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Health care as you age
Old 05-09-2016, 06:35 PM   #1
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Health care as you age

Under 50yo and go to the doctor about once every three yrs but as expected is getting more often as I age. Currently need to go in and scheduled an appointment and was told at that time it would be 4-6 weeks because I am not considered a regular patient. Was also told that I could go to a walk in but because of what I have going on, they are just going to refer me so not really a worthwhile deal and if it got too bad to go to the emergency. Don't ever remember waiting this long before and tried adjacent towns with same result. Low population state and beginning to wonder if I want to age here with this kind of health care. DW has to schedule womanly stuff over a yr out also. I don't want to become a regular patient and only have plans of going in when absolutely needed but would like to get in in a timely manner. Anyone else experiencing this? Anyone find any other options or ideas? Just looking to what I might be able to do in the future.
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Old 05-09-2016, 06:49 PM   #2
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I hear you. When I was your age I also thought every three years was close to overkill, and had no interest in anything more than that. But when you get around 50 years old, it's a good idea to start having regular annual checkups. I resisted for a while, but I was lucky enough to find a great doctor who understood me and worked with me on my terms.

Many years later, I'm still with that doc, still doing annual checkups, and still very happy with it.
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Old 05-09-2016, 06:49 PM   #3
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That's about what we experience here too, but it depends on the nature of the complaint. If it even seems like it might be something very important I'm in there the same day or the day after. Unfortunately, lately I've been a regular patient though. DW sometimes has to schedule things out several months but that's for routine checkups and such.

It does make me pause about moving and having to find new doctors now, especially since Medicare is primary payer.
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Old 05-09-2016, 06:52 PM   #4
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One of my retirement "musts" was : Be somewhere near a decent sized city. In America it's always about "choosing" and "the freedom to choose". Well, if there's not much to choose from you're working against yourself. Also, just getting older, in my mind anyway, sort of compels me to stay close to the whole civil and social infrastructure. I'd still like to live in a country house where I can't hear anything but the breeze and birds chirping but if anything happens to me out there I'm dead. So, I live with people around me. (sigh!)

Whenever I have moved into a new area since I retired, even before I was on any kind of ongoing prescriptions, one of my first things To-do after getting the lights turned on and updating my address with everybody, was to get a new doctor just so I am on the books with somebody in case I come down with something that a guy over 40 or 50 or 55 might come down with.

This is case of the marketplace rules bending you into compliance. All your Base are belong to them
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Old 05-10-2016, 01:07 PM   #5
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Dang. I have a hard time just going in to say hey, doing fine this yr, see ya next yr. Heres a cpl hundred bucks! On the good yrs, that is.
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Old 05-10-2016, 01:11 PM   #6
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Dang. I have a hard time just going in to say hey, doing fine this yr, see ya next yr. Heres a cpl hundred bucks! On the good yrs, that is.
Find yourself a concierge doc and get the red carpet treatment for your money.
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Old 05-10-2016, 01:23 PM   #7
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The scary thing is having a "Cadillac" employer health plan during your working years and (if you are lucky) during early retirement and realizing that your insurance is going to be downgraded to the "lowest common denominator" insurance, Medicare, when you are more likely to need the quality care.
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Old 05-10-2016, 01:32 PM   #8
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Under 50yo and go to the doctor about once every three yrs but as expected is getting more often as I age. Currently need to go in and scheduled an appointment and was told at that time it would be 4-6 weeks because I am not considered a regular patient. Was also told that I could go to a walk in but because of what I have going on, they are just going to refer me so not really a worthwhile deal and if it got too bad to go to the emergency. Don't ever remember waiting this long before and tried adjacent towns with same result. Low population state and beginning to wonder if I want to age here with this kind of health care. DW has to schedule womanly stuff over a yr out also. I don't want to become a regular patient and only have plans of going in when absolutely needed but would like to get in in a timely manner. Anyone else experiencing this? Anyone find any other options or ideas? Just looking to what I might be able to do in the future.
We don't have that problem here to the same extent that you do.

Last summer in the space of less than 2 months I not only got an appointment to see the best opthalmologist/surgeon around, but also got scheduled for my surgery to be done and had it done. So, two months after the day I called for my initial appointment to see why I couldn't see well, I was cataract free. This was on Medicare combined with my federal BCBS.

When I need my dental implants done (working on #2 right now), my dentist gets me in with his oral surgeon friend in less than 24 hours. But of course, due to the nature of the procedure it takes more than half a year, so that the bone can grow and strengthen.

On the other hand, although I'm not enthused with my internist I am reluctant to look for another. I suspect that internists and primary care physicians may be hard to come by, especially for those on Medicare. But I don't KNOW that. Maybe I'm just dragging my feet.

So many doctors, like other people, left New Orleans right after Katrina. While some other people had to come back for their jobs, some of the doctors could afford to live elsewhere and did. So at least for a while, we had a bad shortage of doctors. I'm not sure if that is still the case or not.
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Old 05-10-2016, 01:54 PM   #9
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Find yourself a concierge doc and get the red carpet treatment for your money.
Someday if I need a doc on a regular basis, that's my plan. Right now, thank heaven, at age 63, my visits are for regular checkups only, supplemented with trips to the Doc in a Box for things that need immediate attention such as a raging case of poison ivy.

I skipped the regular checkups for about 10 years but decided around age 50 that I was no longer at the age when I could assume that everything was fine just because I had no symptoms. Sure enough, after I gave in and got a colonoscopy at age 50 and they discovered a small adenoma. Easy to snip out, but that's the kind that develops into cancer if you don't. Now I'm a believer.
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Old 05-10-2016, 01:57 PM   #10
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Find yourself a concierge doc and get the red carpet treatment for your money.

For my money, I'd only get purple shag carpet treatment...
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Old 05-10-2016, 02:02 PM   #11
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For my money, I'd only get purple shag carpet treatment...
You can afford carpeting? I'd get the dirt floor treatment...
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