Sunday, 26 November 2017

Health Care System is bleeding a lot faster than my Nose!! .

Wasting resources for a bleeding nose.
   A number of  years ago I had a series of nose bleeds.  I tend to take such events more seriously than I  might otherwise do, because I am on anti-coagulants (blood thinners).  It's not that the nose bleeds were severe, but with waiting times, between seeing my doctor and then being referred to an ENT specialist a fair amount of time passed between the initial incident and the specialist diagnosing and removing a small benign lesion to cure the problem.  Should I have any further episodes in the future I  was to come back.  Had I not been a physician and able to monitor my own anti-coagulant levels and adjust my own medications I anticipate that there would have been at least another three visits to my family doctor and perhaps even a couple of visits to the teeming overcrowded emergency room, to spend a few hours waiting to be seen and have the appropriate tests, etc.  Instead of one visit to the family doc and a timely referral to a specialist, our bleeding health care system generates multiple physician and lab visits, which  is not only expensive, but bad medicine.
   So, when I had a couple of very minor nose bleeds recently, I wasted no time.  Since our health care system requires  a new referral and the wait times are so lengthy I decided I  had to strike pre-emptively despite the fact that when I  had my blood test it was satisfactory.  While in an efficiently functioning health care system I would have been quite satisfied to wait and monitor my progress, knowing if I has a  serious nose bleed I could be seen by the specialist - in the emergency room, if necessary,  I know that in our system I would be seen by a medical resident and receive emergency treatment, usually after a lengthy wait and then had a consultation request for ENT which could well have taken months.   Instead, I made an appointment to see my friendly family physician and because the system wastes her time as well as mine, I had her review the three year old letter from ENT saying that they would like to see me again if there was any further epistaxis (nose-bleeds).  She obliged and now I have an appointment being set up, in case I need it.  In the meantime I have had no further nose-bleeds, but my doctor told me to go to emergency if I  do!!  It's a shame we have to work the health care system that way.
   The health care system is bleeding a lot faster than my nose!!

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