I have been patiently waiting for my medical insurance to decide whether they would allow a referral to a provider outside the network I am currently enrolled in. They had 30 days in which to do so. That’s the equivalent of molasses going uphill, on a glacier, during a blizzard. I mean really, oncology referrals should take as long as possible because we’re only speaking of a human life. Shoot…that sarcasm reared its truthful head again.
Even though I have completed chemo, I had no follow-up with my oncologist because she refuses to answer my questions without an appointment. There wouldn’t be messaging capabilities if we had to make an appointment every time we needed to ask a simple question. No wonder it takes weeks to make appointments these days. Sorry, I digress.
It’s been very peaceful with the new job and not having any contact with anyone in the medical industry. Yet, today, that peace was shattered. I answered an 800 number. The good thing is I didn’t have to go through their carrier’s horrendous hell of a voicemail system to return their call. The unfortunate aspect was I had to deal with someone who doesn’t understand the proverbial, “you”.
While I am far from the best or even compliant patient, customer service representatives need to understand the tone of frustration compared to yelling. It’s one thing to be sympathetic to someone’s plight of an insurance nightmare. It’s a completely different to truly be empathetic. Then, to add insult to injury, tell me I am yelling when I am merely expressing frustration. There is no doubt when I truly begin to yell. As my daughter puts it, “New York Mommy” shows up at that point.
It never ceases to amaze me how shocked people are when I say, “you have no idea” and then try to argue the fact with me that they do. Unless the person that I am speaking with has filed multiple grievances, prepped their children for the “worst case scenario”, begged for help and to see a provider they can actually understand, DO NOT tell me, “I understand”!!! It’s unprofessional; to say the least. Learn the difference between empathy and sympathy; they are not the same.
Am I overly “touchy” where my health care is concerned? Absolutely! Having been neglected after surgery, passed around to provider after provider and generally ignored when I insist on being in charge of my care and letting doctors only advise has me extremely “jaded” to most people.
Healthcare is non-existent. Health profits is what drives today’s medical profession. Patients die every day. I truly believe insurance carriers AND providers are facilitators of this because if the patient doesn’t fit in the “acceptable” boundaries, they are discarded; regardless of how much assistance and/or treatment they need. Nice to know it’s reached the call centers. The entire system needs a course in compassion!
So ends another medical rant. Off to pray for tolerance and healing.