Thursday, July 23, 2009

Doctor doctor

Just the other day, I was in a discussion with a bunch of people about how its so hard to get a doctors appointment in this country, and how every time you call up either a specialist or a general physician, the wait time can be anything from 3 months to 3 weeks. I've lived in very doctor-concentrated areas and once out of desperation remember calling every doctor in my network within a 10 mile radius just to get an immediate appointment, but it was always the same story. At least here they have the concept of walk-ins, in Philly they didn't even have that.

As a doctor in the group pointed out, the reasons for this could be pretty complex, but when you're at the receiving end of such systems, it doesn't come easy to appreciate "the other side".

Today my dad in hyd tells me how, since my mom's skin condition had escalated recently, they decided to change treatments. He found the name of a dermatologist who is supposed to be really good. But he was also advised to get there by 4 AM to get a "number". My dad woke up at 2 am to get to the clinic by 4 am. Here, he was supposed to collect his "number", and if it was within 30, he could go back home and bring my mom later that morning, and there would be a good chance that the doctor would see her. When my dad reached, the numbers being handed were in the 30s, and there were 15 people in the line ahead of my dad. He was advised to forget about it and try again next week. So he came back home.

Of course, the difference between systems in India and US is even more complex and so would be the reasons for this kind of crowding, but it just made me realize again how desperate we get in matters in health and trying to find relief for ourselves or our loved ones: and then left me wondering if places like this dermatologist in hyderabad could actually adopt an appointment system that wouldn't have people clamoring in a line at 4 AM.

3 comments:

Ms Taggart said...

They can, but they dont. Most doctors in India try to build a hype around themselves.
I know couple of docs who have appointment system,and some are even online, in Hydie!

As for the queues, recently I was in queue from 7AM to 1030 AM, all for an admission into the swimming academy, and they said I can make it if my number is within 150. I was on 135! :)

Prasoon said...

one sec.. we are talking about hyd? Where in hyd is this and which doc opens at 4am for appointment - bahut pahunchi hui cheez hoga zaroor!

this is going crazy - for a city which otherwise happens to be popular as a medical destination in whole of south asia.

greensatya said...

Doctors in India are becoming arrogant day by day. There is no recourse cause even if we don't wish, we all need them.

Sad!