Thursday, May 20, 2010

The Stressed Out Shrink Rapper

http://psychiatrist-blog.blogspot.com/2010/05/stressed-out-shrink-rapper.html

Yes, shrinks get stressed out, too. Can I tell you about it?

I hate paperwork, in case I never mentioned it. And I hate dumb things that are mandated by institutions and don't make sense. So I'm getting ready to go to APA this weekend ( see you there?) and I'm trying to tie things up. It's not going so well. Here's my list:

MEDICARE.
Remember I told you that I moved and tried to change my address with Medicare? Ah, 221 downloadable forms on the Medicare website, and not one of them is a change of address form. To change my address, I had to re-enroll. 27 pages. Then they wanted my office utility bills. But I don't have utility bills, they are included in my rent. I faxed my rent invoice--it has my address, and it says "office rent" on it. It's a very nice office. I figured I was done.
Two days ago, I got a letter from Medicare. I've been denied my application as a Doctor of Medicine. I can appeal. Why? I didn't send in three things: 1) Downloadable form 558 giving access to my bank account so they could pay me. Only I'm not an in-network doc. They don't pay me. Ever. 2) my participating agreement. I'm non par and wish to stay that way. 3) my utility bills as proof of address. Am I the only doctor who rents space with utilities included?
I called. Twice. If I won't give them my bank account numbers and routing information, I'm out. Which means I have to leave my clinic job where I've been for 12 years. I don't have to fill out a participating agreement. And they'll take another copy of my rent invoice. I have 30 days to appeal. From the date on the letter which came 2 days ago. The letter is dated in April (it's now May 20th). And I'm really not happy about giving them my bank account information---what happens when they pay me for patients I see at the clinic? I'm salaried there, I don't get paid by the patient, the clinic does. If I do nothing, I'm quickly opted out, and that's a good thing...unless you're my Medicare patient and you no longer can get reimbursement or you're the clinic that wants me there. Have other people had to give their bank account info to change their address? Never done this before. Time expended: who knows. Hours. If you're a non-par provider could you offer some words of wisdom here/?

Next problem:
Clinic says I need to be tested for TB along with all the other employees. So I get a ppd placed, no big deal. Only I work there one morning a week, and in the past, I've read it myself or had a dr. friend sign off on it, because it's a hassle to get to the hospital, park, and take off work for this. Now I'm told I can't read it myself or have another doctor read it, unless it's an internist, pediatrician, or pulmonologist. Okay, found a friend, still have to get the form faxed in. Time expended: 2 hours.

Next problem:
My cell phone blitzed last night. I called. They said I needed updates and they'd push them through. Whatever. The phone worked, I thanked them, and half an hour later, I was on my merry way. Only then the phone didn't work. And my kid's phone didn't work. I called back I held. I powered off, I powered on, I removed the sim cards, I read the numbers, I switched the sim cards, I powered on and off and ate the batteries and prayed for ducks to come. The phones aren't reading the sim cards. I need to get new ones. Okay. Hours. I got to work today. The phone works fine. I called AT&T. Can't be the sim card. Husband's phone works fine. Must be the degrading tower. What's a degrading tower? Does it crumble? Why does husband's phone work? Very strange, no explanation, but tonight, all the phones work. Time expended: 2.5 hours.

I suppose the last thing is the book. Time expended 4,237 hours. Our editor wants it in Mid May. I think that happened. It's almost there. We still need a little polish on the last few chapters and a table of contents and Suggested Reading . If you know a shrink book that's been helpful to you, please let us know in the comments===we'll try to stick it in.

Hanging on for: http://www.patobriens.com/patobriens/havefun/hrricane.asp

Thank you for humoring me tonight, please send a bill