Notes from a consumer of medical and dental services
My family doctor is a member of the medical team at Bloor Medical Clinic in Toronto. Along with being highly impressed with the quality of care at this centrally located clinic, I’m also impressed with the fact the clinic has a lot of space. There’s a seating area in the middle, with lots of room for people to sit. Physicians’ offices are spread out along one side. There’s a reception area as you walk in off the street and another reception area toward the back of the open space. It’s a relaxed setting. The space is beautifully organized. There’s a feeling of ease.
I previously was a patient at a clinic elsewhere in the Greater Toronto Area. The clinic was in a tightly confined space. A bench across from the reception area was where patients sat waiting to see the physician. This was a fine physician, but the setting was akin to a busy train station. There was a feeling of time pressure. Other than how the office was arranged, I was impressed with the quality of service, the quality of care, at this clinic. Not being keen about the confined space, however, after some thought I decided to move on to another medical practice namely the Bloor Medical Clinic.
In recent years, a routine blood test at the latter clinic gave rise to a convincing explanation for some minor, recurring symptoms dating back many years. In this case, thanks to a team of physicians utilizing a standard protocol for blood tests, I was able to access information that put my mind at ease. Until then, I had been in the dark, always seeking an answer but never finding it.
Secondly, a word about dental practices. For some years, I was a patient at a specialist clinic in the Greater Toronto Area where on one occasion, I had to wait five or six weeks with an abscessed tooth before it was attended to. After that experience, I moved along to another dental practice. If you need to wait more than a week or two to get an abscess looked after, it’s time to move on.
I’m now a patient of Dr. Jerry Vasilakos at Planet Dentistry in Toronto. Some years ago, a dental hygienist at Planet Dentistry gave me a splendid set of instructions (the time that was required for this was covered by my dental insurance) on how to properly clean my teeth. I found that really useful and highly recommend learning such details.
Another thing I’ve learned is that it’s a great idea to find a dentist who is not going to carry on an extended conversation with a dental assistant while you’re having a tooth implant procedure performed on your jaw. I will close with a story about one of my experiences many years ago at the dental practice where I had to wait five or six weeks before an abscessed tooth was attended to.
I recall a dental-implant procedure from many years ago. As the dentist was drilling into my jaw, he was engaged in a non-stop, animated conversation with a dental assistant (who was helping with the procedure) about a day, a few days previous, that they had spent on a lake in Muskoka north of Toronto. I still remember visual and other sensory impressions that arose in my mind during the conversation. All the details about this power boat and that power boat, and who went where and who did what.
The fact I was under local anesthesia, possibly combined with the stress of the dental procedure, has meant the story I heard about the waves and splashing water in Muskoka have stayed in my mind forever. The story has been firmly planted in my brain, ready for playback any time. Despite the fact the dentist actually did a great job with the implant, I’m pleased I’m no longer a patient at that particular dental practice.