Saturday, January 21, 2012

The Health Fair

Marathon, Florida
24 42.40 081 N 05.68 W

We've often said that Marathon offers a lot for cruisers.  It's true.  However, one thing stands out as truly unique -- The annual Health Fair.

Here's how it works.  Medical students from the University of Miami need practice on/with real people.  Unlucky people get to be dissected post mortem.  Luckier ones, like us, get to go to the health fair.   

The health fair is open to anybody. No charge; no ID.  no SSN required.  They check vitals, glucose, cholesterol, dermatology, male or female exam (your choice), eyes, dental, even mental health.   The fair does not provide treatment, but rather screening.  It does what an annual physical exam used to do.  

The students are supervised by doctors.  At the conclusion, you take your file and your results to the checkout. There, they recommend further treatment or exams if indicated and a doctor review signs off on the whole thing.

The only down side to it is that there is a whole lot of waiting in long, slow-moving lines.   It took me four hours to get through.   The waits indicate the weakest point in these students' training --- organizing large groups of people and administering the waiting room.   From what I remember about doctor office waiting rooms, it is a deficiency that lasts a lifetime.

Anyhow, full time cruisers like us have a big problem with doctor visits.  We are nomads.  It is very difficult for us to have a primary care physician, or even to choose a city and state in which to seek one.  If we do something that requires follow-up visits, it really disrupts our lives.   Two years ago we got stuck in Vero the whole winter because of precisely that problem.  If you just pick a local doctor by throwing darts at the yellow pages, you get the most expensive and probably ineffective of all types of care; yet that's what cruisers face.  Therefore if I may speak for all cruisers in Boot Key Harbor, I say "Thank you UofM.  Your healh fair is much appreciated."

1 comment:

  1. All diagnosis? No treatment? Oh, I get it! Just like Obamacare.


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