Thursday, June 01, 2006

Medical Woes

Does it ever end???

It seems that the world of medicine is truly a mystery. Insurance, copays, physicians, prescriptions... what happened to the old Indian healer? I knew there was a reason I wanted to be a doctor early in my college career. To be able to take care of myself and my family!!

Around 2 weeks ago all 4 of us come down with a nasty virus that gives Katie and I sinus infections, and Nick an ear infection. At that time we were still living in Houston and I had a wonderful doctor that really was God's gift to us. She was the best ever and I will be eternally grateful for everything she did for me and the kids while we lived in Texas.

Now Nick has got his ear infection back. How do I know this?? First Mike calls the benefits people and gets enrolled in his medical coverage, but we still have no insurance card (apparently in the medical business this small piece of plastic, and sometimes even paper - is like diamonds and gold). I call on Tuesday, after Nick runs a fever of 102 to get an appointment with a pediatrician. They ask me for all kinds of information I don't have, but eventually grant me the much wanted appointment as long as I promise to pay them in full. Fine with me, just take care of my sick baby. I see a "doctor" who is worthless. Normally I would be kind, but he acted as if I was a crazy mother and there was nothing wrong with my child. Kids just run fevers, and even though his ears were red and full of fluid he was just fine. OK

2 days later and Nick is now spiking a fever up to 103 every night, and if not given Motrin and Tylenol throughout the day, he runs a fever between 101 and 103. He also has broken out in a beautiful red rash from head to toe. He is definately not my usual child and I know something is wrong.

So today I call my beloved doctor in Houston for some advice. Maybe I am just crazy and paranoid. She kindly calls me back, a rarity in her busy practice, and tells me he should definately be seen again. This time I choose a different practice and doctor and do all my prep work. I call the insurance company itself and they give me a temporary id # and all the other info a doctor's office might need. The woman I spoke to was wonderful. I then call the new doctor's office and again speak with a very helpful woman who asks me know questions about insurance virtually and looks up everything herself. It takes around 15 minutes but well worth my time. I arrive at the office and am greeted by a pleasant receptionist who helps out even more. After waiting only another couple minutes we finally see a doctor, not my first choice but one that was available that day, and after hearing Nick's story he checks his ears to find his left one is still infected from 2 weeks ago. He prescribes a stronger antibiotic and sends us on our way.

Stage 2 comes when you go to get the prescription filled. Prescription insurance company is different than medical insurance, so I have no info on this one. While a wonderfully helpful pharmacist calls all over trying to get information, no one can help her and once again we have to pay out of pocket and hope we get our magic card in the next 2 weeks so they can resubmit it. Luckily they give a good discount to AAA members , who knew??

After a long series of exhausting days and conversations with medical personnel, I am beat. I pray we all survive without even a hint of illness until the magic card comes in the mail.

On the "positive" side, Katie had a bloody nose in the middle of the night and bled on every surface of the bed, sheets, mattress pad, pillowcases, pillows and jammies. Luckily since we still put a waterproof mattress pad on her bed, the blood didn't get on her new mattress.

Hurricane season starts today... I think I just lived through the first of many.

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