A trip to the Derma Doc

As I was visiting my dermatologist, Dr. Noris Lampe she shared an interesting narrative with me. The doctor is a busy woman, laboring to reverse the effects of our equatorial sun on skin, among other medical pursuits.  Additionally, she almost participated in last year’s elections, on the list with MAS, plus she has lots of interesting opinions, on a diverse number of subjects including art. Yes, she is a hobbyist painter.

This is what she shared: It is a mistake to have just one giant health insurance provider, which in Aruba is a sickness insurance company, AZV, you get sick, it takes care of you, to a certain extent, at no extra charge. This is social medicine at its best.

According to Dr. Lampe, this type of health care is exorbitant, and unaffordable – the island is too small, the financial burden too big.

She would like to see two different insurance providers, a general one, and a specific one for accidents and shit-happens cases.

Employers will be asked to buy an extra group insurance for their employees for that later shit-happens category, from a giant global insurance provider who will take the risk, for a large group.

This will immediately relieve the current general health provider from unexpected expenses.

The giant global insurance provider taking the risk, will then oblige its clients to take precautions, wear protective gear, apply safety measures, and in general raise the bar on accident prevention. Companies will take the necessary steps to crack down on carelessness and negligence, otherwise they will get zero insurance coverage.

Of course, the added-value for that is less work and road related catastrophes that keep people away from work, and burden the AZV budget.

She also warned against adding any MORE house doctors to the mix. Add specialists, she said, and make the waiting time to see a specialist as short as possible. It is about 6 months now, as the house doctors prescribe paracetamol to their patients suffering from undiagnosed conditions.

Send the patients to specialists ASAP, she recommended. This will lead to a better diagnosis, early detection of issues, shorter treatment time, and a better survival rate.

Adding more specialists would mean less costly trip to Colombia to medical institutions there, because diseases at an early stage may be treated here!

As she finished zapping my last sun damage spot, her dissertation came to an end.

I can totally see her point. She is 100% right. We constantly hear the complaint that patients get to see the specialists too late, because AZV is rigidly restricting the number of referrals house doctors can make.


In case Dr. Noris Lampe is wrong. Kindly explain why you think so!

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January 30, 2018
Rona Coster