Tuesday, August 5, 2014

More About Malfeasance in Medical Care in S. California

[On swift wings revenge approaches.   They should tremble in fear to know that I am biding my time until the moment is right, then I will strike!]

As many of you know, I have a chronic medical condition that requires that I take certain medication every day.   When I can not get access to that medication a variety of things happen that are unpleasant both for me and for people around me.

Is this situation life threatening?   Well, it is certainly very inconvenient.   The way that this medication is controlled and made available to the citizens of this country means that, unless one is rich, one spends something like 1/4 to 1/2 or more of one's time securing the medication and not always succeeding.  In other words, the system is set up such that it is perfectly likely, in my experience, and even probable that one will regularly go without the medication due to the system set up by the state on several occasions during the year.

That's just tough shit.  We all have our cross to bear, nevertheless it is no fun. Not for me, not for anyone who may be working with me. It generates tremendous psychodrama, angst and general unpleasantness. I would go so far as to say that it may disqualify me from working at a real job since most real jobs have such things as deadlines, travel, and extraordinary stress that is incompatible both with how the medication works and the process of getting it.  The good news is that what I always forget is that when one has a real job, and live in a real city instead of out here in hell, one can build systems that mitigates most of this.  

At a later date I will explain all of the reasons why getting this medication is so complicated.  But one word of advice, unless you have had to do it for a couple of years at least, you do not have a clue how bad it is. You only think you know.   Trust me, it just goes on and on and on.   But in this post I will tell you a story about one little wrinkle in this many volume puddle-of-shit that is procuring this medication.   This particular fuck comes from moving from the NY area to Los Angeles as part of accepting a "job".

One deliberate back door that is supposed to allow for special events in getting this medication is that when something unexpected happens, one is supposed to be able to go to any emergency room, show the doctor your prescription bottle, explain what the current crisis is about (a snowstorm, a hurricane, a last minute affair with someone you have had a crush on all your life, whatever) and walk out with a one-time prescription to tide you over until you get back home and see your real doctor, or find and a new doctor, or whatever.  

This back door worked in NYC. Even more amazing is that it was rarely necessary.  When a doctor there goes out of town, apparently, or takes a vacation, they designate a replacement for the period of time. Not so out here in sunny S. California. Although going to an emergency room is not something you want to do very often for a variety of reasons, it is something that is considered routine back east.  So it would seem.

But when I moved to LA, to my surprise, it did not work. The doctor at Cedars Sinai in West Hollywood told me that they were prohibited by law from giving out such prescriptions. Then later, when I was dealing with a life-threatening illness in my family in San Diego, I went to the ER in the hospital where my relative was in intensive care and they also refused to help me, saying that their hands were tied by the law.   Thus I had to deal with one of the most traumatic periods of my life made much worse by their actions.   Of course, in both cases, I also received a bill for their services.

So I asked my various doctors in California about what I was told. Was there any such law? Not that they knew about. How would I find out for sure?  No one knew.  No one gave a fuck.  Not their problem.

Fast forward to this week. I am in the middle of medication hell the week before SIGGRAPH and so I decided to try one more time and go to an ER to see if they could help me out. They could, and they did. I got a stern lecture, told that they would not do it a second time, and got a prescription for a few days, which will not be enough for me to find another doctor, exactly, but it was helpful and I have been able to solve this problem in time for SIGGRAPH.  So the system did what it was supposed to do.  But that is just the beginning of the good news.

The doctor at this ER confirmed for me that those other doctors were lying to my face. What I was told was a common lie told in ERs he says when they don't want to deal with this kind of medication. You the patient are expected to believe them and go away and die or whatever.  You are garbage in their eyes.   They do not care to help. 

So lets be clear.

Twice now in S. California I went to the ER for help, a help they could have easily provided, and they chose to lie to my face and let me suffer because it was more convenient for them, for some unknown reason.  The lies were to deflect my anger from their harmful actions.  This is not just incompetence, this is malfeasance.   What are my legal remedies?


What is the solution?

Become rich and the problems go away.

I do not know if this is unique to S. California or if other communities have the same problem.

I can not wait to get out of S. California.

The two 'bad' hospitals by the way were Cedars Sinai in West Hollywood and the older Palomar Hospital in Escondido, CA.  The ER that actually helped me was the *new* Palomar Hospital in Escondido and the experience was quite pleasant and efficient, as these things go.

[How then will I get my revenge on these evil scumbags who serve Satan?   I can not reveal this as yet.  But their time is coming and then they will know my wrath and they will be punished!  And all those who protect and enable them, they will be punished as well!]

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