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Re: [IP] Trusting Your Doc

I agree with Spot -- a lot of it has to do with the control
that insurance companies have over doctors. One of the 
problems that I had when I was first diagnosed was that
I'd just moved. My old doctor diagnosed me, but I couldn't
continue seeing him because he was too far away and I 
didn't have a car. So I had to find a new doctor right away. 
I didn't have time to shop around, and once I'd gotten into
a relationship with a doctor, no matter how bad, it was
really hard to change. And starting with a new doctor 
(especially a popular one who's recommended by many
patients) usually means a wait of several months for an
initial appointment.

Some of the problem has to do with attitudes that are slowly 
changing. The attitude that the doctor knows all, that the 
patient should never question it, is slowly being replaced by 
an "active patient" model, where the patient works *with* 
the doctor to set treatment goals, etc. That is now what a lot 
of us expect, but a lot of practices haven't made the switch yet.
And the "doctor in control" model may have worked better
when doctors had more ability to be more involved with 
their patients, with less interference from insurance companies.

Also, in my case at least, part of the problem is with the
patient. :) I tend to project my own feelings of insecurity
and failure onto the doctor; I'm afraid that the doctor will
judge me as harshly as I'm judging myself. I've found that
this is often not true. There have been times when I've 
confessed something I was embarassed about, and I was 
surprised at how well the doctor responded. The problem 
is that I've had enough bad experiences that I find it really 
hard to trust any doctor.

But still, there have been many times that I've been treated
very badly, in ways that made me feel that I was better off 
just trying to handle things on my own. Most (but not all) 
of the times that this has happened, it was by a doctor that 
I didn't know well -- for example, the on-call doctor paged 
for me by the receptionist when I called the clinic after hours. 
That was when, with a bg of 300 that I couldn't get down, I 
was told "diabetes is a chronic condition, and you're just 
going to have to learn to live with it." I don't know, maybe 
I interrupted her dinner, but I don't think there's any real
excuse for a doctor talking to a frightened, worried patient
like that.

/Janet L.

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