Despite the fact that Pierce City Medical Clinic (our latest venture) is growing much more slowly than I would like, I've discovered that throughout Missouri and neighboring states, there is a huge shortage of physicians. I know that because in the past three days we've received at least ten calls from physician search services asking if Mel has any time to fill in at Missouri emergency departments or medical clinics, urgent care, and even medical care facilities on Indian Reservations (their choice of words, not mine.) For the most part, Mel doesn't have that time, because his former full-time employer is happy to keep him on the schedule every Saturday he's available until the clinic is filled with patients. The nurses and other medical staff entities who are still in the ER have recommended him for many of their ER patients.
So why is our beautiful new clinic not filled with all these patients searching for a doc? My take on it is this--too many people resist seeking health until they're near death. Emergency departments are bombarded with patients desperate for help because they waited too long to take care of themselves. Do you know how much it costs to go to an emergency department? Thousands. How much does it cost to find your way to health? I don't know...under a hundred, even for an extended visit to my favorite doc. Some good veggies and fruits and lean meats may be a little costly, but how valuable is good health? Exercise? Priceless.
Mel has been told by someone in the know at one of the local processing plants, which employs at least 600 people, that at least 65% of their employees don't have a family doc. And yet when they encounter illness or accident, they end up in the ER. Either insurance pays a high price, or the patient is stuck paying off a huge bill for how many years? If not that, the government ends up footing the bill. That means us, the taxpayers.
If you don't have a family doc, I suggest you establish one. Find someone more interested in helping you with your health, not someone simply interested in getting rich. Catch illness before it catches you. Your health can make a huge difference in your life.