Is there a doctor in the house?
HELLO ALL WE ARE MOVING IN JUNE AND ARE LOOKING FOR A NEPHROLOGIST. MY 6 YEAR OLD SEES A KIDNEY SPECIALIST EVERY 4 TO 6 MONTHS. THESE ARE CHECK UPS TO MONITOR HIS KIDNEY FUNCTIONS. I LOOKED ON LINE AND ONLY CAME UP WITH ONE ON ST THOMAS. WE ARE MOVING TO ST THOMAS, BUT IS THERE REALLY ONLY ONE SPECIALIST THERE AND DOES ANYONE KNOW ABOUT HEALTH CARE. WE HAVE HAD HEALTH INS. BUT IT DOES NOT CARRY OVER TO THE V.I. WHAT OPTIONS DO WE HAVE. WE BOTH WILL CONTINUE OUR CAREERS THERE BUT IS INS. MORE COSTLY THERE? WHAT DO PEOPLE DO WITH CHILDREN WITH EXISTING CONDITIONS , DO YOU FLY TO PR OR SOMETHING OR ARE THERE MANY SPECIALISTS THERE? ANY INSIGHT WOULD BE WELL ACCEPTED.
I do not know the answer to your specific questions, but remember, each island has only 50,000 people. There are many medical specialities not represented on each island. For example there is no rheumatologist on STX. It is not unusual for people to fly to San Juan for specialized medical care.
I would be very cautious about moving here with a child who has such a need. Have you visited and checked out things for yourself? If not, I strongly suggest you do so.
After reading the thread about different cultures and there different definitions of rudeness, I feel like I should address your use of all capital letters. On a message board such as this, it can be seen as shouting and is considered rude. Just a lil' piece of advice for ya. In regards to medical specialists, I'm afraid that I don't have any personal experience but I know others on the board do.
John: It is true that Dr. Hunte is the only nephrologist on St Thomas. He runs the only hemodialysis center on the island. I believe there are two on St Croix, so I am surprised you couldn't find a name to go with them. Health care here is like many rural areas in the states. There are a few specialists, but not much competition. There are some specialties we do not have- rheumatology, pulmonology, neurosurgery come to mind. Some people go to Puerto Rico and some hope never to be sent there... You really are urged to come and interview the doctors you think you might need. The insurance business here is very strange. Talk to someone in the business about your specific needs.
Anytime people with children want to move here, this board seems to recommend extra scrutiny in the family's deliberations...
I'll get back to the point in a second, I promise, but to add to what vicaptain said, regardless of whether all caps is rude, it's difficult and annoying to read, so I tend to ignore posts that are in all caps.
In this case, I read the post because I happen to be a doctor. However, I'm not a nephrologist, and I don't live on STT! Like Linda said, I'd be careful about taking a child with such needs to a remote place. Sure, maybe you can set up regular appointments in San Juan or whatever, but what about emergencies? Obviously, I don't know anything about his particular condition, but kidneys are pretty important! Would he be able to get help in time? Would your insurance cover medical evacuation? These are rhetorical questions, of course... just things to think about.
My landlord on STX had kidney problems, and although he did get care locally, I know he was always having to fly to Miami for some treatment. That could prove to be extremely expensive these days. I would be afraid to live on any island with a serious health problem. Can you imagine having to be "rushed" to hospital in an ambulance there - best of luck! Sorry to be so negative, but I personally know a few people who may still be alive today if their accident/illness hadn't happened on an island.
If you have any serious illness I would tell you to think long and hard before coming and a pmv is a must not a maybe. If you have a sick child and you do not have a job line up with insurance please don't do it. Its so expensive to live here and health care is spotty and expensive. I would not risk it just for a nice beach and nice weather. You can get that stateside.
hello all, i do appreciate all the feed back and will take everyone very seriously. about the capital letters i did not realize the caps were on till almost half way through my thought process. i am a one finger typer and rarely do my problem solving over a computer. ten sentences is a big deal when i don't type, so to erase them was not an option for me. however if i would have known it was offensive, which I've never heard before, i would have done so rather than created such a stir in the more sophisticated patriots of the computer. sorry i really didn't think i was talking that loud. i must of had my i-pod on at the time.
If they are truly monitoring type check ups 2 or 3 times yearly it could work out - if there is an emergency situation certainly expect to be airlifted to the states and carry the appropriate insurance . Do not underestimate our remoteness - without a doubt -- come down ahead of time and assess the availability of the services you will require before you commit to a family move.
A child who needed specialized care could be a deal breaker. Call the doctor on STT and see what he says or write a letter. I have to fly to Puerto Rico for a procedure occasionally and it's a big deal both expense and flying, taxi, and med. costs. Good luck!