The call came in on my cell phone the other day. I didn’t recognize the voice: “How’s the cough, Jon?”
I asked, “Who is this?”
“It’s your doctor. I just wanted to check in and see how you’re doing.”
Here’s the back drop.
Last year I had a short bout with pneumonia. Two nights in the hospital; not a fun experience. Recently, I started coughing again. Concerned I might be more susceptible to a recurrence of pneumonia, I scheduled a visit with my new doc to make sure. (I was able to get in the day of my call.)
The verdict: simple virus. No need for treatment. Sent me home without a prescription for unnecessary antibiotics. (Read more about that at Consumer Reports’ “Choosing Wisely.”)
But then he called a week later to make sure I’m doing OK. How often does that happen?
I risk boring you with this personal anecdote, because it illustrates an episode of care that if the norm, would lower costs (premiums) for all of us.
P.S. If asked, I’d be happy to share the name of my new doc.