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But My Cashier Says My BP Is Fine...

But My Cashier Says My BP Is Fine...

Yes, times are tough and the economy isn’t the greatest, but that’s no excuse to let grocery store machines become your new “doctor.”

An older person, 77 years-old, wrote into a newspaper column saying that he or she was in excellent shape except for having high blood pressure, which was discovered through a “machine at the local grocery.”

If this sounds like you, we have to tell you that you’re being hosed. You can’t rely on 25 cent machines to diagnose a medical condition like high blood pressure. These machines are gimmicks; they’re meant to provide you with a ballpark figure of your blood pressure. They are no more accurate than mood rings.   

Even if you’re having a difficult time making ends meet, many clinics provide physicals and other health services on a sliding-fee scale, meaning that they take into account your income when they charge you for services. See if you qualify for Medicare or Medicaid. Call ahead to clinics to see what they charge and how they can work with you. It might take a little extra time and research, but there are ways to make sure you receive quality health care. [St. Louis Post-Dispatch]

Posted: 9/9/08