Sutter Health Plus

All posts tagged Sutter Health Plus

Cancer Care Further Delayed

Published November 5, 2018 by lynn k scott

Friday, I was supposed to have an appointment with a new oncologist.  The insurance, without my consent, chose my doctor and told my primary doctor to have me call for an appointment.

I did and told them I don’t see male doctors (which of course, that’s who they selected because they can ignore my preference; by law).  I let the office know I needed a female oncologist.

After the new patient coordinator made a condescending remark about, “I should be able to understand her”, the appointment was booked.  I updated my phone number so they could call my cell phone if they needed to reach me.

Five minutes before I was to leave work for the appointment, a 45-minute drive from my job, I received an email cancelling the appointment.  They called the home number as my cell number was never updated (sigh + eye roll + not surprised).  They told me the staff wasn’t aware of the special conditions of my appointment.

After I called them unprofessional for pulling this stunt at the last minute, the Office Coordinator was nice enough to put in writing some clarification points.  Apparently, only one doctor agreed to see me.  It’s common practice all doctors in an office will see a patient and are backup to the primary oncologist.  Not in this case.  It would seem because of my ‘history’ only one doctor would agree to see me.

My ‘history’ turns out to be one of non-compliance.  I didn’t let that one go.  I am not non-compliant; it doesn’t exist.  What exists is a patient’s right to choose his/her treatment.  I have not completed several tests ordered because the doctor left out crucial information that negated my right to informed consent.

I couldn’t complete the CT scan that had been ordered because the facility, that is able to start an IV and add a contrast dye was unable (more like unwilling) to numb the arm before the IV was inserted.  It takes anywhere from two to four attempts to start an IV in either of my arms.  I will not be a pincushion because it’s easier for them not to inject an additional needle in my arm.

I still have no care.  I requested yet another oncologist to see me.  Now, I have to wait an additional 7 to 10 days for that approval to be reviewed.  Then I have to see if the oncologist I chose  (an hour away and a bridge toll) will see me.

Patient care, especially with a life-threatening disease, should be taken seriously and doctors should only receive the patients file with diagnosis and current treatment.  All other matters are completely subjective.  This subjective documentation has cause a lapse in care.

If you  have a moment, please click HERE, sign my petition and share it.  So many people are affected by cancer and we need to stop the health care industry from villainizing patients for choosing that best suits them.

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Sutter Health Plus – Denying Proper Care

Published October 26, 2018 by lynn k scott

I’m still trying to get the care I deserve.

The latest update:

I am being forced to see a doctor, not of my choosing.  Heck, I didn’t even know I was being referred to this provider.  No one returns my calls.  Three different people were supposed to call me back; no one did.  The doctors and insurance are clueless as to what communication means.  I AM THE PATIENT!  I am to be consulted and I participate in my care – that is my right!!!

They originally set me up with a male doctor and I was told regardless of what I prefer, they aren’t mandated to accommodate me.  I finally got a to make an appointment with a non-English speaking oncologist.  I am not allowed to choose someone I would feel comfortable with.  My care cannot progress if I cannot trust my doctor.  At this point, care is functionary only.  I cannot heal properly if I am under duress at what will be added to my file because I don’t respond or act within preassigned and undisclosed parameters.  I am not allowed to give feedback or ask clarifying questions without repercussions.  Is that anyway to treat anyone, much less someone with a cancer diagnosis.

The insurance company refuses to allow me to see any other provider.  My care is being compromised.  I tried to ask the scheduling person a clarifying question (very nicely) and she loudly states, “Don’t you yell at me!”.  I hadn’t.  However, because of the derogatory notations in my account, this is the norm for every phone call.  I am accused of being rude every time I attempt to receive help.

Doctors should only be able to read medical charts.  The inaccuracies of my “dismissal” from the previous oncologist negate to mention the SEVEN requests to see other oncologists.

The blackballing of my care continues.  If there are any attorneys within N. California who can right this wrong, please contact me.

Please click HERE to sign, share and ask others to sign my petition.

 

Help Make My Voice Heard

Published October 15, 2018 by lynn k scott

I created a petition to alert the state of California to how cancer patients are being treated by Sutter Health.  If you could find it in your heart to sign and then reblog, share on Facebook, Twitter, or any other platform, I’d appreciate it.

It’s time we told insurance companies they can’t let doctors control who they do/don’t treat.  We are all people.  No one facing a life-threatening illness should have the stress of no treatment options because someone deemed a patient not worthy.

You can find the petition HERE.

Thank you for your support in this latest cancer development.

Kicked out of Sutter Oncology/Hematology

Published October 12, 2018 by lynn k scott

I just learned today, after following up, again, on an oncology referral, that I have been dismissed from Sutter Health Oncology/Hematology. I never received the original dismissal from my first oncologist. Apparently, after I saw my PCP for another referral, because my existing oncologist was bought out by John Muir (which they failed to advise), I was blackballed by Sutter.  I only learned of this today, over the phone that I am not allowed to see any doctor in oncology/hematolgy.

Sutter is refusing to treat a stage 3 colon cancer patient because I couldn’t understand my Russian-born oncologist. They are collecting premiums and denying care.  I went through the steps of seeing a PCP for a referral for an established disease that Sutter knew of for the previous 10-months.  Sutter told me I had to do this to see another oncologist and they knew full well I couldn’t be seen by anyone in Sutter who could treat my cancer.

My only option is to my PCP or go to urgent care; neither of which can treat my disease.  I can go to the Emergency Room but they can’t refer me to an oncologist, whom I’d have to see for follow-up care.  I am only allowed to see someone out of network and they have no one for me to see.

I am allowed to choose my doctor. It is not out of the norm for a female patient to want a female doctor. Based on the medical terminology, it is not out of the norm to insist on a doctor whom I can understand, without the aid of her staff.

Have I been challenging? Yes! Have I been rude and sworn? Yes. Why? Because I, ME, am in charge of my care. I, ALONE, determine my treatment!!!!

Doctors take an oath to treat patients. Yet, they pick and choose who they will care for. The ones who blindly go along with their godlike mentality are their preferred patients. How dare the patient question them? I am the one living and battling cancer – NOT THEM!

Please share this. Let the world know how cancer patients in Northern California are being treated.

 

Still waiting…

Published October 12, 2018 by lynn k scott

Today makes two weeks since the hoop-jumping commenced.  I did as I was required; saw my PCP to get an oncology referral (even though my insurance knows I have cancer).

My PCP claims they called me to say the referral was approved and to call the oncologist.  That was pure fabrication.  I only found out, because I called a week after the appointment since I hadn’t heard anything.

This past Monday, I called the oncologist’s office and was told they hadn’t even reviewed the file yet.  They couldn’t tell me how long it would take for the doctor to review the file to see if she could even treat me.  She only reviewed files in between seeing patients.

Now my PCP was told I was having anemia symptoms, yet she didn’t flag the file with any urgency.  She put it through as a basic referral.  This is the problem with using a PCP for conditions they don’t treat.  If they are to facilitate care, then listening to the patient would be a good place to start.  If the patient deems the situation as an issue, then the doctor has an obligation to process that information accordingly; especially if they are symptomatic.

My energy levels are falling.  Day to day life is becoming more and more challenging (again).  Yet, I sit and wait because the medical profession has no sense of urgency.  I’ve upped my caffeine intake and back to taking naps the second I get home from work.

When will doctors get a clue they are messing with people’s health by their lack of concern.  They aren’t battling a life-threatening disease.  They aren’t waiting in limbo to see if the cancer has spread or new cancer has emerged.  They have all the time in the world (at this point).

Yet, I and so many like me, are dependent on a broken system that doesn’t value life.  This is our reality.  We struggle, we worry, we pray and we just wait.

Sutter Health – 9/25/18

Published September 25, 2018 by lynn k scott

It’s a sad reality when I have to document every phone call and issue because Sutter Health and its providers are fine with denying care to (cancer) patients.  If necessary, this will be a play by play for a lawyer.  I’m also throwing it out there, any lawyer who reads this has my permission to contact me.

  • Current oncologist knew they would not be under contract as of 9/1/18 – failed to notify patient in order to process a referral
    • Now have to see PCP and establish care just to get my referral
  • Try to establish care and the office sends a message and doesn’t make an appointment.
  • Call to follow-up and rude medical assistant claimed she made the call (she didn’t) and then said I swore at her (I didn’t) and disconnected my call.
  • Manage to make an appointment with another doctor in the office.
  • Received call to say appointment was cancelled because “the doctor reviewed your file and won’t see you)
  • Received a call this morning to reschedule with the doctor listed on my medical card.  *Note:  Insurance will let you see any doctor within the practice; this is a point of harassment by the PCP’s office
  • Site Supervisor calls me to tell me I cannot use an “unprofessional tone” with staff.  The tone he is referring to is a frustrated one of being harassed by his staff.
    • Surprisingly….he backed his staff
    • Accused me of being unprofessional with him; oh wait – I was frustrated at this nonsense
  • Threatened my appointment would be cut short if I was not 100% professional with his staff
  • I ended the call telling him my responses would be “yes” and “no”, said, “Good day, Sir” and hung up.

I have no rights.  Sutter Health and its providers should be embarrassed, ashamed and liable for what they are putting me (and no doubt other patients) through.  This is not acceptable and we have no recourse.  They can write anything they want in the chart.  Any complaints to the state, that’s supposed to govern them, only reads the chart and does not contact the patient for details and/or clarification.

I simply ask that people share this.  Silence is their success in being allowed to continue to mistreat, deny care and abuse patients.  Patients are allowed to say “no” and do what is in their best interest; not what’s easiest for the physician’s office.

 

Cancer Update: September

Published September 19, 2018 by lynn k scott

Not a whole lot to report. I am experiencing issues of anemia again.  The same symptoms when I was diagnosed (almost exactly a year ago).

I called the oncologist’s office to find out what’s going on with my CT scan.  Well, it’s on hold because of their inadequate scan coordinator.  The facility, that’s in my city, can do the scan, but refuses to administer lidocaine to numb my arm for the IV.  I have collapsing and rolling veins.  Most IVs take two or three attempts (not to mention hurting like hell on each attempt).  They don’t do that on a “clinical level”.

Seems the scan coordinator is inept at calling the patient to update them or having someone else follow-up.   It would seem, the scan coordinator isn’t able to search other hospitals to see if they might be able to accommodate a very reasonable request.  Nah – let’s not do anything…we’re only talking cancer, right?

The receptionist was gracious enough to let me know that following up wasn’t in her job description.  She agrees someone should have called but couldn’t answer who would do that.  Let’s chalk that up to “no help”, shall we?  Then she told me to feel free to call back to check on the status.  I let her know I have been symptomatic.  Gave her all the symptoms.  Anyone with half a brain, working in a hematology office knows what anemia sounds like and should make sure the patient is called back.  Yea…not this office.

I almost passed out yesterday.  I was able to stay awake for 1.5 hours after work.  I slept after work and was in bed at 9:00 and went to sleep for the evening.  Their inept attitude is robbing me of my quality of life.

Am I demanding?  Yes.  I give them an opportunity to do their job and then I take off the “kid-gloves” and let them have it.  I will not apologize for being my own advocate; esp. when patient advocacy and the online help feature have also failed me.

I submitted a referral request for a doctor, who’s an hour away.  I asked for confirmation they received the fax and confirmation when it was processed.  The fax was sent over five hours ago.  Did the doctor’s office call:  Nope!  Now I have to follow-up with them; again.

There is no excuse I am receiving such horrendous treatment.  If I end up in the emergency room, I will not be paying a bill that could have been prevented by the doctor’s office simply doing their job.

Part of the blog is to show how (cancer) patients are being treated while facing a life-threatening illness as well as documenting issues should a lawsuit be necessary.

Sutter Health Plus, based out of Sacramento, California, should be ashamed at its inability to provide healthcare based on the needs of the patients.  I shouldn’t be forced to go to a subpar facility, even if they deem it ok.

Apparently, I have Schrodinger’s Cancer:  I either have it or I don’t.  Guess we’ll never know because my health isn’t a priority to anyone but myself.

 

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