SAL-VA-TION: by grace

E-LEV-EN: children from 1984 to 2006

HOME-SCHOOL-ING: since 1990

DOWN-SYN-DROME: susie and gabe

GRAND-CHILD-REN: since 2010

FAITH-FUL-NESS: my steadfast rock, my biggest supporter, my leader, my friend, my love, my husband

Thursday, June 19, 2008

common NONsense

I have found a number of physicians and nurses that I respect and in whom I am comfortable placing my confidence. I have found many more that I distrust completely. And the "establishment" as a whole....well, I begin to shudder.

Case in point. Last month, one of my daughters had to go in for a minor surgical procedure. Yesterday, I received the bill. I could grumble about the $275 charge for the initial office visit or about the need for TWO office visits prior to the procedure, with a second charge of $150. But I won't. What I WILL NOT tolerate, however, is a $64 pregnancy test!! On a girl who is not engaging in behavior that would make that a requirement. Upon challenging the test we were told that all girls/women (unless they have had a hysterectomy) are required to have a pregnancy test done--AT THEIR EXPENSE--prior to any surgical procedure! So, what they are saying is, "We think that anyone who says they are not engaging in se*ual behavior is a liar and we will make them pay to prove it. If it turns out that they were not lying, the cost is still theirs to bear."

They are "looking into it". Look all you want, we are NOT PAYING.


Kate said...

So I enjoyed your blog so much yesterday that I thought I would take a look today. I am surprised by your outrage about the pregnancy test requirement. The "establishment" promotes the health of all citizens, and I would say the majority of young women do engage in sexual behavior. If these are young girls, they may not feel comfortable telling their parents, so the tests are mandatory. The goal would be to protect the unborn child from harm during the procedure, which I think you would be in favor of? I did some research and they also have mandatory pregnancy tests a week prior to women participating in contact sports, such as wresting, and women are tested prior to being put in jail. I think the goal of the "establishment" is to protect the unborn child, or to protect themselves from liability. Sure you can and should argue the cost of the test, like the female wrestlers are, but I don't think that you can see it as any personal attack calling your daughter a liar. I am also curious as to whether you have insurance and if it would be a covered expense for the insurance company...I would expect so. Just my 2 cents!!

Marcia Wilwerding said...

One problem here is the matter of informed consent. No tests should be given to anyone of any age without telling the person ahead of time, *especially* on a minor. Whether or not the test was necessary is secondary in my opinion. You had every right to be outraged. I would be, too!

Keithslady said...

I appreciate your thoughts, Kate, and had considered those myself. However, let me fill you in on a few more facts that I chose not to include in the main body of the post. These make the physician's refusal to follow common sense and break with protocol look ridiculous. But even without this, I object to mandating the tests at the patient's expense (and remember, ultimately we absorb the cost of the insurance company). Any establishment has gone too far when it presumes that a free individual cannot be responsible and must be cared for--even if that is involuntary--by a governing body.

Additional facts:
1) My daughter had her period during the procedure.

2) She was in for a hymenectomy to remove an almost completely imperforate hymen (not explaining it here, you can look it up if you're unfamiliar with it, as I was). There was not even room to insert a Q-tip without extreme pain. Pregnant? Not even possible. Will they argue that there was a possibility of immaculate conception?

Kara Jo said...

Keithslady, I agree with you.

I had similar outrage when I was pregnant with Nathan, and the state of Indiana was requiring me to take an AIDS test as part of routine OB care. They said if I didn't, my newborn would get an additional painful poke in the hospital and there was nothing I could do about it. (I found out that was a lie. No additional poke--just done with the other bloodwork. AND I could have protested.) My OB was even a Christian, BTW. And I explained that my husband and I were virgins when we got married, and I've never done drugs or had a blood, I've had the AIDS tests before and saw no need for a repeat. They wanted to know what my problem was, since "the insurance company would pay for it!" (Like your additional point, we do end up absorbing insurance costs one way or another.)

Kara Jo said...

P.S. I do understand why this test is recommended for many women. But I guess I was offended and bothered at the insult and disbelief that there might be some of us out here who do follow God's design & abstain from pre-marital se*, and thus are not at risk for AIDS.

kristi noser said...

I'm with you. I would so not pay.

Joey said...

Gotta be honest Mom, I don't think I'm with you on this one. Leaving aside the arguments of what kind of disclosure there was (I think the medical field has far too little disclosure of what they're billing for prior to actually billing you), if I were a doctor, I can't imagine performing this procedure without a pregnancy test. Regardless of sexual activity, period, or medical ability to have a child, for the doctor it's all about liability. That's not a problem with the doctor; it's a problem with our lack of judicial constraint in this country. We're in desperate need of serious tort reform. Without it, there will only be more preliminary exams and tests administered (many of which I presume are required by the doctor's malpractice insurer). And of course, we will absorb that cost.