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  1. #1
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    Lightbulb There are good well priced doctors and not greedy

    Specialist surgeon had to be consulted. Three of them were contacted:
    - 2 months waiting time = scratch
    - 3 days waiting time. R2000.00 down payment before the booking is confirmed. 3 times the contract rate. Scratch
    - Next day appointment. Contract rates. Has done one op with good results but we thought he is only doing hands. Call - not only hands. Booking done.

    Visit to the doctor. No big op yet. Go to see an other specialist. He will fix it with small op. Writes recommendation. How much? R0.00

    Orthopedic surgeon: Dr. Freed.

    It is really worth to phone around and not to trust hearsay.
    Jouko
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  2. #2
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    Default Re: There are good well priced doctors and not greedy

    I wonder if any perceived attitude from your side led to these surgeons passing you on from the one to the other? Don't know you, but just thinking .
    Stanley Weakley.
    Toyota Landcruiser 76SW 4,2L diesel.

    “Great journeys are memorable not so much for what you saw, but for where you camped”.

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    OR
    http://www.4x4community.co.za/forum/...e16?highlight= from post 315.

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  4. #3
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    Default Re: There are good well priced doctors and not greedy

    When I pick a doctor cost is one of the last things on my mind

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  6. #4
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    Default Re: There are good well priced doctors and not greedy

    When I saw the heading of this thread I took a bet with myself that it was posted by Jouko! Honestly!
    There is never a right time to do the wrong thing and never a wrong time to do the right thing!

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  8. #5
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    Default Re: There are good well priced doctors and not greedy

    Quote Originally Posted by Stan Weakley View Post
    I wonder if any perceived attitude from your side led to these surgeons passing you on from the one to the other? Don't know you, but just thinking .
    Not only in the medical profession.

    In our industry we have a habit of referring our non-paying clients to expert opposition
    Cheers
    Willem Greyling

    "When the wise man points at the moon, the imbecile examines the finger" - Confucius

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  10. #6
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    Default Re: There are good well priced doctors and not greedy

    Quote Originally Posted by Jouko View Post
    Specialist surgeon had to be consulted. Three of them were contacted:
    - 2 months waiting time = scratch
    - 3 days waiting time. R2000.00 down payment before the booking is confirmed. 3 times the contract rate. Scratch
    - Next day appointment. Contract rates. Has done one op with good results but we thought he is only doing hands. Call - not only hands. Booking done.

    Visit to the doctor. No big op yet. Go to see an other specialist. He will fix it with small op. Writes recommendation. How much? R0.00

    Orthopedic surgeon: Dr. Freed.

    It is really worth to phone around and not to trust hearsay.
    Jouko are you sure you're not Scottish perhaps?
    Cheers
    Willem Greyling

    "When the wise man points at the moon, the imbecile examines the finger" - Confucius

  11. #7
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    Default Re: There are good well priced doctors and not greedy

    location, location, location. I did something stupid and needed to see a plastic surgeon. I saw a nice guy in Hillcrest Hospital and I forget the cost, but I want to say it was around 650 for the initial consult and then he asked to see me a few days later. When I got my wallet out at the end of the second session his secretary told me it was covered under the initial consult and there was no balance to pay.

    So it was significantly cheaper to see and FRCS in KZN, than a GP in Midrand? Anyway, I was happy, but as a believer in the free market, these guys will charge what the market will bear and would be stupid to leave money on the table. If no-one can afford to pay them, they will either lower their rates or leave the country.

    I also have no idea what their cost base is, but they have missed a crap load of earning potential buy studying for a decade or so, and then usually pay extortionate medical insurance rates. What I will say is that if you have some dosh here, you can see really good docs, really quickly compared with the socialist european countries or Canada, so I am happy to betaal while I can afford it.

    My mom used to work in Theatre and one of the plastic surgeons she worked with would do quite a few free surgeries on cleft pallet kids and would cover all the hospital expenses from his own pocket, so some of them are very generous.

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  13. #8
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    Default Re: There are good well priced doctors and not greedy

    It was not me calling. They were simple booking calls. Normal questions: when available and are you contracted in

    Personally I will never see a doctor who has 2 month's waiting list. Once upon a time I did ask a specialist why his waiting time is short and an other one in the building has couple months. He was quiet few seconds and then said that when he was young he worked under a senior doctor and he gave an advise: Do not have long waiting time for appointments. If you do people get better, they forget or they die. In addition it takes 3 months before you can take a holiday. That specialist sorted out my issue. I happen to agree with that doctor.

    We have hospital plans with dedicated hospitals. We use those. Every specialist we have used have been contracted in and have been top class. No co payments. 100% cover.

    In this case the specialist whom we have used before with very good results determined that major operation is not needed. He referred to an other specialist who is doing what ever is needed in a different way. It is a bit like why to do open heart when stents do the job. Doctors specialize.

    No I am not from Scotland. Quality of a wine doesn't improve by increasing its price. Doctors are the same.

    Quote Originally Posted by Stan Weakley View Post
    I wonder if any perceived attitude from your side led to these surgeons passing you on from the one to the other? Don't know you, but just thinking .
    Jouko
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  15. #9
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    Default Re: There are good well priced doctors and not greedy

    Dr Freed? I guess it's all in the name!

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  17. #10
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    Default Re: There are good well priced doctors and not greedy

    What is the bases? I have asked so many people on what bases they say that this doctor is better or this hospital is better. I simply do not get an answer.

    One key issue going to a doctor is "how quickly".

    When I read past threads the cost is a BIG issue afterwards. Why not to ask upfront and then no need to moan afterwards. How many people complain "medical aid did not pay". Often the issue is that person went to a wrong hospital because never read the policy.

    In our case it was R2000.00 saving ON INITIAL CONSULTATION and elimination of 2 MONTHS of pain and problems by using phone 3 times.



    Quote Originally Posted by Half-Pint View Post
    When I pick a doctor cost is one of the last things on my mind
    Jouko
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  19. #11
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    Default Re: There are good well priced doctors and not greedy

    My old Staff, ripped me from nose to lip, I came to cuddle her and was a bit heavy on her back legs. She snapped.

    I did not have MA. Waited in the queue, at a netcare. Got told I need to to pay a R3k deposit, did that and waited....

    A young Doc came to have a look and said you need surgery done by a specialist may cost 50k,

    I told him can you stitch it , he said yes but, you need to sign a form. He charged me R300 and I had a slight scar after, the initial lisp, drool lack of confidence.

    10yrs later I still have confidence after he stitched

  20. #12
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    Default Re: There are good well priced doctors and not greedy

    Whatever explanations given, I really find it difficult to understand some people.
    When they have legal problems they call for the most expensive (and by implication the best) advocate.
    When they have surgical problems they look for the cheaper surgeon .
    Stanley Weakley.
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    “Great journeys are memorable not so much for what you saw, but for where you camped”.

    Trans East Africa 2015/2016 Trip report https://www.4x4community.co.za/forum...-6-SLOW-DONKEY
    OR
    http://www.4x4community.co.za/forum/...e16?highlight= from post 315.

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  22. #13
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    Default Re: There are good well priced doctors and not greedy

    Quote Originally Posted by Stan Weakley View Post
    Whatever explanations given, I really find it difficult to understand some people.
    When they have legal problems they call for the most expensive (and by implication the best) advocate.
    When they have surgical problems they look for the cheaper surgeon .
    Yes, that way they still have some cash to pay the expensive lawyer and sue the Dr.
    2012 FJ Cruiser
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  24. #14
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    Default Re: There are good well priced doctors and not greedy

    How does a surgeon get away from having a waiting list. Does he just take the first 4 patients each day and tell everyone else to come back tomorrow, early, and get in line.

    Or is 2 days ok, 3 days, for not urgent stuff and then fit in the emergency (generally snotty nosed child) patient as they go.

    It's a genuine question though, what's the alternative. My son has on two occasions had to have emergency visits to a top Durban neurosurgeon, he's always been accommodated. When he's needed follow ups we always got sorted out in a day. But I'll bet he has a waiting list, one that he uses with discretion and evaluating risk. It's what I expect.

  25. #15
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    Default Re: There are good well priced doctors and not greedy

    Well, a surgeon of good standing does not go home until the day's reasonably urgent work is done. And indeed there are waiting lists to see them for less urgent conditions, precisely because some time gaps have to be left open for the more urgent cases.

    I think it is fair to say that most surgical patients are initially referred by other doctors or specialists. Other doctors are the most critical evaluators of surgical skills and favorable outcomes, and the best surgeons as judged by their peers will always be the busiest, whether they offer contracted professional discounts or not.

    As pointed out earlier, most busy surgeons seem more likely to offer reduced fees or pro bono services for socially deserving patients, otherwise unable to afford their services.

    In outline a surgeons financial billing is divided more or less as follows, 1/3 covers overheads, 1/3 tax after deductibles, 1/3 take home. No pension, sick leave, vacation pay or bonuses. Many surgeons do about 1/3 of their turnover after hours or over weekends.

    Surgeons with proven skills and good, busy practices will make a decent living, but need successful outside investments to retire comfortably.
    Stanley Weakley.
    Toyota Landcruiser 76SW 4,2L diesel.

    “Great journeys are memorable not so much for what you saw, but for where you camped”.

    Trans East Africa 2015/2016 Trip report https://www.4x4community.co.za/forum...-6-SLOW-DONKEY
    OR
    http://www.4x4community.co.za/forum/...e16?highlight= from post 315.

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  27. #16
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    Default Re: There are good well priced doctors and not greedy

    Hi Stan, I’m not arguing with the points you have made, but sitting on the other side of the fence can be VERY frustrating. As you know Linda is suffering from a debilitating pain in her right foot, the pain started on 27th February 2020, 15 months ago. So far she has visited GP/podiatrist/chronic pain specialist/2 x foot surgeons/orthotist. In this period she has been sent for multiple x-rays/CT scans/ultrasound/bone scans/2 x MRIs/nerve conductivity tests/ultrasound guided cortisone injections/2 x custom made braces and a night splint. Her case is compounded by Parkinson’s disease. Waiting periods have ranged from 2 days to 2 months. There has been no meaningful improvement to her pain. Our own daughter and son-in-law are both doctors so we have no gripe against doctors and often land up in discussions supporting the medical profession.

    Unfortunately, this case has been very difficult to deal with, the 2 x foot surgeons have both been reluctant to perform surgery which all agree is the only real solution. This seems to be mainly as they have been unable to fully/correctly diagnose the problem. Even the Orthotist, in confidence, told us that the surgeons prefer to perform the “easier” operations and stay away from the more difficult procedures. Inevitably we see the surgeon, he/she says we are going to try XYZ, come and see me again in 4 weeks, it is apparent after 1 week that the trial is not working but we have to wait a further 3 weeks to see the surgeon. The end result is that even if Covid allowed Australians to travel, we would probably not be in a position to return to Africa until this matter is resolved. Rant over
    John 2014 Toyota Hilux 4x4 3.0 D4D and 2021 Toyota Prado GXL 2.8
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  28. #17
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    Default Re: There are good well priced doctors and not greedy

    I have almost constant pins and needles in my hands, have had it to a greater or lesser degree for a number of years, now.
    As I sit here typing, it's building up and soon it will be to the point where I need to stop typing for a minute and shake my arms about to restore some feeling in my hands. I struggle at work with it and I haven't ridden a motorcycle for a number of years now because within a few minutes I lose function of my hands and can't manipulate the controls.

    About 2 years ago it was at a bad level, and it was even affecting my sleep, so I took myself off to an excellent Orthopaedic Surgeon we had found and he diagnosed possible "Thoracic Outlet Syndrome", but sent me off for an MRI to confirm it.
    It turns out, I actually have a few discs in my C spine that are/have collapsed and are causing the problems I am experiencing.

    In the meanwhile, my Ortopod retires and I find another one who passes me off to a Neurologist (according to the new Orthopod, buggered necks are now Neurology territory), make the appointment for during my next off rotation because he's fully booked this time around and get told I have to take Lyrica for the rest of my life to help with the pain and ease the pins and needles. I make my departure R2500 lighter for the experience and get a second opinion at R2300 which pretty much said "suck it up, you're getting old, and take Cymbalta for it"......
    A chance conversation with an ex colleague who had a similar thing, but she ended up almost immobile sent me to a guy at Vincent Palotti and in November last year, he was booked until MAY this year.....
    Cheers,
    John Kilfoil

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  29. #18
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    Default Re: There are good well priced doctors and not greedy

    Quote Originally Posted by Stan Weakley View Post
    Whatever explanations given, I really find it difficult to understand some people.
    When they have legal problems they call for the most expensive (and by implication the best) advocate.
    When they have surgical problems they look for the cheaper surgeon .
    I wish it was like that Dr. Stan.
    Cheers
    Willem Greyling

    "When the wise man points at the moon, the imbecile examines the finger" - Confucius

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  31. #19
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    Default Re: There are good well priced doctors and not greedy

    Quote Originally Posted by MANDREAS View Post
    I wish it was like that Dr. Stan.
    I can vouch for that!

    First question most new clients ask is what will it cost. Unfortunately I don't own a crystal ball so I cannot predict what you will be in for over the course of the next 1 - 5 years.

    We wont even discuss the people who ask for an opinion and complain about the account because your opinion was "only three pages".

    I suppose I shouldn't complain too much, at least people aren't complaining I charge too much for a coke

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  33. #20
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    Default Re: There are good well priced doctors and not greedy

    One thing what I have seen right from the beginning is that South African doctors make decisions and even juniors perform procedures that in most "advanced" countries only the most senior will do. I used to say that when you book a GP never ever mention that you have some heart problem because when you go to see the doc he/she may have a replacement waiting. I would say our trainee doctors have good practical years. Often it is a decision for them do or the patient dies. Unfortunately greedy legal practitioners seem to cause this to end. Instead of doing 3rd party claims they have now runners in hospitals to find malpractice cases.

    Within the last 2 months or so we have had one friend and one close family member having some form of a back ops. One lower and one upper. One in Pretoria one in Bloem. Minimal waiting time and no issues. Both medical aid cases and up to now no complains about high out of pocket payments.
    Jouko
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