Wednesday, October 17, 2007

Doctor Shopping

My recent bout with sickness has put me on the "finding a new doctor" train. My Company switched HMO providers, and I took it as a sign to find a new doctor. My old HMO assigned doctor is on my new plan, but i didn't like her anyway. SO I made an appointment for a physical in two weeks, with a new randomly selected doctor, near my house, with a name I can pronounce. Part of the reason for the lack of health care seeking over the last few years was the reluctance to call for appointments. Nothing is more embarrassing than calling for an appointment, and having the receptionist ask which doctor you are calling for, and you saying, "um... Dr. Queeeyummthriiimmmbyyy...? I think?"
Certainly, there has to be an amount of people that cannot pronounce her name. I looked at the other doctors in her "medical group". they all have names that I cannot even come near to pronouncing correctly. Obviously this doesn't mean they are bad doctors, or less than wonderful caregivers in any way. I just feel dumb when I call. My problem, not theirs.
You know how you can tell the region of the world someone hails from based on their last name? (Usually) All the names in the aforementioned medical group must hail from the same part of the world. They are all very similar in structure and phonetic syllables, but are so wildly unfamiliar to me, it's odd. I love names, and the origins of them. I wonder if there is an Internet way to search for the origins of names. Obviously, there must be. maybe I need to do some googling...
Back to my quest for a doctor.
I called the place right beside work. Super convenient, but not accepting new patients. Fart. Too easy.
ok Off to the HMO website to search for "participating PCP's in your area". The first name that pops up is "Dr. Queeeyummthriiimmmbyyy..." Oh, Hell no.
search some more.
side bar: Why must my HMO only have an online directory. Not everyone has Internet at home. I have to do this from work, and our Internet connection has been spotty, at best, the last few days. What would i do if I needed to find someone NOW? I asked when I called to change my "PCP" if I could get a hard copy provider list. "Sure," said Mark, "It's $50." $50!! Like hell I'm paying $50 to get a damn list of doctors!
I wanted to find a "medical group", since usually they have labs and stuff on site, and you can see whoever is available if you need to get in right away. I like that. The next group was "Spanish language preferred". I assume that means they all speak Spanish. I was tempted to sign up there, as I am trying to learn Spanish, but decided to leave the spot open to a HMO member that needs a Spanish speaking doctor. Although an initial visit might have been great fun, as all the body terms I know are slang ones that I learned from watching Soap Operas and Talk shows. I would have learned a lot, and the doctor would have had medical conference stories to tell for years about the "crazy woman who kept talking about her breasts".
The third group I found seems good. Close to my house, accepting new patients, and well stocked with doctors with names I hopefully won't murder. With my luck they will be complete jerks, and I'll be on the hunt again.
Sigh. Why can't doctors just be in big buildings with a sign on the door - like credit card signs. You know what insurance they take, you can go in, say, "I'm sick". They take your card, you see a doctor, and that's that. SO much fuss.
If it were a knitting pattern, HMO care would read:
*Get the PCP approved by the HMO provider, call for an appointment, get turned down because the doctor is "not accepting new patients at this time", even though the HMO just told me you were, call back to HMO, get new "PCP"*, repeat from *50 times, finally get a doctor lined up for two weeks from now.
See? I got knitting content in here!


Jen said...

I know exactly what you mean! We go to the PCP that pretty much most of my family goes to. The only problem is, our doctor thinks my husband has the same health issues as MY parents. He gets so pissed!! He kepts explaining to our doctor that those are his IN-LAWS, not his parents.

KnelleyBelley said...

That was a really good chuckle!

My word verification letters this time spell uyudab. Spelled backwards it's baduyu. Bad you you. I can find endless entertainment in this stuff.

acambras said...

LOL -- HMOs are the biggest pain in the ass, aren't they?

At S&B tonight (I hope you're there), ask me about my doctor. She's in Hamden, so it'd be a little bit of a drive for you, but she's wonderful. And there's a Quest lab in the same building.

Her name's a little hard to pronounce, but don't let that throw you -- I'll write it out phonetically for ya. ;-)


P.S.: Knelleybelley, my word verification letters spell "takec." Is this some way of reminding me to take my vitamins? Have the damn HMOs taken over Blogspot now?!?!?