My Health Care Professional is NOT a physician!

This is sort of a confession type of post, but in a good way.  When I advise that someone should see their health care professional, I mean they should contact the person who provides them with their health care.  Mostly this person is a physician and for me, that is usually who has been my first line of health care giver.  In fact, before I even see someone new, I research their credentials, check out where they graduated from medical school and look to see how other have rated their experience.  Again, always a doctor, until NOW.  

After writing my last two posts on breast health, I thought I better get on it and make an appointment with my gynecologist for a PAP smear and a gyno exam.  As it turns out, since the 18 months ago that I last saw my physician, she moved and didn’t tell me.  While I didn’t take it personally in any way, I sure was surprised.  I mean really, who doesn’t send postcards or emails or whatever.  If I were rating her now I would downgrade on that alone.  But, doesn’t matter since I found someone new.  The doctor I selected is young and graduated from a well-respected medical school.  Figured her knowledge base is current and because she is young, she would outlast me.  All good; however, not to be.  

About a week before my appointment, I learned that my young and active new doctor, who I hadn’t yet met, had injured her knee.  Instead of rescheduling, I asked if there was another doctor available to see me.  While not an emergency, I didn’t want to postpone any longer.  Yes, I was told, there is someone available and she is a nurse midwife practitioner.  I hesitated a moment, as I thought that I have never had a nurse practitioner actually be my primary health care provider.  Of course I said YES.  

Sharon, my nurse practitioner, is a certified nurse midwife and an excellent practitioner.  She has a graduate degree in nursing with a specialty in nurse midwifery.  Her focus area is women’s health and she works collaboratively with the practice physicians to do high-risk obstetrics.  Lucky mothers-to-be who have Sharon as their midwife!! She also does well patient exams and does them thoroughly.  

Sharon listened to me talk about every minor (and not so minor) health happening that I have ever experienced.  Loved her genuine interest in my history.  In fact, I was almost tempted to dig even deeper and find other stuff I could share.   But, didn’t think a menopausal woman talking about her first period experience was relevant.  During the dreaded internal exam with the speculum developed in the middle ages, I didn’t hurt.  Her technique was excellent and I didn’t feel the usual discomfort.  After, she answered all of my questions and she informed me of the logistics of the process to schedule a bone scan.  She even made that easy.  Loved her style and appreciated her expertise, patience and efficiency.   I now have a HCP!!

While there, I learned that the practice has a gynecologist who specializes in urinary tract issues.  What a plus that is for women who suffer from incontinence.  Fortunately, I can appreciate that service from a far.  For those who need the help, great to have a doctor who can address the issues and is focused on women’s health.  

To my previous doctor:  Hope you are doing well and don’t worry about me, as I now have a nurse practitioner, which I trust with my precious health.  

What about you?  Are all of your HCPs doctors or are you fortunate enough to also have a nurse practitioner looking after your wellbeing?

 

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