Friday, October 17, 2014

Why The Disrespect From Medical Workers?

I've been thinking about the disrespect I and a lot of my friends have been treated to by medical workers.  Why are they doing this to us?  It's not even a selective disrespect.  It seems that ALL patients are equally treated like dirt.  Unless you are in medical care you are unworthy.  Even then, unless you are a crna, you are a lower life form.  They even disrespect the doctors.  Why is that?

Here's the deal.  I've worked all my life. I'm a productive member of society.   Just because I CHOSE not to go into the medical field doesn't mean I'm an inferior life form.  It means that maybe I really don't like people (in general) much.  Maybe it's about having to work inside all the time.  Maybe it's because my hyperactivity doesn't allow for extended periods of relative inactivity?  I HATE trying to stay busy.  I like a job where the job itself is busy.  There is nothing wrong with that.  Part of it is the time spent in school, sitting in a classroom.  Part of it is the expense of higher learning.  I have never been comfortable with debt.  I don't like begging people for student loans.  I don't like filling out paperwork.  Lots of reasons NOT to go into health care.  That doesn't make me stupid or unworthy of care.

I WORK!  I pay huge sums of money for my health insurance.  How does it happen that even though I'm making these astronomical payments for health care, that when I want to use it I am treated like a deadbeat? Why am I taken to task for every little thing about me that isn't perfect?  Yes I have packed on a few pounds, but I'm nowhere near obese.  I can't be obese and do my job.  Why is personal attack the main theme from health care workers?  Can't they just fix the problem without the nastiness?  It's like I don't deserve treatment no matter how much I pay.  I pay and pay and pay with money *I* earn so that I can afford treatment.  Treatment grudgingly given.  So what exactly is the point of paying all that hard earned money if I can't use my insurance when I (finally) have a problem?

Most of my friends have experienced this lack of respect from medical workers as well, so I know it's not just me.  Why can't the medical field just treat the damn problem without all the sermonizing?  Do they think it's helpful for patients to be treated like juvenile malingerers by health care?  All those pure and spotless people who will never grow old, never smoke, drink, speed, or do anything lest they "ruin" their health.  Of course they have excuses for their unhealthy choices but for you patients?  Not so much.

In my last encounter with health care I went for months complaining of chest pain.  I went to work every day, exhausted, did my physically demanding job and then some.  My gp was uninterested in the (serious) heat exhaustion I experienced one day, which symptoms continued for 2 weeks.  He was uninterested in my chest pain.  I was made to feel like I was some kind of scammer trying to get on disability!  It was insulting.  I guess I personally am not good enough to rate medical care.  I had refused a colonoscopy (Versed issue) and the statins didn't agree with me so I adjusted my diet instead.  I guess that makes me a persona non grata.  Oh, they still took my money for appointments, but ignored my problem or blamed ME for it.

Even the cardiologist demanded to know why I was back in his office.  The stress test showed nothing, but it did reactivate the previously controlled (by Verapamil) chest pain.  Since I don't complain a lot about things, I guess that means that I'm not really ill.  So at the end, because I found another doctor ( a horse person like me) that called the cardiologist personally I got the treatment I needed.  My cardiologist had CONVINCED me that my chest pain was stress related.  I told the new doctor I was there for non-cardiac chest pain.  Those words passed my lips and I had to eat them later.  Without him, it was just a matter of time before I collapsed of a heart attack.

So for all my class A personality types, don't let the medical machine disrespect you and make light of your complaint.  THEY CAN BE WRONG!  Don't let them tell you that it's your ________ (name the vice/condition) that is causing it.  Don't buy into the "it's all your fault and you are faking it" that a lot of medical people try.

For prospective heart patients whose personalities are like mine...If you are going to work exhausted, and performing by sheer willpower, don't think it's just that you are growing old.  If you are too tired to talk, don't think it's just that you are working hard.  If you have chest pain that feels like a heart attack, regardless of the blood/stress tests get treated.  Change doctors if you have to until you find one who doesn't treat you like uninteresting pond scum.  Don't be ashamed to USE your insurance. That's why you pay for it isn't it?  Don't let the medical people intimidate and shame you.

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