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A change in attitude might be all that is needed February 16, 2011

Posted by dtenjo in Canada, Doctors, Medicare.
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I’ve always been very critical of the medicare, the medical system in Canada, whereby  very basic healthcare is universally guaranteed for citizens of the country. The idea behind it is great, nobody thinks it is wrong to offer free healthcare, particularly to those who otherwise would not be able to afford appropriate health care, and those who would constantly need medical care such as seniors or those with medical conditions requiring permanent and expensive care. However, to me the system is less than ideal as service is less deficient due to the “free” nature of it. There are incredibly long waiting times, and patient care by medical staff most of the time, at least from my own experience lacks professionalism and cordiality.

I had always had experiences of poor relationships with doctors, thank God I have never required serious care such as emergency situations, or dangerous illnesses, but for me every time I went to see a doctor had been an unsatisfying experience. I never felt the human side of doctors, and it never felt like I was treated in a cordial way. Doctors always seemed to be rushed, and with no intention of making me comfortable at all. I always blamed this on the medical system because as is the case with any free service that you receive, you can’t expect excellent service. I had always been thinking that there would be so many ways to improve this, starting, perhaps, with modifying the system, whereby medical services do not necessarily have to be fully provided by the government, allowing private practitioners to offer medical services, that way those who can afford to pay for the service would do it, freeing up some space and resources for the public offering of health services.

Well, it turns out I was wrong. In order to improve the service provided by doctors, it seems like all it takes is a change in attitude by them. Yesterday I had a very gratifying visit with a doctor, Dr. Gdih, an oculist, with whom by far I had the best doctor’s appointment I have had. He actually greeted me politely and professionally, looked at me when he was talking to me, took the time to listen to me, asked questions, and was very willing to provide as much information as possible. He was really busy, seeing patients all day long, and working through lunch and breaks, according to his nurse, but he was still very polite and professional. That excellent experience got me thinking: so, it is possible that doctors improve their service, all it takes is a change in attitude. I don’t know if it has to do with the education doctors receive in Canada, or if it is just cultural, but it would be really nice if there was a change in doctors so that their relationship with patients is better, and their service appears more professional.

I was wrong, a whole change in the medical system might not be necessary, all it takes is a change in the doctors’ approach to the way they provide their service.

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