Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Just Say It

Older adults often need a treasure map to navigate the medical system, a map that rather than leading to treasure,  actually just leads to the truth. They, like the rest of us, deserve to know the truth about their medical care and their functional status and their prognosis. They deserve to know.
I recently heard a classic example:
Mrs. K went to her optometrist and was told her eyesight had worsened and now would prevent renewal of her license… unless her cataracts were removed.
The cataract doctor said her cataracts would prevent renewal of her license… unless a specialist performed a procedure.
The retina specialist (after months of waiting for an appointment) said her eyes would prevent renewal of her license… period.
A horrible thing to hear. An isolating, dehumanizing, depressing thing to hear.
But she finally has an answer. She can finally plan. And she isn’t being sent (mind you, driven by others becauses he can’t see well) all over town to be repeatedly given a glimmer of hope when one doesn’t exist.
She finally has an answer. And she finally has a plan.
Just Say It…

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