Most members of the message board understood the basic need for physicians and patients to be able to actually communicate --- it is an issue of life and death (if not simply patient safety). But in the spirit of "there is one in every group," I share the following message post:
Last time I checked, no one was forcing anyone to see any specific physician. If a patient wants to see a US-born, US-educated physician who uses simple language, he or she has every right to find and consult one. No one's stopping the patient. What does it matter to the patient if some other doctor somewhere else does or doesn't speak English as well as someone born and raised in the US?When a patient in the United States is admitted to a hospital it is more likely than not that the patient will be assigned to a "hospitist" (stranger doctor). The above post is absolutely correct - no one is forcing you to see a specific physician. That is precisely the point.
As such, if you or your loved one is admitted to a hospital and you are unable to communicate or work with that hospitalist (for any reason - the physician does not speak English well, the physician speaks English beautifully but refuses to work with your treating physician or the physician received medical training in a country whose citizens want to kill Americans) then you are duty bound to "fire" that hospitalist.
You can fire a hospitalist by
- telling the hospitalist to his or her face or
- contact the patient services or risk management in the hospital and make your wishes clear.
Just because the individual wears a white coat and/or has the initials MD after his or her name in no way means you must submit your life to their care. Period. It isn't racist. It isn't unreasonable.
And if Obama's crazy dream of universal health care becomes a reality then phenomenal United States trained physicians (and physicians from premier countries like Israel) will likely stop treating patients. Obama will put more people in the medical care system, we will need more white coats (regardless of their citizenship, their upbringing or their hatred of Americans).
Scary, isn't it? Just ask. Know who is making life and death decisions about you in the hospital.