Random Blog A Musing Farf

Thursday, April 05, 2007

OUT WITH THE OLD

Okay, another post about health insurance. As I mentioned in a previous post on January 26th (Blogger is not letting me link to it), my beloved Dr. Kendler moved to private practice and no longer takes my insurance. For the last few months it has been no more than a fleeting thought - a sadness that sort of washed over me when someone found my blog by Googling “Dr. Jason Kendler.” But, today, it became a big deal.

I have health insurance which is pretty comprehensive. I also have some eczema on my face which, in addition to being annoying, makes it look like I am constantly breaking out. I tried fancy face cream and even got a facial, but even the woman doing my facial told me to see a dermatologist. Luckily, I already have one of those as well. (As a total random coincidence, Husband and I have the same one, even though we both began using him before we had ever met. It’s like destiny!) Anyhoo, I made my appointment with Dr. Scheiner, only to be told I needed a referral. Here is where it gets tricky….

From whom was the referral supposed to come? I called Dr. Kendler’s old practice and was told no one there could refer me because they no longer had any doctors accepting new patients with my insurance and, even if they did, I would need to come in and see that doctor before they would write me a referral. I need a new primary care physician (PCP). So, unsatisfied with that answer, I called my beloved Dr. Kendler who, while totally willing to do anything to help me, could do nothing since he was no longer a participating provider with my insurance. He did refer me to a new doctor who would take my insurance though. Grrr.

I don’t want a new doctor. I want Dr. Kendler!!!! (Do you think if I throw an online temper tantrum, it will work and he will accept my insurance?) I remembered that my OBGYN once recommended someone to me. I called and made an appointment for a consultation with that person in the hopes that they will then refer me to Dr. Scheiner and I can get some topical cream to get rid of my eczema. It really should not be this hard. And still, I don’t really win because I am stuck with the new doctor option and have to accept the loss of Dr. Kendler. But at least this way, all the doctors are affiliated with the same hospital.

Now I try and picture how I would be feeling if instead of eczema that looks like pimples on my chin, I had something seriously wrong with me. What if I felt a lump in my breast or something equally scary? I would have to lose precious days of treatment by first meeting with my new PCP and then getting a referral. In this case, I only have to be unsightly for a day or so. I am really lucky. And of course, at least I have insurance at all. Many folks don’t have insurance at all and would think my little rant to be awfully petty. But still, I am mad….

6 comments:

super des said...

my least favorite thing is having to find new doctors. I've written about that a few times as well.

Good luck!

Suzanne said...

Bah. This is stressing me out. Des and I are in the same boat when it comes to finding a new OB-GYN. Maybe we can see yours if Dr. Pollitz doesn't re-materialize soon.

Peg said...

You know, I moved 75 miles away from my doctor more than two years ago...and I *still* haven't found one around here.

Part of that is deliberate, though. I used to live in Greater Boston, and my OB was associated with two of the top area hospitals...here in Podunkville, the hospitals are frankly podunk as well--and if anything ever were to become a problem, I don't want to go through all kinds of BS to get referred to a better hospital.

The insurance industry is so freakin' convoluted, and complicated, and driven by the dollar instead of accomodating good medical care. At least if you find yourself a good PCP now, should you face any thing more serious down the road, you won't have to jump through these hoops.

Alex Elliot said...

I found a great new doctor totally by chance: my health insurance company assigned me one when I had to take a trip to the ER about 5 years ago. I developed eczema on my face with my second pregnancy. I got this ointment to put on it that works really well. I have it on the my eyelids and I look like I'm wearing some horrible hot pink eyeshadow from the 80's when I break out. I can email the name to you if you want.

mara clarke said...

I remember when I started my last job in NYC and had to wait 3 months before insurance kicked in. I developed a strange infection and called my PCP (who I had gone to for about 5 years and had referred many people to) to ask if I could see him and have them post date the appointment. Nope. Plus, it turned out to be a GYN thing, so I would need a referral. I was told to get a referral would cost $250!! Of course, if I had insurance, the appointment would cost the insurance company $75. How unfair is that? I finally went to the emergency room where I was scolded by a nurse for waiting 2 days before coming in (I had a fever - a sign of infection) and advised, next time I had an issue, to come in immediately and make up a Social Security Number. The most frustrating thing about all this? It turned out I did have health insurance, but that the HR person at my new job thought you were not covered until your card arrived . . . .

Anonymous said...

I HAVE SPENT ALMOST THE ENTIRE DAy trying to get a referral for a GP/internist. A specialist whom I see rec ONE BUT WHEN i CALLED WAS TOLD THAT ONCE A YEAR AND THE FIRST TIME I SAW HIM I WOULD HAVE TO PAY OUT OF POCKET BECAUSE MEDICARE DID NOT PAY ENOUGH OF HIS BILL. I ALSO HAVE A SUPPLEMENTAL PLAN BUT THAT WOULD NOT COVER THE BILL EITHER. I WAS TOLD THAT THE BILL COULD BE $1000 TO $2000 YEARLY FOR A YEARLY MEDICAL EXAM! I GIVE UP....BUT ONLY FOR TODAY! I AM FEELING FRUSTRATED!(THAT'S INSTEAD OF SAYING,"@!**+%$#######$##!)