Friday, October 12, 2012

It was the INSURANCE Company! and Other Blog Excerpts/Link

 In speaking with both the medical billing department and the health insurance company today, I learned that the erroneous bills we received were due to errors by the insurance company.

I called the insurance company, fortunately got a more informed insurance rep.  She immediately recognized that we should not have gotten any bills and is forwarding the information for review by the company and assured me that we will not owe these balances.  YAY!  It's not that they were high - but the principal of it.  We pay our insurance premiums to get the coverage stated in the plan.

I did ask the ins rep yesterday if I could please speak to a supervisor (3 times) and she ignored my requests.  Instead she proceeded to give me erroneous information.  I did tell today's insurance rep that I had requested speaking with a supervisor and was ignored.  I also thanked her for her help.  Boy ...the difference in workers sometimes.  I have often said that if you have difficulty with insurance companies you should speak with more than one person because the person "helping" you may be new and uninformed, not care, be lazy or have Friday brain which I guess falls under ...don't care - I just want to get out of here ..except yesterday was Thursday.  But ...I didn't keep pushing it because I knew the practices merged and so I automatically assumed it was on the medical office end.  Never assume!

The owed amounts were small, but really is a classic example of how mistakes are sometimes made.  I might even say often made.  I've found that offices and insurance companies both make mistakes and you really do need to stay on top of your medical bills and records.  And ...ahem ...I've been known to make a mistake or two as well.  Bottom line - pay attention to the details and follow up ...and don't be deterred if you encounter resistance.  Mistakes do happen.  It's too bad for the people who aren't informed or assertive enough to question their bills and just pay whatever is on the bill.  I used to do that.  I was so busy and I erroneously assumed that they were right - always.

 I also jumped the gun with my concerns over the merger between two large medical practices.  It turns out that everything will be the same in the office we go to ...keep the same doctors, etc.  They also STILL participate with our insurance and they did not get a new tax ID number.  The merger was was a financial decision that would not impact patient care.  Although to that ...I still think that trickle down does matter and as the business goes ...so go the patients.  And I do hope this will prove to be a blessing to the now merged practices. 

I say that because of the post I read called "GREED" in medical blog "katevsworld"   Here is an excerpt from that post:  "This week, I got hurled into the air.  Like so many medical practices around the country, over the past year, my group and another prominent group decided to merge.  Mario and his posse told us little penguins that it would benefit us all.  We would be more efficient, take less call, have better lifestyles, and earn more money through better contracts.  With such an enticing spin, who wouldn’t jump aboard?  It was akin to being offered permanent protection from being struck on the road by the likes of..."  You can follow the link above to see what actually happened after they merged.  I hope it all works out for them over time.

From a patient perspective ...I still wonder how the additional stresses and feelings of betrayal for the  physicians will affect the practice for both staff and patients.  Hopefully it is because of poor and disingenuous management that will be corrected at some point. There must be more successful mergers.

I found this blog because of the following link post that was linked in Kevin MD.

Here is the link that drew me to Dr O'Reilly's blog: A compelling post called "My Story." , and here is an excerpt from that post.  "It was a cold winter day in 2009 when my life changed forever, however, it would be months before I figured that out.  On that fateful day, a drug-addicted surgical scrub tech assigned to my operating room stole syringes of fentanyl, a potent intravenous narcotic, from my anesthesia cart.  According to news reports, investigative summaries, and the scrub tech’s confession, once she took the syringes, she used them on herself."

I haven't commented on her posts yet, but do look forward to reading her blog.  I also look forward to catching up with my favorite blogs and commenting.  And also cleaning up/organizing my sidebar, etc.  Now that cold weather is coming (getting a frost tonight), I'll have more time inside.  I do especially love blogging in the fall and winter.  :)  I also wonder if anyone besides googlers read this blog anymore?  Regardless ...I will continue blogging because I like LOVE to write.  I just miss the early days when bloggers commented more.  But, then I figure ...write better Posts SeaSpray and maybe that will change.  Then ...on the other hand we should write for ourselves.  Write for yourself and you will draw readers that are drawn to you and/or things that interest you.  Blooging is the BEST hobby ever ...says me.  Okay ...blooging is the BEST hobby ever but ... BLOGGING is even BETTER.  ;)

AND ..if I ever get a laptop ...oh I am sooooogonnaenjoyreadingblogswhilerelaxingonthesofa!  A SeaSpray can dream!  :)

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