Update to my Kentucky medical story and a flip side of the same coin.
I spoke too soon on my belief that the American Medical Association would be interested in my comments about a Medicare patient and a doctor in a small town in Kentucky – but a “Kentucky Medical Complaint” Google search brought up some answers.
Update in my friends Kentucky case – she, as of Saturday, 24 September 2011 had not heard from the doctor for test results. She called the local hospital where the cardio tests (2) were performed and told the results were in and she could pick them up.
She called the doctor’s office yesterday and told the PFTs were normal and the heart tests were normal too. What justified the cardiac tests when the PFTs were normal?
Why would the PFT procedure be so different in a small town in Kentucky than in the rest of the nation? Is the 29 days it took to wait for the doctor results due to a state raising fast horses and s l o w doctors in general or specific to one doctor in one small Kentucky town?
Having dependence on Medicare/Medicaid and being old, poor and trusting should not be a factor in a doctor’s way of making a living off the patients through unnecessary testing and no follow up contact with the patient.
The plus side is that she now has the physical test results of her lungs and heart but not a clue what they mean. When she called the doctor’s office this time, she was told the results of the PFT and cardiac tests were ‘normal’.
Why did the doctor order cardiac testing if the Pulmonary Function Tests were normal?
I called the doctor’s office this morning, Monday, 9/26/11 and asked several questions including why the doctor didn’t call the patient in 29 days to give her the test results and was told that it can take two or three weeks to get the results and another week for the doctor to review the results. My friend the patient was told two weeks. When I asked why the cardiac tests were ordered when her PFT was ‘normal’ – BEFORE he spoke to the patient - I was told to call back later to speak with the office manager.
I was told if my Kentucky friend wanted to know the meaning of the test results, she should call and make an appointment with the doctor.
Fast horses and slow doctors in a small town in Kentucky – doesn’t seem right to me. Are other seniors on Medicare/Medicaid being ill treated by this doctor?
Are most Kentucky doctors as seemingly indifferent to their senior patients by failing to give test results in a timely manner and ordering cardiac tests without apparent need – or just this one based on my own PFT experience?
The flip side of the coin is the unfair treatment of the medical profession by Medicare and Medicaid.
I wrote the following in answer to a Letter to the Editor, Kitsap Sun:
“Well…health care costs...not one post has mentioned WHY doctors don’t take Medicare or Medicaid. The fact is physicians and the health care industry is the only profession in this nation that PENALIZES the doctor and health care businesses!
Any other business in the country can set their price and people pay it or go elsewhere. Not so the physician. Medicare and Medicaid pay only a fraction of the set price per service of each doctor.
Why should doctors take patients that COST them money to see them…they LOSE money.
If a plumbing business could take ten calls during the business day – why would they take a call from someone that will not pay their full price for the service?
Some doctors DO TAKE MEDICARE/MEDICAID patients and I for one – am grateful mine do.
I will mention here that I saw a medical devise recently that cost Medicaid/Medicare about nine thousand dollars per patient that has one. For a patient to buy it outright it cost about twelve thousand dollars.
If that isn’t outrageous enough for you – my opinion of the value of the devise – it MIGHT be worth one thousand dollars TOPS.
In my opinion, what seems to be happening in some cases is that the health care folks have tacked outrageous prices on cheap junk to make up for the low Medicare/Medicaid set prices.
Who loses? WE DO! The taxpayer AND the patient.”
Speaking of a medical determined momma squirrel in Silverdale…
Thanks for reading… Sharon O’Hara