Sometimes military healthcare is a real joke! :-|

SPC H

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So as part of my follow-up for my brain tumor, I have to not only see neurology, but endocrinology as well because my tumor is in my pituitary gland and as it grows, it affects all major hormonal processes from my thyroid, to insulin/diabetic issues, to female hormonal issues. I work in this same hospital and in a customer service position, so I definitely know how patients should be treated. We have become a joint base facility and work not only with Air Force, but the Navy intensively as well.

I was seen by an endocrinologist in July, which I honestly felt uncomfortable with. No offense, he is not American born and part of the issue was I couldn't understand what he was saying and I really felt like he didn't understand my concerns. I did my follow-up labs and picked up my medication and took it as prescribed. I was supposed to be contacted in October timeframe for a follow-up and I never heard back. Last week, I went to the clinic to follow-up in person to get an appointment because I'm running low on my thyroid meds and am having reoccuring symptoms the meds were supposed to take care of. I explained my situation to the front desk clerk, who said she would take my information back to the Airman in charge of scheduling. After waiting about 40 minutes, I needed to leave to get back to work and made sure they had my contact information.

Today, that Airman contacted me to make my follow-up. I calmly explained the situation and said I really don't feel comfortable with this provider, I've only seen him once and I'd like to see a different provider. She said, well that's against our clinic policy and if you've already been seen by a provider, you have to stay with that provider. I told the Airman that I completely understood that policy and it's a great one, but I had only seen this guy one time and I was NOT comfortable seeing him again. She hemmed and hawed and then said, well I don't know what to tell you, you CAN'T change providers. I asked to speak to the NCOIC of the clinic and she said that it wouldn't do me any good because he would just tell me the same thing. I said this is affecting my continuity of care and I would like to speak to someone higher up because I need a follow-up. She said either make the appointment or don't, I don't care. So I just responded back with "I guess I just won't make this appointment with you today". She hung up on me!

So, I called the patient advocate and again explained my situation and that I am staff at this hospital as well, so I'm not a complete idiot about clinic procedures, etc. I hate to cause waves again and for a minute I was almost worried that crazy NCOIC in my section would find out and somehow I would get a counseling statement for this too. It just makes me irritated! I'm totally prepared to seek an outside provider until my MEB is complete and I head home, but I shouldn't have to!
 

ssgt

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Thanks for sharing. Whats a real kick in the nutts is I have seen some of these same doctors while deployed work their ass off for EPW's unsuring their getting the right care and put in a "full on hearts and mind" push get an award.
Then you get back and your treated worse than they are. Your treated as if your beneath them and do not matter..Its depressing and honestly shameful. We are doing this to each other..
 

grizz13

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I had something of a different story that I can share which happened to me twice!

2004 Schofield Barracks, HI Mental Health Department... I called to schedule an appointment to be seen for my depression and anxiety to see if I could get started on meds. The E-7 on the other end of the phone asked "are you a redeployer or deploying in the next 90 days?" "No," is my answer. "We'll call back in six months, garrison Soldiers aren't as important as the others that are in real need..." You gotta be joking me?!?!?!? So I waited the 6 months, had to wait for another 3 months for the scheduled appointment, I told the case worker what happened. She did an ICE report on her staff, along with naming the NCO in the report while I was in the office...

June 2010 with my PCS to JBLM, I needed continued care of seeing a therapist once a month along with my meds. I called Behavioral Health and got the same damn thing "Call back in 6 months, garrison aren't as important." WTF??!?!!? Waited 6 months, "you need to wait 6 more months..." WTF is wrong here??!?!?!!? Finally after my repeated sick call visits, my BN Surgeon was like "why haven't you been to BH?" "Well I have tried they keep telling me that I have to wait 6 months!" He called to make an appointment for me and guess what? "Call back in 6 months..." OH, HELL NO!!! He call my BDE CDR and told him what just happened... OH, HELL NO!!! So my BN Surgeon puts in a referral for BH... I finally get a call 6 months later, with an apology from the BH team, I refused to see them at this point... My MEB starts and guess what? I HAVE to go see a therapist and get my meds in order for the MEB to move forward... I call back again expecting the 6 month thing again... I get a "Mr. H. there is a note on file that your are to be given an appointment upon your request at the earliest times, from here on out, I have an appointment open in 30 minutes, can you get here that fast?" Talk about getting their doo-doo straight...
 

nwlivewire

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I had something of a different story that I can share which happened to me twice!

2004 Schofield Barracks, HI Mental Health Department... I called to schedule an appointment to be seen for my depression and anxiety to see if I could get started on meds. The E-7 on the other end of the phone asked "are you a redeployer or deploying in the next 90 days?" "No," is my answer. "We'll call back in six months, garrison Soldiers aren't as important as the others that are in real need..." You gotta be joking me?!?!?!? So I waited the 6 months, had to wait for another 3 months for the scheduled appointment, I told the case worker what happened. She did an ICE report on her staff, along with naming the NCO in the report while I was in the office...

June 2010 with my PCS to JBLM, I needed continued care of seeing a therapist once a month along with my meds. I called Behavioral Health and got the same damn thing "Call back in 6 months, garrison aren't as important." WTF??!?!!? Waited 6 months, "you need to wait 6 more months..." WTF is wrong here??!?!?!!? Finally after my repeated sick call visits, my BN Surgeon was like "why haven't you been to BH?" "Well I have tried they keep telling me that I have to wait 6 months!" He called to make an appointment for me and guess what? "Call back in 6 months..." OH, HELL NO!!! He call my BDE CDR and told him what just happened... OH, HELL NO!!! So my BN Surgeon puts in a referral for BH... I finally get a call 6 months later, with an apology from the BH team, I refused to see them at this point... My MEB starts and guess what? I HAVE to go see a therapist and get my meds in order for the MEB to move forward... I call back again expecting the 6 month thing again... I get a "Mr. H. there is a note on file that your are to be given an appointment upon your request at the earliest times, from here on out, I have an appointment open in 30 minutes, can you get here that fast?" Talk about getting their doo-doo straight...

GOOD GRIEF GRIZZ!

And the Army wonders why they have such a high suicide rate, spousal abuse rate, drug/ETOH abuse rate and everything else?????

HOLY COW!

Sure glad you're still with us and very pleased to read you didn't quit seeking help and reported this crapola.

I suspect others in the past may not have survived this delay/denial for immediate treatment and help.

I am glad you did!

V/r,
nwlivewire
 

T-roy

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SPC H,
Please don't drop pushing this issue! Go all the way to Congress. Your condition is a very misunderstood condition that may not be taken seriously. How do I know? Here’s the Reader’s Digest version; whilst on a six month deployment in support of Operation’s Iraqi and Enduring Freedom I started to suffer from a constant dull headache and joint aches. I made several trips to see the doctor in our field medical center, where I was diagnosed with a sinus headache. This continued for two months when all of the sudden, bang! My head started to pound as if I was hit in the head with a hammer! I went to the doc where I was given pain med’s and sinus medication and put on quarters. I went back to my tent and began vomiting and was unable to remain conscious. Two or three days later my condition worsened as I was now losing sight in my right eye. I returned to the doc where he continued to diagnose Acute Sinus Infection, and was sent back to my tent. At this time the Captain I worked for recommended to the doctor we meda-vac me out to a hospital to get further treatment. The doctor stated “the patient was being over dramatic, he’ll be fine”. I remained in the tent for approximately 10 to 15 days, partially blind, lying in my own urine and vomit, without care, even from the two med-techs that was billeted in the same tent.
About twelve days later I finally was able to hold water down and move around, yet my head was dazed and confused. Additionally, new symptoms started to include chronic fatigue and I was incapable to control my urine output. I was in the latrine every 30-45 minutes all day and night. Once again I saw the same doctors about this condition where is I was told “inform your home station doctors when you return”. When I returned to my home station I was ghost pale, weak, dizzy, confused, and lost all my muscle mass. After being bounced around for two months at the home station hospital, I was finally sent to an Endocrinologist where I was diagnosed with a Pituitary apoplexyapituitary tumor bleeding at the base of the brain.
Additionally Pituitary apoplexy caused me to suffer from Diabetes insipidus, an uncommon condition that occurs when the kidneys are unable to conserve water as they perform their function of filtering blood brought on by a tumor or head injury. The amount of water conserved is controlled by antidiuretic hormone (ADH), also called vasopressin. ADH is a hormone produced in a region of the brain called the hypothalamus. It is then stored and released from the pituitary gland, a small gland at the base of the brain.

In January 2012, after 20 years of service, I was officially recommended not fit for duty and began medical retirement process. Thru this I was sent to DC in July where I saw VA doctors to determine eligibility to receive VA benefits. As of 15 Dec 2012 I have yet to hear from the VA about their determination. Because I’m an Active Duty Airman, serving overseas, I’m unable to retire until the VA has sent their recommendation. This has now forced me to remain overseas away from my family and friends, and unable to start life over again.
I've proudly served my 20+ years honorably. However one doctor’s mistake has ruined my life.
 

grizz13

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Holy crap T-roy! I thought my issue was bad but damn! Wish you could sue his ass off...
 
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