As an American physician who lives part-time in Italy, I must relate a recent medical experience


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Medical Care in Italy

As an American physician who lives part-time in Italy, I must relate a recent medical experience.

I walked into the physician’s office unannounced with a severe cough and fever. I was seen by the physician after two patients with appointments and had waited less than one hour. The physician saw me for about 30 minutes, diagnosed me with pneumonia, and gaveme a prescription for antibiotics and mucolytics, which cost me only a few dollars. He asked me to report back if I felt no better. There was no insurance paperwork. This occurred without a six-hour wait and $1,000 bill from an emergency room.

My impression is that medical corporations disingenuously blame patients for overusing the emergency room, while simultaneously expanding emergency rooms and opening new urgent care centers, all the while keeping physician’s offices less accessible. Their financial motivation is hard to ignore.

Dr. Tom Falasca, Author Physician’s Guide to Better Medical Decisions - Critical Thinking in Medicine