Patient engagement is key

Linda Sullivan

Reading the headline “Patient Engagement Key to Better Health: AHRQ Report” prompted my internal response of ‘uh, yeah.’

Having just suffered a double retinal tear (now successfully repaired) I can tell you that without my pushing really hard to find an appointment with the right doctor, I might not have sight in one eye. I was in Florida at the time and while perhaps the best retina specialist is less than a mile from where I was, I wasn’t able to get in to see him.

After many phone calls I got in through the circuitous route of going to an ER, after first finding out if they had an ophthalmologist on call. Once in the ER, I was assessed and the ophthalmologist called. He then referred me to the retina specialist a mile away.

Oh, and while I was in the ER the initial doctor who assessed me said that I needed blood work. What? I questioned this and it was immediately cancelled without explanation.

Yes, patient engagement is key.

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