House Call on a Hundred-Foot Cliff

Johnny’s disabled. He can’t get to my office anymore. So I drive 100 miles up the Oregon coast to check in on him. I get lost, but finally discover his little white house on the edge of a cliff overlooking the Pacific Ocean.

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“Last time a doctor come to my house, I was 9 years old. That was over 50 year ago!” he says as he takes me to his garden.

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“Wow! Johnny your blood pressure is lower than it has ever been—108/68.”

“Getting my blood pressure taken right here at the beach, right at the house, it is so much easier and I feel so nice and relaxed. I don’t have to have the pressure of driving to the doctor’s office. I get to be home. It’s a wonderful feeling.”

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I complete his Oregon Disabilities Hunting and Fishing Permit. He doesn’t hunt, but Johnny has fished all his life. Due to bad arthritis in his hands, he can’t hold his fishing rod so long. With the permit he may legally fish with an assistant who can hold his rod for him. This 11-page document I’m completing will also serve as a disabled clam digger permit that will allow Johnny to have another clam digger fill his container as long as he is within 100 feet of his assistant.

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Now Johnny completes the publishing consent and HIPPA paperwork so we can share his story with the world. He is happy to help other patients and doctors get back to true healing. In fact, Johnny has an important message for America’s doctors:

Want to offer house calls or open your own ideal clinic?

Join Dr. Wible’s teleseminar and find out how! 

 

Pamela Wible, M.D. is a family doctor is Oregon. She pioneered the first ideal clinic designed entirely by patients. Watch her TEDx talk on ideal medical care. Photos by GeVe.

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32 comments on “House Call on a Hundred-Foot Cliff
  1. Lisa says:

    I love this. U. Have put the caring back into medicine. I am just a burned out nurse who is abused daily by patients , doctors, and management and looking forward to the day ( prob 2 years from now) that I can quit nursing and be a cashier at trader joes. And enjoy work again. Love what you are doing !

    • Pamela Wible MD says:

      Lisa!! But we need beautiful people like you IN health care. We have to take this profession back. Need your heart and soul baby. Don’t leave us for Trader Joes. . . . 🙁

  2. Tamara Miller says:

    This is a great article! I love that you are enjoying medicine and care so much for your patients!

    • Pamela Wible MD says:

      Please share. This could be the new normal. I know patients and doctors are ready for real healing.

      • Wendy says:

        Aw…I loved this!! What a great example, bringing back the humanity in healthcare. There have been studies done that show a baby cannot survive without human touch. You can feed them, but if they have no human contact..they die. We adults are the same, but we die differently because we perceive that it’s not okay to just open up and be who we want to be instead of who we think the world wants us to be. I am a pancreas patient hoping for transplant, and to avoid a diseased organ from becoming cancerous. I am sharing this with my facebook group. There’s a lot of patients who need this inspiration, and I’m sure other group leaders will pass it on too. It’s incredibly beautiful where you are. I’m from South Dakota, and have lived in MT. I miss the love that comes from a smaller community. Here in the city we are practically afraid to know a neighbor. Thanks for your inspiration. Your love and compassion is contagious!

  3. Karuna says:

    Hi Pamela, yes! the reward for caring is inestimable and don’t we all need it. Thank you for caring and showing us how it can be done. with love Karuna

  4. Debbie says:

    Love this guy’s attitude and yard. Fantastic that you are able to come to him in a place that he feels so comfortable and give him the care he needs. Way to go Pamela!!

  5. Marv Brilliant says:

    More doctor’s, especially in rural area’s should visit their patients who, due to certain medical conditions and limited transportation are unable to reach their appointments.

  6. Marv Brilliant says:

    Pamela: What’s your take on the ongoing investigations of VA hospitals?

  7. Wow! That video was so refreshing! I really wish medicine was like this for me. I love spending time with patients, getting to know them personally. I want this kind of life. I’m tired of being just another factory worker robot.

    • Pamela Wible MD says:

      You can decide not to be a factory worker robot at any point. I’ll support your decision. 🙂 (so will all your patients)

  8. Mary DeForest says:

    Dear Dr. Wible, triage signifies that the patient met with someone in the medical care system. Many are dying because they haven’t met any one, not even a social worker. Meanwhile the heads of clinics may or may not be reporting shortages of staff , beds, services, and medications. That makes it a system of practicing covering the rear, not practicing medicine. Then maybe the XO knows or isn’t doing his/her job. of asking the right questions, the head of the hospital may know or may not know. The head of the hospital and XO are supposed to provide adequate medical care. This means sending appropriate reports, acquisition orders, knowing how many patients there are and what the patients’ needs are, and advocating for their patients.

    My son is a disabled vet-has been since the late 1980s. He was ignored before being in the system. He’s learned the ropes. Some vet will be stressed out at the Downtown office or being turned down at the VA hospital, and vets tell him to find the disabled Coast Guard vet by the coffee stand at the hospital. My son looks at their paperwork-and does the work a social worker should have done, or takes them and gets the proper paper work-and this includes dealing with social security. he’ll go with them to SS, downtown, to a counselor. They labeled him as mentally ill, so they can’t do much to him, if he starts stalking a counselor- they can’t do much to him, and he’s logical. Also his physicians support him about these issues.

    We had some social workers come over to the house. They started asking me if I knew that my son made their lives miserable-I’m Irish- My son told them that if they did their jobs, he wouldn’t harass them. They tried to tell me that he had a god complex or whatever. I told them that for the first 18 months that my son was disabled that my husband and I helped with with the rent, bought food for his family, because social workers didn’t do their job. My daughter-in-law graduated from engineering school, and joined the Air Force. Her colonel became aware of the situation. He contacted the state veterans board, raised caine with the VA, enlisted the help of other officers-they always have the fear of being treated badly by the VA from a military accident. That AF colonel did what the initial VA counselors should have done for my son, by just giving my son full information and advocating for him. He had to advocate for my son with the counselors that were paid to do the advocating.

    if vets go to a civilian doctor, they can loose services or be denied future services. This is what makes vets so vulnerable. Anybody concerned-write your congresspersons, volunteer at a near by VA, volunteer to help the homeless.

    My son had rotten teeth. The VA here is shared with the military. A enlisted noticed some vets with rotten teeth-most were mental patients. He told the military dentist. A military dentist went up to the ward with a tech- and did exams. The dental unit cancelled all dental appointments-most were officers anyway. That very day, they began cleaning teeth, prescribing antibiotics for abscessed teeth, contacting civilian dentists-making the VA to authorize dental care so the vets didn’t loose their medical benefits. My son has a full set of dentures now. He is so happy, and so grateful for the military dentists, and for that technician that noticed a gaggle of mental patients out for a cup of coffee.

    Dr. Wible- thank you for being unique and caring-

  9. You are are REAL Doctor
    I applaude you.
    I have been a Professor and practising single office practice in Queens, New York for
    32 yrs
    If I had charged for every patient that I treated Gratis I would be very wealthy.
    Sincerely;
    Steve Levitz
    I Love Helping Patients

    • Pamela Wible MD says:

      Honored to know you Steven. You have the heart & soul of a true healer. May you be a beacon of light for others who have lost their way . . . 🙂

  10. Rob Burnside says:

    There may well be a Dr. Pam Wible totem in that spot some day.

  11. Butch says:

    His happy attitude reminds me of me in my life BS “before sick”. Now my life is just ASS “after seriously sick”. If I flew to where you are would you see me as a patient. Doctors here in Texas are not allowed to be happy, Glad to know you are able to be you and bet your patients are to. Thanks

  12. You Go Pam! It’s about managing health, not merely addressing illness. I’m in Boston. Feeling a bit peckish. Likely shouldn’t travel all the way to Oregon, however I could meet you at a sushi rest somewhere between.

    Thanks for the good work,

    Fred

  13. Kerry says:

    I love you Dr. Pamela Wible! I’m so grateful for you. <3 You give me hope for the Dr/Pt relationship.

  14. Michael Perez says:

    I give my patients great care with the support of a great staff who help people as if they were family. All our care is VIP. But a home visit like that? Not practical for us. No one can pay for the cost of doctor and the overhead expenses to maintain a practice.

  15. Colin says:

    You’re awesome Pamela! You are a breath of fresh air to the medical community and it really touches my heart to see how much you care about your patients. Please keep it up!

  16. Jenine says:

    Wow! The view! Your “office” was looking fabulous that day! Look at the smile on his face – no wonder you LOVE your job again! You are really making a difference, love it!

  17. Renee says:

    Great job! You had a beautiful day!

  18. Kernan Manion says:

    Exquisite – your joy and pride, and his happiness – show through. And … who would’ve thought filling out a disability permit could be so exhilarating?!

    • Pamela Wible MD says:

      I know! The best way to do medical paperwork is on a 100-foot cliff over the Pacific Ocean 🙂

  19. Dr. JohnShigo says:

    You and I are still making house calls! Thank God someone can send some self about people and their feelings! What a nice idea which will remember for the rest, Dr. You and I are still making house calls! Thank God someone can send some self about people and their feelings! What a nice idea which will remember for the rest, Dr. Pamela.

    It warms my heart and soul to think of you with Johnny helping him through his medical problems and driving 100 miles just to make sure that everything is taken care of for him! What dedication, Dr. Pamela.

    Dr. John

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