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1124731 tn?1259702611

Pain Management Dr. dropped my husband and I for no reason! Abandonment or Not?

My husband and I see the same PM Dr. I started seeing her about 6 months before him. We somehow wound up getting our refills on the same day. We both called in for our refills and I got mine but his was not called in. He called later that day and the new receptionist in the office said he could not get his refill until he saw the doctor on Monday. He had just seen her the month before ( we see her every 3 months) so there was no appt. missed. He called the office and one of the other receptionist told him to call the answering service. He did but since the receptionist was still in the office the message was still given to the ofc. instead of paging the doctor.

He waited till after the ofc was closed and called the answering service and left message that the receptionist would not call in his refill. (this also happened the month before) The Dr. called in the refill and the following week we received a letter from the doctor addressed to both he and I (not seperate letters) that she would no longer be our doctor and that was a 30 day supply of meds that she had rx'd and wld not be refilling again and we had 30 days to find another Dr.

When I called the office to question what was the problem the Dr would not return our calls and the receptionist that didn't want to do her job in the first place stated that the Dr didn't have to give us a reason or even have to have a reason to drop us, she only had to give us a 30 day notice to find another Dr.

First: it was the receptionist fault in the first place 2 months straight she didnt call in HIS meds he had to bother the Dr. after hours to call in the meds.

Second: I could not understand what I had to do with it at all that I was dropped.

We both suffer from chronic pain. I have applied and am, waiting for a decision on my disability case with the government. I have gone a week without meds and we both are in chronic pain.

I called the Drs office and spoke with the receptionist and let her know that I had not found a Dr and if she would refill my meds one more time to give me more time to try to find a Dr and she told me the Dr said no. I had been seeing her for almost 2 years and she  even suggested that I apply for my disability and that she would assist me in getting it.

She wont return any of our calls and we are now stuck w/o a doctor or meds.

My question is can she do this or we have some type of right to know what we were dropped for (especially me). I was on 8 hydro 10's a day, 2 methadone a day and 3 muscle relaxers daily and even with that I was still in pain. So now I am in chronic pain to tears. My husband wasn't on the same meds as me but he has chronic pain as well.

Can someone please let me know my RIGHTS.
23 Responses
547368 tn?1440545385
Hello and welcome to the Pain Mangement Forum. What an awful predicament. I am sorry that this has happened to you and your husband.

First the receptionist is correct. Unfortunately a physician does not have to provide you a reason for refusing to treat you. She did prescribe a 30 day supply of medications and that is where her obligation ends. Had she not it could have been considered patient abandonment. Although this seems very unfair I am afraid that it is legal.

The physicians refusal to treat you and your husband may have nothing to do with you. If you have provided the entire facts it may be from some internal issues the physician is facing. The DEA may be involved with her. She may had to limit the patients that she treats. I am guessing but it seems more related to her practice than to you personal.

In my opinion you have one option at this point which is to find a new physician. Don't delay your search, this physician is obviously not going to reconsider. You are entitled to your medical records including her notes. Request them asap. You may find a reason for her actions in her notes. Again in my opinion, had there been a failed drug screen or other suspicions I would assume you would have been notified. It seems an internal issue to me.

Best of luck to you both. Please let us know how your search for a new physician is going. If you are so inclined we would be interested to hear the reason, if and when you know it why you were discharged from her care. We all learn form one another. Our members may have better suggestions and comments for you. They have more personal experience with PMP's than I do.  

Take Care,
230262 tn?1316649534
grumble grumble...oh my, i hate pain clinics so much, i really do. But as a chronic pain patient AND an addict, I have to ask you if there is more to your story, if you have left anything out? Im not trying to offend you but Ive seen it a million times how people get addicted to their meds (myself of course included) Its an epidemic. Had your or your husband at any time during treatment from this doctor ever gotten your refills done early? Ever gotten any narcotics from any other doctor (even if legit - like if you broke your leg and had to go to ER and was RX'd something there ?)? Have either of you used other drugs (either illegal like pot, coke, or RX ones such as xanax that you dont have an RX for? ) , and had a drug test done at this dr?   It just seems odd that the dr. did this for no reason.  If i am barking up the wrong tree here (and i apolgize if Ive offended you, that was not my intent), then i would say you deserve more answers as to why. As for legal recourse, I am not sure on the laws regarding this, and also how they may differ from state to state.  You could call your State's Board of Physicians or whatever foundation is in charge of stuff like that and file a report I susppose.  
As for the meantime however, what are you both planning on doing without meds? Have you both already gone through Withdrawl (WD) and are out of everything? You may be in for some very wicked WDs from the methadone. THat is worse to come off from compared to the other short acting opiates. If you need help with this, i encourage you to visit the SUbstance Abuse forum here for help with this. We have a wonderful group of people there that can assist you.  good luck and keep us posted.  
1124731 tn?1259702611
The new receptionist is really a pain in the  buttox and my husband unlike myself will be very outspoken if he feels he is mistreated and did. He asked her why she was always giving him a hard time and also told the Dr. about it. So I really feel that it is an inside job on that part and I just happen to be the wife that got kicked out as well.

However, the Dr never heard his side of the story being that the lady in the office was wrong for not calling in his rx refill 2 months in a row. We never asked for meds early. Take drugs or had a drug test given.

I really think that the lady in the office was the cause of it all because my husband was very outspoken about her rudeness. Me personally I just overlooked her but she never messed up on my rx either.

I don't even know if she gives the Dr the messages that I was leaving for her to talk to me.

I am mainly just in severe pain 24/7.
547368 tn?1440545385
You may be right. The receptionist could have complained that she was being unduly mistreated and/or harassed. You can be sure that the PMP never heard your side of the story. Just find a new PMP. You'll be better off in the long run.

There are good clinics out there with competent staff. If the receptionist treats other patients in the manner she treated your husband it will catch up with her one day.

How's your search for a new PMP going?
356518 tn?1322267242
the laws regarding this is very straight forward. She did give you 30 day notice and a 30 day medication supply so as far as abandonment you really have no case.
Tuck is absolutely correct that you need to be searching for a new doctor ASAP. In some PM clinics and doctors offices it can take months to get in so you need to call around and get an appointment as soon a possible. There are some that will get you in quicker too so call and find a new PM doctor.
You may get your PCP to write your prescriptions until you find one also.
198154 tn?1337790865
so sorry for your situation, unfortunately this si very common with PM
655875 tn?1295698707
I was dropped like a hot potato from PM due to getting a second opinion from a surgeon.  I was fine with leaving the pratice, due to not being treated properly for my pain.
655875 tn?1295698707
I went to my PCP for medications until I was able to find another PMP pratice.  It took me about 3 months to find the place I'm at now.  Good luck in finding a good pain management clinic.
535089 tn?1400677119
I have to thank my lucky stars that in Wisconsin, our PCP is our PMP in most cases. I feel that in your case, you shold ask for your records and view them personally. You never know what the Doctors write in them.

Tuck is absolutely correct in saying that you shouldn't delay in finding a new Pain Management Clinic. Good or not, they are hard to come by.

I truley hope that you find the care that you both so deserve. Please take care and good luck,
Avatar universal
You stated "he had to go see the doctor Monday", did he go?
547368 tn?1440545385
Regardless if the husband went to the "doctor on Monday" or not, the wife should not have been dismissed for any error they perceived the husband to have made.

At least that's my opinion. I would hope that being married does not make one responsible for their spouses actions.  

Just my thoughts....
1124731 tn?1259702611
No he didn't go to his appt on Monday but I did go to my appt that was originally scheduled the next week after and they didnt let me see the doctor sd she took me out of the system. I just couldnt and cant seem to see or talk to the Dr at all.  I dont have a PCP I only had the PMP

I had an appt today with a PCP specializing in rheumatology and he said that he felt I had fibromyalgia and that he felt they should have never put me on narcotics ( I tried to explain to him that I started with back pain after working in a Nursing Home to no avail) I have been on pain meds since 2006. He gave me cymbalta that cost 200 bucks for a 30 day supply.(no generics) that was all he gave me and told me to come back in 6 weeks and he will go from the 30mg to 60mg. The visit cost me 250 bucks out of my pocket no insurance and I am on a fixed income. Then he scheduled me for a bunch of blood work including HIV and Hep C test. I have no idea why but do know that is more lab work I cant afford especially to still be in the pain I am in right now.
1124731 tn?1259702611
I did get my medical records from the PMP today and it didnt say anything about me no longer being with them anymore. The had a very large stack and I did here she was downsizing on patients because she has so many. She is the most economical person around here with patients that drive from out of town to see her. She was only charging 60 bucks per visit and mainly saw u only every 3 months unless she changed your meds etc. They even gave me someone elses medical records that were clipped to mine. I new my records couldnt have been that large. I wonder how the person would feel to know I have there medical records. Can the pain in the but office lady get in trouble for giving me someone elses medical records? LOL
230262 tn?1316649534
wow. I am sorry. I hope you can find a new dr. soon.  This is just anotehr reason I so hate the clinics (another good reason I dont use meds anymore)...good luck to you and keep us posted on how things go. How far into WD are you now? How many days? If i were you, Id start preparing for the bad WD's soon from methadone
Avatar universal
I would think they could get in trouble for giving you someone else's medical records. Even if they are down sizing, that IS NOT  a reason to treat patients the way you & your husband were treated. I guess on a good note, there was not anything negative that they may have lied about on your records.

I hope things work out for you & your husband.

Sorry I can't answer why they are requesting the blood work. Maybe to eliminate things.

1124731 tn?1259702611
Went to the last PCP I have gone to. (2008) and they no longer treat pain or anxiety. This is so sad.

Did talk to the PMP office today to find out what I am supposed to tell the next Dr as to why I no longer see her and they said to tell them there was a problem with my husband and the office and the Dr dropped him and felt that since we were related thought there would be a problem if they continued to see me and dropped him.

Now isnt that something when the only problem he had with them was not calling in his refill 2 months in a row. The other lady in the office told him to cl the answering service and the PMP had to do it after office hours. 2 months in a row
356518 tn?1322267242
The blood work is common when seeing a new doctor. Most of the time the new doctor will order all the test needed even if you have have them done already.
I am so sorry they dropped you and your husband that is just not right but the good thing is that you should have no problem getting a new doctor. If the reason was a failed urine test or something of that nature you would have a really hard time finding a PM doctor to take you.
Good luck and please keep us updated. I wish there were more we could do to help you:)
What state are you in? Maybe someone can refer you to a PM doctor they know of.
547368 tn?1440545385
You must feel better knowing that you did nothing wrong. At least I would. And as Sandee said you should have no problem getting another PMP to take you.

The office that released another person medical records to you is in huge violation of HIPPA laws. This is serious. You are right, how you would feel if it were your medical records that were released. I would be irate.

Thanks for keeping us updated. So many ppl don't take the time to do so. So again thank you.
1124731 tn?1259702611
Saturday is my Birthday. 40 yrs old. This is not a good time. But have an appt next week (Wed) with a PMP. I have everything I need. Hope everything goes ok. Will let u guys knw
535089 tn?1400677119
I will be praying that everything goes your way. Your story is a sad one and I hope that things turn around for you. We are here at anytime for the both of you.

Please take care and like I said...good luck and let us know how it goes.
1124731 tn?1259702611
Thanks everyone for you comments and help. Will definately keep you guys updated. I am wondering if I should try to contact the person that is on the medical records that they gave me. At this point I am very upset with the lady in the office. She was very rude and acted like she knew everything. I just dealt with her. Like I said my Hubby is very outspoken and he made her mad and that is when we lost out PMP.
Avatar universal
Dr said i did something wrong never warned just go somewhere else.  Well that easy for you Doctor but in the mean time I'm not guilty of doing wrong.  First and the medication you have been so kind to give me has terffing side effects and may kill me.  If I withdraw from them abruptly  Its called side .  I'm in line for a seizure. Cause you think not.   I'm a senior on medicare and medicaid. and I didn't know I could  not go to a closer pharmacy .   A seizure will kill me I had one approx. 10 years ago when I stopped taking Xanax oh my god they are scary, I went down no warning, where there was hard floor, I could hit anything going down, I go into a fetal position arms locked eye rolled back of head and I'm unconscious my heart raises faster than it should I really rather not die right now,, but you think I did wrong shame on you..  Your a Doctor where are your ethics your compaction????  I am trying to find another Dr. for all my med cronic back pain acid reflex and others I finally thought you were better than this
Avatar universal
HELL YES! The persons records that you have can sue her!!!! She will at LEAST LOSE HER JOB!
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