Wednesday, September 21, 2016

Changing Doctors

A few years back when my insurance changed I had to change doctors too.

So I went to the new insurer's website and looked at a list of doctors. I just picked one at random. Near where I wanted the office to be which is around DuPont Circle. The search function on the site wasn't the best. You could search by field which wasn't that important to me because I wanted a general practitioner. You could then select a zip code and search within a certain radius from that zip code. The smallest search area you could choose was a couple of miles. So when I conducted the search I ended up with a couple of hundred possibilities not exactly a small list.

Like I said I picked on at random. Turned out to be a good choice. I had this guy for a little over a year until he left the practice. So I went to another guy at the same office. Liked him as well.

Recently I got a letter from the office of the doctor with the following news. The first paragraph stated that the office was moving to a new location. A brand new office featuring state of the art amenities. The current office was located in an old building which probably had not seen major upgrading for years. The letter went on to say the new location would allow more services to patients.

I thought that's not bad. The new office wasn't too far away from the current one. So that wasn't a problem. Then along came the third paragraph. It said the doctor I was going to was retiring as of August 29. It went on to say: it has been our pleasure to offer you expert primary care, and we hope you will continue to allow us to meet your health needs. Following that is a list of doctor's associated with the practice that is accepting new patients.

Very helpful of them.

I took a little closer look at the letter. Here's where my problem with it started. It was dated August 25. I didn't receive it until September 12. Eleven business days after it was dated. Really why did it take that long. I'd have no problem with it if it was just an announcement of the office moving but my doctor retired. I should have been told about this earlier. Like I don't know before he retired.

I thought about what to do. In fact I need to see a doctor because, although my cold was gone, my cough from it was still hanging on. This had happened to me the last time I had a cold. I continued to have wonderful sinus drainage down the back of my throat which caused me to cough.

So the question now was what to do. Since the loss of my job, I was on a different insurance. I decided to call up my old doctor to see if they accepted my new insurance. After a little bit of a run around (which was mostly my fault), it turns out my old doctor's office accepted the insurance.

I thought better to go to someone who knows my history and I'm on friendly terms with (even if I haven't seen them in almost three years) instead of someone completely brand new. Also since I have a $6,000 deductible better to go to the place that charges less. The place that charged less was my former doctor not the current one.

I was able to get an appointment at my new/old doctor's office for that day. Got my new/old doctor caught up on what had been going on with me. Then we got to the issue of my cough. He told me what to do. I was in and out of the office in under 20 minutes. If everything works out with the insurance (I'm still a little confused about the whole insurance set up but the office said they did accept it), I'll call the old office and have my records transferred.

Now that's the way a doctor's visit should go.

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