Thursday, August 11, 2011

Hi... Ummmm... Nancy?

Ok, so.... I'm not sure if I have shared this with you all, but I work at a bank.  My particular branch is open on Saturdays, so we have to take turns working.  In return, we get an entire day off during the week.  Today just happened to be my day off, so I made a few doctors appointments for the day.  

First off, I had to go see the "lady doctor".  First off, I have been a raging bitch for the past month or so (just ask Daniel, I'm sure he will confirm this statement.. and then beg you not to tell me he did).  Secondly, I have always had problems with my "monthly visitor", and I was really hoping that my Lapband surgery might have cleared some of that up, as it does with many women.  Lots of times, obese women have extended periods or, on the flip side, completely missed periods.  My doctor explained that it's due to the extra stress that is on your body from the excess weight as well as the fluctuations in hormones that are slightly more common in overweight women.  I have had both problems.  Sometimes I will go 6 or 8 months with no visit at all.  Other times, like now, my visitor decides to pack extra suitcases and have an extended stay with me... to the tune of THREE MONTHS!  Yeah.. I'm over it.  One thing that band patients are told from the beginning is that their body can't absorb nutrients and vitamins the same way after surgery.  Well, this also applies to "extended time release medications".  Birth control pills fall into this category.  So today my doctor and I decided to switch things up a bit.  This may seem like TMI for some of you... but it's definitely something to think about:  I am going to start using the Nuva Ring instead of pills.  This way I am still getting protection, but because of where the Nuva Ring is placed, my band CAN'T interfere with it.  I will let you all know how it goes =)

On to the next appointment of the day.  This one doesn't really have any educational value for you all, but it was certainly educational for me.  I have had a few issues with my feet since I was in high school, and I finally decided that it was time to go see a podiatrist.  On Monday, an automated number called me to ask me to confirm my appointment, which I did.  Yesterday at 4:03 I got a call to my cell phone from a number I didn't recognize.  I saw the phone ringing, but I was a work, so I couldn't answer.  The call finally went away, which told me that I should have a voicemail in just a few seconds.  But, I didn't.  Then the phone rang again from the same number.  Not just one more time.  Not even two more times.  They called me FOUR TIMES total (back to back calls) before leaving a voicemail.  At this point I am panicking.  I'm thinking that something has happened to Daniel and the hospital is calling me, or something happened to his mother, all kinds of crazy thoughts went through my head.  Do you want to know what the voicemail said?  "Hi Nathalie, this is _____ from Dr. ____'s office just calling to confirm your appt for tomorrow.  Please return our call as soon as possible."  Really?  A) I have already confirmed through the automated system and  B) Was it really necessary to call me FOUR TIMES before deciding to leave the message?... I was slightly annoyed (blame it on my visitor!!!)  I went into the office today for my appointment, did all of the usual paperwork, and eventually went back into the exam room.  I spoke with the nurse, explained my issues, she got me all settled in the chair and said the doctor would be in shortly.  The doctor comes in, looks at my foot from at least a yard away and asks what he could do for me.  Never once looked at the notes that the nurse took several minutes writing for him, and couldn't possibly be able to see anything from where he was standing.  After explaining everything AGAIN, the doctor says to me "So, what would you like for me to do for you?"  Uhh.... I don't know, I didn't go to school to get a medical license.  That's why I came to YOU instead of seeing patients in my home.  So many rude and sarcastic answers came to my head.... but I eventually filtered them and came up with "Well, I was hoping that YOU might have some suggestions for ME."  He tells me he has something in mind and will be right back with some sample medication.  We finish up, and I go out to the counter to check out.  

With my insurance I don't have a co-pay, so I just needed to drop off my paperwork.  The nurse says "Hi Ms. Wilson, that will be $21.53."   Uhhhh... what now?  I say "What for?  I don't have a co-pay."  She responds, "Well, it looks like there is a charge for some medication you requested."  Once again... Uhhh.... what now?  I say "Oh, there must me a mix up.  Dr. ____ gave me some samples to try out and he said we would make a decision when I come back next week."  She says "Yes ma'am, and it looks like there is a charge of $19.99 for that medication, and an additional $32 for the other one."  WTF?  Since when do doctors charge you TWENTY DOLLARS for a sample??!  Isn't it called a sample for a reason?  I politely informed the nurse that I no longer want the samples, because I was not prepared to pay $50 for something that I was under the impression was free.  So... I left.  I was extremely irritated by the situation and the doctors "bedside" manner.  I had already made the decision that I would NOT be going back for my follow up next week.  I don't like shady people, especially someone who I am supposed to trust with my personal information and my health.  But, it was over, no one could force me to go back, so I was done with them... or so I thought.  When I got home several hours later (I needed some retail therapy after all that), Daniel handed me his phone to listen to a voicemail.  Here's how it started... "Good afternoon.... ummmm..... Nancy.....  You just left our office and Dr. ___ wanted us to give you a call because he was concerned that you opted not to keep the medication he gave you...... blah blah blah."  First off, if I had just left the office, you should know that my name isn't NANCY.  Secondly, Dr. ____ didn't GIVE me anything.  He was trying to charge me $50 for what he called samples.  Third, why is it that you called my "emergency contact" to leave this ridiculous message when you never once tried to call my phone.  I guarantee that you know the number, because you called it FOUR TIMES yesterday.  

Ok, so... that's the end of my rant for today.  Do you guys think I am over-reacting?  I have been known, more than a few times in my life, to do just that~ haha.  The whole thing just seemed ridiculously unprofessional to me.  I have considered returning their call tomorrow and give them a run down of all the reasons why I will NOT be returning next week.  Too much?


  1. You are nit over reacting one bit. All of that nonsense is totally unprofessional! I might even go so far as to report them to the insurance company. They may nit want to do business with them either.

  2. that's crazy! I've never heard of pharm samples costing money before. The the doc asking what you wanted HIM to do?

    That reminds me of the first lap band place I went. I was private pay and asked a lot of specific pre-op questions. The nurse says, "Why is it that you have so many questions?" Umm....because I'm paying you people 10 grand to cut me up and put a foreign object in my body that will change my life forever? The next day I called and canceled my next appointment. She called me back and I told her I decided to go somewhere else. She asked where and I said, "I'm not sure, but it won't be there!" She said "Oh, well feel free to call us if you have any more questions." I then told her that she asked me the day prior why I had so many questions. I think my point was made very clear. That was the end of that convo..and that lap band center. I found a much better one. Why is it that medical professionals think they can act so unprofessionally?!

  3. FIND ANOTHER DOCTOR!! THAT GUY IS A LOSER! I am in inpatient Pharmacy Technician at the hospital where I live and believe me...he didn't pay a dime for those meds! I saw a podiatrist for my foot issues for about 8 months...then eventually ended up at an ortho. surgeon and had surgery, in a large part due to the treatment the podiatrist had done...too many cortizone shots into a nerve. Good luch sweetie...oh, and i have many friends that use the Nuva Ring and LOVE LOVE it!!!

  4. If there is a place to report them- I would. I tal most sounds like fraud to me.