Monday, November 28, 2011

What a Mess!!!

This is not going to be a puppies and rainbows posting. Are mine ever? I tell it like it is and what it is today is a stinkin' mess!! I'm in a lot of pain physically and mentally because I've gone 24 hours without one of my meds. This is a medication I take three times a day. A medication  I have taken every day for five plus years! The not- so-condensed story of how I got to be in this mess follows.

So, a few weeks ago I got a call from Medco wanting us to switch to their mail order pharamacy. They provide our pharmacy benefits, but we can also go to a local pharmacy if we want. We've toyed with the idea of moving our prescriptions over to them, but honestly, the prices weren't much better and I love, love our pharmacy. But, and it's a big but, when we got the call it was too good of a deal to pass up! Basically, since I've met my deductible. I am able to get three months worth of meds for free!! Now, I'm all about being loyal, but free is, well, FREE.  Considering all of the out of pocket we have to dish out every year, and our current financial situation I just couldn't say no.  Anyway, the person who called asked me if I had enough meds on hand since it might take a few weeks to get everything squared away. I thought I did, but I did not! See, for the past year or so, my medication has been prescribed at a higher dose than I'd been taking. That almost always left me with plenty left over. But, I'd forgotten that the last time I had it filled I had the prescription written for the exact amount I'd need to take. Yesterday morning I took the last pill in the bottle and when I went to look for another bottle I couldn't find one. After a bit of checking, I realized what had happened. So, the phone calls began.

I first called my local pharmacy to see if they could give me a few to tide me over until today. I was told they could not. Not without speaking to my doctor's office. Next, I called Medco. They said I could have the doctor prescribe 14 days worth and it would be covered. They suggested I call my doctor's office and speak to the on call doctor. I started to do that, but the message that was  left on the office number said to call back during office hours for prescription refills. Technically, this was for a prescription refill, but it was an unusual situation and, in hindsight, I probably should have left a message.

So, the first thing this morning, after not having my meds for nearly 24 hours, I bit the bullet and called my doctor's office before office hours. I was feeling hopeful when I was told who the doctor on call was. It happened to be a doctor who goes to my church, who does know me. Well, when I talked to her she told me to call back during office hours. No offer to call the meds in. Hello?? I was trying to get this settled before office hours, before the nurse came in and started listening to all of the messages in her full mailbox. Grrrrr!!!! Not one to give up, I call my CVS and my very favorite pharmacist happens to be on duty. Finally! I know I will get somewhere now. After explaining my situation, she first asked me who I talked with yesterday at the pharmacy because apparently that pharmacist should have given me a three day supply of my meds!!!!! She was not happy at all and said she was going to talk with their manager about it. Good!  She then tells me she will call my PCP and get the doctor to ok the prescription (I'm sure the fax sent from the pharmacy yesterday was probably at the bottom of the pile and who knows when they would have gotten to it). She says she'll call me back. In the meantime I get a call from my doctor's office. I'm not sure whether it's normal procedure for them to call back patients who call in after hours or if the on call "church lady" doctor pulled some strings, but whatever...I explained my situation...again (are you keeping track? That's FIVE times explaining my sorry story) and she said she would take care of it. Within 10 minutes the pharmacist called me back and said my medication was ready to go!!! Between the two of them they got it done!

Oh my!! I am too sick to have to deal with so much red tape. I will take responsibility for not checking to see if I had enough meds on hand, but I should have been given the meds yesterday. I shouldn't have had to explain my situation over and over again. I know I have to get better organized when it comes to my medications. I have decided that I will switch back to CVS after the three months worth of prescriptions are done. This was my original plan, but it has become clear that I need someone local, who knows me and will go to bat for me when I need it. 

I have to say that I was sort of looking for Tim to step in and be my knight in shining armour. He is not involved in my medical care at all. He goes to my appointments that are out of town, but that is the extent of his involvement. I'm hoping that he will understand more of what I'm going through once we go to the national EDS conference next summer. Still, I think he did get that I was having a difficult time. He went to get my meds, then stopped by the convenience store and bought me a fountain drink and some of my favorite sunflower seeds. It was so nice of him to think of me. I know it was his way of showing he cared and that he knew I was having a bad day.

I've been trying to set aside a little bit of time every day or two to organize things. I'm not a hoarder or anything like that, but I have a bad habit of having my paper work in random boxes. I do have important papers like birth certificates and social security cards all in one place, so I get an "A +" for that. I obviously need to make organization a priority, especially when it comes to my medical needs.

So, there you have it....my drama of the day! I am feeling much better, but sort of drugged up. I'm guessing it's a combination of the Lortab from this morning and the lack of other meds. And, maybe just a wee bit of it is from STRESS! Ya think?

Let's file this one under "Whine of the Week" and just get that out of the way. I'll be back with the puppies and rainbows in a day or two.

Here's hoping you have a calm and pain free week!

Shari

"The best way out is always through"~Robert Frost

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