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View Diary: Cancer Treatment Centers of America: Misleading statistics and big money for tea party groups (156 comments)

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  •  That part of the ad is a dead giveaway. There (15+ / 0-)

    might indeed be a cancer doctor somewhere that is that cold hearted.  But I don't think s/he'd stay in business very long.  Unless he was a miracle worker and people were willing to put up with a horrid bedside manner in order to get the miracle worker cure.  That line should tell everyone the whole thing is a lie.

    "If you trust you are not critical; if you are critical you do not trust" by our own Dauphin

    by gustynpip on Wed Mar 06, 2013 at 02:18:55 PM PST

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    •  No kidding. (4+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      suzq, SCFrog, Mr Robert, Eyesbright

      Oncologists don't go into the specialty because they couldn't give a flying eff about their patients--quite the opposite, I'd imagine.

      My mother had cancer back in 2007, diagnosed a few days before Christmas and started treatment right after the new year in 2007.  In February 2008, she was laid off, and had an appointment scheduled that May for another screening (PET scan I believe as she was getting those and CTs every six months).  She couldn't afford COBRA at the time, so her health insurance went bye-bye.  She called her oncologist's office to cancel the appointment.  When her doctor found out she canceled it (since she only talked to a receptionist), he personally called her back and demanded she keep the appointment.  My mother explained that she had no insurance right now and could not afford a $7,000 procedure.  He told her to show up, get the test done, and he would take care of the rest, because she had been his patient for 18 months and they were at a critical crossroads and she could not miss this appointment.  My mom cried and went to the appointment.  She never saw a bill.  He continued to be her oncologist until last year, a few months before her November appointment (her checkups are in May and November) when the office called to tell her he'd suddenly retired and she needed to pick a new doctor from their staff.  Which was shocking, to say the least, because he didn't mention anything about retiring at her May appointment (and even said "See you in November!").  So we're not sure what happened to him, and she doesn't particularly care for the oncologist she has now, but we can't find him.  We hope he's okay, whatever he's doing now--he seemed too young to retire, he wasn't much older than my mom who is now 47.

      But yeah, that guy?  Didn't become an oncologist for fame/money.  Not when he's giving away $7,000 procedures to patients who can't pay.

      "I don't want a unicorn. I want a fucking pegasus. And I want it to carry a flaming sword." -mahakali overdrive

      by Silvia Nightshade on Thu Mar 07, 2013 at 08:13:19 AM PST

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      •  The other doctors found out about it and canned (4+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        ColoTim, njquack, ArtemisBSG, Mr Robert

        him.  Don't kid yourself, those practices are very lucrative and they were created to make money.  Medicine is a highly profitable business for these medical practices.  Read Brill's Time article, the $7000 test costs them very little.

        •  Interesting (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Mr Robert

          to fire him four years later, but if he's doing it often enough yeah I suppose they forced him out.

          I'm not naive enough to believe none of them are in it for the money.  But they're not all blood-sucking vampires who drain your bank account then leave you to die.  There are all kinds.

          "I don't want a unicorn. I want a fucking pegasus. And I want it to carry a flaming sword." -mahakali overdrive

          by Silvia Nightshade on Thu Mar 07, 2013 at 09:27:57 AM PST

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          •  When someone charges another human being (0+ / 0-)

            thousands of  dollars for a life saving medication or test which only cost them a small percentage of that fee, blood sucking comes to mind. Read the Brill article, it does not indict individual doctors but large medical practices are part of what I would call a vast criminal enterprise.  The punch line of the article, "Your money or your life" and usually it is both.

        •  That sounds about right- (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Mr Robert, Eyesbright

          My oncologist is very aware of my not having insurance, he sees me for a $40 flat rate and sneaks in the blood work at no charge.  However, he said that is as far as he can go as he's in a group with several dozen other doctors.    

          He wants to help me out more, but his partners feel if they help one person they'll have to help more and then there goes their profits.  

          Uninsured cancer survivor

          by ArtemisBSG on Thu Mar 07, 2013 at 10:30:03 AM PST

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    •  No ... my Honey's oncologist at Sloan Kettering (6+ / 0-)

      was as cold a fish as you could possibly imagine.  And her surgeon ... well, definitely not the sort to warm a speculum before inserting it -- or apologize for making an ouchie in a post-operative  examination.

      That's the Sloan corporate culture: always kind, never friendly.  You are their "patient" in the original sense: the passive object that is acted upon.  

      Their saving grace : being unquestionably very very good a what they do.

      But ... going THROUGH the experience in the First Person ... it certainly FELT as if they were every bit as uncaring and unfeeling as described in the Cancer Center Ad -- except when they seemed cloyingly phony.   (A Stage 4 diagnosis can make anyone a little Holden Caufield-ish.)

      The other side of the coin:  When the reality of your profession is that more than  half your patients have less than a 50/50 chance of living another 5 years ... two of which will be spent recovering from your care -- over involvement isn't  a healthy professional trait.

      •  Sometimes, the nurses make up for it. (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        wishingwell, Mr Robert, Eyesbright

        And sometimes, they hand you a pamphlet for a support group--like they did to my dad.   Sometimes, it's better to have your moral support system outside the hospital.

      •  my Sloan Kettering experience (0+ / 0-)

        Adam, I had the opposite experience at Sloan. my surgeon was incredible-warm and empathetic. IQ called her my moment of Zen. my oncologist could only be called an uber-mensch. Everyone at Sloan was wonderful. I recommend them to anyone who gets a cancer diagnosis. Hope your Honey is well.

        "Well Clarice, have the lambs stopped screaming?"

        by buffie on Sun Mar 10, 2013 at 04:05:00 AM PDT

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