We had the same family doctor for most of my first twenty-some years on this here planet. His name was Dr. Polin. Some people just seem to stick in your mind forever. Dr. Polin is one of them for me.
When I was 16 I was just a little more naïve than I am now. I did not know that if you poured gasoline over a pile of tree limbs and reached down to light it with a cigarette lighter the gasoline would…E X P L O D E!
No one was around to help me after I blew off the first layer of skin on my right arm and the right side of my face…lost a bit of eyebrow, too. So what to do? Of course! Call Dr. Polin. It was a Saturday afternoon and there he was, “Hello this is Dr. Polin.” Can you imagine calling a doctor today and (1) he’s the one who answers the phone, and (2) he says come right over. Oh, let me say that again: it was a Saturday afternoon. That would not happen today.
I have had an unusually busy year of medical issues. I understand that is something that happens to people who reach the senior demographic thingy. As a consequence, I have had a lot of dealings with doctors, hospitals, pharmacies and medical supply companies. Ordering a pizza is a lot easier.
What is most amazing is the lack of response you get when you call a doctor’s office because you have a question or—worse yet—you are not feeling well and you sense something is not right. What is even more amazing is that my experience is not with just one doctor. I have three doctors’ offices which I have called, left messages regarding something that needed taking care of—me usually—and have gotten no response, no call back, no nothing. And then when I call back for the third time a few days later and display the least bit of frustration, instead of an apology I get attitude. Meanwhile, the doctors are so busy they have no idea their patients are being ignored.
What is fascinating is that we took Bill the Dog to the vet last week with a minor injury to his paw. Now, who do you think called the next day to ask how Bill was doing? Yep, the vet. I was considering making an appointment with her for myself.
I recommend the entire USA medical industry, including a lot of the health insurance bozos, should undergo some serious self-examination. Maybe they should all jam themselves into an MRI tube and not come out until they’ve fixed all their tumors. In the meantime, I will place a make-believe call to Dr. Polin. I realize the good doctor is not in anymore, but just thinking about him eases my mind…and some of the discomfort.