Tuesday, September 28, 2004

Sick? You need botulism.

Ok - I have already admitted that I got sick when I was overseas, so I don't think its too much more of a personal confession to also mention that after getting sick, I dropped by a walk-in traveler's health clinic in London, England.

It was a complete fee-for-health-service. Users are expected to cover a stiff fee to see a doctor plus all fees associated with any lab tests and drugs. Being Canadian, sick and in a poor mood, I caught myself immediately interpreting every precaution that my doctor was prescribing as a means to extract funds from wallet. Looking back, I'm not sure where this distrust was fair and yet when I began to haggle about a particular medical test which to me seemed quite unnecessary, the doctor "threw it in for free" just like a new car salesman.

I mention this story not to get into a larger discussion on health care funding but only to make a small point - monetizing healthcare changes the way you feel and think about health.

And for-profit healthcare is changing how doctors think about you. After I was safe at home in Canada with our glorious publicly funded health care, I took a relaxed visit to my doctor (where I got an official all-clear, in case you are concerned) to find, much to my chagrin, that my clinic pushes now Botox in its doctors' offices.

It makes me sick.

No comments: