As I age, I seem to becoming a quite valuable commodity to the medical profession. When I was in my 20’s I didn’t really have a Doctor (certainly didn’t go to see him or her very often). As I reached my 30’s I started seeing one doctor regularly for check ups (and on occasion to repair a catastrophic joint issue caused by me thinking I was a much more talented athlete than I ever was), but now in my 50’s I seem to be a veritable growth industry for the medical profession.
I see various specialists now for many of the issues that an ageing out of shape man might need, and I keep wondering how does the money flow here? In Canada with socialized medicine I don’t really pay for the visits, however I do pay for the prescriptions that are given out, and I am wondering how much business (i.e. cash flow) is one beat down old Cajun Man creating in the medical world?
My guess is that my Family Doctor (who seems to now be more of a Medical Concierge than an actual medical practitioner) , who is at the center of a medical machine that is making some kind of “good will” or even “kick backs” for sending me to various specialists. What specialists you might ask?
- I have a Urologist on my speed dial thanks to my prostate (including a cancer scare a few years ago) and then an actual problem.
- Two other urologists who I saw for vasectomy
- An Orthopedist who specializes in knees, for my beat down knees
- An Orthopedist who specializes in shoulders for my torn rotator cuff
- A surgeon who ended up taking out my gall bladder (that was 15 years ago)
- Various different physiotherapy clinics for my ankles, knees, and shoulders. Note (so far) my back has been fine.
- An ophthalmologist who seems to enjoy occasional zaps with a laser for my stretching retinas.
I must be a valuable commodity, not to mention my Dentist who I think has a new addition on his house thanks to my bad oral hygiene (when I was younger). The biggest issue I think I have is that no matter how healthy anybody thinks they are if you look hard enough, and see enough specialists, they are going to find something wrong, and even worse, I don’t get a cut of any money made off my bad health. I should be able to send out a Request For Proposal and find the Doctor who will do the job for the right price. Yes, I am being facetious, or am I?
I guess the good thing about this all, is that it isn’t costing ME anything directly (just the taxes I pay for the medical system), other than my medical insurance. What do ageing folks do in the U.S. I wonder?