How to avoid unpleasant surprises in hospitals and doctor’s offices

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October 1, 2020

How to avoid unpleasant surprises in hospitals and doctor’s offices

Hospital Survival Guide: The Patient Handbook to Getting Better and Getting Out by David Sherer, Humanix Books, US $25.00, Pp 300, August 2020, ISBN 978-1630061630

My last stay in the hospital was not what I had expected. I was very unhappy when I left the hospital after my 5-day “stay.” It was one of the best-known hospitals in the state where I lived. The doctors were the best doctors you can get in the Unites States. There was no problem with other medical facilities. But I was still not happy when I was discharged from the hospital. If I had read David Sherer’s Hospital Survival Guide, I would have chosen a different hospital. The reason why I was not happy during my stay at the hospital was that I was visited by a large number of people who did not have any role in the medical care I was receiving. In Hospital Survival Guide by David Sherer says that if you prefer to limit the number of strangers examining you, don’t choose a teaching hospital (especially if your problem and its treatment is straightforward and simple to fix).

David Sherer explains that, in addition to doctors and nursing staff involved in providing medical care to you, a large number of students, interns, residents, and even fellows keep visiting. This is especially true if your problem or its treatment is at all unusual. You become an object of constant attention. In my case, it was a great source of irritation because I am a very private person. The kind of hospital you should select depends, to a large extent, on your personality. Sherer suggests you choose a community hospital if you value closeness and want convenience. If is easier to choose a community hospital if your case doesn’t call for cutting-edge technology.

These are not the only considerations when you are choosing a hospital and a surgeon for yourself or your loved ones. Dr. Sherer gives more than hundred tips that will help you in choosing your medical caregivers. In one of the chapters, Sherer tells his readers that the choice of a hospital depends a lot on whether you are having a procedure or surgery. If it is an elective surgery, you should avoid having it in July. He argues that July is the worst month to be in the hospitals. He explains that few outside the medical community know that the medical school calendars include what they call “Third year mandatory Orientation/Registration/Introduction to Clinical Skills.” In other words, the medical students who have made it through courses like anatomy, pharmacology and medical ethics finally get experience with patients. Old medical teams disappear, and new faces appear. This is called July Syndrome. You should postpone the elective procedure if you don’t want novices learning on your bodies.

Many of us need to choose a hospital and a surgeon for ourselves or for our loved ones. Dr Sherer not only tells his readers how to choose a hospital and surgeon but also other caregivers. Dr Sherer gives practical advice on how to avoid unpleasant surprises in hospitals and doctor’s offices and how to deal with rude doctors and paramedical staff. The most important point Dr Sherer makes is that a knowledgeable patient or his/her family are in a better position to make informed decisions affecting their healthcare. That is not all; he also teaches you hospital/medical jargon so that you don’t feel at a loss when caregivers are unable to explain your medical problems in plain language. Everybody needs to read this easy-to-read medical guide. It is a small investment in your health with unimaginable dividends.

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