Do doctors still make housecalls’

Growing up during the Depression, you didn’t go to the doctor unless it was an emergency. Rochelle had two doctors’Dr. Martin and Dr. Matlock. In 1935, I had a very bad sore throat. Mother took me to see Dr. Matlock. He gave me medicine and mopped my throat. Mother gave him three Rhode Island red hens. People couldn’t pay cash so they used chickens, turkeys, pigs for their doctor fees. About three months later, my throat was again in bad shape. Mother said we needed to keep the hens for eggs so she got a man who lived in a tent by the cotton gin. His name was Red Conner. He had two mules and moved the boxcars up and down the railroad track. He said he had an old indian solution for my throat. I remember part of it being roots from an Algerita berry vine and iodine. He mopped my throat and it got better. I always had throat problems until Dr. Jordan took my tonsils out in 1942. Doctors back then made house- calls, if necessary. Granny Cates delivered most of the babies in the early years around 1912. Most of our medicine was home remedies. Lots of Vicks, castor oil, black drought and aspirin were used with coal oil and sugar and always coal oil on cuts. One time my uncle gave me a spoon of whiskey and honey for a cough. Everytime I saw him, I would tell him I had been coughing a lot. In my early teens Dr. Jordan was our family physician. Later in my late teens, Dr. Robert Hayes was our family doctor. Times have changed so much. It’s sometimes harder to see the doctor. Last week my stomach tube came out. The hole will close up in four hours so I drove 90 miles per hour to get to Brady. In the emergency room, I filled out papers and waited an hour and a half and still no doctor. It was noon, and everyone was out. When you can’t talk, it’s difficult to explain what you need. Since I can’t talk, a lot of people think I can’t hear, and they shout. I finally found Jo Wright, and in five minutes I had a new tube. I do appreciate the Brady doctors, the hospital and everyone in the ER. The next time I will get my wife to call them and see if they will make housecalls. They would come fix me up for three red hens.

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