Monday Morning Rant

This is a new one on me. Ok so everyone knows I moved about a year ago, 40 miles closer to Philly. I've slowly been finding new doctors in our area, but I put off scheduling my annual appoinment with a new OB/GYN until recently. I had been relying on my old doctor to keep calling in prescriptions for my birth control, but they quit giving me refills in order to get me to make an annual appointment. So I finally got sick of calling and begging for a refill every single month, and made an appointment with a new doc locally.

All things considered, I decided it was pretty important to have my records transferred to the new doc before this appointment, so I called and the girl said "Just write us a letter requesting the transfer and we'll take care of it." So three weeks before the appointment I sent said letter.

This weekend I got a return letter from my old docter's office which said something like "We have received your request for a transfer of records. The state enacted some law that allows us to charge you for that service. Your file is 63 pages long. You need to send us $50 and THEN we will transfer your records." ACK!! How incredibly rude! I have had records transferred from this doctor two or three times before and have never been charged.

I called them this morning to complain.

Me: "Can I just come pick them up and take them with me to save the money?"

Secretarty: "No, you'll still be charged the same amount."

Me: "But that's a lot of money! I've never been charged before!"

Sec.: "The state says we can charge you. We don't even charge the max the state allows."

Me: "Nobody told me about this when I called! Now even if I send you the money, the records probably won't get there in time!"

Sec: "If you send the check this week I guarantee they'll get there before your appointment."

Me: "This is so not fair. They're MY records. My new doctor really NEEDS them."

Sec: "I'm sorry."

Me: "What am I supposed to do, try to tell the new doc from memory my entire history, including what we did to get pregnant, all the tests, the pregnancy details, labor and delivery details, etc?"

Sec: "No, you're supposed to send us the $50."

Me: "Fine, I give up. You'll get your check."


The Attractive Nuisance said...

Just out of curiosity, can your new doctor request the records on your behalf and avoid the fee?

Spikey1 said...

Been there, done that, have the tee-shirt! Sucks being us eh?

Mainline Mom said...

AN - Nope, I asked about that and they would still bill me.

Spikey - Which part do you most relate to, getting sick of calling for monthly birth control pills or transferring your OB/GYN records? Haha. I thought you lived in the land of free socialized medicine?

Spikey1 said...

haha... got me! You want a flu shot?? Come on up! :)

TBG said...

ridiculous. I am on the month to month birth control call BULLSHIT! It pisses me off so I am one month off because I didnt feel like begging this month and have to reschedule my appt for next month. That is bull I would expect that they have to give you copies now everytime you go just to avoid the fee next time. Keep the records for yourself.

Well good luck hope they arrive in time I would have definitly asked to talk to the doctor!

Lori said...

Hah! Did you unintentionally misspell "Secretarty"? That is hilarious!

Anyway, been there, done that too. It's so hard to find a good OB/GYN in PA, what with all the malpractice issues and insurance costs. My favorite doc ever left for KY a few years ago, and I've been struggling ever since. :-(

Just out of curiosity, since we're local -- who do you go to now? I go to Main Line OB/GYN in Collegeville and Paoli. Not sure what I think of them yet...

Mainline Mom said...

Hmm. Yeah I had one OB/GYN that practiced in dowtown Philly retire early because of the malpractice insurance issues. And my favorite doc up in Reading just retired, which is another reason I'm switching. I would have asked to talk to her about the fees but she's gone already :(

I have my first appointment with Valley Forge OB/GYN in Phoenixville next week. Main Line in Collegeville would've worked for me too, so if I don't like this doc maybe I'll switch. This office is four female docs, which I like. I'm not sure how I feel yet about having my next kid at Phoenixville Hospital.

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