A few months ago, I was invited to see QualiMed in PGH. I wrote about how I was impressed with their facilities and their work standards. During the tour, I learned that they have a branch in Trinoma. Lucky for me, Trinoma is nearby. So this morning - after waking up with a weird sound to my breathing and coughing endlessly and hard to the point that I was almost gagging, I decided to go see a doctor. I knew I had to do it. I should have done it earlier but oh well. Haha! I honestly had two (2) options:
Option 1: Use our Valucare Health Card in St. Luke's QC
Option 2: Use GC to visit QualiMed Trinoma.
I chose Option 2 - why? Because, I didn't want to wait for forever for the doctor to show up. ValuCare has two (2) pulmo doctors that day - one had clinic from 10am-11am while the other was 2pm-5pm. I am one who likes to see the doctor in the morning because I don't want to waste the whole day waiting. So I called the 10am-11am doctor, I was able to speak to the secretary and was told that the doctor was running late, I then asked if they were extending - and she said *No*. I didn't want to waste my time an effort with waiting and then being told last minutes that I wouldn't be accommodated. Plus, I really found it ODD that this particular doctor only allotted one (1) full hour for his patients! Anyway, I decided to go to QualiMed. I called first and I spoke to Geraldine, she was very nice on the phone - very accommodating. She told me to look for her and that she would assist me when I got to the clinic.
When I got to QualiMed Trinoma - the place was quiet, very well lit, cold and clean. It didn't seem like a clinic clinic. It actually seemed like a very casual office! Hahaha.. So when I got there, I asked for Geraldine and she was all smile, she gave me a small piece of paper with a number on it and I had to fill out some details like my name, age, and contact numbers. After giving it back to her, I told her that I needed to see a doctor because I've had cough and colds for months and I needed a consult. So, while waiting for my number to be called - I was looking around. I thought to myself, that I didn't mind waiting in a place like this because the aircon was cold enough, the staff was all smiles and the place was clean. There were screens all over the clinic's reception area - one screen was for the number sequence and all the other screens were for movies to entertain those waiting. I was actually (happily) surprised to see Guardians of the Galaxy being shown! Hahaha.. I loved that movie so much - it was such a feel good movie. Anyways, I think I waited for about 20 minutes, but it didn't feel like 20 minutes because of all the *observing* that I was doing. In a hospital clinic - you would need to wait in a hallway - a dark hallway without AC, time moved ever so slowly when you're there. Do you agree?
I honestly didn't notice the 20 minute wait - when I was called, a staff took my my vitals, my blood pressure and my pulse. A few minutes later I was called in the doctor's office. I told her that I have been battling colds and cough for the past months, that 2 weeks ago - i took Azithromycin for 5 days and felt better and then after a week - Saturday night to be exact - I was sneezing like crazy and coughing every so often. For the first time since I had cough and colds - yesterday, I felt very weak and my head was hurting. While at Mass yesterday afternoon, I finished a whole pack of tissue! She asked me what I was taking (if there was any) and so I told her that I was taking Loratadine as *allergy* medicines and I was taking this every night for the past month or so. And that last Friday, I decided to try Benadryl AH and it helped (although I became sleepy). She then took out her stethoscope put it on my back and asked me to breathe deeply. I was honestly scared - because I hate diagnosis, any form of diagnosis for that matter. So I was expecting the worse - (I was clutching my holding cross & rosary) after a few seconds that felt like eternity - the doctor told me *I don't hear anything, your lungs are clear as far I've heard them* I was surprised - so I asked her again if she was sure and she said she was. She then told me that she would be changing my *allergy* medicines and that as a precaution, she prescribed an antibiotic. But I wasn't satisfied - I was thinking that since I was already there and I was already getting comfortable - I told her what my doctor friend recommended that I do, and that was to have an X-Ray, just to check the lungs. I think I surprised the doctor and she agreed - she told me that if I was comfy enough, that she would recommend it. Since I was getting an X-Ray, she told me to also have a CBC if I was willing. Everyone who knows me - know that I HATE needles - but I said yes. SHOCKER! Hahaha! I was getting comfortable - the place didn't look creepy and not very hospital-ish (which I liked very much) so I thought to myself - GAME ON! And I was terrified - ask my Panget whenever we have our yearly blood tests taken - I always *need* to hold someone's had but this time - I was just cool and relaxed. Hahaha! I swear - it's the *I'm not in an actual hospital* feel that made the difference (even it I was in a clinic! Haha!!) I was done in an hour's time - and I didn't even notice the wait which was great! I was told that my result will come within the day - and I was happy with that. I was very much satisfied with my experience, it was so pleasant that I wouldn't mind going back (if need be).
I called at 4PM to ask about my results and was told that I could pick them up at 6PM. My CBC results were ready but the radiologist was still looking at my film. I asked them if they could email me my CBC results and they did - and everything was within range. I was honestly scared because my last blood test, some aspects were off the charts. But of this CBC, my results were all within range - mid range to be exact. I was honestly quite nervous on the X-Ray.
I went back to QualiMed at about 6:30PM to pick up my result. The clinic was empty except for the guard and a receptionist. The clinic was quiet too! I gave my name and within seconds, I was greeted with a smile by a doctor and she told me to wait because they were printing out my results. After a few minutes the nice doctor hands me my result - she tells me that everything was clear. I told her that I was prescribed to take antibiotics and I wanted to know if I still needed to take them. She said that as far as her interpretation goes - was that I didn't need an antibiotic. But as a precaution, she contacted the doctor I consulted with to ask a proper endorsement. We had to wait a while for the reply, but the doctor told me that I didn't need to take antibiotics. She explained to me that my CBC was all in the normal range, and that the X-Ray result was also clear. She then told me that asthma can't be seen in an X-Ray because it was an upper respiratory thing. She then explained that it might have been the weather change (sudden raining, hot & cold) or it was due to dust in the air. Oh my..... I was telling her that I was prescribed with medicines that Kailee and Connor were taking - the difference was the dosage!
So there - my results were all CLEAR. But still - I have cough and colds. Is this just allergies? Sigh. I hope so. I hope that my *new* meds will make me well or just manage my allergies because it's really getting to me. I don't want to seem contagious to people (even if I look it!) since it's just allergies, but I know and see *judging* eyes - Hahahaha!!
I have been neglecting this blog because I haven't had the energy since I'm distracted with the on again & off again colds and cough (plus the kids have been sick on and off too!!) When I feel better, I promise to get back in the groove.
Consult cost me P350.00 (I'm sure if I went to a clinic I would burn at least P600.00)
X-Ray was P370.00
CBC was P240.00
I had to pay P150.00 for the X-Ray film (I wanted to keep it)
Not bad right?
I realized that my kids are not actually sick. They're not contagious, they don't have bacteria or viruses - they just have allergies. And mucus production is the body's way to protecting itself from getting sick. I realized this because I was prescribed the same medicines - Cetirizine, an antihistamine and Fluimucil to to help expel mucus and Montelukast to manage the *allergy*