Tuesday, October 14, 2008

I feel like I'm on candid camera but on the phone.

I am trying to schedule an appointment with the local orthopedic folks at the Denver Children's Hospital.

We don't have a local ortho surgeon, because we go to Shriner's in Salt Lake.

I go to the website. There is a Limb Deformaties Team. Not one of my favorite words, but the page on the website says to call and ask for an appointment for the Tuesday Limb Clinic. I call the number.

The woman who answers has never heard of the Tuesday Limb Clinic. Eventually she says "Oh, ortho is what you need. Please hold."

Then I arrive on the extension of another woman. I repeat I want the Tuesday Limb Clinic.

"What's your referral?" She asks.

"Ah. . . my son has bilateral radial club hands. We go to Shriner's in Salt Lake for the surgeries, but I need someone to splint his hand before the surgery in January."

"No, but who is the orthopedic surgeon at Children's?"

"We don't have one. I just need a splint."

"Ok, well you can't come to the Limb Clinic. You have to get a full workup by the PA before a surgeon will see you to see if (garbled)"

"To see if what? I didn't hear what you said."

"To see if it's a true limb discrepancy."

"My son does not have thumbs and he is missing radius bones in both forearms."

"Is this with his arms or his legs?"

"His. Arms."

"Oh, well then you need the hand clinic."

"Ok. Do you have that number?"

"No. That's me too. Ummm. . . .we have an opening on November 7, at 1:30pm."

This phone call is exactly why I avoided contacting them. Honestly, people who say that socialized medicine is frustrating due to bureaucracy have never actually been truly ill with the current scheme.

On a positive note, we are may be participating in this study by the National Institute of Health, although I just called the number that the intake person said to call, and they hung up on me.

Hmmm . . . . . . .

6 comments:

Dayna said...

Aaargggh! Sorry to hear about that Chris. I hope you get the appt. he needs before the surgery!

SaRaH said...

lmao. I sometimes say outloud, "I know what's going on!"

just in case.

get 'em mama

My Carousel of Progress said...

Sorry to hear about the rough time... I thought we had cornered the market on that so you did not have to deal with it, hahaha. Let us know if you get in the VACTERL trial and have to come to Bethesda, we live about an hour from there...By the way FYI we might have some good news to share tomorrow (:wink wink:)

Anonymous said...

Hi! THanks for signing Eithene's page- I am always happy to find other VACTERL families.

I definitely can empathize with the endless merry-go-round of scheduling. (roll eyes here) Sometimes I have wondered whether the receptionists were hired to help new patients- or to stall and sideline them until they get lost and dismayed, and in a frenzy of confused hopelessness just hang up ;)

Anyway, I'm happy to have found your blog and hope that you can- eventually- get Brody into the right clinic with the right drs!

Jessica
www.caringbridge.org/visit/eithenerosehilliard

pattinase (abbott) said...

Dealing with the medical profession for normal reasons is hard. I can't imagine what you must go through explaining Brody's needs to insensitive people who answer the phone.

Robyn said...

Good lord. How dense can you be? Obviously you're not listening to a word I am saying.

Excuse me? Could we hire some competent help over here?