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Wed Nov 14, 2012, 06:37 PM


The '$5 doctor' practices medicine from bygone era

RUSHVILLE, Ill. (AP) Patients line up early outside his office just off the town square, waiting quietly for the doctor to arrive, as he has done for nearly 60 years.

Dr. Russell Dohner is, after all, a man of routine, a steady force to be counted on in uncertain times.

Wearing the fedora that has become his trademark, he walks in just before 10 a.m., after rising early to make rounds at the local hospital. There are no appointments. He takes his patients in the order they sign in first come, first-served. His office has no fax machines or computers. Medical records are kept on hand-written index cards, stuffed into row upon row of filing cabinets.

The only thing that has changed, really other than the quickness of the doctor's step or the color of his thinning hair is his fee. When Dohner started practicing medicine in Rushville in 1955, he charged the going rate around town for an office visit: $2.

Now it is $5.


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Reply The '$5 doctor' practices medicine from bygone era (Original post)
banned from Kos Nov 2012 OP
Lydia Leftcoast Nov 2012 #1

Response to banned from Kos (Original post)

Thu Nov 15, 2012, 01:27 AM

1. When I was a teenager, I did part-time recordkeeping for just such a doctor

He was a friend of my grandparents.

The area where his office was located gradually turned into a ghetto area during his lifetime, and he charged $5 for an office visit, probably equivalent to $25 today. His medical knowledge wasn't always up-to-date, but he was affordable medical care.

My job was to take the entries from his notebook and put them on those index cards.

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