Readers of the blog know of my many, many, many problems in trying to get my prescriptions filled. And I’m an expert in the health care system! Today, Charles Ornstein (also an expert) relates his difficulties in trying to fill a prescription for his son. The story is maddening. He has some advice at the end:
If you find yourself in such a predicament, what should you do? First, be prepared. Sign up for an account online with your health insurance company, review your benefits and review your claims. You’ll be amazed by how much — and sometimes how little — your health insurer pays for various treatments and drugs. Second, if you encounter a problem, ask questions. While you may have to pay the bill at the pharmacy if you want to leave with the prescription, you should follow up with your health plan and ask to speak with a supervisor.
Finally, if the stakes are high enough, consider a health advocate like Ms. Gardner. Some advocacy firms are run by former health insurance executives, who help navigate the roadblocks that their former companies have erected.
But, ultimately, you may well end up doing what I did: paying the higher fee with gritted teeth and gaining a new appreciation of how confusing our health care system really is.
It’s the last sentence that grates on me.
By the way, I still own the site bestintheworldmyass.com. I just haven’t figured out what to do with it yet!