Thanks for all the comments and support. People get outraged when they hear what happens and the assumption is that something can be done about it. The reality is, probably nothing will ever happen to that doctor or that hospital. They will have to investigate because I filed a complaint, but the chances of anything actually changing or being done about it, are probably less than 2%. I’m not exaggerating.
Anyhow, I think I’m done with the day by day accounting. It’s just too depressing. So again, just a couple more highlights.
When you are admitted to a psych unit or facility, they take all of your belongings. Emily told us that the hospital finance person had approached her at least three times to tell her she needed to pay the thousand dollar deductible in order to be discharged. This upset her because she kept explaining to them that her purse had been taken so she didn’t have her credit card to give them.
Now understand, Spencer and I are having to sort out if Emily is comprehending things fully or not by this point. Did that really happen? Spencer handled this one. He called their insurance company and was told that of course that was not an appropriate procedure for the hospital. The insurance rep called the hospital and kept Spencer in on a three-way call. They got a hold of the woman directly and she verified that indeed, there was no misunderstanding. That is their protocol at the hospital. The conversation got pretty heated but the gist of it, was that this is NOT appropriate for three reasons:
1. Emily is not the primary insurance holder. Any conversations about deductibles or any other coverage questions should have gone through Spencer.
2. It is not normal procedure to trouble a patient about finances while they are currently still being treated.
3. It is just completely lacking in common sense when the patient happens to be having mental health issues and hasn’t even been coherent for 48 hours yet. Really??
Spencer made it clear as well that when his wife was discharged (which couldn’t be soon enough at this point) they would not be given a dime. He had been paying on his deductible all year, and the hospital would have to do what every other medical facility has to do. They bill the insurance, and then the patient pays the difference. That is just the norm and it absolutely makes logical sense. The finance person finally reluctantly agreed and then said she was hanging up because she thought the conversation was getting hostile.
Don’t even get me started with health insurance. I have heard so many ridiculous stories or experienced them myself that I could write another book just on that. Honestly, is there no common sense anymore? I have no idea if the insurance company will follow-up with that hospital, but if it were me, I would be extremely concerned to know that patients are being pressured while still in treatment. Let’s face it. People pay the money to get out of that hell hole. When the hospital finds out that the patient has already filled the deductible, what do you think the chances are that the hospital gives the money back to the patient? Now I don’t consider myself cynical or paranoid but let’s be honest. The hospital has probably ripped off thousands of patients. And oh yeah, let’s remember these are patients who also happen to be mentally unstable. That’s really special.
I recently got feedback that I can come across as bitter. I disagree. I also got the feedback that I seem angry, not bitter. There really is a difference. I am pissed off at the things I see. And I’m beyond enraged that I can’t seem to do a damn thing to help make it better. No matter how hard I try.