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Anti-vaxxers have a point.
Not in their blanket rejection of vaccines. Those save millions of lives, maybe mine. I’ve taken five, count ‘em, five, COVID shots and wish you would too, even though you probably haven’t — 90% of Americans didn’t bother with the latest booster.
But they have a point about questioning medicine. Doctors are not always right; their advice is sometimes clouded by self interest. Some are highly skilled; others, less so. How to tell the difference?
In 2019, when something was obviously wrong with my spine, I fled the first surgeon I spoke with, but let a second, at Northwestern Medicine, cut open my neck — decisions based on differences of bedside manner and because Illinois Bone and Joint Institute’s name sounded to me like something plucked from a Lemony Snicket novel.
It’s a gut call. Earlier this year my father contracted COVID at his senior lifestyle community in Buffalo Grove. They sent him to a hospital. After a few days he was discharged into a rehab facility in Arlington Heights, and the facility told me he’d need two weeks of physical therapy to learn to walk again.
Interesting if true, as they say in my business. As soon as he was out of isolation, I hurried over to the chaotic facility. Eventually I found him in a wheelchair in a dim room. We exchanged pleasantries. His roommate watched a blaring television.
“Let me wheel you into the hall, Dad, where we can talk,” I said. I looked closely at him. He smiled back. A youthful 90, heavier than in the past, due to not remembering that he’s just eaten.
“Dad, can you stand up?” I said. He did. “Dad, could you walk over there and back?” He walked over there and back. I went to the nurse’s station.
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