The healthcare system still doesn't "get it"

I have been doing this for 5 years and have just about seen it all,  but this week I am COMPLETELY EXHAUSTED with stories of conventional medicine overtreating every symptom and abnormality with a prescription or a surgery. And the new healthcare system is going to allow more Americans access to care? That is a BAD thing as far as I'm concerned.

It's as if doctors are now in the business of customer service and freely give out a prescription or surgery to give immediate relief. The problem is they are wrong for two reasons:

1. These quick and/or aggressive fixes rarely improve the root reason for the concern in question
2. For the most part, the patient wants "care". That means they want to hear they are going to be fine, or that what is happening is normal and will resolve. They don't just want a pill to make it go away or some fancy-named diagnosis (exception: lots of patients still in appropriately want antibiotics for illnesses that do not need them).

Instead, patients are sent on aggressive and side-effect laden wild goose chases with surgeries, CT scans and other procedures that put them at risk and increase their worry that something really bad is happening for a symptom that will go away in time or improve with some simple lifestyle change.

My best advice (beside coming in to visit with one of our practitioners) is to wait it out. Whatever it is, wait it out. Now, on rare occasion there are signs and symptoms that are present that demand attention, no doubt. But always err on the side of taking care of yourself: get more sleep, breathe deeply, eat whole foods, laugh. If things worsen instead of stay the same or improve, go find someone you trust. Don't have a physician you trust, go find one. I have to believe that some still exist. Just tell them you want their care, respect and opinion, not a pill.

Have a story of when time healed. Please share...

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Dr. Jeffrey Gladd


Dr. Jeffrey Gladd graduated from Indiana University School of Medicine in 2001. He then went on to train in family medicine...

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Dr. Jeffrey Gladd
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