I have been going to the Ogden Clinic my entire life. My pediatrician Dr. Balkin was there and I have been a regular at the Instant Care with every sinus and kidney infection of my life. Seven years ago, when I had my daughter, the on-call pediatrician at the hospital where she was born recommended a new pediatrician just starting her practice at the Ogden Clinic. We LOVE her. She is a wonderful doctor. She is so kind and caring and has been there for us during some pretty hard times, like when a premature 6 week old Baby Cole was hospitalized with RSV. I never want to have my children go to a new pediatrician, but we might have to.
You’d think a life-long patient at Ogden Clinic would be treated with more respect but no. This is another instance where I loath the private pay insurance health care system of America and long for the national health care of other countries like Canada. Then what happened to me today wouldn’t be an issue.
A few years back we had crappy insurance. Now we have wonderful insurance that basically pays 100% of everything minus the copay. The aforementioned crappy insurance didn’t pay what they were supposed to pay to Ogden Clinic and instead of giving us time to work it out, they sent several bills of ours to collections. Since we are a “collections patient” we now have to pay on a cash basis. Apparently this lasts for three years and went into affect in January 2007.
We took Dane to his 2 week check up back in July and were forced to pay $60 instead of our regular $15. I’ve been waiting for our $45 reimbursement check since then. Today we took Dane to his 2 month check up and they made me pay $70. I said I wasn’t going to pay it because I was never reimbursed from July’s visit. She said I physically had to go to the business office and pick up my check. Whatever. I begrudgingly paid the $70 and went about the visit.
After the visit, I dragged my two kids and baby over to the business office. I explained the situation and said I wanted my reimbursement of $45. They said they wouldn’t give it to me because I had another visit today and they’re going to treat the $45 as a credit to my account until the next visit is paid for by my insurance. If I have a $45 credit on my account, why the f*%& did I have to pay $70 today? Shouldn’t I just have to pay the $25 the $45 credit doesn’t make up for? When I argued with the lady and told her this was bullshit she told me that I was lucky they still let me be seen here, like I’m a piece of garbage they deign to treat. It was after that that I grabbed my kids and stormed out of their office. Screw you business office!
I admit, I’ve had more than my fair share of collections due to financial difficulty and crappy insurance. I haven’t always kept track of my bills as good as I could (and have been rewarded with a crappy credit score) but every single thing that has ever been sent to collections has been paid. I’ve never filed for bankruptcy or defaulted on a loan or credit card. Don’t you dare treat me like the scum of the earth. Your customer service is for shit Ogden clinic and I’m going to spread this message as loud and as far as I can because I know it’s way more expensive for you to attract new customers than it is to retain old ones.
I really don’t want to get my children a new pediatrician, but the business office is practically forcing me to. If they’re going to retain my payments every time I have a new appointment when am I every going to see my money? Dane has a 4 month, 6 month, 9 month, 12 month, 15 month, 18 month, and 2 year old appointment to contend with. I can’t afford the $490 out of my pocket that my insurance already covers if I never have hope of every getting reimbursed.
So I say, screw you to the business office at Ogden Clinic, and more appropriately the self-righteous bizz-natch I dealt with today. You win my you suck award of the day. And I’d also like to say, as an adoption caseworker, frequently clients ask me who I would recommend as a pediatrician when they adopt a baby. I always recommend Dr. Cook and the Ogden Clinic, but no more. In fact, I’m going to warn them against the Ogden Clinic and start referring them elsewhere.