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Author Topic: Florida Doctors /Medicare and Medicaid  (Read 11510 times)
bdpoe
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« on: September 16, 2007, 01:16:48 PM »

I'm a Florida ESRD Hemo-dialysis patient with Medicare and partial Medicaid benefits
under age 65 and it seems to me that my doctors are overworked, have way too many patients
and I wonder if I'm even getting adequate care?

I'd like to hear from other Floridians as to their experiences with doctors, facilities, Medicare
and or Medicaid.

It was recently reported to me that some nurses have actually overheard doctors complaining
about Medicare patients with words to the effect of " Oh good, another patient I won't get paid for!"
And that was in two different hospitals in Florida.

So, I go to the MD and he doesn't know much about ESRD and I go to the Neph and he is overworked.
Are Florida's Citizens with Medicare third class patients?
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« Reply #1 on: September 16, 2007, 07:30:44 PM »

I am originally from FL.  My family is still there and they tell me that there are so many retired old people in FL that the health care system there is grossly understaffed.

My sister heard two orderlies talking and the one was saying he had agreed to work a double shift.  The other said he wouldn't do it because he was too tired.  The first said he was too, but they offered him a $100 bonus if he would stay because they were so short staffed on the next shift.

Some of the hospital nurses are working four 12 hour shifts from Friday to Monday and getting paid double time for covering the weekends when most don't want to work.

Many of the doctors offices are booking patients every 10 minutes and still working in other patients who call during every day.

When we were in Miami in March of this year, Mike sprained his foot.  He thought is was broken.  He arrived at the ER at 11 AM, he got back home at about 9:30PM.  The hospital had 50 exam rooms which stayed occupied and always had 20 or more in the waiting area.  One poor guy that almost cut his finger off had been waiting with a blood dripping towel for 45 minutes when he finally lost it and cursed the security guard in Spanish.  Someone took him in the back for a few minutes and he returned to the waiting area with a temporary bandage.  He had been there over 4 hours when Mike left and he was still waiting.

BTW, the ER bill, after Medicare paid, was over $2,000.  We didn't pay it and they haven't sent us another bill.
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Lorelle

Husband Mike Diagnosed with PKD Fall of 2004
Fistula Surgery  1/06
Fistula Revision  11/06
Creatinine 6.9  1/07
Started diaysis 2/5/07 on NxStage
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« Reply #2 on: September 16, 2007, 08:21:31 PM »

we are near melbourne, we use a privately owned non-profit dialysis center which is clean and sanitary, our neph is Dr. Tony Tran- he is excellent, sees my husband every week and encourages us to call if we have any questions, our MD is awesome as well. He has spent 15 to 20 minutes with us many many times. When my husband is in the hospital, he comes every morning, and  the weekends he is not on call, one of the other DR's come. His neph also comes every day when he is in the hospital.
  Melbourne has three hospitals and Sebastain  has a small one, Beside alot of elderly, there are alot of illegals here, and our Emergency room in Sebastain is always jammed up at night with them. We have walked in and walked out several times, so we drive another 15 miles to Melbourne. Sometimes its jammed to overflowing, but a lot of the time it isn't, we made over 20 trips to the ER last year , our avg time there was about 6 hours.
  The biggest problem we had was waiting for a bed. After being admitted- it sometimes took three days before he had a permanet room.  I don't really understand why,  they just added a new wing but couldn't fill all the available rooms with beds, a nurse we were talking to said it was difficult to add beds, the neighboring hospital had just added 40 beds,and they had to wait until the state approved them to add more. which means they had empty rooms -waiting for the state to say they could add more beds.
   I never saw a nurse work a double shift, they work 12 hour shifts,shift change is 7am and 7pm, I was there for many hours every day, for many of the shift changes. I got to know quite a few of the nurses,and they did complain about having too many to take care of, and they do seem aggravated and overworked.
   As far as to how the medicare works, no one has ever said anything snotty about him having medicare. People have been pretty nice about it all really.

Maybe you should move to the space coast. :) I don't think its too bad here.
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Jack A Adams July 2, 1957--Feb. 28, 2009
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Lulu
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« Reply #3 on: September 16, 2007, 09:44:18 PM »

Hi, I am not on dialysis yet, but soon to be. I live in West Palm Beach and before that Pompano Beach. My Neph is Dr. Bejar. I am not able to speak about dialysis. But as far as kidney transplants. I have found the two centers I am really interested in accept medicare with no problem. I only have part A, part B starts with my dialysis. I think most doctors expect kidney patients to be on medicare. As far as being overworked, my last neph was definitely in that category. Always 10 people in the waiting room, always over an hour wait. My new neph is  completely opposite. I think you might want to shop your docs a bit. What part of FLorida are you in?
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angela515
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« Reply #4 on: September 16, 2007, 10:26:59 PM »

BTW, the ER bill, after Medicare paid, was over $2,000.  We didn't pay it and they haven't sent us another bill.

That is because in Florida the law states medical bills cannot go to collection agency's nor on your credit report.
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« Reply #5 on: September 17, 2007, 06:57:22 PM »

BTW, the ER bill, after Medicare paid, was over $2,000.  We didn't pay it and they haven't sent us another bill.

That is because in Florida the law states medical bills cannot go to collection agency's nor on your credit report.

Maybe I ought to move back to FL and put up with the overcrowding?  ;D
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Lorelle

Husband Mike Diagnosed with PKD Fall of 2004
Fistula Surgery  1/06
Fistula Revision  11/06
Creatinine 6.9  1/07
Started diaysis 2/5/07 on NxStage
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« Reply #6 on: September 17, 2007, 07:44:30 PM »

BTW, the ER bill, after Medicare paid, was over $2,000.  We didn't pay it and they haven't sent us another bill.

That is because in Florida the law states medical bills cannot go to collection agency's nor on your credit report.

Thats not exactly true- they CAN go to collections and they CAN go on your credit, but they are not supposed to count against you when applying for other credit

which is bullshit because they do count against you, they just cant tell you thats why your denied.
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Jack A Adams July 2, 1957--Feb. 28, 2009
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caregiver to Jack (he was on dialysis)
RCC
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dialysis april 14,2006
Zach
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« Reply #7 on: September 17, 2007, 07:59:37 PM »

Maybe Florida needs to raise it's state income tax to provide better services to it's citizens.  It ranks one of the lowest (44) in state and local  taxes -- below Mississippi.
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« Reply #8 on: September 17, 2007, 08:03:46 PM »

BTW, the ER bill, after Medicare paid, was over $2,000.  We didn't pay it and they haven't sent us another bill.

That is because in Florida the law states medical bills cannot go to collection agency's nor on your credit report.

Thats not exactly true- they CAN go to collections and they CAN go on your credit, but they are not supposed to count against you when applying for other credit

which is bullshit because they do count against you, they just cant tell you thats why your denied.

Did they change the law recently then? That *was* the law, and still was as far as I know. I believe Florida and California are the only 2 states with this law...
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George Jung
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« Reply #9 on: September 17, 2007, 08:42:08 PM »

Is there state income tax in Florida?  I worked there for a while and I don't remember paying an income tax at all.
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glitter
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« Reply #10 on: September 17, 2007, 08:51:45 PM »

no there is no state income tax here and they must have changed the law because we have plenty of medical bills in collections lol plus attorney's that specialize in medical billing judgements flourish just fine here- I have lived here for the last 17 years, and as long as I've been here your liable for your medical bills and they CAN go to collections. Otherwise why would anyone pay there bills? you could just go to the doctor and thumb your nose at the bills ,and that is not the way it is at all.
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Jack A Adams July 2, 1957--Feb. 28, 2009
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caregiver to Jack (he was on dialysis)
RCC
nephrectomy april13,2006
dialysis april 14,2006
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« Reply #11 on: September 17, 2007, 10:40:11 PM »

I talked to a lawyer while I lived there, I lived there for 10 years, and that's why none of my medical bills are on my credit reports... b/c they can't put them there, maybe they can go to collections, but they cannot go on your credit report...
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« Reply #12 on: September 18, 2007, 05:15:59 PM »

Maybe Florida needs to raise it's state income tax to provide better services to it's citizens.  It ranks one of the lowest (44) in state and local  taxes -- below Mississippi.

The reason for no income tax is that such a large percentage of the people living there have NO TAXABLE INCOME.
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Lorelle

Husband Mike Diagnosed with PKD Fall of 2004
Fistula Surgery  1/06
Fistula Revision  11/06
Creatinine 6.9  1/07
Started diaysis 2/5/07 on NxStage
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« Reply #13 on: September 18, 2007, 05:31:16 PM »

I can't seem to find the florida law that says one way or the other- what I did find though, if you owe big for medical, they  can take you to court and have a judgement made against you which they can try to collect for 20 years as long as they renew the judgement after the first 10 years. All the florida statues I found deal with medical as 'regular' debt. maybe you can find it. Experian and transunion did say medical debt does not affect your score nearly as much as , say, bad credit card debt.

Black- florida has no STATE income tax at all. and while we do have alot of retirees here- I doubt they are in the majority- florida has had a huge influx of families with kids in the last 15 years. we cant build schools fast enough,my zipcodes area is 32949,32907,32935  http://www.zipskinny.com/  you can see the average age of the people around the space coast is 35-48


 Why the taxes are low? I think that our property taxes just tripled- and florida has very little state aid.  my daughter is on the waiting list for help from the dept. of disabled to help her transition to adulthood- the waiting list is 8 to 10 years long. They have no money. All these da,m politician are crooks too,  With unbeleivable amount of new homes built in the last 5 years, property taxes went (mine) from 895.00 to almost 4000.00  IN TWO YEARS and  They say they have no money.
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Jack A Adams July 2, 1957--Feb. 28, 2009
I will miss him- FOREVER

caregiver to Jack (he was on dialysis)
RCC
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dialysis april 14,2006
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« Reply #14 on: September 19, 2007, 06:21:11 PM »

Schools in FL have been overcrowded since the 1950s when the "Boomers" hit school.  Last stat I heard was 1000 families a week moving to FL to stay.  In the 1980s most new schools opened with several portable classrooms because the population was growing faster than they could build.  When you figure there are that many kids and the median age is in the mid to late 40s, then there has to be a hell of lot of old folks.

If you look at the stats for the zipcodes in the center of the state, other than around Orlando, many areas have around 20% population over 60 and more than 15% living below the poverty line, even in areas with low unemployment.  Sometimes areas have unemployment as low as 2% and still have 10 - 15% living below the poverty line.  People at those income levels pay no federal income tax and often qualify for a "refund" of federal dollars from other taxpayers.  The educational levels, except around the universities and medical centers, is usually below the national average as well.   Not a good formula for building a tax base.  Check out: 33189 34433 34453 34142 32628 32066

BTW, many of the stats probably do not count illegal immigrants and their disastrous effects.  Many pay no taxes except sales tax, but they still occupy schools, emergency rooms, and jails, which require tax dollars to operate.

Unfortunately the property owners are being squeezed for revenue because the politicians can't seem to get enough from sales tax to satisfy their spending habits.

Florida is a little like a glimpse of some of the Caribbean islands, where the tourist areas are prosperous and well maintained and the rest of the island lives in poverty with little social support or medical care.
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Lorelle

Husband Mike Diagnosed with PKD Fall of 2004
Fistula Surgery  1/06
Fistula Revision  11/06
Creatinine 6.9  1/07
Started diaysis 2/5/07 on NxStage
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« Reply #15 on: September 19, 2007, 07:33:27 PM »

 I wouldn't compare Florida with a third world country, sure, there are places here with alot of low income, service industry jobs. I would imagine rural florida is not much different from rural anywhere,usa.  Most of the old folks go North in the summer-its too hot here for them.

I would be interested to hear how people on medicade/medicare are treated in other states. We don't get medicade, but we have no issues with medicare.

I had medicade 18 years ago in California,(Irvine med. center) and was denied pain meds during childbirth because I had no history with the hospital and they were afraid I had other drugs in my system. They 'assumed' because I was getting medicade. ( a nurse actually told me that)
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Jack A Adams July 2, 1957--Feb. 28, 2009
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caregiver to Jack (he was on dialysis)
RCC
nephrectomy april13,2006
dialysis april 14,2006
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« Reply #16 on: September 20, 2007, 06:41:23 PM »

I had like 5 different seperate accounts with Baptist Medical Center, all over 30k, and some over 100k, the hospital wrote them off. I can't find the law either on what i was told by the lawyer.
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« Reply #17 on: October 31, 2007, 05:04:06 PM »

BTW, the ER bill, after Medicare paid, was over $2,000.  We didn't pay it and they haven't sent us another bill.

That is because in Florida the law states medical bills cannot go to collection agency's nor on your credit report.

Not true as I have medical bills as well as my oldest son. They have shown up on our credit reports continuously for several years now. They can hold it there for 7-10 years then usually it's removed, but not until that time. My son was turned down for a credit application based on the medical bills "lowering his credit score" also as it is included in this determination. I'm originally from and currently live in FL for over 50 years and it's been that way as long as I can remember.
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angela515
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« Reply #18 on: October 31, 2007, 06:29:26 PM »

BTW, the ER bill, after Medicare paid, was over $2,000.  We didn't pay it and they haven't sent us another bill.

That is because in Florida the law states medical bills cannot go to collection agency's nor on your credit report.

Not true as I have medical bills as well as my oldest son. They have shown up on our credit reports continuously for several years now. They can hold it there for 7-10 years then usually it's removed, but not until that time. My son was turned down for a credit application based on the medical bills "lowering his credit score" also as it is included in this determination. I'm originally from and currently live in FL for over 50 years and it's been that way as long as I can remember.

Dunno what o tell you but I lived there 10 years, and my mom got us a lawyer due to my high medical bills and they never went on my CR.

I will look up the law that states this issue, b/c Florida and Cali are the only 2 states with this law.
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« Reply #19 on: October 31, 2007, 07:10:04 PM »

I too live in Florida- my husband has medical on his credit- and I can't find anything that states they can't do it- and beleive me I have looked. Were you on public assistance at the time? maybe thats why they couldn't pursue you for the bills....just a thought
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Jack A Adams July 2, 1957--Feb. 28, 2009
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caregiver to Jack (he was on dialysis)
RCC
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« Reply #20 on: October 31, 2007, 08:20:32 PM »

Never been on public assistance in my life.
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« Reply #21 on: November 01, 2007, 07:49:32 AM »

wasn't trying to offend :)- just trying to find this law you keep talking about- everything I find says they absolutely can pursue the debt and put it on your credit report. I just applied for a job as a researcher for a medical collections company here in florida. If I get it I am bound to learn even more about the law here. I know technically medical is not supposed to count against you- but no-where does the stautes state you get a credit 'walk'- if that were true-everyone would move here for the free medical. There had to be some extenuating circumstance about your particular case.
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Jack A Adams July 2, 1957--Feb. 28, 2009
I will miss him- FOREVER

caregiver to Jack (he was on dialysis)
RCC
nephrectomy april13,2006
dialysis april 14,2006
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« Reply #22 on: November 01, 2007, 01:09:12 PM »

Most of the old folks go North in the summer-its too hot here for them.

Yeah, they all come up here to Ohio! During the summer, we are overrun by cars with Florida and Georgia license plates!   :o
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« Reply #23 on: November 01, 2007, 01:12:21 PM »



That is because in Florida the law states medical bills cannot go to collection agency's nor on your credit report.


the agency I just applied to work for is ONLY medical collections and they do 25 hospitals in the state of florida. and that is all they collect for.
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Jack A Adams July 2, 1957--Feb. 28, 2009
I will miss him- FOREVER

caregiver to Jack (he was on dialysis)
RCC
nephrectomy april13,2006
dialysis april 14,2006
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« Reply #24 on: November 01, 2007, 02:43:52 PM »

As I said, when i find it, I will post it... I need to find it first, but if it does not exsist as you all say, then I guess I will be searching forever, eh? All I know is what i was told, and the fact that not 1 medical bill ever went on my CR in Florida. I shall keep searching and in the meantime, I have request to find this in to a friend.

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