The Doctor App – Just Say, “Ah,” and Fog Up Your Phone

 

Marfuas

Our healthcare system showed signs of dementia last week when BlueCross BlueShield launched the LiveHealth Online App — when you can’t get an appointment with your local doctor.

Just download the app from the iTunes App or Google Play store and get a live video chat with a tiny flat screen doctor from Walla Walla, Washington or other places you usually don’t go.

Yes, you can have an intimate doctor-patient chat with an avatar in a white coat for virtually the same cost (or lower) of visiting your doctor on earth. Because healthcare isn’t impersonal enough.

On Wednesday, I answered the phone and spoke to a Stepford robo-caller from Blue Cross Blue Shield. She was more animated than the usual telemarketing robot, and chatty, too.

In fact, she wouldn’t shut up. “Blah, blah, blah. LiveHealth Online is a new covered benefit of Empire BlueCross BlueShield…No waiting. No people coughing at you…like in the waiting room of a real doctor’s office.”

I hate getting sprayed in the face with a gaggle of germs.

More blah, blah, blah and robo-call gal said, “…. And the first 500 people that sign up get a free Amazon Gift Card.”

Sign me up Scotty or is that beam me up?

I suppose a Smartphone doctor would be less creepy than the doctor my medical group schedules you with when the other doctors aren’t available. During my last physical with him, when he asked if I needed him to do a breast exam, I said, “If you want to.”

AWKWARD!!!!

At that moment, I would have preferred to see his face smushed against a screen.

I don’t think teledoctoring is a state-of-the-art service. It’s more of a state-of-a-broken healthcare system, an insurers creative attempt to cut back services in a shiny new way.

I mean really. What can be accomplished with a virtual face-to-face appointment without a stethoscope? How do you give a urine sample? Pee on the phone?

What if your appointment is for an ear problem and the connection drops? Your “I can’t hear you, Doctor” may be misinterpreted as an ear blockage. Then you’ll have to fly out to Walla Walla, Washington for the doctor to shove a light in your ear.

It’s hard to get a good shot of an ear with an iPhone. Getting a flattering selfie is challenging enough.

And how does a Smartphone doctor get a throat culture for Strep? Do you lick the screen?

As BlueCross touts ”…the telehealth service is…a two-way, face-to-face video chat with a doctor who can both diagnose and treat them, along with their family members for non-emergency conditions such as the flu, cold, strep throat and ear infections.” – HealthTechZone

You know how I feel about ear problems.

Frankly, I think BlueCross BlueShield should have their head examined. Just hold the phone over your head and snap a picture. My telediagnosis — shit for brains.

What do you think about the new telehealth service?

When you get a moment, please check out my latest piece at HuffPost/50, “How to Say Goodbye to Summer.”

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Why I hate promoting myself

In all the years I’ve been blogging — roughly 4 1/2 — I’ve never been comfortable promoting myself. And here I am about to embark on a mission to promote my latest blog post at Huffington Post, an achievement I’m quite proud of.

Scared!

Scared! (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

The fear of posting on such a high-profile site was paralyzing at times. I can’t remember the number of revisions I made, or how many times I hesitated to click “submit” to the editors. When I was finally able to push past the fear and submit a blog post, the anguish of not feeling HuffPost worthy scratched at my brain. Perhaps that is why I didn’t write a blog post here the first time I was published on Huffington Post. Sure, I could have squeezed one out, but I didn’t.

Yet, I managed to puff my chest on Facebook because I was among friends, and friends of friends. Of course, you are my friends, too. I love all of you and am grateful you keep coming back to read my thoughts on cyberspace paper, in an extrasensory sort of way.

Writing a blog post takes a lot more effort these days. I’ve got achy breaky hands from typing, and my focus has been fuzzy at best — which I blame on summer head. I guess I can’t use summer head as an excuse much longer. Maybe the warm weather will find its way into fall. I can only hope.

As I can only hope you will forgive this awkward attempt at self promotion and help exacerbate my feelings of inadequacy by commenting and tweeting and liking (or not) my post at Huffington Post … Oh, insecurity, how I loathe thee and your vile cursed ways of making blogging so damn hard.

Thanks. Peace out.

Hint Fiction: Short, But Not Necessarily Sweet

 

Graffiti: Hint

Graffiti: Hint (Photo credit: Franco Folini)

I lost my engagement ring. The coroner found it on a corpse on the dance floor, clenched inside her fist. My fiancée’s missing.

 

Jayne’s Micro Writing Challenge. Join in and link up at Injaynesworld.

The Challenge: Write a story (beginning, middle and end) that hints at a larger story, but is complete within itself, in 25 words or less.

 

 

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The thing about life is…

 

You always think you have one more day
to make things right,
to say you’re sorry,
to hold a loved one tight

You never think the day will come
when all those thoughts that whooshed through your mind
never find the other bookend
that keeps its side of the bargain…

The last piece of the puzzle that fits into the empty space,
so all the other pieces can make a whole

You never think the day will come
when the words that were meant to be said
stay wrapped up inside your tongue,
a tightly woven thought that will never become undone


In Memory of Freckles

Jim and Freckles

Jim and Freckles

Are You A Moody Blogger?


Do you post at the same time each week or when the light hits your computer at a certain angle?

Light includes both natural and unnatural lighting — a flashlight in the event of a power failure.

Instituto de la Grasa, Sevilla

Instituto de la Grasa, Sevilla (Photo credit: Colt Group)

(more…)

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