Thursday, April 26, 2007

May I suggest pills?

I know it's horribly insensitive and selfish of me to say, but apparently they're really easy to get here and I am sick of receiving regular calls from my tired and hard working husband telling me that he is going to arrive home from work late again due to yet another "accident grave de voyageur" on his train line. A percentage of these "accidents" likely are just that, but I think it's a common assumption that most are suicides.

A few months ago a study on the use of antidepressants in France was published. On this topic, a student told me that the only reason French use more antidepressants compared to other countries, namely the U.S., is because France has the best health care system in the world. Thus, if a French person feels even mildly depressed, he or she can visit the doctor and receive antidepressants and sleeping pills compared to depressed Americans who must suffer in pain. Maybe she's right. I have no idea. Although, she is the same person who told me this.

7 comments:

phillippa said...

I have one word for the French who are 'mildly' depressed or in a little bit of pain..."JUSTSAYNO."

Samantha said...

It's true that the French have the best health care system in the world, but it's also made them the world's biggest hypochondriacs. It's so cheap to go to the doctor that the minute they cough, "hey, time to make another appointment". And on their side, the docs write prescriptions for ridiculous amounts of medication, because "Hey, it's reimbursed".

As far as anti-depressants go, a few months ago, I read an article stating that 1 out of ever 3 French adolescents has been on them...that really surprised me, it seemed like a lot. And hell, that's what adolescence is - walking around being moody and depressive!

Fred said...

I never understood why my countrymen are so depressed; aren't they supposed to live in the best country in the world? :)

I have to say that the ratp (the company in charge of the metro/train system in the region) is fast at cleaning the tracks after such an incident, I only lost 1 hour.

David said...

You aren't being insensitive, Amy. You should see the looks I get when I make a joke about one of the hundreds of shootings we have to deal with in Oakland. You gotta laugh so you don't cry . . .

Mlle Smith said...

I had an instance here yesterday in which I needed a prescription, and I was surprised at how efficient the process of getting a prescription was. It's incredible, really.

I'm surprised that people are jumping onto train tracks, and equally surprised that it seems relatively common. It's a bit shocking for me.

Anonymous said...

Getting a prescription in France is very easy and efficient and I do have very positive experiences with French pharamcists. However, while many parts of the French health system are good, it does have its faults unfortunately, especially when the ailment is quite serious. A social health system does have its limits, and sometimes you get what you pay for, so don't loss the "american" in you when you need to demand more attention, answers and second opinions. My French inlaws and the doctors have been shocked when I questioned the doctors, etc. The darling husband told me it is the American in me to stand up for myself, ask for second opinion, etc. and it saved my life last year. The doctor's response, "Do you need to speak to a psychiatrist about your feelings?"

-Almost French

jevan said...

im sitting next to an american without health insurance. actually, a lot of americans are without health insurance, maybe they should move to france. (: *.*
>.< T.T