The Interplay Between Your Own and Your Care Team’s Responsibilities

I (Sara Nelson) recently visited my family in Madison, Wisconsin, and took a tour of the Epic Campus. Epic is a multi-billion dollar medical software company. Their campus is stunning in architectural design and landscaping. It is wonderful for them, but I wonder how health care dollars are being spent on documentation rather than direct patient care and the impact that is having. Indeed, the medical service delivery system has fundamentally changed the practice of medicine. This can be addressed in future articles, but the burning question is how do you get real help within this system.

❤️How we relate with our practitioners

Doctors used to know their patients over the course of many years. Their advice sprung from that relationship of knowing a person over time. Now delivery of medicine is more driven by procedure and protocols and you may not see the same provider. The division of medicine into specialization can result in slower diagnosis and segmented care. 

❤️Taking personal responsibility

A passive patient who relies on the advice of experts to provide an answer can miss some important help. The current system works better if the person seeking treatment acts as the project manager. Get answers to your questions. Persist to move through the system to get to providers that have the answers you need. 

Take care of the basics: good nutrition, movement, self care and developing self awareness. Although there is no foolproof insurance against illness, good health practices help us meet what comes our way. Get help in developing those good health habits if you find that challenging. 

❤️What to do if you are having symptoms

Remember that medical science looks for what kills you and is less effective with what makes you miserable. If the doctor doesn’t identify a problem, that can be a positive. If you are having malaise it is a good idea to get help to address that. This help may come from pressing your medical providers for more answers, working with a physical or occupational therapist, massage therapist, acupuncturist, naturopath, chiropractor, nutritionist or similar.

Increasing numbers of practitioners are finding ways to provide the personalized care you may prefer. Choosing one of them may require a different financial arrangement but can be well worth it. 

Christina Rankin, Shona Craig, Irene Luc and myself (Sara Nelson) are holding conversations every Wednesday morning on the Clubhouse app. This article arises from our discussion from April 7th, 2021.

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