Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Finally getting my cardiologists switched.

So here's my problems with the cardiologist here in town:

1. He doesn't actually like women. When Ben goes with me to an appointment, he talks to BEN, not me, and expects Ben to answer all the questions about how I'm feeling and any symptoms I'm having.  Yeah, that makes sense.

2. It took him 4 months to figure out that my pacemaker battery was dying.  He tested my blood for all kinds of problems, and actually told me, "When I first saw you, I thought you had a thyroid problem."  What is that supposed to mean?  He had me wear a heart monitor for 24 hours and then neglected to call me with any results.  He scheduled me for appointments, but then basically told me he didn't know why I was feeling out of breath, dizzy, tired, etc...

3. His office has rescheduled my appointment times to get my pacemaker checked several times without telling me, then when I come in, they tell me I missed my appointment.  The ladies at the front office sneer at me and tell me that I'll have to wait while they find room for me in the jam packed schedule.  When I try to have them listen to the voice mail that I get telling me my exact appointment time, they ignore me.  Once, I went in, and they had locked the doors and weren't answering the phone.  I left, and 30 minutes later, they called asking why I had missed my appointment.  I told them I was there 10 minutes early for my appointment, and the doors were locked.  They told me that they were there and were waiting one me.

4. The front desk refuses to do anything BUT make appointments.  The front office person that used to work there would send in the referral renewal paperwork to make sure I was completely covered by TriCare whenever I went in.  I had already had a doctor refer me there, the front office person would just renew it.  The appointment I had a couple months ago, I had made and asked them to check and make sure that my referral hadn't expired.  The person that works there now said I was fine. I called the day of my appointment, and they told me that I didn't have any referral and no one had told me that I did and that I would either have to reschedule (the pacemaker people are only there once a month) or pay for it all out of pocket. I asked her if there was any way she could help me, and she told me no.  I called the TriCare office, and they wanted to speak with the doctor's office.  She refused to call them.  When she finally did, she said that TriCare had said they weren't going to pay for it.  I finally got a hold of Dawn at the TriCare office and she took care of it for me.  When the doctor's office called me and told me that the referral had come through, they were snappy on the phone about it.

This has nothing to do with the people that come from Amarillo to do the pacemaker checks (because the doctor's office isn't equipped to check them), the errors come from the doctor and his employees.

All of this stress compounded with the fact that I have a heart condition isn't helpful to me at all.  I don't enjoy being jerked around and having people give me attitudes when I'm trying to take care of myself.

I had an appointment to get my pacemaker checked on the 24th.  They called and confirmed my appointment, and then called back 5 minutes later and told me that the people who come to check the pacemakers had suddenly cancelled.  This has never happened before and the front office person couldn't give me a reason.  She rescheduled me for the 29th of July, over a month after my appointment date.  This was the final straw, I've had enough.  I called and made arrangements to be seen by the doctor who performed my replacement pacemaker surgery in December of 2009.  I don't mind making the drive to Amarillo as long as I don't have to be seen by the doctor here in town.

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