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GrammaBear

What a rip-off.........

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GrammaBear

I just recently learned one more reason why the cost of medical care has gone up so much.  When I see my Endo's office every 3 months, they always do what they call a 'bedside' glucose test.  I asked why they did this and was told "because we want to know what your glucose is while you're here so if it is low we can get you a snack and if it is high we can give you insulin."  Huh.......like I can't tell you what my glucose is because I just checked myself before I drove here?  They always insist on doing this test and I thought it was unnecessary.  Now I learn that they charge my insurance $35 for one test that I do multiple times a day and I know it doesn't cost me $35 every time I do it.  It is my opinion that this is a rip off.

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JohnSchroeder

Wow... That is absurd.  Good observation.  I'm curious to know if my endo does the same thing.  I mean, they obviously test while there, but not sure if that is a separate line item to be billed to insurance.

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Kit

My question is, why do they always assume we can't take care of ourselves?

 

I mean we do manage to function from day to day. They know our A1C and similar, so they know the type of control we have. So why is it that during the visit they assume none of that exists?

 

Ok I have to admit, I'm annoyed at doctors and diabeted at the moment.

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GrammaBear

Wow... That is absurd.  Good observation.  I'm curious to know if my endo does the same thing.  I mean, they obviously test while there, but not sure if that is a separate line item to be billed to insurance.

 

I can't speak for insurance, but I do know that if you are a senior on Medicare that there is a good chance they do bill a separate line item.  I've seen other people 'complain' about this charge on other diabetes forums.

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GrammaBear

My question is, why do they always assume we can't take care of ourselves?

 

I mean we do manage to function from day to day. They know our A1C and similar, so they know the type of control we have. So why is it that during the visit they assume none of that exists?

 

Ok I have to admit, I'm annoyed at doctors and diabeted at the moment.

Kit - I understand you being annoyed.  It is a feeling that many of us know well. 

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jwags

I have never had a bg test in the office, but whenever I have surgery they won't let me use my meter and charge my insurance for several bg tests at a very high cost. When I was going through chemo, the day after I had to go back and get a Neulasta shot. The first time I got the bill I almost had a heart attack. The first shot was billed at $18,500 with a $200 fee for the nurse to administer it. My last shot was billed at $19,700 with a $200 administration fee. Medicare only paid $4500 and my supplemental paid about $900 and that was it. If I didn't have the supplement I would have had to pay the $900. During chemo I would often get a reaction to some of the infusions. They would give me a Percoset before the infusions, I got billed $7 a pill. When I would fill my own Rx for 1 month I paid $1.50 for 60 pills.

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Todd G.

Partly, it is a scam. Sort of like added doctor profit. Partly, its also them doing something cheap for which they are well reimbursed to offset something that costs more for which they receive lower compensation. And partly, it is to protect against the majority of diabetics that seldom if ever test, maybe take their met every day, and feel that gives them license to eat anything they want. They show up in the doctors office with a 426 BG and are oblivious.

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Fraser

I don't have any blood work done in the office, in fact my doctor no longer does either a fasting or random BG test at my 3 or 6 month labs. All she cares about is my A1c test. which currently is 5.7, so BG test are not really required. I am sure if it was higher she might do

More blood work.

 

As to T2 submitting their own BG test? I would not beleive them . Ditto bad diabetic tend to lie about results.

I have heard many people respond to what was your last BG reading by asking what do you want it to be.

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notme

In all the years I have had diabetes (over 30) the only office test I ever had was when they were trying to diagnose me back in the 80's. Tell them to take their bedside blood glucose test and put it where the sun don't shine. Let them see your meter.

 

Stupidity.

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Uff Da

The only time my endo takes blood for any test is if my PCP has not ordered an A1c within the past four months, in which case he'll do a blood draw in his office and send it to the hospital. Medicare requires an A1c within six months to allow him to continue writing prescriptions for my test strips, insulin and other diabetes supplies. None of my doctors have ever done a fingerstick test in the office. Normally I try to have my PCP order all tests to cover the needs for all my doctors even though their offices are in different cities (her, the endo, and the cardiologist), but occasionally the timing doesn't work out and either the endo or cardiologist needs to order one separately. 

 

I'd just say no to an office fingerstick test in your situation, GrammaBear.

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lark27

My endo does the meter check every time. I don't know how it's billed, but I've been told it's meant as a meter check.  They have me give them a drop of blood for their "fancy" meter, and I then give the next drop of blood from the same site to my meter, and we verify the results are similar.  I actually find this helpful as one time I did have a meter that was off quite a bit (don't remember the numbers but maybe 30 points off).  We tested it again to see if it was an anomaly, but it wasn't, and the Dr. gave me a new meter he had and we retired the faulty one. 

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GrammaBear
16 hours ago, Bar&In said:

Why are you going to the endo every three months? The co-pays alone would piss me off! 

 

I can't speak for others but sometimes people see the Endo every three months because their insurance 'requires' it.  For Medicare I am required to see the prescribing physician every three months if I want my insurance (Medicare) to help pay for my insulin and pump supplies.  I was just foolish enough to think that seeing an Endo would be an enriching experience and I was wrong!

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don1942

I see my Endo every three months not only because Medicare requires it in order to cover my pumping supplies, but the Endo and I discuss spend time discussing recent changes in medications and diabetes care. I also get a full battery of blood tests, including liver enzymes. Several years ago, he switched to a new med that seemed to be keeping me under  better control, but after six months, my liver enzymes began to rise, so he switched back. 

 

Since I have a CGMS, he accepts my readings. After Medicare and supplimentry insurance, my quarterly bill is $3.79.

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1668880

Bar&In you must have great control over you Bg or crappy insurance. I am hoping it is the former, I had poor control over my Bg and saw my PCP every 3 months till I got better and my A1c got lower then I was moved to every 6 months. But with the way insurance companies cover things once you meet your deductible you might need to see your doctor more so you can meet the deductible. I usually wait till the next year and order a new CGM or insulin pump so that will meet the deductible required for the rest of my care for the year and I make sure that I have enough supplies to last till the end of January so that when I order another 3 months of supplies it meets the deductible and I am covered again for the rest of the year. 

 

GrammaBear You have the right to refuse the test. If they want to know what your blood sugar is then they should have no problem with you using your own meter and strips. I have always wondered when they told me that theirs was better then mine why it was that I could not buy the one they use since the one I was using was not as good as theirs because if the test they were doing was that important would not all of the testing I was doing to find out how much insulin to take require the same importance. As was stated they are doing that to get more $$ since it does not cost them that much and it helps to cover what they lose by agreeing to the price the insurance company says they will pay. If you ever get to see the price charged by your doctor versus what the insurance says they will pay you will understand why they do it. I got to see what my dentist charges and what the insurance company would pay him and I could not understand why the dentist would agree to those terms. The only thing that makes since is he must see a lot of people who have that insurance so it makes up for the money lost by having more patients. 

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Doug

Dont forget that most Diabetics are type 2 and most of them NEVER test 


So the Dr sees a LOT of people who only get tested by them.

And then there are the Diabetics who DO test but lie about the numbers 

 

Add all that up and you see why they test and why they use the A1c 

Its a liars test 

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Kit

But at the same time, I'm there to discuss my A1C of 5.1 or 4.8 or similar with similar results for the last few years.  Wouldn't it be rather obvious that I am quite capable of controlling my condition on my own.  Wouldn't my current A1C, as well as my history of A1Cs, be proof of that ability.

 

And then I get to sit there and watch them hunt for reasons to scold me.

 

My big complaint is that I am not a person when I go to the doctor.  I am a condition matched up with check lists with no regard for my specifics.

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Hammer

I see my doctor every 4 months, and when I am there, she gives me a sheet to take to the hospital, indicating what blood tests she wants done.  I hang on to that sheet until a week before my next appointment, then have the blood work done.  I also have the hospital mail me a hard copy of the test results, so I can compare these new results, with past results.  One of the tests that they do, is a fasting glucose test, just like the test I do myself when I get up in the morning, and that result is shown on the sheet that the hospital mails me.  I also can go online to get the test results a day after I was at the hospital, but I always want a hard copy for myself.

 

Getting back to being ripped off....years ago, when I went to the hospital to have back surgery, I was there overnight, so it was just a one day thing.  When I saw the hospital bill (that my insurance paid for), one of the charges was for something that I didn't understand, so I called the hospital to ask what that charge was for.  They said that, they set up a paper cup (that little white paper cup that contains pills that the nurse brings around on a tray to the patients), in the event you require medication.  I said that I didn't require medication, so why did they have no cup set up for me, and why did it cost $10?  They said that was standard procedure, as if that made it okay.

 

Another attempted ripoff (that I was able to stop), happened to me many years ago when I went in to the hospital for an outpatient procedure.  When I woke up in the recovery room after the surgery, they wheeled me into a private room, which I stopped them from doing, since I was paying for the procedure, and was told I didn't need to have a room, but they ignored me and put me in the room anyway.  I had to stay there for a few hours until the doctor came in to see me, then he said that I could be discharged, but by then, the friend that was supposed to drive me home, wasn't able to because it was late.  I asked the staff at the hospital, "if I agree to pay for this room, can I stay tonight and leave tomorrow".  They said that, no I couldn't stay, since the doctor had released me, and they needed the room for another patient.  I called my parents, and my stepfather picked me up.

 

When I got the bill, they charged me for that room, even though the kicked me out.  I went to the hospital and asked why I was charged for a room that they kicked me out of, and the idiot in the finance office said that, it was billed, so I had to pay it.  I told I wouldn't pay it and they could sue me for it.  I got a letter in the mail, indicating that I owed the hospital XXX dollars for that room, so I called the hospital and talked to their collection department.  When I told the collection person what happened, she didn't understand why I was billed for that room, since they kicked me out, and that she would cancel the bill, which she did.

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statdeac

That is so silly.  I wonder if you could just refuse it and say you just tested and give them the number?

 

They always check both my bg and A1c at 4 mo. office visits, too, but I never recall seeing a bill for that test. All the negotiated insurance reimbursements are so low that my insurance company probably pays no more than a few bucks for it, if anything.  There is always just one flat rate for my copay.

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Fraser

I get my blood work done every 6 months.  Typically in the 5’s.  Doctor just says keep on doing what I am doing.

the last time I had my blood done my doc was on vacation, so another doctor reviewed my test.  He thought my numbers were fantastic and that I should be congratulated on my good work.  Not all docs are negative nellies. 

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