Finding Loving Care
Jeff likes to introduce himself as a Doctors Care success story. His problems began with, what he thought were dental issues. After having eight teeth extracted in one day, and paying $3,000, he was still sicker than ever. His tonsils started to swell, and not knowing what else to do and not having insurance, he ended up in the ER, where he was treated for acute tonsillitis. But his problems persisted.
Jeff tried Metro Community Provider Network (MCPN), but was turned away due to his salary (net of $26,000 in 2012). Through a friend, Jeff learned of the Nursing School at Sheridan Healthcare, and went to see them. He was given a complete examination and told if he continued on the same course, he would become a diabetic and have heart problems. He changed his lifestyle and diet; lost weight and reduced his blood pressure by about 20 points.
However, he remained in a deep depression – from financial issues (making two thirds less money than what he had made in the past) and persistent pain. He thought about seeking mental help, but wasn’t sure which way to turn first. Next stop was the Sheridan Health Care where he was told he had a periodontal abscess. They suggested he contact Doctors Care. Jeff came in to Doctors Care and spoke to Char Patton, the Patient Care Coordinator. As he says, “I shared all my information with her. It was just a great experience. She is phenomenal.”
Doctors Care got Jeff enrolled in the Sliding-Fee-Scale Program and arranged for an appointment with Dr. Jonathon Blacker, an ENT (Ear, Nose and Throat), with Centura Health. In Jeff’s words, “ I’ve never met anyone that’s more impressive than him. I thought I was going to go in there and get the abscess drained and I’d be on my way. But that’s not what happened. Dr. Blacker looked at me and said, “Jeff, you have this cancer.’ I liked the honesty.”
The surgery was successful, and doctors were able to get all the cancer. Jeff says he now has more energy than ever, and his doctor calls him “Wolverine” because he’s healing so fast. He goes back to his doctor often and will continue to do so for the next five years. In summary Jeff says, “Dr. Blacker feels I’m doing fabulous. I have this whole new life. I want to give back because I was given so much. And it’s all because of you guys – Doctors Care.”