Thursday, December 01, 2005

To the Doctor

After having a cough for entirely too long and many urging from others, I decided to see a doctor. I was leery since I had heard that most Indian Doctors have little to no bedside manner and generally don't inform you of what you actually have. I prepared myself for the miserable wait and a generally unpleasant experience.

Chandeyree (one of my co-workers) suggested her doctor only a short walk from work. She gave me the directions and seemed surprised when I kept asking when was the best time to go or about his fees. After work yesterday she assured me I would find the place and could go at anytime. When I arrived I was surprised to find a small waiting room with only two other people.
The waiting room had a few posters up and swinging saloon doors that allowed you to see directly into the doctors office.

I was shocked about the informality of it all. After fine minutes I went in and (as trained my by father) gave him a run-down of my symptoms, their duration, and what I had done to address them. Without smiling (in the least) he asked a few questions, took my pulse and blood pressure, listened to me breathe, looked in my throat and wrote out a prescription and told me to come back in five days. Only when I asked did he let me know what the medication was.

The whole visit took about 25 mins, and cost 70 Rs (that's the price of 3Kg of apples, 1/2 the price of a shirt bought off the street, or about $1.50). The small cocktail of medication I'm on (1 cough suppressant, 1 antibiotic, 1 decongestant [and], and a nutrient supplement) cost more than 4 times the amount of the doctor visit.

All in all not a bad visit, it could have been much worse, but all the drugs make me sleepy.

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