2012-03-22

Problem: Solution

Let's get Phase Two kicked off with a bang, shall we.

Anyone with type 1 diabetes knows the frustrations of dealing with health care practitioners who are patently uninformed when it comes to our condition. In some cases, these situations can be quite dangerous for us. We go to doctors, nurses, and so forth for help; if we instead receive bad advice then we are subsequently worse-off than we were when we came to them in the first place.

The Problem
Generalized, the problem seems to be that the supply of health care practitioners with even an elementary knowledge of diabetes is horrendously insufficient for the needs of diabetics in general. As with all medical supply insufficiencies, this is caused by over-regulation.

Shall I prove it? I could, but as I indicated yesterday, I no longer believe any human being anywhere is actually interested in the evidence of the matter.

At any rate, what matters is the cold, hard fact that all health care is under-supplied, and that we therefore confront the downstream effects of this. We live in a fettered, un-free health care market. Unless you plan on investing yourself in some "community organizing," casual drug use, government-subsidized employment, and then eventually seeking public office, your opinion is not going to count much when it comes to the supply of health care. Nor is mine.

Period. End of story. Now we deal with it.

The Solution
If you have diabetes - or any other serious illness - my conclusion is that you cannot sit idly by, placing your future in the hands of people who have no clue about your condition. You have to take the reins. You have to educate yourself to the point where it is almost impossible to meet someone who knows more about your condition than you do.

Why? Because you might find yourself in situations where the doctors' advice can literally put you at risk. If they don't know their stuff, they can do more harm than good.

We can bemoan the inadequacies of the world around us, or we can take them as they are: Wholly imperfect and not at all what we deserve.

Once we accept that we are neither getting a fair shake nor even a passable level of care, we gain precious freedom! This is the freedom to understand our situation, which then enables us to plan for it.

Knowing that I will likely never get the kind of health care I need, I have to take up the slack. I have to educate myself to the point that I can self-treat if it were required of me. Then, I have to be able to push back against some of the medical advice I get, including knowing when to just shut up and not contest the diagnoses/prognoses; then go do the right thing anyway.

Accepting the problem as-is is liberating precisely because it defines the situation in such a way that it can be dealt with. Solutions only present themselves when we acknowledge the realities of the problem and go forth from there.

Look for more Problem: Solution posts on the blog in the future.