Why can’t SA’s private practice have doctors like Addison and Sam?

19 Apr

                              They say South Africans like complaining  – so dammit, today I’m doing it.

Somewhere between their mommies telling them that Doctors are gods and our government health system hitting the toilet, private health practitioners have developed the biggest Attitude since Napoleon.

Now, I’m not saying that they don’t (sometimes) offer a valuable contribution to society – obviously a life-and-death situation does arise here and there between golfing and swimming in money – but for the most part, this profession spends its time acting like douche bags just coz they can.

I’m talking specifically about GP’s. The rest – kudos, you actually do something useful, so well done. I’m not talking to you. I’m talking to those fat cats who sit around spending their time asking money for prescriptions and referrals.

If I never have to come into contact with these assholes again, it’ll be too soon.

In the past week I have honestly had enough.

Were it not for paranoia and idiotic prescription laws the GP profession wouldn’t even exist. So please –get over yourselves and get off your high horses.

Anyway – Paranoia.

This bugger caused me to visit Glenhealth in Kempton Park last week. Let’s not go into the details of what I though was wrong, but let’s just say that I did some extensive Googling and thought the trip necessary.

Boy, was I wrong. Not only did the doctor not even do any type of physical exam – she didn’t even INTRODUCE herself.

Dr Manners: “What are we looking at today?”

Me: “<confidential info about a silly health scare>”

Dr Manners: “Oh. Well, sounds like it’s just stress and a hormonal imbalance.”

Me: “Uh. Okay. Yeah. That’s what I read on Google… But it also said I could have a tumour. So that’s why I’m here… To make sure?”

Dr Manners: “Nah. It’s just stress.”

Me: “Uh. Okay.”

Dr Manners: “We can do a blood test to be sure.”

Me: “I guess. But you just said it’s just stress?”

Dr Manners: “You can never be sure…”

Me: “Uh. Okay then…”

Dr Manners: “Great. Tell the nurse on your way out.”

Me: “I assume this is included in the consultation fee?”

Dr Manners: “No.”

So there we go – R310 for 5 minutes of what I ALREADY READ ON GOOGLE. Plus a further R100 for the blood test. (I could’ve bougth new winter boots!!! Dammit!!!)

Now, anyone getting blood taken is understandably a bit apprehensive when it comes to the results. So you’d expect them to call when they said they would. Once again, this is asking too much.

Me (calling them): “Hi there. My name is Caro Erasmus. Had a test done yesterday – just need the results?”

Receptionist (auxiliary medical staff are just as bad as the GP’s themselves): “Who?”

Me: “Caro Erasmus.”

Receptionist: “Oh. The doctor will call you later.”

Did she? Yes – two days later. Seems it’s just stress after all.

Now, speaking of auxiliary medical staff, let us introduce The Medical Parking Attendant. First off, I find the fact that you have to PAY for parking at ARWYP hospital completely ridiculous. There you are, visiting your dying uncle and you have to pay for the privilege…

Be that as it may, I was there because of my sister’s ingrown toenail.  Pretty gross, and still morbid enough for me to be annoyed at the parking ticket machine.

So, cue doctor’s visit being over and rain coming down like mad. Lucky me gets to run across the road while little sis waits undercover (you can’t expose the toe to water, you see). In the rush, handbag containing such valuables as parking ticket and Blackberry are handed over.

Soaked and grumpy, I reach the car and drive to the gate.

Me: “Excuse me – I left my ticket across the road. Could you please let me out? I’ll come pay now.”

Person unable to even do the useless job of sitting at a gate: “Eish… No. I can’t open the gate.”

Me: “Please? I’ll come pay now.”

Her: “No. Go back and pay.”

Me: (Desperately looking around at the monsoon and my ruined outfit) “But it’s raining?”

 Her: “Go back. It’s not my job to open for you.”

 Me: “???????”

So I reverse. Over a fucking wall that was impossible to see from my angle. Cars are CLEARLY not meant to go backwards here… My bumper tears loose. My car is broken. She just stands there, smug.

Run back. Ingrown toenail sister is perplexed. Run back again. Seriously getting pissed at the fact that my car broke, and that I’m now ruining my shoes as well.

 Get back to gate. Attempt to pay. Scowling.

 Her: “You must pay in the hospital to pay at the machine. Go back.”

 Me: “FUCK! Are you serious? Just let me go! Here’s the ticket; here’s R10. Let me out!”

 Her: “Are you trying to bribe me?”

 Me: (Perplexed) “What? With R10?! No! I’m trying TO PAY MY FUCKING TICKET!”

 Her: “Go back.”

 So I do.

And show her the finger when I eventually escape.

Now, I know that these experiences are my own and that the entire private GP profession and everyone they surround themselves with can’t all be rotten.

 But I’m gonna carry on complaining anyway.

In my business, I meet with people regularly. I’m sure the rest of you do, too. Why is it that Doctors are the only ones who make an appointment, only to make you wait for at least half an hour?? The only worse people are the banks, but we can complain about them another day…

All I’m saying is, at this rate, I can’t wait for NHI. Or TV-land doctors. I’d pay R300 for a consult with Dr Addie any day…






4 Responses to “Why can’t SA’s private practice have doctors like Addison and Sam?”

  1. mkovalch April 19, 2012 at 4:49 pm #

    Ha. Sounds about like seeing a GP in States except prices are five times of yours. And they would prescribe you anti depressant, because dr. gets kickbacks from pharmaceutical companies.

    • caroerasmus April 19, 2012 at 5:05 pm #

      It’s ridiculous, I tell you…Didn’t know your health care was that expensive! Explains why so many of ours go that side… Sigh.

  2. I like boys who wear glasses April 29, 2012 at 11:52 am #

    My GP likes to ask me: So, what do YOU think is wrong with you?

    Which always makes me wonder… didn’t HE go to med school, not me!? Though I get to give my own consulatation, I still need to pay him for it for some reason. Something seems off here… 😉

    • caroerasmus April 29, 2012 at 12:44 pm #

      Well put! So often, they simply repeat exactly what they’re told… Sure, it’s in a slow and authoritative voice, but stilll… 😛

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