Tuesday, February 22, 2011

I Need An Exacto Knife and a White Bathrobe Pt. 1

     I'm not sure how I feel about this whole health care bill thing, but I do know how I feel about health care as it stands now.  We just did this circus with my FIL last year and now here we go with my mother.  She found a mole in Nov., her doctor told her in Dec. she would do a shaving in Jan.   Three months later it comes out the thing is a "stage 3 malignant melanoma."  The name sounds dramatic. Apparently its earned the name honestly; it spreads fast and once spread doesn't have much of a cure rate.  The chemo drug hasn't really been proven to be very effective, but it's all they've got at this point.

     So we get this news and are told to move on it right away.  We are sent to the nurse who is going to get us a surgeon and call us the next day.  Like I said, I remember how this went with my FIL, so when the next day comes and no one has called and no one answers the phone, I get in my car and head over there.  They are of course surprised to see me.  As expected, no one has made a call and like the harpy I am, I stand there and wait while they make calls.  Apparently surgeons are a bit malignant melanoma shy and so they aren't all that plentiful, or rather in Mom's insurance network they aren't plentiful.

     Eventually, the nurse finds "Surgeon A" and "Oncologist X".  The surgery is scheduled for the 9th.  Two days later we see "Oncologist X"who says he doesn't like our "choice Of "Surgeon A," (like we selected him off of the showroom floor), and wants us to see "Surgeon B."  Well we are willing, but I've talked to nurse so and so at "Surgeon B's" office and they don't take Mom's insurance and they can't see her until March.  So like a doofus I'm thinking this doctor would say, "well let me have my people call his people and see about working something out."  Nope.  Oncologist sarcastically says, "well, I'm sure  'Surgeon A' will do okay,"leaves and tells us to see him after the surgery.

     So I call the insurance people who tell me if "Oncologist X" does a medical necessity form and "Surgeon B," is approved after a three day wait then we may be able to see "Surgeon B."  I call "Surgeon B" and talk to "Nurse B" who is a sweetie and tells me she can move some dates around seeing how it's a malignant melanoma we are dealing with.  Meanwhile "Surgeon A" finds out we are seeing "Oncologist X" and says he is now sending us to "Surgeon C."  To make a long story shorter, after many phone calls and faxes on my part, we ended up with "Surgeon C."  The surgery is now on March 1st.

     I'm a drama queen not a diva so this ego crap is making me nuts.  If any of these people's mother had a "stage 3 malignant melanoma" on her face that needed removing, somehow, I have a feeling it would have been removed by now.  Nov., Dec., Jan., Feb., March; that's four months; that is not acceptable.

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