Thursday, July 4, 2013

You Don't Look Sick to Me!

I just read a wonderful article reproduced on  Suzanne Koven, MD.  wrote "Education that occurs among patients in a group."  I've never had a group offered to me for any ongoing medical issues.  I've been loudly confronted across a room at work with, "Why are you eating baby food!?"  And gone home from a specialist's diagnosis wondering if I should even tell my family.

But the really wonderful thing was her story about a woman who'd been given a referral to another woman with the same problem.  I wish there had been flashing red lights on the phrase "it helped me emotionally. . ." 

There is no feeling like the aloneness of having no one to talk to when we're sick with something chronic or when looking at a long recovery with plenty of physical limitations.  In a movie some time ago, women getting chemo were all together in a comfortable treatment area.  Yet new one-passenger chemo rooms are still being built and furnished.

I had great doctors in California, but the closest I ever came to a group was talking through a sheet that divided two treatment areas in a minor rehab for tendinitis.  In rehab for lumbar fusion, I never had a chance to speak to another patient. 

If the group education and even group rehab is less expensive, why isn't it popular? 

How many doctors have read her article?  How many will act on it?


1 comment:

Dr. Leana Wen said...

Great point. Doctors need to be a lot better at offering at treatment--not just medicines and surgical options, but treatment that make people feel better. Thanks for the excellent writing!