Archive for November, 2016

What does it good for doctors to discuss tests if they blow off the results?

November 26, 2016

For years I refused to get a prostate level test (TSA) due to the evidence that it does more harm than good. I had a PCP that kept encouraging me to do it and I would pointedly refuse. I insisted it go into the medical that patient REFUSED prostate level test.

Anyhow, I had some routine labs ordered and was troubled to see that a TSA test was included in the lab orders. Worse, I looked look at older orders and discovered that I was getting the tests as part pf my regular lab orders.

So, I had the discussion with the PCP with the on the test and REFUSED it. This was supposed to be logged in my charts. Then I learn that my wishes were ignored and I was both getting the testing and being billed my share of the costs.

Now I have to scan all lab orders to ensure that my wishes are followed — despite a discussion with the doctor and having it noted in my records.

I ask: What does it do to “talk about talk about tests and procedures with your doctor) if they simply blow off what you tell them?

Let’s make hospital discharge instruction more clear.

November 22, 2016

I just noticed in my own discharge that the instructions for medications were written in “doc-speak”.

I read that I was to take a medication BID. The acronym wasn’t spelled out and the average patient has NO IDEA what BID means.

Nor can the patients be blamed. It turns out the mystery acronym is for the Latin phrase “bis in die”, which means “twice a day”.

If a patient is supposed to take a pill “twice a day”, then the discharge instructions should say it.

True, the information for using it twice a day is also there if one looks, but it is confusing as it mixes patient views and pharmacist info. One also has to wade through pages of updates and unneeded info. What the patient wants is ONE PAGE with the important stuff, like when they take their meds.

A working knowledge of medical Latin phrases (and their acronyms) shouldn’t be required of patients.

There have been discussions for years now on how to make discharge instructions more clear. It appears we have more work to do.

Here is the full reference: