Monday, April 21, 2014

Visit to the Doctor

Waiting for the doctor this morning - never a happy camper


This morning I had my six month checkup visit to my doctor at the VA.  I am so glad I am in the VA system.  I truly believe being in the VA system and having regular six month checkups have saved my life.

My appointment today was for 11:30 am.  I drove down to Georgetown, where the local VA outpatient clinic is located.  Dennis, an assistant was waiting outside.  After I parked my car and got out and approached the facility, he hollered to me "Are you Mr. Tipton?"  I said "Yes."  He motioned with his arm for me to follow him inside.




VA Outpatient Clinic Georgetown, Delaware

What service!  So much for the naysayers for government healthcare.  I followed him in.  He measured my height.  74 inches.  I shrunk.  I used to be 75 inches.  He told me not to worry about it. Happens to everyone when they get older.  There we go with the "older" thing again.  Oh well.

Then he motioned for me to have a seat.  I took my jacket off (nice day today but still a bit of a chill out on this sunny day) and he took my blood pressure.  135 over 72.  I said "That's a little big high isn't it?"  He said "No, that's normal."  Then he stuck a thermometer in my mouth and took my temperature.  I don't know what my temperature was but it probably was alright because after he took the thermometer out he motioned for me to have a seat to wait for my doctor.


Waiting Room Georgetown VA Outpatient Clinic

I took my seat, got out my iPhone and within five minutes, my doctor open the door to his office and came out to get me.  As I greeted him he said "That's what I like to see, a big smile.  You know Mr. Tipton we get so many people here who don't smile, it's nice to see a smile like yours."  Hey, I didn't know I smiled that much but it's nice to hear.

I followed I'm into his small office and had a seat.  I won't go into the details of what we talked about except to mentioned that I did tell him about the painful skin condition on my back that was causing me a great deal of pain.  He took a look and said it was a very common condition called seborrheic keratosis, a non cancerous skin condition.  A couple of days ago it was itching so much and I scratched too hard thus breaking the skin and causing some major pain.  He prescribed a cortisone cream.  I have it on now and the pain is almost gone.  Thank you doctor! 


Not me but doctor similar to mine this morning under same circumstances - I get the best care at the VA!


I was in his office for almost an hour.  Oh yes, government health care, the big bogeyman that the Republican are trying to scare everyone about.  Well, we covered everything from the side effects of my prostate cancer treatment to comparing U.S. healthcare with government run Canadian healthcare.  With both programs, one has to wait for major procedures so there isn't any difference.  I told him that with him I can spend time with my doctor that my private doctors (and I have a slew of them) don't seem to have the time for me because they're off to see another patient.  To me that is one of the major differences between government run health care and private health care.  Of course I use private health care now because of the geographical convenience.  I can't be running to Wilmington (89 miles away) every time I need to see my urologist, oncologist, cardiologist, dermatologist, eye doctor and dentist.  Besides if I did the VA in Wilmington still charges my Medicare just like the private doctors do now.  




So all in all I had a good visit.  As I left to go out into this wonderful sunny spring day, I made another appointment for six months hence in October.  

All is well in the World of Ron.  Back to our regular programming now.


My happy tulips waiting for me when I got home



8 comments:

  1. Ron,
    You are lucky if I am to believe what I have read about the horrors of the VA health system. Having said that, I wish the whole country had government run healthcare. Even though a certain political party will never allow it to happen here, the Canadian system and British systems seem to work very well. I am lucky that my physician spends as much time with me and other patients as necessary and provides excellent care. The only downside to that is the wait is somewhat longer at times which is ok in my situation as I'm retired so my time is flexible. Most of my other doctors spend enough time with me that I have no complaints.
    The tulips are beautiful, Spring is apparently here to stay. All is good.
    Jack

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    1. Jack,
      I've heard about "the horrors of the VA health system." To me it's a myth because the VA has always been excellent to me. In fact, it's the best health care I've ever received. My only complaint is that the main medical center is ninety miles away. I use personal physicians who are closer and most of them have time for me but do seem a bit rushed but that's the nature of the system. They have so many patients to care for plus there is also the profit incentive which isn't in the VA. I can tell the difference. Joining the Army when I was 18 years old and having the lifetime care of the VA was one of the best decisions I ever made in my life.
      Ron

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  2. I imagine a lot of folks don't smile when they see their doctor, so your's must have been very welcome!

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    1. Bob,

      My default expression is a genuine smile when meeting someone unless someone doesn't like me or has done me a wrong.

      Ron

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  3. All docs is quacks; I have it from the best of authority.

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    1. Dr. Spo,
      I've always had the highest regard for anyone with the title "Doctor." However, lately, listening to some of these "doctors" who are our elected representatives spouting off their ignorance about the Affordable Care Act, climate change and other hot social issues, makes me wonder about their intelligence. I had always assumed that taking all that schooling one had a certain level of intelligence and common sense but apparently that always isn't so. Social issues seem to trump (no pun intended) common sense with some of these "doctors."
      Ron

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  4. Anonymous1:54 AM

    Ron, you have a great smile and I'm glad you have a chance to use it, now that you got a good check-up. I have read "horror stories" about the VA system but family and friends that use it never had a problem and only good things to say about the care they received. The hospitals are much more crowded and busy than the stand-alone clinics, though. Thanks for the picture of your beautiful tulips. I always like seeing multiple colors in small planting vs. monochrome (although I think monochrome plantings on a large scale are lovely).

    ~~~ NB

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    1. NB,
      All my experience with the VA health system have been excellent. I know fellow veterans who won't go near the VA because of the so called "horror" stories but that hasn't been my experience. One thing I know for sure, the only time I came near death was when I had a hernia operation when I was 17 years old in the regular health care system. I developed a staph infection which the hospital refused or was unable to recognize and thus spent six months in the hospital and three operations before I was "cured." I've had several surgeries and other procedures with the VA and no such problems. Maybe it's just the luck of the draw burt the "horror" stories? Overblown I think.

      This year I purposely put out a lot of yellow tulips. I think they contrast well with the other tulips. More next year!

      Ron

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