*Free Medical Care –Stuff Doctors Offices Do For Free That Takes Time
This morning a woman called my office asking about a pneumonia shot for a family member. Mr. Phone Caller (Mr. PC) is a patient at the local Veteran’s Administration Clinic. He is in his 80s. Evidently there is no problem getting flu shots, which he has done. Their policy is that you have to see your “provider” (I hate that word) to get your pneumonia shot.
Mr. Phone Caller last had a pneumonia shot in 2006. He can’t get an appointment with his new “provider” until February. Mrs. Phone Caller is very worried. She sounded older, and seemed to be quite concerned that he might die without the shot immediately.
We don’t have pneumonia shots this year. We didn’t do many two years ago, so we stopped carrying them. When we did, we gave them to anyone who needed one. I think that’s why Mrs. PC called.
Princess talked with her first. She suggested that Mrs. PC call the local Health Department. She did and got “the run around”. She called us back. I spoke with her and promised we would call around and see what we could do.
Princess called one medical practice and I called another. The practice I called wasn’t really interested in giving a vaccine to someone who wasn’t an established patient. The practice Princess called said they would see the gentleman. Mrs. PC will have Mr. PC there sometime within the hour.
All of this took about 15 minutes of non-continuous discussion and phone calls. Mrs. PC is not a patient of ours. Mr. PC is not either. They have no charts. No paperwork was done. We generated no charges. Mr. PC will get his pneumonia shot. Mrs. PC will feel better because he is protected. The only thing we get out of this is a little bit of knowledge and a couple of warm fuzzies.
*Free Medical Care may become a series. These are things that are done in a medical office that are not paid for. This is mostly for your information, but sometimes I just need to vent.