My Right Foot: Mission Accomplished

Mission accomplished! The surgery on my right foot was a success. The operation came on the 45th anniversary (just a day after) Neil Armstrong stepped foot on the moon. So I felt confident that the universe was with me as I was taking my own giant step.

foot1I am getting excellent medical care. From the surgeon and anesthesiologist to the nurses and hospital staff, they are all superb. I am seeing first hand why everyone praises the American medical system. It doesn’t get better than this. But at the same time I am also seeing flaws and inefficiencies in our healthcare system.

My journey to the operating room involved weeks of travel through a maze of people, paperwork and bureaucracy. I appreciate the importance of accuracy ahead of a major procedure, but the process of gathering that information is so inefficient. The redundancies are mind-boggling. There have been so many people asking the same basic questions. I’ve lost count how many times I have been asked “What’s your name?” “What’s your date of birth?” “Who’s your surgeon?” “What’s the date of surgery?” Over and over. And all the questionnaires are paper forms. It seems so archaic in these days where everyone is using iPhones  and iPads. You need money, you use an ATM. You need to travel, you check in on a kiosk at the airport.  You need to get in touch with someone, you send a text message. But at the hospital, it’s all about paper and people. I wonder what it would be like if Apple came in to fix this mess. The healthcare industry would probably save billions.

I am sure there are innovators and entrepreneurs working to change our healthcare system for the better. If we could put a man on the moon, we can surely fix this too.

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  1. James says:

    Well, the medical tourism industry does demonstrate that other countries are doing the same for less, just as Apple owes much of its own productivity to the overseas manufacture of its products. I fear it could mean more structural unemployment for those paper pushers.

  2. Susie & family. I’m duplicate in my mode of well-wishes when taking Twitter into account. While I wish Tyler and all of the production crew best of health, I thank you for your accounts, continued reporting. On the eve of my father’s hip replacement surgery I will have to make sure some communications are clear. Heal up. This individual is with you all. ~~ Your points improvement in the healthcare situation are well-taken. Now, .. take care. – B

  3. Lynn says:

    Hi Susie,
    I was wondering where you were! Missing you on NBR. Glad you came through surgery okay. I understand what you mean about medical facilities asking the same questions over and over. I am the care coordinator for my uncle who is elderly and has dementia. I go through this all the time. Recently we were at his eye doctor’s office and had to fill out updated paperwork. He has many medications, too many for me to possibly remember (I don’t administer them) so fortunately the assisted living facility he lives at provides this list that we bring EVERY TIME we go to any doctor. The crazy part is that they don’t even read the information we just provided. He is blind in one eye and every time we get a different assistant they test that eye for vision when it says very clearly on the form I just filled out that he is blind in that eye. That is just the tip of the iceberg….don’t get me started on how often these facilities are not well-equipped for people with disabilities. Last time I took him to the doctor it was raining and although the steps to the front door were covered, the handicapped ramp which he needs to take is not covered. Thankfully I had a large umbrella or we would have both been soaked, as it takes him a very long time to walk up that ramp.
    Get well soon, Susie! Hope to see you back on tv soon.
    Lynn Phelps

  4. Neil says:

    Get well soon, you are finding out about the medical maze of medical insurance, that makes no sense.

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