As you may already know, we have moved, and the tedium of transferring my life from one state to another has officially entered the doctor phase. You’d think I’d go for the oncologist first, but it’s not that easy for me. I’ve got other medical issues that have caused my body to go haywire besides the tumor. Since the tumor appears to be dead now, it’s going to have to wait its turn.
Just let that sink in. I’ve got so many issues I have to set the rare tumor on the back burner to take care of other shit that’s more pressing. If I were a car I’d be a Ford Pinto.
Given that I have no thyroid function, I kinda need the meds to like live and stuff. I’ve only got 30 days of meds left, so I set out to find an endocrinologist first. Last week, I spent about a half hour doing research to find a decent doc. Then, 20 minutes on hold only to have my call dropped and then another 25 minutes on hold to be told that I need a physician referral to make an appointment with said endocrinologist.
Cool. That’s not how it was back at home, but fine. I will play by your rules, motherfucker.
Bright and early Monday morning involved more research and cross referencing on my insurance company’s website to find a suitable primary care doc. When I finally decided on one, I made the call. I was put on hold forever and told at least 8 million times how important my call was. I was transferred to another office, because of course the doctor I want doesn’t see patients at the office she’s listed at. Then, my call was dropped, cause Monday. So, I called again and waited even longer because, don’t forget, my call is very important to them.
Then, finally, finally, a human spoke to me and the call WAS NOT DROPPED! Below, I have detailed a decent approximation of how the conversation went, with perhaps maybe a few embellishments:
Hi, how can I help you?
I just moved here from Florida and I need a primary care physician. I’d like an appointment with Dr. Soandso, please.
Let me have your last name and date of birth so I can see if you are in our system.
But, I told you I just moved here. From another state.
I know, but I just need to see.
*gives last name and date of birth*
Ok, are you Amy?
No, no I’m not. My name is Christine and I told you I just moved here. I’m not in the system. I’m not in the system, never been in the system. I just moved here.
I know, but I had to check to see if you were in the system. So, Amy, what can I help you with?
It’s Christine and I need an appointment with Dr. Soandso.
Sure! Let me find you her first available!
*looking, looking, computer keys tapping*
Oh, it looks like Dr. Soandso isn’t taking any new patients, but we have other female doctors at our practice that are available. We have Dr. Whatchamacalit and Dr. Whatshername.
Yeah, but the insurance website says she does take new patients and I just spent all morning making sure Dr. Soandso isn’t a serial killer and I don’t know those other doctors you’re talking about. Like, are they serial killers? I don’t know if they are serial killers, Chip!
Uh, my name’s not Chip and I’m fairly certain none of our doctors are serial killers.
Well, I guess I’m going to have to take my chances, Chip, because I only have 30 days of my thyroid meds left and I’ve got to get in to see someone. So, pick one with lady bits and set up an appointment for me. And, pick a good one, Chip! I’ve been working real hard for the past few years not to die and I don’t want to end up six feet under because you booked me an appointment with a serial killer.
My name’s not Chip and, like I said before, none of our doctors are serial killers. Okay, it looks like Dr. Watchamacalit has an opening on August 2nd.
I’ll take it.
Great! Oh, it looks like August 2nd is a no-go. That appointment appears to be blocked, but we do have August 3rd available.
*scratches out August 2nd in date book, pencils in August 3rd*
Whoops! August 3rd is blocked for some reason. Sorry, we got a new system and usually it will tell me the blocked out appointments, but for some reason on this new system…..
Cool, Chip, just give me the next available appointment.
Yep, August 4th, for sure is open. I’ve got it right here, just let me see what times we have.
Ok, you’re sure August 4th. We know with absolute certainty that I can see Dr. Watchamacalit on August 4th.
Yes, yes, absolutely certain. We’ve got a 9:15, 11:15 and a 12:45.
Eh, the 9:15 might be too early, the traffic will still be bad. I’ll take the 11:15.
Ok, great! Oh, it looks like the 11:15 isn’t available. Sorry, the new system…….
Ok, Chip! Just give me the 12:45. Is the 12:45 open?
Yes, yes, the 12:45 is open. I promise.
Ok, let’s get this straight. August 4th.
Yep, August 4th.
And you swear on a stack of bibles Dr. Watchamacalit isn’t a serial killer?
Ok, you’re totally 100% super duper sure, right Chip? I’m going to write this one down. You sure?
Yep. August 4th at 12:45 with Dr. Watchamacalit, who is totally not a serial killer.
Please bring a list of medications you normally take and your insurance card and we will be taking your copay at the time of your appointment regardless of what your card says, ok?
Got it. Medications. Insurance card. Copay.
And, please arrive at least 30 minutes prior to your appointment time in order to fill out your new patient paperwork. Or, if you want, you can go to our website and download the new patient registration packet and fill it out at home. Just bring it in with your list of medications, your insurance card, and don’t forget that copay!
I will fill out the paperwork at home, Chip. Thanks for the heads up. So, just to be absolutely sure, August 4th at 12:45 with Dr. Watchamacalit, who is certainly not a serial killer.
Yes, you have a great day!
Alright, Chip, thanks. You too!
That’s when I hung up with Chip or Chester or Sam or whatever the fuck his name was and found the paperwork online. I hit the print button and nothing happened. So, I hit the print button again. Nothing happened again. Turned the printer off and back on. Turned my computer off and back on. Still nothing.
After much strenuous googling (I think I pulled a muscle), I reset the router, turned the printer off and my computer off, turned it all back on, reinstalled the printer onto my computer, reset the wifi on the printer, hit the print button and heard the familiar whizz, clang, whir. And, then, an unfamiliar beep.
No paper in the tray.
No paper in the house.