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Changing Doctors is a BITCH!
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Old 05-19-2019, 07:56 PM
DGoddessChardonnay's Avatar
DGoddessChardonnay DGoddessChardonnay is offline
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Unhappy Changing Doctors is a BITCH!

Oooh boy, I didn't think I'd have to but a few weeks ago, I had the unfortunate occasion to find out I've been dropped by my long time orthopedic specialist, Dr. K.

I called in March to make payment on my outstanding balance and also get hold of the nurse to request refills be called into Mail Order Pharmacy (as it was coming due within a couple of weeks before I'd be close to out of meds).

Billing Specialist informed me upon pulling up my account that my account had been suspended. Reason being no payments had been made in 3 months and they had recently switched to an outside billing company, that in turn closed my account and sent it to collections.

She asked if I had received a notice from them? No, only thing I'd received were monthly statements.

So, I also update my contact info (as we had recently changed cell phone providers and I'd just gotten a new phone number the week prior) and asked what we could do to reactivate the account. She said she didn't know but would check with the committee that oversees the practice and get back to me.

Nobody has gotten back to me from there . . . Didn't think they would, so I start googling to see other providers in my area that accept my insurance.

Found one out at Big Outdoor Mall, so I called . . . they said they'd contact the doctor's office and that I didn't need to do anything right now and expect a call back with an appointment time soon.

A week went by, no cal so I called back. Only to find out that I have to go back o Dr. K's office to sign papers releasing my records (which I wasn't told on the first call even though I asked if I needed to do anything to speed up the process) . . . .

I go by the next day after work to sign the papers, turn the in and leave.

Two weeks later, they've finally got the records sent (after I'd called twice to find out.) Had an appointment set up with their specialist, who only does consults in the mornings.

Mornings are bad for my work schedule, as I work usually a 7-2:30 or 3 shift. Turned out they had an opening on Saturday (last Saturday in April) so I took that.

The Thursday before, I get a email (luckily I'd checked my phone in between deliveries that morning when I had a couple of minutes) and found out I needed to call back about the appointment.

Called back . . . turns out Dr. S wouldn't be in that Saturday, next opening is the upcoming Friday at 10:45 (May 3.) I reluctantly sign up for that opening and inform Larry (Sheldon was off) that I'd need that day off (had a annual physical already set for that afternoon at 4 so it wouldn't interfere w/work and two appointments in one day is too much running back and forth.) I write it down on the calendar in back office and Larry promised he'd try to remember when making out the schedule the following week (Sheldon was on vacation.)

So I end up taking that day off completely. . . which turned into a 4 day weekend due to a mainframe shutdown taking place that Sunday and Monday, and I wouldn't be able to do anything on Monday. Yay me!

I called and reset the physical for July and took my brother with me to Big Outdoor Mall to my appointment (we would go shopping through the mall after the apppointment and grab lunch and stay out the entire day.)

Get to Dr. S's office and the waiting room is packed. I check in, they take myi nsurance card take a photo for their file and hand me a tablet to finish the registration. Brother had found a couple of chairs empty off to the side, so we sat down and I went through the tablet while he was listening to music on his phone with his headphones. We had arrived at 10:30, by 11:15 we were still in the waiting area when I'm finally called.

Go down the hall, have to change my top and go have X-Rays of my cervical spine and lower back. Then I went to the exam room to wait for the Dr.

Dr. made it in, asked some questions, I explained what was going on about needing a new doctor to oversee my care and medications, went over previous history, etc. He checked reflxes and basically told me just to take Iburprofen and Physical Therapy.

What???????

What I have going on is congential, not the result of an accident. I also don't have the time or money to spend on PT, which in my case would be wasted effort.

Needless to say, I thanked him for his time, got dressed and left. Rest of the day was good though . . . .

The following week, I put in a call to my family doctor and explained what was going on and asked for a referral to someone that would actually listen and be of benefit.

Two days later, one of the front desk people from her office called and had put in a call to Smaller Ortho group (which is over by Good Hopsital.) I explained what was going on (by this time, I'm already out of my meds and trying to keep going w/Advil but as my neck is trying to periodically lock up and my arms and shoulders ache and my lower back is cranky at times and my right hip at times feels like the chipmunks are munching on the bones) and that I need someone who will prescribe medications, and not brush me off with PT.

Heard back from Smaller Ortho last week . . . I have an appointment tomorrow afternoon and the coordinator I spoke with sounded great. She even asked about MRI films (other group didn't ask about those.) I explained that my c-spine hasn't been filmed in 20 years, the lower spine was in 2013 and if the Dr. wants to send me for updated MRI's I'm good with it. She said she would let Dr. D know (Dr. D is their neck and spine pro, and he is also a surgeon.)

So we'll see tomorrow what happens with this one . . . .
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  #2  
Old 05-20-2019, 06:01 PM
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Nunavut Pants Nunavut Pants is offline
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Add that to the list of "stuff that really sucks when you actually need it". When you're basically healthy, changing doctors isn't that big a deal. Especially if it's in the same clinic/facility. But when you have actual medical needs... Yeah. Bummer.

I hope the appointment goes smoothly and you get the help you need to cope!!
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  #3  
Old 05-21-2019, 11:08 PM
LadyofArc LadyofArc is offline
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I hear you on this. Had to do this last year when I moved across town. I still see my psychologist and psychiatrist near my old place (as it's easy enough to access), but trying to find a GP that would actually listen to me was a bitch.
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  #4  
Old 06-09-2019, 02:38 PM
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DGoddessChardonnay DGoddessChardonnay is offline
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Thumbs up We Are Making Progress . . .

After having to reschedule twice my appointment w/Smaller Ortho group, I finally got there this past Friday.


They didn't take X-Rays, as they had more recent ones provided by Dr. G (my primary) and I didn't get to meet Dr. D, but instead met with his PA, we'll call her Kaye.


Kaye was very thorough w/her exam . . . not only did she use the mallet to check reflexes (my right leg was jumpy and almost kicked her) but she also probed w/her fingers to see what was bothering me in both the neck area (my muscles were pretty tight not only the entire legnth of my neck but also both shoulders) and lower back (she hit the sore spot at the very small of my back and I yelped.)


We discussed possible spinal compression, in which case surgery would definitely be warranted. She think I have some of the symptoms of it, but wants an MRI to see for certain. My last MRI's are older (lower spine in 2013, cervical spine in 1999) so she's written it up for me to have a complete MRI on my spine (one trip for both cervical and lower back) and, in the meanwhile ordered not one, but 2 muscle relaxants for the spasms. One I take during the day, the other at night.


And I get samples for a combination anti-inflammatory/antacid (Durelix) to take for the pain/inflammation . . . this stuff is basically 800mg Ibuprofen w/Famitodine added. I can order 800mg Ibuprofen cheaper through my mail order and take OTC antacid and get the same relief . . . .I'll let Kaye know when I go back and see if she'll either send a script for the 800mg and I can use my OTC antacid or if I can just use the OTC ibuprofen.


But the order for the MRI has been submitted. I'm waiting on a call (should be sometime this coming week) from the imaging center to set up the appointment. Then I'll call back and get the consult w/Dr. D set up so we can see what the results are and go from there.


But definitely a lot better experience this go around.
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