The longer Tom and I are on the road, the less we return to Akron. The last two times we have been back to Ohio, we have only gone to Akron once. We got a letter that Tom’s doctor retired and another letter that said my optometrist was retiring. So we decided it to go about finding a doctor in the Columbus / Delaware area.
Tom had been going to the same medical practice in Mogadore for 27 years. I have had the same doctor in Tallmadge for 23 years. I have been going to the same optometrist in Kent for 32 years. Once we find a medical professional we like, we hate to change. But it was time.
So I read reviews, thought about what we wanted in a doctor, and then made some calls. And made some more calls. Finding a doctor is not just a matter of making an appointment. Even though there are lots of doctors in the area, I had a hard time finding one that was taking new patients. I appreciate that doctors want to limit the size of their practice. I hate sitting in waiting rooms for hours (the reason Tom and I had different doctors). But I had to call seven different practices before I could find one that was taking new patients. And that was only because the doctor was a recent hire to the practice. So – no reviews or referrals – we decided to take a chance and see if we liked her.
We want a doctor who will listen to us, take time with us, and value our time. We also need a doctor who is willing to be flexible about blood work. Our insurance only lets us get blood work done every six months. And I take Lipitor which means the doctor isn’t supposed to prescribe more than six months of it unless the blood work is done. But we aren’t always in Ohio at convenient six month intervals. So we needed to find a doctor who is willing to call in a refill to some pretty strange places when we can’t get back to Ohio.
We were very pleased with our visit to Dr. Candice Martin at OhioHealth in Lewis Center. She is only 15 minutes from the campground we stay in most often in Ohio. We were taken into exam rooms within five minutes of our appointment times. The nurse who took my blood did a great job and seemed to really be listening as she took my medical history. Dr. Martin was not in the room with me for a long time, but she asked if I had any special concerns or changes that we needed to talk about. I asked her about calling in refills and she said she was willing to do that as long as we came in to see her when we got back to Ohio. We got our flu shots. And the office nurse called just a few days later to give us the results of our blood tests.
Finding a doctor is not an easy thing, especially with so few doctors taking new patients. But we were very pleased with Dr. Martin and her practice. I think we will be happy with her as our doctor – and she won’t be retiring for a long time!
As for a new optometrist: that is a story for another day.