The Clinic Door – Chapter 1: The Beginning

| September 26, 2017

Physicians blog for a myriad of reasons. Some to discuss interesting clinical cases and their interactions with patients and in the case of pathologists, our clinical and pathology colleagues. Some do it to rant and rave about regulations, reimbursements, requirements, EMR adoption and so forth. Some do it as an outlet to share ideas, propagate thoughts outside usual peer-reviewed channels and explore ideas that they think will help themselves and their patients. And some blog to talk about their own health.

I have done some of all of these in a manner which allowed me to do so without the usual peer-review or board review or committee review that is usually required in medicine when a physician writes something to be read by others. Fortunately, I haven’t had a need to talk about my own health. Until now.

Let me say this for my experience in the past 6 weeks as one physician described it to me in a text, “Welcome to the healthcare system”.  He wasn’t kidding. The system of healthcare having been cared for in a number of hospitals now, behind many clinic doors and curtains and glass enclosures, becoming a consumer rather than a provider/producer, is anything but a “system”.

Having spent time working in and being treated in the VA system, I always believed the care was excellent, if you had access to it.  Access is the key. And I think of the keystones of what we have tried to do with “healthcare reform” or as I think it should be said, “healthcare payment reform”.

Once you access the “system”, the care is second to none. Big or small hospitals, employed or private physicians, rural or suburban, you are cared for. It may not be what you want to hear or do but the care is there.

Navigating this system is anything short of “integrated care” even within “integrated healthcare delivery systems”.

In what I hope to publish in a series of posts I will share my experiences within the “system” behind inside many clinic doors and share the good, bad and ugly of getting sick and trying to get well from the perspective of a patient rather than a provider (I hate that term but my own doctors use the term “provider” so will stick with it).

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Category: Personal

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  1. Tom Boyd says:

    See a movie entitled ‘The Doctor”.
    William Hurt is terrific as a doc who is diagnosed with throat cancer and the “patient experience” is really eye-opening for him.