Katie is under the weather, and after I realized she’d been exposed to strep throat last week I took her to the doctor today.
Seeing the doctor took far less time than finding a doctor to see. Her “primary care provider” as designated on her insurance card wasn’t in her office. No problem, I didn’t mind seeing any of the other four doctors in the practice or even a nurse practitioner. We just needed a strep test, right?
Not so fast. They didn’t bother to tell us this when I initially “interviewed” them, but Katie’s doc was the only one in the “family medicine” practice who sees anybody under 18 years of age.
I think their definition of family is off, to say the least.
They told us to go to the emergency room. I don’t think so! We’d still be there waiting, and we’d be contributing to the overcrowding that causes treatment delays for those who really have emergencies.
I didn’t want to deal with that practice anymore, so I called the insurance folks to change providers. They’d be happy to do that, and the change would be effective October 1. Oh, we needed to see someone today? Well, if Katie’s doctor was closed and nobody was seeing her patients, we could go to the ER.
I’m beginning to understand why it took hours to be triaged when I went to the hospital (and was eventually admitted) back in June.
I finally argued someone into acknowledging that she could make a change effective immediately, after which I called around to find a doctor who was
1) on the plan
2) accepting new patients
3) the real kicker: is willing to see Katie today.
She was missing school already, and I wanted to avoid having her miss another day if possible. And honestly, by then it was A Thing. My child would see a doctor today!
I found one, called the insurance people back—and had to educate the next representative as to the fact that he could indeed make a preferred provider change effective today.
Finally, we went to see the doctor. I admit to asking far fewer questions than usual, but I was still floored when we walked into the examining room and I saw a homeopathic reference book sitting next to the doctor’s chair. (Yes, her chair. She sits in a rocking chair most of the time.)
Had I been seeking an alternative care provider, I probably wouldn’t have been able to find one. That wasn’t what I wanted, though. I thought I was taking my kid to a good, old-fashioned allopathic practitioner and was given no indication that she was anything else. (Don’t even start with me about how much older-fashioned herbal remedies are, much less homeopathy.)
Her version of taking care of things was to give us a mess of articles and emails printed out from Dr. Weil’s website, some of them recipes for herbal remedies that we could choose from and “just try any of them.” My judgment from reading them: expensive experiments that the girl might or might not agree to even taste.
She did, at my insistence, do a strep test. The fast test was negative. We should know something about the normal test in a day or two.
So now we’re looking for a doctor, again. This time I’ll be asking, specifically, if the practice is “holistic” or not, as that seems to be a code word for “uses homeopathy.”
The girl has been soothed with Traditional Medicinals Throat Coat tea (which contains some of the same things recommended by Dr. Weil), frozen fruit bars, Nyquil, and lots of cuddles.
I have nothing against herbal remedies, but I know how to read websites, too. Very well, in fact. We don’t have to go to a doctor for that. We can even print out articles right here at home! And, obviously, I don’t have any truck with homeopathy at all, and I will not trust the health of my child to a physician who practices that nonsense.
I suppose I’ll be on the phone a lot again on Tuesday!
On the positive side, my girl has health insurance, so we weren’t worrying about how to pay to get her to a doctor, as many people would be. I didn’t have to take her to the ER. She did get to see a doctor. She probably doesn’t have strep throat, so we didn’t have to get on the “will she be allergic to this one” merry-go-round of antibiotics.
The day did end on a more positive note. Katie is sleeping better due to the Nyquil, and seemed much more cheerful after the tea and pops helped her throat a bit.
Sam picked up a new-to-us recliner via a gifting group. (I’ve wanted another recliner since mine died a year or two back.) We had yummy leftovers from his cooking yesterday for dinner (fajitas) and he and I did a big grocery run together. I’m sitting here enveloped by the smell of the flowers he snuck in amongst the comestibles now. If I could put my hands on the digicam I’d post a photo, but I may have to be patient ’til tomorrow for that part.
A good partner makes a huge difference after a trying day!