Monday, May 11, 2009

My Wellington GP

I lived for 19 years in Wellington, New Zealand and naturally I had a doctor when I was down there. By the time I started seeing Dr Lowe I had already had three different doctors during my time there, one retired, one I wasn't happy with, and one was just too far from where I shifted to for easy access.

Following a minor motorbike accident where I was picked up by some helpful road workers and deposited a the nearest doctors practice, I had become a patient at a multiple doctor general practice in Karori. I switched to them largely for my convenience and ease of getting an appointment. For some reason I've never really understood, these practices like to assign patients they might only see once a year to individual doctors and I needed to see a doctor, but my "normal" doctor was unavailable.

The receptionist explained that they had a young doctor available who was a fully qualified doctor doing the practical section of his general practice training under supervision and would I mind seeing him. I had some fairly trivial ailment and had no problems seeing him. As it happened I ended up seeing him two or three times and he was pretty good; young and clued up.

Several months later I needed to see a doctor again and the receptionist explained that my "normal" doctor was away on maternity leave, but did I remember Dr Lowe? Apparently the student doctor was now a fully qualified general practitioner and had joined the practice. I was very happy to see him and he fixed me up.

As well as being a very competent medical practitioner, he had a great sense of humour and we established a rapport. Finally I understood why having a regular doctor at a multi-doctor practice was a good idea. I can't remember if it was after the first or second visit, but I quickly informed the receptionist that I would like to make him my "normal" doctor.

I kept seeing him for 5 or 6 years until I moved back to Auckland, NZ, ten years ago. I haven't found a doctor up here that I relate to as well as I related to him, and it's something I miss.

Originally published on Qassia

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