Those Elusive Test Results

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I’m not sure how it happened, but over the years, my medical appointments and tests all seem to have ended up as summer scheduled dates. 

You know – all those annual or periodic things:  bloodwork, mammogram, bone density, dentist, optometrist…. I also check in with the dermatologist once a year (because I was that fair-skinned, freckled kid who, as a teenager, slathered on the baby oil at the pool – remember those days?)  And this year was, oh joy of joys ...

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All We Really Need to Know About Getting Good Healthcare, We Learned in Kindergarten

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With a nod to Robert Fulghum

As millions of youngsters head off to school, it reminds us that some of the lessons we learned in kindergarten can serve us well as we consider our healthcare throughout our lifetimes.

Here are some of those lessons:

1. Be respectful of your medical providers, and command their respect in return.

Early on, we learned to be polite and to stick up for ourselves. The same holds true for working with our healthcare providers.

It’s important ...

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When Your Doctor Goes Missing and Other Medical Conundrums: How to Take Command

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Summer vacation this year was comprised of two weeks on a road trip with my husband as we left our (new) home in Florida, drove north to Upstate New York, then home again, visiting family and friends along the way. It was one of those vacations that you thoroughly enjoy, but then, can’t wait to be home again!

This year I had an extra reason to want to be home. About halfway into the trip, my knee began to hurt, then ...

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Are You, a Friend, or Loved One “Battling” Cancer?

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Those of us who spend much of our time embroiled in some way within the healthcare system are reminded, over and over again, that not everyone sees themselves as a patient in the same way.

As in: you say “tomato” and I say “tomahto.”

I was reminded of this after reading this article from New York Magazine (BTW – not to be confused with the New York Times or other publications with “New York” in them.)  The article is entitled, Continue Reading →

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Why Won’t My Doctors Talk to Each Other?

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Mrs. Adams had been visiting her son and his family. She was reading a book to her grandson, when she began to have trouble breathing and started breaking out in hives. She passed out, and her son dialed 9-1-1….

She’s back in her son’s home again now, looking back over the entire experience which was horribly traumatic, not just for her but for her son, her little grandson, and the entire family.

They thought she was going to die, and according to ...

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If You Don’t Tell Them, Who Will?

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Many readers know that the advocates whose profiles are found in the AdvoConnection Directory are members of The Alliance of Professional Health Advocates. They are professionals who serve clients everyday, solving problems with the healthcare system or the cost of accessing that system. Or, as those patients who reach out to us claim, they are angels.

What you may not know is that we publish blog posts and guidance for our advocates, too. Once a week or so, ...

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Yes, Sometimes the Doctor IS Wrong

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This topic is very personal. In fact, over the years I have been affected by PTSD (post traumatic stress) because of it. But because it’s so personal, I may be the best person to share this lesson with you.

My name is Trisha Torrey. 13 years ago this week, I found a lump on my torso, about the size of a golf ball. A surgeon removed it, it was sent off to the pathology lab for diagnosis, and two weeks later, ...

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Here – Let Us Help You Pay Us Way Too Much!

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Just when you think you’ve heard it all…. Now hospitals are “helping” their patients with finances, too.

If you don’t give that much thought, then it seems like a great idea. “We recognize you owe us more money than you can afford, Mr. Johnson. So we’re going to help you figure out how to pay for it!”

Yes, according to Stat, Financial counselors help patients navigate costly care, you, too, can sit with a hospital’s financial counselor to see ...

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“Do Not Quote Me”

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A few years ago I was at a picnic with a friend who is an orthopedist. The question was raised about whether advice given by doctors is always in the best interests of the patient.

“Do not quote me,” was how he began his reply. At least that alerted me that he would give an honest opinion.

What followed were a half dozen examples of times he had been forced to adjust his recommendations to patients because a number of hurdles stood ...

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My Sibling Has Disabilities, My Parents Have Died – Now What?

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This is such a difficult scenario, yet it happens every day.

A child, perhaps mentally or physically disabled from birth, or one who might have suffered an accident earlier in life, grows into adulthood, having been cared for by very loving parents who did everything they could possibly do to care for their child.

As everyone grows older, eventually both parents die, leaving behind the child with disabilities, now an adult, who has outlived his or her parents. Maybe the parents have ...

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