Thursday, December 02, 2010

The Consultant? Pah!!

Caelyn had a hospital appointment today and she asked me to go with her because she doesn't always understand what they tell her. Lots of ordinary people don't speak "medical". As things turned out, it is just as well I went with her.

The Dr introduced himself in very broken English. Before the consultation started, the nurse came in with a prescription that he had written. He had not written the dose of the medicine down, so she asked him to fill it in. He did not understand "strength of the tablet" so I suggested "dose". He didn't understand that either so Caelyn suggested "milligrams" and you could see a light go on. "Oh, MILLIGRAMS" he said. That is when I began to lose confidence. Alas, that was only the beginning. Most of what Caelyn told him he didn't understand and he kept asking her to repeat what she said, and even so, I don't think he grasped much.

I was sitting behind her, out of her line of vision, and I decided to say nothing about my doubts in case she felt OK about the way the interview was going. Then he examined her behind a curtain, he hurt her quite a lot and then said there was no problem, nothing wrong. That is not what the radiologist said when he did her scan, so she queried it and was rather abruptly brushed off. He said he would write to her GP to say there was no problem.

When we got out, Caelyn told me how he had treated her roughly and hurt her and she felt like a "piece of meat". She reacted badly to the whole thing and she did not get it wrong. I was there and witnessed the whole thing, and she is entirely justified in being dissatisfied. I advised her to go to her GP and tell her the whole story because the GP is going to get a letter from him saying that Caelyn is fine and she will assume that that is the case and that Caelyn is happy. She isn't. Luckily, she has an excellent relationship with her GP.

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