You should only need a referral if your insurance demands it (many do so check).
Insurance aside, if you have a doctor you trust sometimes it helps to get a referral from them for two reasons, 1) they know you and will (hopefully) get you the best professional, 2) team approach to your health care, 3) your doctor's office calling the new doctor's office can often get you in much faster, and my favorite: 4) if you don't like the referral they know you can go back and yell at them for it. :-)
Check with your insurance and see what they require. If your oncologist doesn't want to refer you then either look through the phone book/Internet or call the hospital's endocrinology department and ask who they recommend.
Hang in there, I'm somewhere in this brain fog with you!
Thanks for your help.
Here in British Columbia we need a referral from either our family doctor or another specialist (like my Oncologist)to see a specialist. It is completely paid for by our medical system. Most times, we need not worry about private insurance (the only drawback is that there are sometimes long waiting lists}. Sometimes certain things are not covered by the system (i.e. eye exams and dentists) but some have additional coverage through their workplace that does cover some of this.
Okay, that's it. I'm moving to Canada!
Any time you wish to move you can both come stay with me! I live in the most gorgeous part of Canada: the pacific northwest (Vancouver). We will be hosting the 2010 Winter Olympics so you are all welcome to come!
utahmomma: I have family in Utah and have been there many times. Where in Utah to you live?
bizwiz, just curious, where are you located?
FYI: with British Columbia medical insurance (I pay nothing) along with the additional coverage at work for three months coverage of 150 mcg of synthroid I pay about $3.00 (Canadian) and about $17.00 (Canadian) for the cytomel (without my work coverage it would have been $68.00 for 45 25 mcg pills).
I live upstate New York (approximately 2 hours from NYC and an hour and a half from Albany). I mean the healthcare sounds nice........however, it's cold where I am now and I don't know if I can handle it in Canada. The cold didn't bother me as much when I had my thyroid but now...............well, I don't have to tell you guys how it goes right through your bones. LOL!
Okay, Canadian friend , you're just being mean now! :-)
I live in the heart of Salt Lake Valley (yes, home of the 2002 Winter Olympics). I've been to Seattle plenty of times but haven't made it over the border to Vancouver. I do know that you've got more TV series being filmed there than anywhere (except L.A.) and that your area is BEAUTIFUL (and warmer than here I have heard).
Have enough room on your sofa for my son too?? I also have cute dogs but they are negotiable.
I just lost my health insurance so I've had to purchase private policies for my son, my daughter, and me. I'm waiting to hear on my children's policies and whether or not they will be covered. Insurance companies here don't have to cover you and can reject your for nearly everything.
Of course, I am "uninsurable" with the thyroid cancer diagnosis so I had to get two rejection letters then beg the state to cover me on their "uninsurable" pool. That coverage alone will cost me roughly $500 a month - plus I'll have a $500 deductible and then they will only pay 80% of medical expenses.
If I can get private insurance for my children they will each cost me around $100 (each) per month with the same deductible and coverage. Yeah, add that up, that's $700 a month for crummy insurance coverage and $1500 out of pocket I have to pay before that coverage kicks in.
It's still cheaper than going on COBRA (a U.S. government regulation that allows you to purchase ongoing health insurance from your previous employer at full cost). My COBRA cost would be over $1500 a month!
Then there is the issue of prescriptions. I'm not even sure what the coverage will be on those but I can tell you that last month on my old insurance (which was pretty good) I still ended up paying about $300 out of pocket for prescriptions.
Slide over Cathy, I'm moving to Canada.
I honestly don't know why there is so much fear and misinformation here about a national health plan (ohhh, I forgot; the doctors associations, the hospital associations, the drug companies . . . ). Sorry, you get political when you've been through some of this stuff!! I'll now return to my neutral political postings. :-)
LOL!!!!!!! Political soap box? LOL!!!!!!
Oh...my...gosh..gosh...gosh... I'm speachless about what you must go through with your health insurance and medication problems! It is difficult enough dealing with thyroid health problems much less financial difficulties like this.
Sometimes we do not realize how good we have it until we find out how difficult others struggle with the same situations?
As they say on the T.V. show "The Price is Right" to..."come on down!"...I say..."Come on up!!" There's plenty of room for all of you here! If you are ever up this way, I live only a 20 minute drive north of the Blaine border crossing (south of Bellingham, WA)--in a suburb of Vancouver.
By the way...my cousin lives in Sandy, UT., uncle used to live in Fruit Heights near Ogden but raised his kids in Provo...some live in various places in the states including Arizona and New Mexico.
Take care neighbour ~Cat
Your cousin is close - I live in Midvale, the suburb just to the west of Sandy. Small world!
There has been a lot of talk the past few years about the U.S.'s "broken" health care system. Yup, I'd have to say I agree. It's pretty sad when insurance companies can deny you the help you are willing to pay for and leave you high and dry. And the cost is incredible - if I went on COBRA it would cost me the same amount each month as my mortgage! Yeah, like I have $1500 a month just lying around.
Even with the insurance I'm trying to secure for my children and me it's going to be "do I pay the bills and groceries or do I pay for health insurance." What a choice. I'm already working 7 days a week, it's not like I can just run out and get a part time job too. Argh!
Okay, enough complaining. It's after midnight and I really need my beauty sleep! :-)
So, dear Canadian thyroid-buddy, if you see a strange woman on your doorstep with a suitcase, a 15-year old son, and a thyroid scar, let me in. :-)
Although we do struggle, thryroid scars are a way we show our "happy faces" to others even when we are not smiling. I tell my nieces that I am always smiling to everyone...as my thyroid scar is in the shape of a happy face. We do struggle, but we have many good times too.
I wish you well with your insurance battle. It is definitely not easy. Just curious, does your dog like cats and rats?
Somedays it's my ONLY happy face. :-)
My dogs (miniature dachshunds) are, well, weird. One likes birds and other dogs but HATES cats. The other one likes cats and mice (he has a pet one right now) but HATES birds. Don't ask, they need psychotherapy but they will take raw carrots instead.
Thanks for the well wishes with the insurance. I may need all the well wishes I can get.
Got 12 inches of snow yesterday - how are things in the land of national healthcare?