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PostPosted: Mon Mar 21, 2016 4:24 pm 
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Hi, I figured I'd intro myself before and not simply pop on here and spew my frustrations.
I've been in and out of recovery for opiate addiction as well as being an alcoholic for a very long time, I am
42 & was introduced to recovery at 19. I've recently had 2 years of successful suboxone treatment and recovery - I had a mental breakdown and relapsed at the same time over the span of two days and admitted myself back into
Detox, spent a week getting back my mess back on track and left rehab with an even lower dose of suboxone than I was on right before the relapse. (Went from 8 mg strips twice a day to 4mg strips 3x daily.)
Since this, which was 4 months ago, I've had nothing but issues with the pharmacy and insurance company.
I have private BCBS, and they are only approving 1 week at a time- so I end up at the pharmacy every week- then recently it went to a 6 day supply. When I tried to get my docs office to address this and get a PA in place - after
Days and and hours on end on te phone with insurance- the nurse called back from the doctor office and stated she couldn't do anything with it till the new year. This didn't even make sense because I was told it was a monthly quantity issue that a simple override would help. I went fory next appointment and found out that's doctors office had went to heck in a hand basket- the main doctor who owned it had bailed without notice, another left with a week notice and followed by quite a bit of staff, including NP's and nurses... while one doc stayed on, mine and I stuck with him as he's transitioned to a location two hours away from me but considering all
This there wasn't a chance in heck I could get someone to help me resolve this PA problem so it's just been very expensive and a pain in my rear to go to get 18-21 strips each week and pay a $40 co-pay each time.
This has led me to feel so insecure and having to go to a pharmacy that often and deal with the staff has made me feel like such a loser, seeking pathetic addict.
Today I called to check on my script because I'd went to pick up my week supply Saturday and all
They had was 3, and wouldn't have a truck in till this morning. Well... Someone forgot to send the order and so I'm out till tomorrow at noonish.
I'm SO tired of all this.
Does anyone know why my insurance is only approving 6 days at a time? Should I fight this? I feel like I should fight and also make them repay me all
These co-pays.
I wa told today by the pharmacy that I could Transfer it to another pharmacy that has them in stock but it's so hard to find anyone who'll carry 4mg strips and I just don't trust transferring my script midway through -
I am ready to be done with this. Constantly worrying and feeling insecure about this is as bad as actively trying to get dope.


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PostPosted: Mon Mar 21, 2016 4:39 pm 
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Pharmacists sometimes really suck. Keeping fighting the good fight!

Amy

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PostPosted: Mon Mar 21, 2016 5:06 pm 
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Yeah it's a pain in the ass for sure but you have to keep fighting if you want to get it right. You're whole situation sounds pretty messed up with the doctors and all. Lots of time the pharmacies go by how respectable the doctor is that is writing the script and if they know there are issues at that particular doctors office it makes it worse.

Nothing about this is easy. All I can say is if you want it to get right you have to do all the footwork. Unfortunately that's how our system is set up. They make it hard.

good luck, megster


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PostPosted: Mon Mar 21, 2016 6:44 pm 
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Thanks for the support and responses. I get what you are saying about the reputation - I think my current doc has a good one but this clinic crashed and burned so fast it was crazy. The owner/main doc just up and freakin bailed! Everyone was so shocked - he'd secretly sold his home and relocated and simply didn't show up for work one day. Well, about 6 months prior to this, I came in for my regular appt and I was told I needed to see the counselor first and I was to see the PA after, which is never done before.
I had been struggling a bit with my bi-polar and my doc (I'll use first letters), Dr. D, at the time(same one that bailed) had been prescribing my psych mess also.
Well the counseling session was to tell me that
A. Dr. D would no longer be my doc, I was to start seeing Dr. S instead
B. I needed to get another psych
C. He'd no longer prescribe my psych meds
I couldn't understand why all this was happening and why I was hearing it from a counselor and not from Dr. D. I was very upset and the therapist and the PA that day both made me feel like I was crazy.
So fast forward to the New Year and the same therapist is sitting in our group session trying to explain why the clinic is closing and letting us know they had no idea till Dr. D just didn't show for work. Hmmmm? Who wasn't surprised at his behavior? Yup... Me. Because I dead my believed when I told them how he was the one who took it upon himself to treat my mental illness as well as prescribe my suboxone.
So my new doc happens to be the stable one and the one who stuck with the ship as they had patients. They lost almost all the staff but who can take hearing patients threatening to take their lives because they had to call them and tell them a day before their appointments they no longer have an Md?!
I rode out that mess and now have to drive an extra hour for the appointment in my docs new place.
I would rather go without than attempt a transfer to another pharmacy because it's so hard to build up a reputation with a pharmacy and not be treated like a trash.
It's so relieving to be able to have a place to discuss this stuff because most of my recovery friends are strict AArrs and just don't understand MAR.
Thanks again


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PostPosted: Mon Mar 21, 2016 7:25 pm 
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The problems that you describe suck-- no doubt about it. Anybody who doesn't need medication assisted treatment shouldn't use it, for the reasons you describe.

What I find frustrating is that from my perspective, buprenorphine is the right medication for the right time. But the treatment is attacked from all sides-- by the idiots who don't know how buprenorphine works, or by the idiots who mistakenly think buprenorphine is used to get high, or by the insurance companies who see a chance to tarnish a treatment that is woefully needed right now.

Make certain that you are taking the form of buprenorphine that is on your insurance company formulary. Some insurers will cover a limited amount of a non-formulary med, and if you call to speak with a rep on the phone, the person will often not know the difference between Suboxone, Zubsolv, Bunavail, buprenorphine/naloxone, and buprenorphine. Make sure you ask about EACH medication, and see if it is covered.

And if you can't find a suitable answer, do what I do--- which is to comment after every article about buprenorphine, setting the record straight. Write to the politicians that cover your district at the state and Federal levels. Go to Heroin summits and when someone says something stupid, call him/her out on it. And of course, always feel free to put in a plug for the forum or blog!

I do think that the tide is slowly turning. At the Federal level, MAT (medication assisted treatment) is recognized as the only answer to the current epidemic. BTW-- if you want some interesting reading about the history of MAT, Google 'tip 43' and 'MAT' and download the pdf file. I'm halfway through... and it is an interesting story.


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PostPosted: Mon Mar 21, 2016 7:38 pm 
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Well I know I can at least help you a little. I'm certain of it. With your next script get your doctor to prescribe 8 mg rather than 4 mg strips. In fact, that might be part of what is causing your insurance issues. Rather than 90, 4 mg strips, have your doc write for 45, 8 mg. strips. Then cut them in half. The total cost will be less and the computers may allow 45 strips where anything over 60 gets flagged. 45, 8 mg strips will cost less than 90, 4 mg do. they are very easy to cut in half. I'm betting this will help and may even make the entire problem go away.


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PostPosted: Wed Mar 30, 2016 12:21 am 
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I feel your pain, before my health insurance and benefits kicked in at my current employer I was having to pay out of pocket for my bupe treatment...honestly I would have been better off financially going to a methadone clinic, but I cold turkey'd 130mg of methadone at a clinic I went to in 2013 and I was dope assssss sick for 2 months I swore I'd never go back on methadone again...anyways back on topic the BUPE look I was taking 12mg suboxone when I first started on Bupe, now I'm on 1 5.7 mg pill of Zubsolv per day and I feel no better no worse than 12mg suboxone so I'd recommend trying to take as small a dose as you can per day, even 4mg once you ain't gonna go into withdrawal it's all in your head at that point less is more with Buprenorphine and especially if it's eating up so much money and other trouble, dose down man!!!


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