I'm having Female Problems. As usual, anything involving my Lady Businesss is a fucking soap opera (sorry for the language, but really, nothing else will do at this point). Let's just say that, at the wrong time in my cycle, for no good reason, and for way too long, the alert level has been hovering between orange and red.
When I called my gyn's office, their response was "Yeah, remember that hysterectomy we offered you at any time (backstory: enlarged uterus, many fibroids, just an unpleasant mess)? Are you ready to schedule it?" Well, no, not really. First, although a large portion of my Lady Business is completely useless, I'm still not keen on having any of it sliced out of my body. Second, there is talk of RIFs at my employer, and this is not a good time for anyone to say "Hey, Tracy's been gone for 6-8 weeks, and production hasn't been affected at all. Hmmm." Third, I occasionally do accomplish something around here, and this is not a good time in my current project to take off for several weeks. Fourth, my previous gyn (one of the three I ran out of town) suggested endometrial ablation; can't we do that instead? Well, maybe.
The nurse gives me the option to inject some kick-ass drug to calm things down and also hopefully shrink my uterus to the point that we can do ablation. Unfortunately, the drug costs $500-$700 per month (I laughed at this point... because it's all so ridiculous, and because, ironically, that's what we were paying for infertility treatment when we were doing IUIs, and that's with insurance). But some insurers cover it. I make a phone call and, what do you know! Mine does! They're the good guys for once! (Remember this for later.) Is there anything special I need to do? NO! (Again, remember this for later.) Awesome! I call the nurse and tell her to call it into my Beloved Local Pharmacy.
When I get home, there's a message from Beloved Local Pharmacy saying that my insurer has rejected their attempt to order the Magic Drug because it has to go through their Specialized Pharmacy. Well, crap. If I wanted my insurer to decide what provider I could use, I'd have joined an HMO. Oh well. Call the Specialized Pharmacy. Yes, we can get that for you. Our pharmacy tech will call your doctor to arrange for it, and we offer overnight shipping, aren't we awesome? Oh, and it will take about 7 working days. So, do you want it shipped to the doctor's office or to your house?
Hold on. Seven days? No, seven working days, which means a week and a half?
Well, it normally takes seven working days. I'll put a rush on it.
So how long will it take now?
I really can't say.
You can't say? Can you guess?
Well, I don't want to tell you something and then have that not be true. It takes some time for our pharmacists, I mean pharmacy techs, to get to your file.
Can you, for example, tell me that there's no way it's going to be done in less than 24 hours, just so I'll know what to expect? I promise I won't hold you to it.
Well, it might be three to four working days.
Ooooh kay. This is Wednesday. Nothing's happening this week, obviously. I'm sorry, I know this is not your fault, but I really do not consider this good customer service. (And, again, if I wanted to be treated like this, I would join an HMO.)
I'm sorry. Anything else I can help you with?
"Idiots." <- I'm 90% sure she said that, it was kind of under her breath.
Anyway, she said, I'd need to find a local pharmacy that has it on hand - a national chain, not a mom & pop - and have my doctor call it in to that pharmacy. And that I'd need to call to get the override. Unfortunately, I left my notes at work and couldn't remember who to call when I got home. I called Health Insurer and they were clueless and said they'd have someone call me back.I called Prescription Insurer this morning after finding my notes on my desk and was chided by their automated answering system for calling the wrong number. I then tried to explain what I needed. The person I was talking to had never heard of a one-time override and couldn't find anything about it in her system. "They're keeping it a secret," I said, not adding "Because it might help a patient." I politely asked if her supervisor might know more, and after some clicks, I was sent to a supervisor who was actually at Slow Fucking Specialized Pharmacy (A Division of Prescription Insurer - that's not conflict of interest at all, is it? "If you buy expensive meds, you have to buy them from us." Isn't something wrong here? But I digress).
The supervisor told me that yes, I was entitled to a ONE TIME ONLY override. "And one time only means ONCE IN YOUR LIFETIME." And yes, she did say that in bold, italics, and all caps.
Shit. Do I use it on this, or keep it in my pocket for a more dire situation?
I know Big Chain Pharmacy has it in stock, so how does this work? She tells me to give my prescription to Big chain, it will be denied, and then I need to call them and request my ONCE IN A LIFETIME OVERRIDE. Shit. I've never had to do anything with Big Chain that requires actual customer service. Can they handle this? I know Beloved Local Pharmacy would be able to do it. Oh well.
And then I get the phone call from Beloved Local Pharmacy. Health Insurer has called them, they have the ONCE IN A LIFETIME OVERRIDE, and they are ordering my Magic Drug. Awesome. It won't be here until tomorrow (Saturday), which means I can't actually get it injected until Monday, but things are finally, finally, slowly moving along.
So, why was it that I was reluctant to have chunks of my Lady Business removed? Because right now I'd like to tackle it myself, with a swig of vodka and an X-acto knife.
The kicker? The Magic Drug is also used to treat cancer. Can you imagine being diagnosed with cancer and then having to go through all of this shit? It makes me want to cry.