Surgery Center of Oklahoma Blog

January 24, 2012

“Here’s your antibiotic and thanks for the okra and chickens”

Filed under: Uncategorized — surgerycenterok @ 10:58 am

My doctor (yes, I have one other than myself) has opted out of Medicare and almost all insurance plans.  Let me tell you why this is so wonderful.  You see, I know that she is working for me.  She has my best interests at heart, not that of the insurance company, not that of her employer (she is, of course, independent and self-employed), not the interests of Uncle Sam.  She is old school.  She spends a lot of time educating her patients about their conditions, advises what she believes to be the best course of treatment and makes darn sure that the patient owns the responsibility for their disease and its management.  I believe that her approach to medicine is becoming more and more rare (and that much more valuable and in demand).  She is hard to get into.  Her schedule is booked.  Many of her patients are Medicare patients, but they continue to see her even though Medicare never enters the picture.  I hope that anyone reading this blog is lucky enough to have a doctor that is truly your advocate, working for you without compromise. 

A friend of mine recently called me needing help getting in to see a specialist.  I made the call to the physician and he promptly contacted my friend and told him that he didn’t accept his insurance.  My friend called me disappointed and asked me to find him someone else to see.  Now keep in mind my friend isn’t what anyone would call “poor.”  I said,”..are you nuts?”  “Don’t you know what you have stumbled in to?”  “He doesn’t take your insurance because he doesn’t have to!”  I recommended that he call this physician back and tell him that he wanted to see him and that they could deal with each other without involving the insurance company. 

It seems that just when I think that the medical world has completely lost its way, I think about my doctor and how she operates and practices.  Then I hear about physicians like the one to which I sent my friend.   Understand that these doctors are at war with every fiber of what mainstream medicine represents.  These are extremely tough, principled individuals that are determined to stay the course in spite of pressure, threats, you name it.  They represent what Albert Jay Nock called the “remnant.”  Think about the doctor I’ve written about who accepts a cup of coffee from one of his Medicare patients as payment in full.  I understand he took a plate of cookies recentlyas payment.  Chickens, vegetables, ironing services and home-cooked meals are acceptable payment methods for one of my very favorite physicians here in the Oklahoma City area!

I am fortunate and honored to have known many members of the medical “remnant” over the years, even more fortunate to claim my physician and many of my partners as members of this group.  “To the remnant!”

G. Keith Smith, M.D.

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