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A QUESTION OF ETHICS
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A QUESTION OF ETHICS

I am going to keep this as brief as possible. Pain management doctor in CA I was seeing for about a year. He finally got the meds and treatments right! Aside from the trouble that came from the two occasions that Percocet rather than Norco 10/325 was prescribed. I was feeling hopeful, since my friend, "Normal"(Little guy/Hardly noticeable unless he's in a mood)was hanging out with me, again and co-workers would mention that they had all but forgotten about the difference in the dynamic change in the personality of the store and how they would enjoy the impact it would make on each person as it completely changed from arrival to departure. I have had this issue with my back and neck for almost three years. When meds were given to me early on in treatment I was concerned that the meds had taken me back to my early 20's until some of the other treatments made the same impact on my moods for from 3 to 5 days and without meds. I was always impressed with my insurance but forever discouraged by "Pain management" and the doctors associated with the term, until I found this doctor. At first I felt like he was stacking treatments and getting paid well for it. I just was so grateful that I didn't mind his taking liberties with my insurance. I did eventually cut out the excess, however, and things seemed to be falling back into place. Most recently when given my scripts he had, for the second occasion prescribed the Oxycodone, which, long story short, landed me in jail with a drug DUI(late afternoon when CHP stopped me and it had been 24 hrs since I took the oxycodone last). I lost my job and my insurance; enter Aetna insurance. Never too impressed with them but as a PPO I could be worse off. My next appointment with the doctor, I was on time, as usual, but the office staff could not verify benefits but kept saying they should have things handled, at which time, I could see the doctor, but not before(?????). Cash patients pay 350.00 for an office visit. I didn't want to even discuss that possibility. Four hours later and I have been on my phone and they say they've been on theirs, but the doctor left about twenty minutes ago and they didn't think to call my cel to inform me of the latest(They asked for me to write my cel #on a post it so I wouldn't have to stand in their over-crowded waiting area while the insurance was handled) It was at this time that I was told that I could make an appt. But no sooner than three weeks out. I asked earlier in the day if it would be a problem to write the script to continue meds for the time expected to clear up the insurance problems. I was told, "Only if I paid the cash patient amount of $350.00." Maybe by now, my question concerning ethics is getting clear. I don't have an issue with the mistake concerning oxycontin from the prior appointment. I could have taken the time to read the scripts or correct the issue after the fact, but as a patient who never received a bill because the insurance took care of it, and never wrote a bad check because my co-pay was $0.0, even for a specialist, and on one other occasion three months prior I paid that cash co-pay because of a mistake on their part(They still haven't paid that cash co-pay back and this was cleared up prior to the appt. Where I was refused service)With all this going on, it could have easily been a mis-communication on my part, but I went out of my way to ask them to state clearly, what their position was in this situation. Now I have the list of nightmares that I started with three years earlier and not only am I without my Norco(#210 For a 30 day supply)and fentanyl patches 25McG one every 72 hrs. But the cost of going to the hospital on one occasion for what was largely due to detox from these meds and ER doctors with their hands tied once I walk out of the hospital and the IV is removed. How is this not so much more an obvious issue. How can a doctor committ to the well being of their patients and call any of this mess, "Patient care?" Understanding how tuff detox from this strength and type of meds is, why should anyone have to suffer that indignity. I am not working right now but couldn't if I wanted to. It takes up to four hours in the morning for me to make my way to the shower which is an experience I don't care to share the details of. I was burned over 43% of my body 2nd and 3rd degree and had my wife told more than once to make preperations for my services... I survived the detox from some fairly heavy and serious grief giving meds. I just realized that I will stick around long enough to hear an amount attached to the words, "Éthical treatment" and "Punitive damages," and for me personally the words "I'm sorry," "Ridgid policies," "This will Change," would remove the fuel from my fire. I have more important things to be concerned with and don't care to waste my time, but only if the words above are said by the office staff. Otherwise, you can bet your money that I will do everything in my power and spend every bit of my time to make sure that this issue will be addressed by the proper governing bodies. I will continue, until I am confident that someone else has put the proper authority in my shoes and I hear them articulate my frustration, grief, and passion to keep it from happening to anyone else.
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All the ranting aside it boils down to this. He did not refuse to see you. Without verification of benefits you would have been seen as an uninsured patient and could file for reimbursement later if there was , in fact, a policy covering you at the time. If the patient has a third party payor covering his medical expenses he is responsible for providing the proof at the time of service. That is what your contract with the third party payor says. If you showed up at the body shop to pick up your car without the insurance information would it cost you anything less than full price to drive off?
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