The Doctor Crisis of Crown Heights

From the inbox: While waiting endlessly in a Crown Heights doctor’s waiting room, one mother jotted down her thoughts about the state of the medical services offered in the community.

By a Crown Heights resident

I’m sitting here in the waiting room of a beloved CH doctor trying not to think about my 9 kids and bed ridden husband who are “patiently” awaiting for me to return home while I sit here and scroll, waiting endlessly for my name to be called.

I’ve finished chitas. Checked all my starred emails, looked through all 8 children’s class whatsapp groups and even called my parents.

And did I mention, I called the secretary twice to get a 10 minute heads up so I wouldn’t have to escape my house before the doctor was ready to see me.

And how did I get here ? Six days ago, after 50 minutes of listening to Benny Friedman, the secretary finally picked up, “Doctors office, please hold”. Following another 16 minutes of Yaakov Shwekey, I was able to speak to a human and book this appointment. (And yes, there were no options. 4:45 pm or nothing.)

In anticipation of this appointment, I consumed 7 packs of ricola, 4 boxes of herbal tea, a quart of chicken soup and way too many self-diagnosis articles on google.

4 nights ago, when the humidifier wasn’t doing the trick with my lingering Covid breathing, I called Hatzolah which landed me in a 2 am hospital spree. “See your local practitioner in a few days“ the doctor on call advised after my x-rays came back fine.

If only it wasn’t so complicated.

This isn’t a bash on the current Crown Heights doctors AT ALL. They are incredible super heroes who work overtime to care for me and you. In this endless Covid craziness, they have been a beacon of light and hope throughout the madness.

This is a busy mom’s plea to the Askanim in our community: Please send us some more superheroes in lab coats!

Crown Heights has 30+ eateries, 72 shuls, and 11 schools. Shouldn’t the medical office numbers match up to this incredible growth?

Why should juggling mothers of large families be shlepping to Flatbush every month to get their kids braces tightened? With our booming population, we should have a selection of 4 local orthodontists to choose from!

Why does the OBGYN waiting room have a minyan of ladies waiting?

Why is there no eye doctor in our beloved schunah?

Our community just lost a beloved doctor. As of this writing, there is no word yet of a replacement. Instead, his former patients need to choose where to further clogg the waiting rooms of the existing swamped practices.

Crown Heights, we can do better!

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  1. ODA is opening a state of the art 16,000 square foot medical center on East New York in the next year iyh.

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