Saturday, February 23, 2013

pills, Pills, PILLS & bills, Bills, BILLS

I’ve been a bit occupied the last few weeks. Can you guess what with? =) It might be difficult to understand why I’m so frantic about Nami’s medicine given that despite taking them he’s still having about 300 complex-partial seizures a day. Seems likely they aren’t working, right? All it took was one day of forgetting to give him his morning dose to realize how dependent he is on his medicine. After the missed dose Nami turned purple, was freezing cold, and didn’t move from his position on the couch all day. He was basically in a constant seizure. Unfortunately, I didn’t realize that the morning dose had been missed until giving him his evening medicine.

I have nightmare after nightmare about counting out the pills for the week. Viliami is currently on 5 anti-epileptic meds that he takes twice a day and I am also taking medication for different health issues. In my nightmares someone or something knocks the pills out of my hands and spills them all over the floor. I go into hysteria, screaming at whomever/whatever caused the problem as I frantically try to pick them all up and get them into the right container before my sons come and ingest them. I figure these nightmares are a reflection of our current life situation.

Where there are pills, there are bills. I need to be able to face the reality that bills will never stop and I will never be caught up. That’s just part of the facts of life. Our poor mail deliverer must hate us. I drive by our mailbox each day, sometimes multiple times a day. I often think about stopping but most of the time I choose to just drive on by because I'm afraid to find out what’s in there. By the time I bite the bullet and go pick up the mail, it is so jammed in there that there are many rips in the paper. I begrudgingly pull and yank at it until I get it all out. I usually drop a bunch of it so I have to run after the items and pick them up and then I place it in the front passenger seat. Sometimes it takes a couple more days before I build up the courage to bring the mail inside the house. Unfortunately I sometimes stuff it in a corner on our counter for even a couple more days. By the time I get to it, it usually takes at least an hour to go through and sort all the mail and recycle all the junk. Then I’m so tired that I can't bare to face all the new-found problems that the mail revealed so I put it away for a little longer. All the while, more mail is piling up in the mailbox.

While going through my bills a few weeks ago, I noticed a weird charge from a pharmacy on my credit card statement. I didn’t recognize the name of the pharmacy and the charge of $16.66 was a weird number. I saw it and didn’t feel like I could deal with it right then, so I waited a week before looking into it further. I finally called and found out it was charged through my old insurance company's mail-in pharmacy. I explained, "Our insurance was canceled 5 months ago. You don't have any right to charge our card." The pharmacy explained that they had our card on file from the year before and so when the bill came through, they just paid it with the card on file. I questioned HOW a bill came through to them if I wasn't even insured by the company that used them. They confusingly explained how the pharmacy that sent the bill to them was their sister pharmacy or something and that I should call them. Of course they didn't take any responsibility for their mistake and told me they could refund my money but that I would be sent to collections for not paying. At this point I knew something was really wrong. Little did I know the nightmare that this one phone call would cause!

I called the pharmacy who had sent the bill and asked them what insurance they had on file. They said the name of our old insurance company. I asked them how they got that information as the only insurance we had ever discussed since starting to deal with them was our current insurance. They responded that when they looked up who to bill our old insurance information popped up as the current insurance so they billed them. I asked them to please change the information to our new insurance company and they said they couldn't do that. WHAT?!?!? That makes no sense! I told them, "When I go to Walmart Pharmacy I give them my insurance card, they run the prescription through and then get me the script. Why can't you? Where is this mysterious machine that is sending you the wrong information and how do we get it to stop?" We talked in circles and nothing they said made any sense whatsoever. They told me to call my old insurance company to make sure it's canceled.

To make a long story short, there was a series of unfortunate events that led to me being told I would need to pay my old insurance company $10,700+ for the 30 day supply of these little babies:
Alrighty...I’ll just go write a check since I have that much money lying around! So because multiple companies did NOT do what I asked them to do, I have to pay? And, in the meantime, the pharmacy that we are forced by the FDA to use for this medicine will not fix the mistake nor will they send our next shipment of meds. Needless to say, I was a panicking mess.

43 phone calls to 5 different companies and 5 days later, I finally got an emergency shipment for a 14 day supply of meds. The next week I made at least 5 more phone calls before I was finally able to get a regular shipment scheduled. The meds arrived and so did a bill for $2700 when I was not supposed to be billed anything. I’m still not sure how it will all get resolved, but I have no more energy to deal with it right now. No wonder I hate my mailbox!


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