Wednesday, December 24, 2008

The Good Physician

Mother has been in hospital here in San Antonio (I write this from Dad's apartment, where we are getting ready to go to midnight mass on Christmas Eve); she's been treated at the South Texas Medical Center by a dazzling array of doctors in a variety of specialities---none of whom have been able to help her at all.

Since she's been in the nursing home, she's been confused, whacked, and otherwise "out of it". She has slept the past two months away.

Enter H. Edwin Tamayo, MD. Dr. Tamayo is a Board Certified Internal Medicine Specialist with impeccable credentials (University of Texas Health Science Center San Antonio Medical School; Internal Medicine specialization same institution; Board Certification Exams, then faculty teaching physician at University Hospital, Audie Murphy VA Hospital, and UTSA).

In September, 2007, Dr. Tamayo resigned his teaching position at UTSA. Effectively, he jettisoned the traditional medical practice (the financial end, including an office in a medical tower, a receptionist, nurse, transcriptionist, records clerk, and a veritable phalanx of insurance filing/billing experts) and treats people strictly at their homes. He does ONLY housecalls!

He started treating Mother about 10 days ago. He arrived at the nursing home wearing jeans, a t-shirt, and sandals on his bare feet. It was freezing outside. My sister asked him what was up with the sandals. He stated, "Well, if your feet are cold, your hands will be warm. Since I'm going to be touching my patients, I want my hands warm, so my feet need to be cold." An unconventional approach, to say the least.

He immediately determined that Mother's meds were TOTALLY wrong; he took her off almost all of them. He changed her diet and the entire approach to her care.

He has called the nursing home every day since he started treating her; every day. He checks on her progress and makes recommendations for her care based on what they tell him. How many doctors do you know who do that?

When I last saw her (Thanksgiving), she was barely conscious, almost catatonic in bed; she slept the whole time I was here except for the last day.

When I walked into her room today, she was SITTING UP ON THE SIDE OF THE BED, DRESSED, and TALKING. Not talking well, and she'll never walk again---but WE ARE TAKING HER TO MY SISTER'S TOMORROW FOR CHRISTMAS DINNER! She was coherent, though she had trouble with speech. It was a dramatic turnaround, which wouldn't have happened without the intervention of Dr. Tamayo.

So much for traditional medicine.

So, this dude must charge a fortune, right?

Here's what he does: when he walks in the room, he hands you a self-addressed stamped envelope, empty. He says, "Pay me whatever you think I'm worth; if you don't send anything, I'll never know. If you send thousands of dollars, I'll never know. This goes straight to my bookkeeper; I'm relying on God to provide for my family, and so far it's working."

He accepts no insurance, no medicare, no traditional payment schemes.

Hats off to The Good Physician. I hope he lives a long and prosperous life. He's certainly helped Mom.

1 comment:

  1. How wonder for you, your mother, and your whole family. This man sounds remarkable. Hope you have had a good day with your mother.