The more I listen to people in the #doc, the more I see that PWD’s seem to be terrified by the thought of attending their appointments at Clinic or with their GP. I see comments like “Head Masters Office” and “Getting Told Off”. This saddens me. In fact it makes me #Grumpy!!
It’s YOUR appointment, not the Hospitals, GP’s or Consultant’s. YOUR’s! For you to get whatever it is you need from it to help you manage your Diabetes the way that you want to.
If I’m honest, I look forward to them! They help me to stay focused and motivated. I am lucky that I now have a great DSN that see’s things the way I do and is incredibly supportive. So I don’t have to get too arsey #Grumpy any more.
This is not always the case with other in my heath care team so have decided to share my approach to appointments. Please note, I’m not trying to advise other PDW’s, this is just how I do things.
Grumpy’s Guide to Appointments.
1. It is MY meeting! I don’t let anyone else run it or dictate the agenda.
2. I prepare for the meeting in advance. Write down what I want to talk about, and I don’t leave until I’m ready to and have covered everything I need to. I’ve never been thrown out of a meeting yet. Lots of other places, but not a Hospital…….
3. I try to change the language used in the meeting:
• Check BG not test. I can fail a test, but checking is just evaluation of its level.
• Meeting not appointment and I run the meeting (or at least I think I do).
• I don’t control my Diabetes, I manage it. It is therefore never out of control, nor do I have bad control. I managed it to the best of my ability every day. The level of effectiveness varies depending on many variables.
4. I am the expert in the day to day management of my Diabetes. My consultant is there to consult with, advise me, and, in my opinion, learn from my experience! Not to tell me off or judge.
5. Never take no for an answer. Be it Pump, CGM, meter type or number of strips I need. The answer no is unacceptable to me. I always use “Quality of Live” as a good case. No one can tell me what quality of life means to me, except me. So no one can argue with what I need to achieve the quality of life I need, nor can they measure it to see how it stacks up against some NICE guideline written by someone with a functioning pancreas.
I’m prepared to fight. I fight Diabetes every day. So why would I let one person saying no to me get in my way?
6. If I’m not happy with what is said to me, I say so. Told last year when my HbA1c went up by 0.4% that my consultant was “disappointed”. So, to his face I asked why? He said “well, it’s gone up, and you’re on a pump”. I asked what the overall trend had been in the 3 years since starting on the pump. Reply “downward trend with a marked improvement”. My next question was “how many times has it gone up?”. Well….”Just this one-time” he said. I had two more questions. “so are you really that disappointed then?”. “Errrrm, well…no Mr Grumpy” (real name changed to protect the guilty innocent). “So you don’t fancy trying to take this off me because I’m not using it right then???” With a slight grin, he replies “no, I think you’re doing fine”.
None of this was done in a confrontational way, and I came out of the meeting feeling a lot more positive than if I’d have accepted the “disappointed” comment.
7. I always ask for help if I need it. Never say it’s going ok if I’m not happy with my management. Always tell them if I’m pissed off fed up with things, or have work stress etc. It all factors into my Diabetes Management. They are not just there to talk about my BG stats. It’s all about me
Not sure how you view your clinic meetings, but that’s a brief glimpse into how I try to run mine.