I’ve always considered myself as lucky that I have amazing doctors. I recently decided to change primary care doctor because of the location and their hours. It was a bit too hard to get an appointment when I was sick. I found myself going to walk-in clinics when I had a sinus infection or bronchitis. So I don’t have a new doctor until next week, but am sick as a dog. I decided to go to my health system’s urgent care. I figured it would be best because they have all of my health records on file. (Actually my former primary used to tell me to go there if I could not get an appointment with her). I should have known something was odd when they kept referring to their doctors as “providers”. A PA came in to examine me. I explained my symptoms (body aches, headache, runny nose, laryngitis, cough, and low grade fever) and that I take a biologic drug that lowers my ability to fight off infection. I explained how each day I am feeling worse even when I do nothing. I was figuring I had a virus and now was getting a sinus infection. It is what happens to me whenever I get sick. The PA leaves and the “provider” comes in. He looks in my mouth. Says you have a virus and a fever, so stay out of work tomorrow if the fever doesn’t go away today (it hasn’t). I asked about an antibiotic because of my history (which he can see in his computer). He responds, no, I won’t treat that. Call your rheumatologist. Uh, what?? The other clinic I went to in the past always gave me one to cover me because of how sick I would get. This doctor left the room before I could even get a word out. I told his PA I wanted it documented that I asked for an antibiotic and was refused. She looked freaked out. It ended up not making it in the file. I left, called my rheumatologist, and now have an antibiotic.
I get his reasoning, viruses don’t react to antibiotics, but I have a history (which he had record of) that shows that I can’t fight off viruses and I always end up with infections…ALWAYS. When that happens, I miss a lot of work or I struggle to get back to work and get worse. I followed this directive once. A PA for my doctor told me that I had a virus and an antibiotic was not appropriate. Two weeks later, I was still out of work with raging bronchitis. When I went back to the PA, he was shocked. Telling him “I told you so” was bittersweet. I guess, in this doctor’s opinion, I need to get sicker then go back and he would then give me a script?? Now I should note that I am walking again now, but still have a surgical shoe on my foot and have to use a cane. So getting around is still not easy and we are having a huge winter storm. Getting to another doctor appointment would not have been easy at all. Today, I felt generic. Maybe it’s my fault for going to an urgent care, but I thought going to one with all of my records would be the best choice until I get my new doctor. Oh well, no more “providers” for me. I really felt generic and not like an individual getting individual treatment. I’ll stick to doctors that actually look at me for more than 2 minutes. Oh well, live and learn….and always speak up for yourself…and fill in the feedback, I did.
So tonight, I picked up my script. I am laying here with a raging headache and earache. I think it will be appropriate for taking my antibiotic tomorrow.
I’m looking forward to meeting my new primary care doctor next week and building a good relationship.