Gefilte Fish Out of Water


An Apple a Day…
March 5, 2009, 2:24 pm
Filed under: Infrastructure

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This morning I had my first doctor’s appointment.  My boss told me I should have gone to his doctor, Barry Schwartz, a nice South African guy whose first language is English, and he always recommends to all his friends.  But I didn’t know that, and I had taken the card of this private practice when I signed up for health insurance the other day.  It is close by where I’m staying.

The office was very nice.  I didn’t want to be too creepy/stalkery by taking a pic inside, so this is the exterior. 

My doctor, Dr. Avi Keren, was in his 40’s.  Very nice.  One thing I thought was very interesting is there was a 30-something woman with him.  He explained that she was the practice’s “natural medicine” consultant.  This is not standard in Israel or anything; it’s just this very cool practice’s way of doing things that it likes to have the holistic input to every situation.  I really liked that.

Primarily I was there to get my regular prescriptions filled.  Here’s how it went down:  One of them he was able to find in Israel and prescribe for me, no problem.  Another isn’t produced in Israel, and he prescribed me something similar that’s used here.  And the third is available in Israel, but not authorized for why I take it; only for another purpose.  He wrote an email to a senior administrator in the Mccabbe health program asking for the authorization.  If I get it, fine.  If not, I can pay for that one (100 sheckels or $24.39/month) or they can prescribe me an alternative.  The holistic consultant lady is going to work on that one.  I got three prescriptions that I can fill for free (except I’ll pay for that one medication I mentioned.)  Doc also wants me to take a blood test, even though I just had a full physical before I left the U.S.  This way, my blood work will be in the system here.

He was very nice and even asked when I’ll be starting Ulpan, which he recommended.  We discussed alcoholism and AA in Israel.  Oh, and the visit’s co-pay was not 19 sheckels but only 6 ($1.46!).

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