Health Care Vignette

by Larry Emmott on March 11, 2010

in Health Care Politics

More from ShrinkWrapped the East Coast Blogging Psychiatrist; I thought this worth repeating as it involved dental care.

A 58 year old man has been coming to the clinic for many years. He has a personality disorder, is chronically irritable, and does not get along well with others. He takes a low dose of Prozac which allows him to manage his irritability. He has not worked in 20 years despite a college degree and adequate cognitive ability; he is on Disability for his Mental Impairment.

Today he came for his appointment in a more irritated state than usual. He has had dental problems, needed several teeth removed and now is in need of Oral Surgery to prepare his mouth for dentures. Apparently, there are only two Oral Surgeons in Manhattan who accept his Medicare Insurance. He will be forced to go a half hour from his home to get to the Oral Surgeon.

He would like there to be a single payer system and have all Providers be forced to accept any patient who requests their services. He is enraged that he is being so inconvenienced.

I did not address his complaints directly but pointed out that his irritability makes him uncomfortable; perhaps a higher dose of medication would help?

Just for the record: if I am ever told I have to see every patient who wants to see me and the government determines both the appropriate treatment and the fee I can charge, I will retire and find another way to make a living. (Maybe I will be so disturbed by the changes in my profession that I would need to go on Disability?) I suspect there are many Oral Surgeons who would agree with me.

via ShrinkWrapped.

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