Why a blog?
This website has been empty of content for several years after its initial set-up when we opened the practice in 2004. Mostly, this was because we're a tiny office: one doctor, two full-time employees, one part-time employee. We have traditionally had minimal paperwork and minimal red tape, simply because we are small enough to do most things on a case-by-case basis. Tiny things are nimble. We haven't needed to publish many major changes in policy or announcements about new things that weren't perfectly well-suited to appearing as a blurb on our Facebook page.
However, over the last couple of years, I have found myself writing up more policies and generating more paperwork. Was this because we needed more documentation about our patients? No. It was because I found myself trying to explain modern health care.
We have discovered, through our daily headaches navigating referrals, orders, prescriptions, and insurance claims, as well as patient complaints, that our patients have very little insight into what is going on behind the scenes in the current corporate health care world. Thus, new policies. Explaining what referrals are and how they work. Explaining what a prior authorization for a medication is, and why it's not an instantaneous process. Explaining what an "annual wellness visit" is, and why a routine follow up for a chronic condition may not qualify to have the copayment waived.
So, I am setting these things down here, as well. Addressing patient confusions. Addressing my own frustrations. Highlighting news items about the changing face of medicine in our world today.