Health Care(less), Part 4

, , , , , , | Healthy | January 5, 2019

In the spring of 2000, I came down with a cold that lingered nearly two weeks, then got weird. I went to see the doctor and she ordered several tests to be done at the hospital next door to the office building.

It was there that I was told that one of the tests she wanted done — a pulse oximeter reading — required pre-approval from my insurance company, which would take about three days to go through the process.

When I told my doctor about that, she was furious. It was a fairly simple test, but her office did not have the necessary equipment. Once she had a break between patients, she marched over to the hospital and spoke to a friend who worked in the emergency department. She then brought my husband and me through the back hallways to her friend, who placed a clip that looked like a clothespin on my finger. In a couple of seconds, the nearby machine showed the necessary data and I was finished with the test in less than five minutes. I was never billed for it.

It turned out that I had pneumonia. I was sent home with the needed prescriptions and instructions. I was back to normal in a few days.

The next time I went to that doctor, she told me that the office had acquired their own equipment.

It’s now eighteen years later, and her office has several of them. I noticed this morning that you can buy one online for about the price of two fast-food hamburger dinners. And the insurance company had wanted three days before approving the procedure!

Related:
Health Care(less), Part 3
Health Care(less), Part 2
Health Care(less)

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