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Old 01-04-2013, 07:46 AM
 
567 posts, read 1,313,094 times
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OK I know a lot of people - when they retire - like to move to more rural areas for a variety of reasons. However, people need more health care as they age and healthcare services in rural areas can be limited. I am currently living in such an area and not only limited but we have to pay (a lot) more for less and most of the Dr's (hospitalists and other healthcare staff) that work in the local hospital are fairly inexperienced. When they gain experience they move on to higher paying jobs and more lucrative places to live. Most people leave the state for surgical procedures which is what my husband should have done a few months ago when he had a cartilage repair done on his knee. Long story short, it turned into a nightmare. This orthopedic surgeon is a jerk. I don't think he would get away acting like he does anywhere else but here he has no competition. Same story for the OB dr's. OMG there are horror stories about their exceptionally poor bedside manner. I'm not saying they are all bad and I know Dr's who work in rural areas don't get paid a lot for having to be on call 24/7 and we also have a high underserved population. My parents are 60 y.o. and having lived in this area for the past 24 yrs are considering relocating for the purpose of better healthcare services. Just wondering what other's experiences are.
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Old 01-04-2013, 09:51 AM
 
Location: Hot Springs
1,299 posts, read 2,430,758 times
Reputation: 1277
Healthcare was a major consideration when I chose a place to retire to a couple of years ago. The place I found met all of my other criteria and had plans for building a new hospital with expanded medical care. The hospital has now been built and healthcare has improved, however many specialist are close to an hours drive up the road to a larger population.

The issue is a valid issue when choosing a place to move to and many, if not most, rural area's will be eliminated from ones retirement plans because of it.

uh
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Old 01-04-2013, 11:50 AM
Status: "Support the Mining Law of 1872" (set 18 days ago)
 
Location: Cody, WY
9,861 posts, read 11,415,185 times
Reputation: 19925
The nearest cities with major medical services, Denver and Salt Lake, are five hundred miles from me. But I'm not going to live in some rathole city or suburb or any kind of town. I can drive or fly to those places if need be. Then I can come home. If I live ten fewer years where I am than I would in a city that's fine. I'll live the life I wish. I've had sixty-nine years on this earth. I don't intend that my last ones will be miserable.

It's the country for me forever.
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Old 01-04-2013, 01:42 PM
 
2,878 posts, read 3,951,810 times
Reputation: 3083
Quote:
Originally Posted by rya700 View Post
OK I know a lot of people - when they retire - like to move to more rural areas for a variety of reasons. However, people need more health care as they age and healthcare services in rural areas can be limited. I am currently living in such an area and not only limited but we have to pay (a lot) more for less and most of the Dr's (hospitalists and other healthcare staff) that work in the local hospital are fairly inexperienced. When they gain experience they move on to higher paying jobs and more lucrative places to live. Most people leave the state for surgical procedures which is what my husband should have done a few months ago when he had a cartilage repair done on his knee. Long story short, it turned into a nightmare. This orthopedic surgeon is a jerk. I don't think he would get away acting like he does anywhere else but here he has no competition. Same story for the OB dr's. OMG there are horror stories about their exceptionally poor bedside manner. I'm not saying they are all bad and I know Dr's who work in rural areas don't get paid a lot for having to be on call 24/7 and we also have a high underserved population. My parents are 60 y.o. and having lived in this area for the past 24 yrs are considering relocating for the purpose of better healthcare services. Just wondering what other's experiences are.
There are quite a few counties in United States that fit the description of "frontier counties" -> meaning, less than 2 people per square mile. These counties and their tiny towns have real issues hiring doctors since the doctors usually do not last long (solitude, wife doesn't like it, pay is low etc.). Hence, many resort to having registered nurses to the work and for everything else you go to a large town.

A book called "Miles fro nowhere" is a great description of life in these modern frontier counties. It even documents a case of a doctor who lasted a few years (a man) who everyone got to like until one night he walked into the only local bar (full of local conservative folks) dressed in drag. :-) The country (especially modern frontier country) is not for everyone, it would appear

OD
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Old 01-04-2013, 04:04 PM
 
Location: Valdez, Alaska
2,759 posts, read 4,454,197 times
Reputation: 2792
A lot of people leave here when they retire, for a variety of reasons. A lot of it is the weather, cost of living, and distance to...well, everything, really. Health care is a big part of it, though. We have a small hospital that is gaining a few specialists lately, but it's still pretty basic. Most people with serious illness/injuries or even mildly complicated childbirth situations go to Anchorage for treatment. My father-in-law was going to Anchorage every other week to see specialists when he had a mysterious illness (that apparently turned out to be celiac disease), and even had to see an even more special specialist in Portland twice. The money, time, and additional stress involved in all of that travel really weighs on people here. In addition, it isn't unusual for flights to be cancelled due to weather here, especially in the winter, so evacuation can be a challenge. There have been cases where people had to be driven two hours north to the next airport to be medevaced from there. And if the road was closed due to weather or avalanches they'd just have to sit tight until they could get out. Several times a year we're stuck here with no way in or out.

Another big problem in the state is the lack of trauma centers. Serious trauma patients are usually sent to Seattle. This is a problem not just for older people, but for the many people in Alaska who engage in dangerous jobs and other activities. The fact of the matter is that if you suffer a serious injury or acute illness here you are more likely to die or suffer more serious complications due to the need for lengthy and difficult evacuation than if you lived somewhere else.
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Old 01-22-2013, 05:58 PM
 
Location: Sierra Nevada Land, CA
8,791 posts, read 9,579,621 times
Reputation: 14130
Quote:
Originally Posted by Happy in Wyoming View Post
The nearest cities with major medical services, Denver and Salt Lake, are five hundred miles from me. But I'm not going to live in some rathole city or suburb or any kind of town. I can drive or fly to those places if need be. Then I can come home. If I live ten fewer years where I am than I would in a city that's fine. I'll live the life I wish. I've had sixty-nine years on this earth. I don't intend that my last ones will be miserable.

It's the country for me forever.
I couldn't agree more. Some people have different priorities, but I'd rather die in paradise than live in a big city with the best medical services. Where I live medical services are OK, but for anything serious one must travel over an hour from where I live.

Oh yea, there is this fabulous invention called a helicopter ambulance. Local law enforcement can summons one.

Google PHI Cares for more info.
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Old 01-22-2013, 10:39 PM
 
Location: Somewhere in northern Alabama
18,760 posts, read 55,972,284 times
Reputation: 33067
We just had a thread that covers much of this subject:
//www.city-data.com/forum/rural...till-have.html
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Old 01-22-2013, 11:09 PM
 
Location: Western Nebraskansas
2,707 posts, read 5,461,941 times
Reputation: 2416
Quote:
But I'm not going to live in some rathole city or suburb or any kind of town. I can drive or fly to those places if need be. Then I can come home. If I live ten fewer years where I am than I would in a city that's fine. I'll live the life I wish.
This is my opinion as well. I've lived my entire life is so-called "frontier counties," in four states, and wouldn't have it any other way! I'm not going to sell my soul just for a shorter drive to a specialist.
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Old 01-23-2013, 09:56 AM
 
Location: Keosauqua, Iowa
9,215 posts, read 17,194,516 times
Reputation: 12447
Quote:
Originally Posted by rya700 View Post
OK I know a lot of people - when they retire - like to move to more rural areas for a variety of reasons. However, people need more health care as they age and healthcare services in rural areas can be limited. I am currently living in such an area and not only limited but we have to pay (a lot) more for less and most of the Dr's (hospitalists and other healthcare staff) that work in the local hospital are fairly inexperienced. When they gain experience they move on to higher paying jobs and more lucrative places to live. Most people leave the state for surgical procedures which is what my husband should have done a few months ago when he had a cartilage repair done on his knee. Long story short, it turned into a nightmare. This orthopedic surgeon is a jerk. I don't think he would get away acting like he does anywhere else but here he has no competition. Same story for the OB dr's. OMG there are horror stories about their exceptionally poor bedside manner. I'm not saying they are all bad and I know Dr's who work in rural areas don't get paid a lot for having to be on call 24/7 and we also have a high underserved population. My parents are 60 y.o. and having lived in this area for the past 24 yrs are considering relocating for the purpose of better healthcare services. Just wondering what other's experiences are.
Your parents don't have to deal with poor health care providers because they live in a rural area, they have to deal with poor health care providers because they live in an area with poor health care providers.
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Old 01-23-2013, 06:55 PM
 
26,056 posts, read 32,704,236 times
Reputation: 23350
Yes, it is possible to have excellent health care in rural areas. In South Dakota we have three major hospitals that have aircraft and communications to make access easy.

We have a helicpoters and fixed winged aircraft that make getting to a hospital easy and if you need to be turfed to a center with better care it is fast. Diagnostic and lab tests can be sen by specialist in rapid fashion.
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