Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Is There A Time Frame On How Long I Have To Wait To Strangle Them?? Cause I'm Ready NOW!

You all warned me, but did I listen?

Oh no, I chose to give them a chance. I had hopes.


Who am I speaking of, you ask?

I'm talking about the office staff at my new local neurologists office.

You all told me to watch out for them but I didn't listen and now I want to strangle every one of them!

As I may (or may not have, I can't remember) told you, I am in the process of switching MS Therapies from Rebif to Tysabri. I stopped taking the Rebif when the nurse from the doctors office told me to and was waiting for the call that would tell me when my first injection would be.

When the call didn't come, I started to get nervous. The month off from Rebif was hell for me. I've had two major flare ups, my fatigue is at an all time high, I'm forgetting stuff all over the place, and my body hurts like I've played a game of football by myself against the Steelers (I love Big Ben!).

Finally, I called their office and was told that they were having trouble getting the insurance to approve the medication. "That's funny" I thought, our insurance usually doesn't require approvals.

When I explained it to The Doc, aka the hubs, he thought it sounded funny too so he called the insurance people and was told that, not only did we NOT need an approval, but that there was no request for the Tysabri on record. THEY HADN'T EVEN CALLED ABOUT IT YET!

So, the hubs called my neuros office and worked his magic (and by that I mean he scared the crap out of everyone there) and an hour later I got a call saying that the insurance had "approved" my Tysabri and that my first injection would be Jan. 10th, which was last Friday.

Thursday, I got a call from a mail order pharmacy called Caremark, not the one we use, who informed me that my medication was ready to be shipped out but they had to tell me of my co-pay first. Wanna know how much they wanted???

$698.00! A MONTH!!!!!

When I called the nurse again to ask her why she didn't use our mail-order pharmacy, who would only charge us a co-pay of $50 for three months, she told me that I told her that Caremark was our pharmacy. Oh, so now it's my fault?? I guess when all else fails, you blame the patient.

Then I thought back to when I had to fill out this book of forms that they mailed me before my first visit and I distinctly remembered (well, not remembered so much as found the copy that I made of it) that I had filled out a paper telling them the information on my mail order pharmacy. I told the nurse that I had not given her the wrong information and she said, very snottily (is that a word? snottily? snidely?) that she was holding the original in her hand at that very moment and said that I had written down this other pharmacy. "Oh, really?" I asked her, trying to be as snotty to her as she was to me, "because I made copies of all of those forms and I'm holding the copy and mine has the correct information on it.

After all was said and done, it turns out that the office staff was the ones who had made the mistake.

I KNOW! I was just as shocked as you are now!

It has now been six weeks since I have been on an MS Therapy and it has been six weeks of pure hell with a couple of good days mixed in here and there. When the nurse called me the last time, I tried to explain this to her. I told her that I understood that I wasn't their only patient and I know I'm not the Jiminy Cricket on her shoulder at night, not letting her sleep. Then I tried to explain to her what the past six weeks have been like for me. I've had three flare ups, two that effected my speech and balance, and all three gave me fatigue to the point that my husband had to stay home from work a couple of days because I could not keep myself awake for more than 15 minutes at a time.

Would you like to know what her response was? Ok good, cause you're getting it!

She said "Well, through it all, it sounds like you've been getting by just fine."

Oh yeah, I'm getting by just fine and dandy thanks.

Before I go, I have to tell you something that I did. It's one of those "Everyone is already laughing at you so you might as well laugh too" kind of things.

I have an email account that I use just for an online MS support group that I'm a member of. But every time I went to sign in, I would always end up mispelling my password once or twice and it was starting to drive me crazy.

So, two days ago, I changed my password and I remember thinking "This is something I will never be able to forget".

Well, I forgot it.

And I have no clue as to what it might be or what it pertained to. Yesterday, I tried so many passwords and zipcodes that my account was locked for 24 hours and I think I'm getting pretty close to that again today!

Do any of you have any ideas what I could have changed it to? You all probably know better than I do right now!


Anonymous said...

This is the first time I have read your blog and I can both laugh and cry at your issues with your neurologist's office. I love the way you word this horrendous series of problems, all their fault. Oh my. Isn't it amazing how office staff has such poor interpersonal skills in validating feelings as well as a flare for making mistakes that are monumental to the patient? I'll tune in to your blog again an hope you have good responses to Tysabri!



Tracy, oh Tracy,

I was laughing so hard....sorry. If it'll make you feel any better AT ALL, I've heard other folks say that they HAD TO have a washout period before starting Tysabri. So just think of this EXTRA TIME as a more thorough washout.

Wait!!!! You almost got me with that rolling pin. Yikes.

About the password, is there anyway to have it emailed to you, or have a new one sent to your email, or something like that? I've had to do that before.

Denver Refashionista said...

What a pain the rear. I'm so sorry you are having all these issues. I hope the Tysabri helps. I actually forgot my password the other night but then it suddenly came back to me. Maybe yours will too.

Anonymous said...

Well, before you get rid of the doctor (if you like him/her), report the staff member to the doc and get rid of her.

It is a long hard battle to find a MS doc that you like and I would not let a staff member cause me to change docs.

So give that some thought and keep on blogging. Love your wit.


Dan said...

That sucks! I hope this new stuff works better for you. I come visit you here too, I think I need to start another blog to since I have sooo much to write about and post so often.

Tracys Ramblings said...

Deb- I'm glad that you enjoyed your visit! I hope you come back!
I was starting to wonder if my fuse was too short for office staff, seeing as how the hubs is a doc and I was once, long long ago, a nurse, and had to deal with them often.
I'm glad to hear it's not me, it's them!

Lisa- Yeah, I knew that I had to have the washout period but they told me four weeks. It's now been six but evidentally, I'm the only one counting.
Oh, and the password, I never did remember it but I did get one of the "security questions" right and am now back on!

Denver- I'm glad your password came back to you. That one has still yet to suddenly come back. Oh well.

Anne- It really has nothing to do with liking the doctor or anyone else for that matter. It's more a matter of convenience. See, my main neuro is at Georgetown University, which is three hours from my house. He suggested that I get a local one for the Tysabri injections.
I kind of already knew they would be a punch of pains in the butts.

Dan- Why hello there, Daniel!
I had no idea that you came to visit here too!
I think that before you start a new blog, you should make a new post on your main one. Not a summary, a post.
I'm glad you're here though.


Norton Internet has a password memory component. It will fill in the "blank" for me. God knows if I ever lose that function, I might as well just unplug my computer and use it for a foot stool!

GAWD! What is WRONG with those people?!?

Linda D. in Seattle

Dan said...

I need a rambling fix!

Anne said...

Oh, it's so nice to be able to laugh about this.

I have learned to check up on every aspect of every referral. It's a full time job, really.

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