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Monday, Dec 17th

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Healthcare or CPT codes (What are you getting?)

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When we go to the hospital we do so because we need supportive healthcare, but we also need reliable and credible information, feel a sense of being cared for, and if it’s not too much to ask, an examination to help us thoroughly understand our present condition. Now let’s be clear there are excellent stewards of your health in hospitals across the country, but unfortunately there are an equal number of healthcare professionals entirely focused on meeting patient quotas, writing prescriptions and getting you out the door as quickly as possible regardless of the questions you have unanswered.

Recently a dear friend and client shared with me a frustrating experience she had at one of the local hospitals here in town.  My client told the doctor that she was experiencing pain from her bunion. As she recounted the experience to me she said the doctor recommended a number of options such as orthotics, Nonsteroidal Anti-Inflammatory Drugs (NSAIDS), a bunion splint and surgery if the other options didn’t work. I asked my client if the provider ever examined her feet. My client said, “No, she didn’t.”  If you have ever seen a person with a bunion (sharply curved big toe) you would recognize it right away even if you did not know the medical term for it.  A bunion is a deformity of the joint connecting the big toe to the foot, where the big toe often bends toward the other toes and the joint becomes red and painful.  Bunions typically develop between 20 and 50 years of age and they tend to affect women more than men. My client is in her 50’s with toes as straight as a ruler and good space in between.

If the physician had taken a quick look at her feet and considered her age she would have known instantly that something else was afoot, but not bunions. Instead of healthcare the doctor gave my client the Current Procedural Terminology or (C.P.T) code used to generate your medical bill.

The other issue we face routinely with our medical system is the myth of diabetes as the irreversible chronic disease. Opps, did I say myth? Yes, I did. In the column ‘It’s Okay to Turnaround’ written for the Gallup Sun, I addressed the fact that it was known and published in 1916 by Dr. Elliot P. Joslin, 1958 by Walter Mertz director of field services - United States Department of Agriculture (USDA), and 1985 by the medical school at University of Vancouver, British Columbia and countless credible physicians such as Dr. Jason Fung and wellness practitioners since that diabetes has always been curable, that diabetes is not a chronic disease that cannot be reversed.

When you hear the word “chronic” it implies that once you get diagnosed with a disease that you will always have the disease until the day you die. When it comes to Type 2 Diabetes this is not true. However, there is essential information that must be clarified to increase your understanding.

Elevated blood sugar (A1c above 6.5) and diabetes are not the same thing. Elevated blood sugar is a symptom of diabetes like sneezing is a symptom of allergies, but elevated blood sugar is not your diabetes. Your caregiver needs to tell you this.

Diabetes is a disease of insulin resistance, or too much insulin. This means insulin is not working efficiently in the body to remove sugar (glucose) from your blood.

Diabetes is a dietary disease caused by too many carbohydrates and is only cured through dietary lifestyle changes.

If you start with a drug such as Metformin (or equivalent) but you do not change your dietary patterns you will eventually be prescribed insulin in small doses, before being prescribed greater units of insulin later on.

Insulin will not cure your diabetes. Insulin prescriptions will help control your blood sugar (A1c) for a time but if you do not change dietary habits your diabetes will continue to get worse until you to experience the serious complications of your diabetes.

Within the United States the CPT codes generating your healthcare costs and medical insurance will continue to increase at an alarming rate as long as those who take care of you remain focused on quotas and prescription drugs. However, if you follow the guidance of dedicated healthcare professionals it will lower your medical bills; decrease your dependency on prescription medications that don’t cure disease and restore to you control over your health.

Coach G

Greg McNeil is a StrongFirst Instructor, Professional Strength & Conditioning coach, Licensed Clinical Counselor (LPCC), Life Coach, Author, and the owner of Gallup School of Strength (www.gallupschoolofstrength.com)

By Greg McNeil

For the Sun