OK. I spent two weeks being civil and fair. Not today. Today I’m pissed off.
Readers of my old blog may remember the trouble I’ve had getting medications in the past. But for those of you new to the issue, here’s a recap:
I have a chronic illness. I do not have this illness because of anything I did. There is no way I could have prevented it. I eat right and I exercise. I don’t smoke, I don’t do drugs, and I don’t abuse alcohol.
I work hard; I have health insurance. I pay for the premiums. I pay all the co-pays. I follow the rules.
For my illness, I take medication. This medication is serious, with bad potential side effects, and it is not something you would want to take. But, since I want to be well, I take it.
The last time I lost my mind about this was because my insurance company, in their infinite wisdom, changed my pharmacy to a specialty one (which they own) and didn’t tell me. That meant that when I called in to refill my meds, it became a massive clusterf*** when it was Friday of a holiday weekend and they needed to talk to my doctor and OH MY GOD, please don’t make me relive it. Just go read this.
A week ago, I called my new pharmacy (which has changed names AGAIN) and ordered a refill. I had my labs drawn so there would be no problems with my doctor authorizing it. They asked how much medication I had left, and I told them up until today. They said they would schedule delivery for Nov 1.
I remarked that would be cutting it close, but they said they don’t like to deliver early and that it would be here today.
About 30 minutes ago, I received an email from my wife. It appears there is a message on the home voice mail saying that there is a problem with the prescription. I should call them.
Did they leave any details? No.
Did they leave me a number to call them? No. They said I should just call the number on the medication bottle.
Do I have the bottle with me? NO. I don’t carry my once a day medication on me at all times. I leave it in the medicine cabinet.
So what am I supposed to do? If I wait until I get home to see the number, they will be closed. And, of course, I have no more medication.
Luckily I managed to get a hold of my wife and she gave me the number. And I called them.
You ready for this? They didn’t ship the medication. Why? It’s on back-order.
So explain this to me, awesome insurance system. You will only allow me to get my medication from one pharmacy, which is not local, and which you own and run. And you won’t send the medication early, which would provide a safe buffer. And then you run out of the medication. And then you don’t tell me until the day I run out. And then you don’t really tell me, you leave me a cryptic message on my voice mail that I would usually not be able to get until I arrive home and you are closed.
Will you allow me to go to another pharmacy? Sure. But you won’t cover it. Will you have the medication soon? Yeah, you hope to have it tomorrow.
I don’t believe you.
Do you have any concern – whatsoever – that I am without my medication for a period of time? That it’s entirely your fault?
I’m a model patient. I pay all my bills. I go to the doctor. I get the labs done. I refill the meds on time with a weeks’ advance. I follow the rules. And you screw me.
I understand the health care system better than almost anyone I know. And this happens to me. What do you imagine happens to everyone else?
Best in the world my ass. What am I paying for again?