I have just finished, Miss Julia Takes the Wheel, and I am outraged at the treatment of Osteopathic Physicians by the author. How wonderful that she looked up the definition of Osteopath and based her opinion on that. On reading in the newspaper that a DO has joined the hospital staff, Miss Julia states, “ The problem I have is with the very recent elevation of these outliers to the same level of authority as fully qualified and accredited physicians.” A Doctor of Osteopathy, DO, is a fully licensed and board certified physician working in the same fields as an MD and equally qualified. She is also of the opinion that they attended a DO school because they could not get in to an MD medical school. Miss Ross has done a great injustice to the thousands of dedicated DO physicians who see and treat patients daily and work hard in their profession. Outliers, indeed..what an insult. I have read my last Miss Julia book!
The first 27 pages are a Rant about the changes to the delivery of medical services and care as the U.S. has converted to profit driven medical care. Once past that, the story finally starts but is soon based on denigrating a woman who does not do enough, in Miss Julia’s estimation, to enhance her personal beauty and choose a more flattering wardrobe. Domestic violence, often a reason for this, is touched on but discounted and ignored, while the commentary on medical services is constant and tedious. When Mildred has need of Etta Mae, I hoped Etta Mae would join the story, but alas, all of the usual rich recurring characters are missing from this book. I love the Miss Julia series and hunger for each new book, making this all the more disappointing. If the bulk of the medical commentary was removed, the author might have focused more on the domestic violence and included more of the characters we all love.
'I left that alone, for it's unbecoming to criticize a woman's husband. To her face, at least.'
In this twentieth Miss Julia book, Ann B. Ross once again takes her readers on a wonderful ride (no pun intended) as we enter into the land of hijinks with Miss Julia Murdoch. Miss Julia's doctor has taken an extended vacation with his wife and hired a replacement in his stead. She is not one to welcome change, so she decides she must do something about this situation. Miss Julia, ever the consummate southern gracious lady, invites them over to dinner along with two other couples she knows and loves. The doctor's wife, Lauren, is an odd duck for sure and afterwards, Hazel Marie and Binkie pick up on some strange vibes from the doctor himself.
In the meantime, Miss Julia's long time friend, LuAnne, who has divorced her philandering husband of 30 years, has just taken a job at the local funeral home. Add to the pot the fact that Lloyd has just gotten his first car, even though he is ashamed to be seen driving it, and you have all the ingredients necessary for a rollicking good time. And Miss Julia never fails to deliver. How that woman manages to get herself into the scrapes she does never ceases to amaze me. But she soldiers on like a good Southern lady, even when she's knee deep in mud in the pitch black dark.
Put your seatbelt on and get ready for a hilarious ride as Miss Julia once again proves she is up to the task of setting folks straight in Abbotsville, NC. We see wonderful characters from previous books as well as a few new ones, who we'll never see again. My husband always says to me when I'm reading a Miss Julia book, 'What's Miss Julia up to now?' So I read to him and he laughs right along with me. Come along for the ride. Highly recommended.
*My thanks to the publisher for an advance copy of this book. No positive review was expected. All the opinions stated here are expressly my own.
First of all, I'm an RN with close to 40 years' experience in the US healthcare system working in for- private large hospitals only, and for a bit, for a doctor who needed an experienced nurse to establish his practice after years as an E.R. physician full time.
I've seen the good, the bad, and the ugly. I've seen a P.A. who faked his credentials and killed an incarcerated person. It was a different time in a small town and people were trusting, but I never thought he knew what he was doing, and left the MD's practice as his " right hand nurse" because the P.A. had way too much power with no proven track record ( said he got his licensing while working for this same doctor- but had copied someone else's P.A. certificate without their knowledge and forged his own name. I wasn't " allowed" to check his credentials with the state licensing offices, as the doctor was extremely certain they were valid. NOPE. I've seen insurance companies deny NECESSARY care to very ill patients much more than I've seen anyone take advantage of the health care services.
I've worked on a substance Detox. unit, and our clients were from all walks of life including physicians, their wives, teen children, attorneys, you name it. I've seen way more patients try to get prescriptions for strong pain medications than I've seen pill pusher doctors write excessive prescriptions. Possibly because of the DEA crackdown on the LEGAL prescriptions.
In this installment of the Miss Julia series, it's my opinion after finishing the Kindle edition today, that our beloved author needed to express her own concerns and perhaps even stronger feelings through Miss Julia to the public. Because I think she will reach many people with her message, couched in the homey, warm setting of Mrs. Julia Murdock's world, I think she will effect change.
People have written reviews that hint that Lauren Crawford was clinically depressed. I think she was being drugged out of her mind and didn't realize it. Think back to her one playdate with her 2 young children at Hazel Marie's. The little girl, a 5-6 year old not yet in school, didn't want to play, she wanted Granny to HOLD HER. This tells me that her mother didn't protect and nurture her children for a very long time, long before the family arrived in Abbottsville, N.C. A child who will go to a stranger in search of comfort and love is a severely neglected child, in most cases. Play would have been the appropriate action for her to engage in, but her spirit needed basic nurturing her mother was unable to give her.
A mother who's ONLY worried about her children but is sober and not drugged up will love them even more, holding them tightly to protect them from the " bullying" of her husband/ their father. Also, the author hinted that there were other lapses in judgment with Lauren Crawford by the affair she was having or maybe getting ready to engage in, we don't know which, specifically. That doesn't speak to me of suicidal depression so much as it does impaired judgment from drugs. Maybe she didn't know her husband was putting crushed bits in her food or drink or maybe she did.. The point was never clarified and we never heard that any drug testing was done on Mrs. Crawford.
"Dr." Crawford flourished BECAUSE his wife was his accomplice. I'd like to know more about how he controlled her initially and how it progressed. There are al kinds of emotional abuse and neglect, but most of us will go to a therapist and get help when we are hurting. If she had any bruises or was physically abused, the storyline would have been more horrific in one way but more believable in another.
Maybe there is a cautionary tale here for the mostly- female readers of the " Miss Julia" series. If a doctor's actions seem to be hard to understand or accept, if a person is prescribed strong pain medication for a minor injury, then by all means, this is an alarming sign that he or she may not be a competent practitioner in general. People who are medicated to the gills with Oxycodone are not going to complain about anything for a while. The act of over- medicating does just what Miss Julia said- It hides the lack of treatment by the physician. For those who didn't know this, now you do.
Maybe you know someone who could benefit from the wise words and plot in this one book. If so, give them a gift copy or a Kindle download. You don't have to say anything except " I love this sweet lady's family and Southern ways", because you do or you wouldn't buy the books yourself.
All of us need a strong support system, and we also need to learn early in life to be strong self- advocates for our own healthcare, our own continued wellness, and how to speak up to a hospital's Administration when one or some of their employees are failing to properly and professionally treat you or your family member.
Here's another warning sign she didn't touch on: I once worked in a very large hospital with a Neurosurgeon who came to our state late in his career ( warning sign 1). The hospital in which he had practiced was one of our company's facilities, and because they wanted him GONE, they gave him good references. There was no disciplinary action on file, as far as I know.
What he did was to quickly establish himself as THE Neurosurgeon on the roster of Neurologists and Neurosurgeons. He was former military and he had a bearing and demeanor which defied any questioning or slowness to react to his barked orders. We first started suspecting he MIGHT be either ill or impaired when he started scheduling HIS non-emergency neurosurgeries after normal operating hours. Usually, surgeries are finished for the day around 5 PM, and patients are back in their rooms by 8 PM at the latest, except for some complicated longer than anticipated major surgeries, which usually then go to ICU for monitoring during the night. This doctor operated at night because he had switched his life around so his drinking wouldn't be detected, he thought. He operated soberly at night, but after a day of seeing outpatients in his office while he was absolutely under the influence of mind and mood altering substances ( alcohol and likely some narcotics as well). I know this because I hurt my back as nurses sometimes do, and the hospital referred me to him. I knew him as well as any of the nurses could, and was experienced enough to see a totally hostile, rude, brash demeanor which didn't exist when he was making his rounds in the hospital with me or with a co-worker RN.
Long story shorter, I called the hospital administrator and told him what happened and what I was sure was going on. I called my former husband, who was the HR director of the hospital and told him and he was my strongest advocate because he knew that I knew what I was talking about. Lastly, I called my boyfriend, who was the head of the hospital's Board Of Directors and I met with him that same day and poured my heart out about what I'd seen and endured at the doctor's hands ( he was very callous about exposing more than just my back, he was inappropriate in many comments made, that sort of thing from male to female regardless of " status").
The hospital Board called an emergency meeting within a week, and at the meeting with the medical staff. The neurosurgeon was present, and he was offered the Physician Rehab, Self- Reporting program, which would have placed him in another city in a detox. and rehab. unit for 30-60 days, and on probation for a few years afterwards. All of us had seen physicians clean themselves up and stay sober. This Neurosurgeon wanted no part of any treatment program and was fired in front of his fellow physicians. He went home and committed suicide via gunshot to the head.
ALL of us are affected by the problems of medical professional lack of ethics, of substance abuse in the health care professional staff, and in what Miss Julia related- selling drugs for enormous profit. I've never seen this happen, but either pharmacists or doctors or both are participating in " pill mills". The DEA shuts one down, and two more pop up. Ann Ross lives in the area where addition and misuse of opioids are epidemic and are killing mothers, fathers, teens, and even babies who get into the substances by accident.
We owe her a huge round of applause for having the bravery to discuss this part of the deterioration of modern civilization. The message is clear, though. If you and I NEVER take the medications, then we are not going to become addicted to them! It's the same principle of alcoholism beginning with the first drink for many who are genetically and personality- predisposed to addiction.
I hope the next book in the series returns to a light hearted funny book with the familiar beat, but if this book helps 25 people to live sober lives and not die, then it is an invaluable tool. Help is available by calling 211 in most US cities. It's a free call and the help offered is not limited to ability to pay. Blessings to all. :)
There's too much discussion on the failings of our medical system and not enough action. I missed hearing from characters in the previous books. I hope Miss Julia climbs off her soapbox a little more in the next book. Because all in all I'll still be waiting for the next one.