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Re: First and likely last excperience with a 'walk in clinic'
Old 05-19-2007, 07:37 PM   #21
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Re: First and likely last excperience with a 'walk in clinic'

How about some positive news about a walk-in-clinic? DH was working on his classic car today and put a nice gauge in the top of his thumb! He went down to Emergicare, which is right down the street from our house...about a 5 min. drive. Emergicare takes Humana One, our insurance company. Mind you, we have a 5000 deductible, but our healthplan entitles us to a network discount with Emergicare, so we are only responsible for an $89.00 office visit charge, and we cannot be balance-billed. DH ended up needing three stitches in his thumb. He was in and out of the clinic within 20 minutes, and the charge was only $89.00! What a bargain!

I guarantee you a visit to the ER would have cost in excess of $300, and the wait would have been one or more hours. People who have health insurance should never use the ER unless they are having a life-threatening emergency. But, our wonderful employer-sponsored health insurance programs do nothing to discourage wasteful and un-necessary use of the ER. Instead, those $50 copays get abused to the point where our ER wait times are outrageous. I hope more employers adopt HSAs and HRAs. It will help tremendously to cut down ER wait times.
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Re: First and likely last excperience with a 'walk in clinic'
Old 05-19-2007, 11:51 PM   #22
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Re: First and likely last excperience with a 'walk in clinic'

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Originally Posted by mykidslovedogs
our wonderful employer-sponsored health insurance programs do nothing to discourage wasteful and un-necessary use of the ER.
Well, some may not. DW's plan provides 100% coverage (no deductible or copay) for using Emergicare facilities for emergencies and has a relatively high copay for using the ER. So, in a situation where we can clearly see what's wrong, such as a cut needing a few stitches, we head to the Emergicare joint and save some money. For situations where we don't know what's wrong, such as lots of internal pain, we still head to the ER where they have immediate access to sophisticated test gear and damn the cost.
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Re: First and likely last excperience with a 'walk in clinic'
Old 05-20-2007, 10:11 AM   #23
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Re: First and likely last excperience with a 'walk in clinic'

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Originally Posted by youbet
Well, some may not. DW's plan provides 100% coverage (no deductible or copay) for using Emergicare facilities for emergencies and has a relatively high copay for using the ER. So, in a situation where we can clearly see what's wrong, such as a cut needing a few stitches, we head to the Emergicare joint and save some money. For situations where we don't know what's wrong, such as lots of internal pain, we still head to the ER where they have immediate access to sophisticated test gear and damn the cost.
That is exactly the kind of healthplan I would like to see more employers adopt. The ER visit should simply be a deductible expense, and that would help resolve some of the overcrowding issues we have. Anyone who doesn't have a true emergency should be triaged to an urgent care center immediately. I think all hospitals should establish a first-come, first-served urgent care center located nearby the ER for minor emergencies staffed by one or two docs, a couple of interns and a couple of nurses. Anyone who comes in with a cold or minor flu symptoms, a small cut that needs stitches, or a minor fracture should be triaged to urgent care.
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Re: First and likely last excperience with a 'walk in clinic'
Old 05-21-2007, 07:22 AM   #24
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Re: First and likely last excperience with a 'walk in clinic'

"I guess their business model is like a car salesmans.  Grab what you can now and wait for the next sucker." 

And this is exactly the problem.  There be sharks in the water now, hiding behind the obsolete image of the caring country doctor. 

Parts of the medical community are doing what's actually "bait and switch" advertising.  To do this, they are relying on the public's reluctance to call bull$hit on the practice.  Businesses such as these, in ANY other field, would be required to produce a "menu" for their customers to rely on. 

And callous pricing, after the service, will ultimately catch up with the industry.  This will either take the form of legislated price controls, or a "shopping public" that evolves to demanding to know the price BEFORE agreeing to the treatment. 

At that point, in the eyes of the public, medical professional's prestige will have sunk to the ranks of lawyers, tv preachers and used car salesmen. 
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Re: First and likely last excperience with a 'walk in clinic'
Old 05-21-2007, 06:19 PM   #25
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Re: First and likely last excperience with a 'walk in clinic'

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Originally Posted by Cute Fuzzy Bunny


But $180 to have someone tell you what they want and then giving it to them, totalling a few minutes...$180 is a bit ridiculous.

I guess their business model is like a car salesmans. Grab what you can now and wait for the next sucker.
We just had dinner with two new doctor friends who are owner-operaters at their own medical clinic in washington (though it isn't a walk-in clinic).

They were both initially recruited out of medical school for a clinic which went belly-up in the same location. Business at their new clinic is booming and is extremely profitable.

So, I asked, what makes one medical clinic profitable when the other went bankrupt? They both answered in unison: "Two words: bill up." By which they meant, if you look at someone's ear wax, don't bill it as a level one or two visit, bill it as a level 3 visit ("pre-operational review" or something...I"m making the terminology up, but this was their drift.)

Fine (i suppose) if the patient has full insurance. But not so fine for those of us (like me) who carry HSA plans. Walk-in clinics are not the only culprits in over-billing (extortion?)

Winnie
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Old 05-22-2007, 11:20 AM   #26
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Your are right... they stuck it to you. Kinda like a mechanic that works on your car. They just charge the listed rate for the expected time listed in the manual. If the expected time to do the work is 1 hour... thats what they charge even if it took 5 minutes.
True, but at least you know how much its going to cost before you start.

If you ask for the price, and they tried to charge me another price, I
would refuse, if they force me to pay, I would pay via credit card, then
call the credit card company to dispute the charges.
I definitely wouldn't go quietly into the night...

I had similar problem, had to call the finance person a few times but
got it corrected.
TJ
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Old 05-22-2007, 08:23 PM   #27
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Ugh and here we go again. Gabes got a little fever (100), although he's eating well and other than feeling a bit warm to me, is still a small rocketship covered in strawberry jam.

Guess I'll be calling around to some pediatricians tomorrow to see who can fit us in.

Might just be some teething...I think he's cutting a few molars. But ya gotta know for sure.

Its killing me to think there are people without health care who dont have the means to pay out of pocket like I do.

Its really killing me to need to make all of these out of pocket trips when our coverage starts in a little over a week.

*grumble*
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Old 05-23-2007, 08:57 AM   #28
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Cute and Fuzzy -

I hope your little one is feeling a bit better. Not that you would want to take any advice from me, but after having been through a lot of fevers with my kids, I've found it best to wait at least 3-4 days before taking my children to the pediatrician. 9 times out of 10 it goes away on it's own. If it (the fever) gets really high, then it could be an ear infection or strep, but I've been told by the docs that sometimes, if you take them in too early with strep, it won't show up in the test, so it can be better to wait a couple of days before bringing them in.
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Old 05-23-2007, 09:06 AM   #29
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He's fine today. First (and only other time) he got sick and had a fever, I almost ran him to the emergency room before my neighbor the EMT and father of two gave me the "Calm down new daddy" speech.

So now he's a small rocket covered in strawberry jam with no pants and no diaper, with a giant grin on his face about the whole matter.

'scuse me while I go try to determine where in this vast house he's left the diaper and pants...
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Old 05-23-2007, 06:46 PM   #30
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Originally Posted by cute fuzzy bunny View Post
He's fine today. First (and only other time) he got sick and had a fever, I almost ran him to the emergency room before my neighbor the EMT and father of two gave me the "Calm down new daddy" speech.
I thought of giving you that speech when you mentioned he was cutting some new molars. I really did think of it. Kids often seem to have a mild fever briefly when they are teething (at least my kid did).

But then, it occurred to me that there could be something seriously wrong, and who knows from a distance, and wouldn't I feel bad if it wasn't his teeth? Hmm. To post, or not to post, that is the question.

Of course, the fact that I couldn't even log in at the time actually made the decision for me about posting or not posting the "Calm down new daddy" speech.

Glad to hear he's feeling better! Strawberry jam... that brings back memories!
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Old 05-23-2007, 08:23 PM   #31
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'scuse me while I go try to determine where in this vast house he's left the diaper and pants...
Shouldn't be too hard ... just follow the trail of strawberry jam Glad the little guy's feeling better.
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Old 05-24-2007, 09:34 AM   #32
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Thanks for all the calming words. Indeed, the stuff isnt always tough to find...although sometimes the trail is something less appealing than jam.

He's been spending the morning practicing his monkey skills by climbing directly up my back and then sitting on my head.

I wish I was 20 years younger. But I probably wouldnt have been able to handle a 2 year old mentally and emotionally then :P
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