Navigating Medicine | Pt. 1
Anytime somebody I care about approaches me about how to proceed with their health concerns, I am reminded that navigating the healthcare system is a problem rarely addressed.
Note: In recent weeks, I have been traveling across the US in search of a new job & community within which my family can prosper. The exit from academic medicine is nearly complete, and I am very excited for what’s to come. Unfortunately, between life, work & travels my ability to publish new material has been limited. However, these travels have provided fertile ground for new thoughts, ideas and questions.
Leading up to the birth of our son, several people encouraged us to get in touch with a pediatrician in advance and arrange a newborn appointment. I initially thought “alright, let’s take it easy - he hasn’t even been born yet.” You know, don’t count your chickens before they hatch. God forbid, but do not tempt fate - this is how I was raised.
But, I understood their concerns. So, we embarked on finding a pediatrician.
As anyone might experience when realizing that they need the attention of a medical expert, the immediate question that presents itself is: how do you choose a doctor?
Now, facile people will wonder if it really matters. During labor we asked one of the hospital staff if they recommend any particular pediatrician, “Oh, all of our pediatricians are excellent!”
Anyone who has ever had a job knows that not all of their coworkers are equally productive or good at their job.
But, we are under the impression that doctors generally uphold practice habits that are good for people.
With the amount of financial, legal, and administrative pressure on doctors, it is possible that at least the hospital settings are generating net harm. Also, because we haven’t agreed on how to measure the negative impacts of modern medical practice, does not mean they don’t exist.
Back to the question: How do we go about finding a pediatrician?
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