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GOOD DOCTOR. BAD DOCTOR.

I have had numerous family doctors and specialists over the years. Most I’d recommend, others I would absolutely NOT! One such Doc was a family physician. None of my family goes to her anymore.

I had gained 32 pounds in a matter of days. While I am not a doctor, I know (1) this isn’t normal, (2) it was most likely water weight, and (3) I most likely had a heart of kidney issue. The conversation went like this:

“You’ve been eating too much.”

“Doc, I was just here two weeks ago! How could I eat enough to gain 32 pounds in two weeks?! And what about all these marks on my legs?” My legs had swelled so much, pores broke open all overt my lower legs and feet.

“Those are probably bug bites.”

“Don’t you think I’d know if I had 150 bug bites?!”

“So what do you want me to do? Do you want to go to the ER?”

“No, I want you to either diagnose what’s wrong or refer me to someone who can.”

She did an EKG, which was clean at that moment, and ordered a chest X-ray. She also, thank God, referred me to a cardiologist, whom I saw about 10 days later.

Within minutes of seeing the cardiologist, he admitted me to the Cardio ICU. Turns out I had congestive heart failure. He told me on a follow up visit, “I don’t know how the hell you walked in here!” I’m, still not sure what was the chicken and what was the egg, but I also had A-Fib. It was about a three-year battle through tests, meds, and procedures to fully recover.

On the plus side, I have an ophthalmologist who I would most definitely—and have—recommend for any retina issues. My family friend and optometrist noticed some diabetic retinopathy during an annual exam. He said, in no uncertain terms, “I wouldn’t go to anyone else but Daniel Miller with Cincinnati Eye Institute for this.” That’s all I needed to hear, even through Doc Miller’s office was an hour away.

My point? If you want to know if a Physician / Surgeon is good, ask other medical professionals. I don’t mean on a referral basis or just one person. Your family Dr. may send you to someone who is a friend, but sucks in his / her specialty. Or, they may send you to someone who will compensate them for the referral. Want a real, honest answer? Ask a nurse or two!

I hate arrogance. But I’d rather have a specialist who’s a jerk, if he / she is great at their specialty, than a kind one who’s a HODAD (in the medical field, that stands of Hands of Death and Destruction). Of course, if you can get both kind and skilled, that’s a plus. (Like Daniel Miller for me).

Shopping for Healthcare…

We shop for everything else we use, why not shop for healthcare? First, let me clarify the difference between healthcare and health insurance. Healthcare refers to your providers: The doctors, nurses, and facilities that take care of your health. Health Insurance is how you pay for that healthcare.

Most folks we provide health insurance for have been or are shopping for that insurance. Once we provide the best solution for them, we encourage them to keep that shopping mentality. We tell them to keep shopping for the care—providers and facilities that will provide top-notch care at the fair prices.

Few industries—at least legal ones—price gouge more than healthcare. Their markup / discount practices can be so outrageous and there is little to no accountability to keep it under control. We encourage to shop for…

RXs

People are so used to copays for RXs they don’t even realize they are often paying more than they can get if for cash! I priced (25) of the most common generic meds and (23) of them are $0 to $20…There are apps like Good RX and DREXI, Pharmacy programs like Kroger RX that greatly reduce your out of pocket on what are often referred to as Tier 1 and Tier 2 meds.

TESTS

One of your clients had to have some cardio tests done. Through a shopping service provided with many of our policies, she was directed to (4) nearby facilities. The prices—for the exact same tests—ranged from under $1,300 to over $13,000! With the insurance we sold her, she actually got money back!

IMAGING

These hi-res imaging scans don’t have to cost $2,500. We’ve directed clients locally to MRI centers for $550. Same test. Same results.

How about a 3-D Mammo for under $200?! That’s at a ProScan facility, not an RV in an alley.

SURGERIES

Okay, Kincaid, now you’ve gone too far…Nope. It’s true. You can actually shop for non-emergent surgeries. In fact, I know of a place that is fraction the cost of most places and guarantees their work!

Other Ways to Save:

  • Use TelaDoc / Telemedicine if you have it
  • Go to Urgent Care (UC) in lieu of ER if needs can be meet in UC
  • Download RX savings app like Good RX or DREXI
  • Find discounted / free Diabetes services / supplies. Call me about getting…
    • A1C Tests for $15
    • Discounted (even free) meters
    • Discounted (even free) strips
    • Insulin for 25 bucks!
  • Set up payment plan with providers
  • Negotiate discounted settlement for immediate pay
  • Have regular checkups
  • Look for free clinics

But I Need Health Insurance Now

I could use a myriad facts and figures, but these days seem to be all about emotions…one negative emotion after another. Not least of which is the fear and anxiety caused by losing one’s insurance.

Whether it’s unplanned early retirement, being squeezed out of your job, or your company folding, you need insurance.

Here are your most likely choices:  Read more