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View Full Version : Drs. business practice toward women is obscene and cruel.



Little Red Barn
12-03-2007, 06:49 AM
I find this totally unacceptable amongst other things, what do you think?

Friend went to OBGYN, after finding a lump in breast; OBGYN sent her to a diagnostic Ctr to a DR. who does Ultrasound to get a better reading. Friends insurance covers/pays for tests.

After ultrasound, she (friend) asked for Dr. to read results/ Dr. is in other room. Tech said, that will cost you extra money, like 150.00 for Dr. to read it now, give you an answer now, otherwise, you'll have to wait for results; which will be available to you in about a week.

This is cruel, makin' the person wait, when Dr. can read within 5 min and give you results, yet this attitude of gimme more money and I'll save you the worry and wonder and tell you now, is morally/unethically wrong, I feel.

Friend told tech this was really obscene practice, she smiled, laughed weakly, said "yeah, I know." As if it's not hard enough waiting for answers, this, I felt compounded the problem.

I'd like to report this, but not sure where to start. I know another friend this happened to a few months ago and he plopped down his Visa card (monies they did not have) so the Dr would read the results after the exam, and his wife wouldn't have to go through the anguish of 'the wait'. She already had cancer, they just wanted to make sure it hadn't traveled to the breast.

Bravo
12-03-2007, 07:00 AM
that's pretty ridiculous.

best of luck to your friend.

William Haskins
12-03-2007, 07:02 AM
http://www.ama-assn.org/ama/pub/category/5105.html#file_complaint

unfortunately, double-dipping for fees in order to deliver results is not addressed in the general guidelines for reporting clinical test results.


To alleviate patients’ anxieties, physicians should report clinical test results to patients within a reasonable time frame. Since many variables contribute to the urgency of a particular situation, physicians should use their best professional judgment when determining what length of time is reasonable for the particular situation at hand. Anticipated delays should be explained to patients at the time of testing. Physicians should adopt a consistent reporting policy that accommodates the demands of their practice while at the same time being considerate of patients’ anxieties. The reporting policy should be disclosed to patients, for instance when tests are administered, so patients know what to expect. Reporting policies should take into consideration under what circumstances (eg, all results, only abnormal results) and by whom (eg, the laboratory or the physician) test results are appropriately reported to the patient. Any anticipated inconsistencies should be disclosed to patients as soon as they are discovered. Physicians should provide test results in language understandable to the patient and in the manner deemed most appropriate by the physician. Any information gathered from test results that would be necessary for patients to make intelligent medical decisions and give informed consent on future medical treatments must be disclosed to them. Physicians should take all appropriate precautions to ensure the confidentiality of test results. Such precautions may include, but are not limited to, not leaving test results on an answering machine, on voice mail, or with a third party unless previously given permission to do so by the patient, not delivering test results via electronic mail, and not sending test results through the mail in any form other than a sealed envelope. (II, IV, V) Issued December 1998 based on the report "Reporting Clinical Test Results: General Guidelines," adopted June 1998.

still worth pursuing, however, in my view.

Little Red Barn
12-03-2007, 07:27 AM
I just thought that a more compassionate approach was in order. The Dr. was available--waiting--just needed that Visa card for prompt. He had the minute and he certainly had the time for about 150.00. I wouldn't even be telling patients this, they should at least say, we'll get results back to you in x number of days. And I suppose a week's wait is reasonable, still, when you're worried enough a day becomes unreasonable...

Thanks William, I'm going to report him, just don't know how and to whom, yet.

joyce
12-03-2007, 07:41 AM
I feel for your friend. What a horrible experience to go through. Sounds like a horrible place to go for testing. If I were her I'd never go back there again. The next time the doctor ordered testing I'd be checking out my own places to go. I know when my doctor orders me to get blood work done, he assumed I'd go to their testing place. At first I did and paid almost $90/visit. A friend told me of another place that offers the test one day a week for 1/8th the cost. I've been lucky because anytime I had a test where the technician could read it, they generally told me something. Sounds like a heartless scam place to me where it's all about the money instead of the patient.

William Haskins
12-03-2007, 07:50 AM
Thanks William, I'm going to report him, just don't know how and to whom, yet.

just hit the link i provided and follow the instructions. why not go straight to the AMA?

Little Red Barn
12-03-2007, 07:53 AM
I feel for your friend. What a horrible experience to go through. Sounds like a horrible place to go for testing. If I were her I'd never go back there again. The next time the doctor ordered testing I'd be checking out my own places to go. I know when my doctor orders me to get blood work done, he assumed I'd go to their testing place. At first I did and paid almost $90/visit. A friend told me of another place that offers the test one day a week for 1/8th the cost. I've been lucky because anytime I had a test where the technician could read it, they generally told me something. Sounds like a heartless scam place to me where it's all about the money instead of the patient.
Exactly, Joyce. The money. Dr. was available and waiting, friend had to choose; spend saved Christmas monies or wait and worry. And of course, she wouldn't take monies away from her family's Christmas. This is a standard practise at this Diognostic center.

Little Red Barn
12-03-2007, 07:59 AM
just hit the link i provided and follow the instructions. why not go straight to the AMA?
I'll do that, thanks.

Susie
12-03-2007, 08:00 AM
I'm so sorry that happened to your friend, Kimmi. Sending prayers and good vibes her way and that doctor should be in another type of profession, one that doesn't deal with people's emotions. Really awful on his part.

Mac H.
12-03-2007, 08:09 AM
The title of this thread is "Drs business practice toward women is obscene and cruel"

You may be confusing the issue by bringing up the 'women' thing ... it is much more likely that the practice would apply to ANY human being .. not just a woman.

This is something to keep in mind when drafting the official complaint.

I hope your friend's test result's come out clean.

Good luck,

Mac

Ol' Fashioned Girl
12-03-2007, 04:40 PM
Was the radiologist really just sitting there waiting? Or was s/he actually working on interpreting the results of other folks' tests that had been run before your friend's? If the charge was for moving your friend to the front of the line, it's possible that it's that high to discourage the practice.

Little Red Barn
12-03-2007, 04:50 PM
The title of this thread is "Drs business practice toward women is obscene and cruel"

You may be confusing the issue by bringing up the 'women' thing ... it is much more likely that the practice would apply to ANY human being .. not just a woman.

This is something to keep in mind when drafting the official complaint.

I hope your friend's test result's come out clean.

Good luck,

Mac
Yes, this is correct and I had thought of this, no person should have to wait PERIOD. Excuse me for not being politically correct here.

Little Red Barn
12-03-2007, 04:58 PM
Was the radiologist really just sitting there waiting? Or was s/he actually working on interpreting the results of other folks' tests that had been run before your friend's? If the charge was for moving your friend to the front of the line, it's possible that it's that high to discourage the practice.
Indeed he was. Waiting around for the flippn' money. Called greed, not discouraging others to ask for immediate results. And no matter if he wasn't--getting paid by insurance co., and the person is wrong, double dippin', not to mention causing person undue stress. If Dr wanted to discourage he should not mention this practice; just say you'll have results in a week or so.

Kudra
12-03-2007, 05:00 PM
Kimmi, contact a regional (or national, if you see fit) newspaper to do a story about this. If you're uncomfortable doing it yourself, call their offices and ask to speak to a reporter. A little media attention goes a long way, I think.

PattiTheWicked
12-03-2007, 05:04 PM
When a physician charges a patient, they must use what's called a CPT code. Bascially, this is a five-digit number (although sometimes it's got additional modifiers tacked on, dependign on the circumstance), that dictates how much they are allowed to charge for the procedure. EVERYTHING counts as a separate procedure -- office visits, tests, injections, etc. A ten-minute office visit has a different code and fee from a 20-minute visit, which is still different from a 45-minute visit.

Radiologists typically do not see patients in an consultation-type setting. Their job is to interpret radiology results and pass them along, either to the patient or the referring physician. While I don't think it was very nice of the tech to tell your frightened friend that it would cost her an extra $150, it's entirely possible that this amount was difference between the radiologist making a quick phone call to a referring doctor, and taking a break from his schedle to sit down for an actual consult with the patient.

I understand that your friend was scared and upset by this, but unfortunately modern medicine is a business and has to be run as such.

Hope everything turns out ok with your friend.

Little Red Barn
12-03-2007, 05:13 PM
Kimmi, contact a regional (or national, if you see fit) newspaper to do a story about this. If you're uncomfortable doing it yourself, call their offices and ask to speak to a reporter. A little media attention goes a long way, I think.
Thank you, I've got just the reporter for this. When another friend told me about his wife and he had to plop down his VISA because she already had cancer and they were stressed to the max, I really felt for him, they needed to know then and whether the cancer had spread or not. It was really sad hearing this. I just think it's plain disgusting.

Little Red Barn
12-03-2007, 05:18 PM
When a physician charges a patient, they must use what's called a CPT code. Bascially, this is a five-digit number (although sometimes it's got additional modifiers tacked on, dependign on the circumstance), that dictates how much they are allowed to charge for the procedure. EVERYTHING counts as a separate procedure -- office visits, tests, injections, etc. A ten-minute office visit has a different code and fee from a 20-minute visit, which is still different from a 45-minute visit.

Radiologists typically do not see patients in an consultation-type setting. Their job is to interpret radiology results and pass them along, either to the patient or the referring physician. While I don't think it was very nice of the tech to tell your frightened friend that it would cost her an extra $150, it's entirely possible that this amount was difference between the radiologist making a quick phone call to a referring doctor, and taking a break from his schedle to sit down for an actual consult with the patient.

I understand that your friend was scared and upset by this, but unfortunately modern medicine is a business and has to be run as such.

Hope everything turns out ok with your friend.
Thanks Patti, yes I understand the ICD codes and how they are used. This was a Diagnostic office with a Dr. there as well. And I do understand it is a business for Drs. Still, this is wrong, I feel. And Dr. has to still report back to referring Dr.

Inky
12-03-2007, 05:26 PM
Kimmi, contact a regional (or national, if you see fit) newspaper to do a story about this. If you're uncomfortable doing it yourself, call their offices and ask to speak to a reporter. A little media attention goes a long way, I think.
Oh...you're sooooooooooooooooooooo right in this.
Get the media involved.
When my son had a gun pulled on him by a kid at school--a kid who had been threatening to bring 'his cousin's gun and off the bastards keeping him down', my son was able to get away and into the office.

Without clogging this post with details, what we all discovered--due to my calling the media--that hardcore criminal teens were being integrated into the school, chaperoned by mombo sized guards from the local juvy camps. When kids had asked what was going on, and why a sherriff's office now existed in the admin office, they were told to mind their own business. We, the parents, were naive until this incident, assuming it was to tamp down drugs. This was long before Columbine.

The media revealed what the school had failed to warn us of.
27 families pulled their kids from that school. Major investigations/charges were brought against the school. Dunno the ending of it. I homeschooled the rest of that year, and then we moved to Texas.

Call the media.