbs - health insurance cuts out just when you start to need it. It sounds as though you're lucky with your care. The British National Health Service may not be perfect but at least no-one dies because they can't afford to go to the doctor!

I was lucky enough just to slip under the barrier before they raised the retirement age for women and got my pension when I was 60 so I don't have to pay for my prescriptions but even when I did it was only 7 (about $10?) an item regardless of its actual cost and I think if you are under retirement age but you're on certain welfare benefits you may get them free too, but I'm not sure. Of course, children get free meds on prescription.

I didn't understand what all the kerfuffle about "Obama Care" was about as most of the reporting on the news here was about the political ramifications and when I researched it I was even more confused. Was it supposed to make health care more accessible for the poor or less accessible?
It's supposed to make affordable health insurance more accessible to the general population. If you don't have coverage through your employer (mine cost me $200 per month, rest is paid by employer), then you can now buy insurance at a lower cost and what you pay is supposed to be based on your income. It's a pretty rough system, at the moment. We really just need a single payer (my opinion) system similar to what you have, but this was the compromise. We really don't need "insurance" but accessible health care for all.
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Old 12-06-2013, 05:55 PM   #14
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We've kept this pretty clean and not political at all so far, so lets try to keep it that way!
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Old 12-06-2013, 06:48 PM   #15
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Addy, your health care may be free to you, but it's not the case for everyone over 65 in this country, and that needs to be made very clear. Most of us on Medicare either pay out of pocket for what it doesn't cover, or pay for supplemental insurance to cover what's not included in Medicare. I wouldn't want for you to give anyone who doesn't live in this country the impression that everyone over the age of 65 receives all your benefits free of charge because it's just not so.

MC, I so agree about how young doctors seem to be these days. I'm reminded of what Erma Bombeck said in one of her books..."I'm looking for a doctor older than my cookie sheets".
As they say over here, you know you're getting old when you notice how young the policemen are getting.

Yes, we are very lucky over here with our free health care. Of course, we do contribute through our National Insurance payments (a small amount paid at source out of income) throughout our working lives but there is no question of a patient being refused care or treatment because s/he hasn't paid enough contributions. If you are unemployed or at home bringing up children you are credited with free contributions so you don't lose out.

All this came out of the Beveridge Report in 1944 which identified the "Five Giant Evils" in society - squalor, ignorance, want, idleness, and disease, and went on to propose widespread reform to the system of social welfare to address these evils and between the end of the war and 1949 all the recommendations of the Beveridge Report had been implemented.

It seems to me very odd that a civilised country like the USA can't organise itself into an efficient welfare system. And it appears to be getting worse. When I was trying to find out about Obama Care I read that, according to an Amnesty International report, the USA has the worst record for deaths connected with childbirth of all the industrialised nations and the maternal death rate has doubled in the last 25 years, whereas in most other countries the maternal death rate has dropped.
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Old 12-06-2013, 06:50 PM   #16
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We've kept this pretty clean and not political at all so far, so lets try to keep it that way!
Sorry, didn't mean to be political. It was a genuine enquiry
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Old 12-06-2013, 11:29 PM   #17
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Sorry, didn't mean to be political. It was a genuine enquiry
No, no problem. The subject of health care becomes very political over here there are VERY strong opinions on both sides.
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Old 12-07-2013, 07:34 AM   #18
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Medicare only pays 80% and it isn't free. They take a little more than $100 out of your social security check for it. Medicaid is only available to people with very low income. Some low income patients can get help with paying the $100 per month fee. I am not eligible for that, mainly because they go by the combined household income. As someone else mentioned, most people buy a medicare supplement to help pay what Medicare doesn't pay. That can cost between $0 and over $500 per month on top of the $100 they take out of the SS check. It depends on what coverage you want or can afford to buy. Even with this, if I get a prescription that is brand medication it is $112.00 for 90 day supply. I try to get the dr to prescribe generics so I can pay $25 for 90 day supply. Newer meds are not available in generic but doctors consider them to be superior to older meds and push you to try them.

In our area, most people who don't have insurance use the emergency room like a family doctor because they must treat you even if you have no insurance or money to pay. Most doctor's require payment at the time of service, no exceptions. If you have insurance but go to the emergency room for something that is not considered an emergency, your insurance can deny the claim, although I've never heard of that actually happening.
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Old 12-07-2013, 10:24 AM   #19
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I shall be 65 in February too ( 24th as it happens) May I be so bold as to point out 1 or 2 errors in your approach?
1.Next time dress as a Hippy and rattle on about alternative therapies. They can't resist the challenge to get you back onside. Will offer you all sorts.
2. Tell them it is such a shame how Britain has slipped so far down the league tables of the world for healthcare, even way below France (they hate that) then have to convince you how wrong you are so will again offer you all kinds.
3. Move to France. Here if you have to see a consultant they apologise if they can't fit you in for two days. No kidding.
4. Thank him very much,pat him on the head, sigh sympathetically and then ask for a second opinion...........".just to be on the safe side Kid"
Good luck!
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