Monday, August 7, 2017

Bad Surgery Center

Gators lurk in American Healthcare.
Doctors, drug companies and insurance get big bite out of you.

Doctors who attend years of schooling expect a three figure lifestyle. Physicians
don't all make huge salaries to payback those student loans.

Surgeons find a way to run surgi-centers that they own or own in partnerships
a means to make a half million dollars a year. C.E.O's make more than this. They don't
go to school for twenty two years and save lives.

Two of my family members experienced when greed fans the flames of surgeons hearts.
This story is about scam surgery centers.

My son's wisdom teeth needed removal.
The summer after his junior year of high school his teeth ached and chewing gave him headaches. Dentist gave a Doctor recommendation.
I no longer go to that dentist because of what happened next. He's in on it.
We met with the surgeon in a high tech office. He reviewed the x-rays and staff
consulted with dental insurance which covers about five percent of the procedure.

An appointment was made for a month later. In the package of instructions was information about no eating or liquids in advance, and a map for the surgi-center.

Appointment day we park at a different address, unaware the appointment is at a surgi center
where roving surgeons book procedures. Our Doctor didn't live in the area,
some mornings he travels a hundred miles to do ten procedures.
He made it appear he was local in the first meeting (books a city with 20 appointments then returns to perform 10 -15 surgeries in a day). This surgi center is owned by his group of Doctors.
Days after the surgery my son became seriously ill with high fever and lethargic. We called four times to get a call back. Doctor prescribed a second run of antibiotics. That night I helped my seventeen year old son who played Lacrosse and led an active and scholarly life to the emergency room. Diagnosis was: MRSA a virulent  bacterial infection that often doesn't respond to antibiotics.

After two days of total isolation the hospital sent him home with an IV cart and instructions for me
to sterilize everything and bleach his sheets and pillows daily. It took a year for my son to get his health back.  MRSA compromised his immune system,  now two years later the infection still flares up in his sinus. A frightening view of the muddy water into the cheap shortcuts of modern medicine.

My Mom just had bunion surgery. She's 85 and could barely walk with crippled toes. A surgeon came highly recommended by her Doctor. Mother is secretive about her care. She insists on being her own advocate. She went to the first office meeting alone. They pressured her into an appointment ten days after. I drove her to the surgical center. This is in Mission Viejo  (Orange County California). She thought the surgery was going to be at the hospital, but it's in a condo commercial office complex. The doctors who do surgeries here own the facility in a Corporate name.
"Mom are you sure you want to do this here?"
"Its fine, and I need to be able to walk better."
"But this place is a wreck," I whisper.
She pretends she can't hear me.
Grey carpet frayed, entry doors banged up, and prep and recovery rooms are dirty. The intake staff (not nurses just employees who move the cattle along) hustle men and women in and out. I'm allowed inside this center. There's a circle of fifteen beds with draw string curtains in between. The patients are nameless. Clothing goes in a plastic trash bag. Dignity not important. IV fed into your arm in seconds. Ports from used IV's are on the floor.

I've been to a hospital in Mumbai/Bombay in 1989 that was cleaner and state of the art compared to this mess.  I'm rushed out so the Doctors can roll them in for all the different surgeries of the eight o'clock shift. Then rolled back to the same bed to wake up and smell the coffee. It's muddy.

They hurry my Mom along to get her in the wheelchair to load her into my car. After the surgery she is unable to reach the doctor by telephone. One of the intake gals screens his calls, then refers the call if she deems it serious (she's not licensed nurse of any kind) to the nurse. Finally they tell her to call her own doctor who has her rush in for blood work... This medicine is broken.

A lot of people yell about the cost of Obamacare. Healthcare is hugely expensive. My son's wisdom teeth removal and subsequent care cost out of pocket $ 42,108. and I have great group healthcare. My mom has a supplement to her Medicare and so far her costs are not near what mine was but by the time we pay monthly premiums it's shocking. I worry that when my daughter turns 26 she won't have a job that offers decent low cost healthcare. I wonder what will happen to the generations who can't afford thousands in premiums or the cost of s life saving drug. I don't support free medicine for all, but the two hundred and ten dollar bedpan (which we couldn't keep because when you have MRSA everything a patient touches is treated as dangerous biological alligator) is an insane cost of a plastic bowl.

Doctors circumvent hospitals to increase their income. Neither of these surgi centers takes the promise of Obamacare to pay. IF you have Medi-CAL they only take cash up front.

The AMA (American Medical Association) bans any rating system of doctors. No entity seems responsible to inspect these surgi centers. I now know the huge amounts of blood and body fluids that are flung in a surgery. The crew who mops up is doing a shitty job.

 Below photos of Ogallala swamp with hundreds of gators.

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