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PostPosted: Mon Sep 26, 2011 9:59 pm 
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[font=Arial] [/font]As I've previously stated, Suboxone has been a life saver for me. Without it, I could very possibly be dead. And that's no exaggeration. For the last 3 or so years, Suboxone/Subutex successfully transformed me from a pill vacuum to a productive member of the human race. But, for every thing that is good, there is surely 5 other issues to screw up that good thing. Obviously, the good thing I speak of is Suboxone. The negative issues are the professionals we need to see in order to maintain our new found freedom. The small percentage of Drs. who can prescribe Suboxone use the disease we come to them to treat, then , they use our disease against us in order to maximize their already huge profits. I don't know about any other states other that Pennsylvania, but Suboxone Drs. here are only able to treat 100 patients at any one time. They can only accept a new patient if one of the regular patients either leaves or is done with their treatment. So, be that as it is, if you find a Dr. that has a slot open you must adhere to his rules, which include: constant fee increases, refusal to accept any type of insurance, little to no flexability on scheduleing, general verbal disrespect, really, the list is endless. Funny thing though, they don't treat their non addicted patients in that manner. Every month, sometimes even every 2 weeks we walk into that office and hand over $200 in cash. (Multiply that by at least 20 or more patients a day, then multiply THAT by the 20 workdays in a month) By my simple arithmetic that comes out to roughly $100,000 a month. Hey, I have no problem with anyone who makes a good living. And Drs. are no different. But when they use the very disease we are seeking help for and use it as a weapon against us, well, then the only difference between these Drs. and the drug dealers on the street are the white lab coats. I get so tired of these supposed "Professionals" talking at us instead of to us. Treating us with no respect simply because of the disease of addiction. Do they think that we want to live our lives in this manner? Do they think that we all just woke up one morning and in the middle of eating our scrambled eggs we just decided to become an addict? Would they treat a cancer patient in such a way?? Then once we deal with the stress of the Dr., now it's time to start fighting with the insurance companies who try to find more and more reasons not to pay for Suboxone. Mine says they won't pay for the meds until I start private counseling. It's funny, I've had this insurance for almost a year, and they paid every month. Now 6 months later, I get blind sided at the pharmacy and the druggist says that I need a prior authorization. So, when I call them that's when they tell me about the counseling bull shit. And I have NEVER had a dirty urine, missed an appointment, or had a balance for the fees. We follow the rules to the letter, and the stigma of being an addict even affects the way even our treating physicians see us. I would really like any of you who has gone or is now going through a similar situation to reply to this post. I'm just curious to see if I am the exception rather than the rule.


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PostPosted: Mon Sep 26, 2011 10:56 pm 
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I am sorry you have such a shitty Dr. There are good and bad and I feel the reason for that is the 100 patient cap. It is a federal law and every sub Dr. In the US must follow it. I believe this what allows the bad Dr.s like yours to stay in business. If Dr.s could take on the amount of patients they feel they could adequately treat (like with any other medication or disease) then patients would have their choice of Dr. instead of being forced to see under qualified Dr.s that do not know the first thing about sub or addiction. These bad Dr.s would have no patients and would not be able to continue to operate.

I want you to know there are good Dr.s out there. I am fortunate and have an amazing Dr. and it really upsets me and my Dr. that their are Dr.s out there preying on addicts and treating them when they have no business doing so. All I can say is don't give up, if you have to get on a waiting list then do it. There is probably a reason that Dr. has one. The Dr.s hate this rule or at least mine does and I fear until it gets thrown out the bad Dr.s will be prescribing Suboxone.


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PostPosted: Tue Sep 27, 2011 6:39 am 
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There's something I've been thinking about lately that's on par with this topic. It's regarding how so many sub doctors refuse to take insurance. I find this EXTREMELY discriminatory in nature. Now, my doctor does take my insurance, so there's not much I can do on behalf of anyone else - at least not what I have in mind.

I think people whose doctors make them pay cash and won't take their insurance coverage need to start filing complaints with their state boards and the ADA. As far as I'm aware, doctors are supposed to treat everyone equally regardless of race, gender, sexual orientation, disability, etc etc. Maybe they even take an oath to that effect? I have a sneaking suspicion that if the medical powers-that-be knew what was going on they wouldn't like it. They are discriminating based solely on one's diagnosis! How is that medically ethical AT ALL?

If I were in this position I know I'd be filing complaints and writing op ed letters about the situation. The current system must be challenged or it will simply remain.

Anyway, it's just a thought and suggestion to consider.

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PostPosted: Tue Sep 27, 2011 7:19 am 
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Thank you Breezy Ann & Hatmaker for your posts. Sometimes I just have to hear a few words of encouragement to soldier on. When I began my Sub therapy, I used to look forward to going to the Doctors because it made me feel good that I was doing the right thing for a change, instead of all the bullshit every addict does in order to satisfy the demon that is addiction. And, I'll tell you something else, if I were a doctor dispensing Subs, it would make me feel good that I was helping addicts see the light at the end of the tunnel. But all they see are dollar signs. And what extra charges they can levy on the addicted patient. And whatever you do, do not question their charges. Because if you do, you will suffer the full wrath of these Drs. The first thing you will hear is "You always seemed to get the money for the drugs you were using while in active addiction didn't you?" Which angers me so much I'd like to drive his teeth to were his tonsils used to be. Then if you engage these Drs. into further dialogue about money, they tell you to leave, find another Dr. or they will call the police. Nice ha? I'm going to try and wean myself off of the subs. I'm not ready to do so yet but I have to. I'm not looking forward to doing this because I have a real fear of getting sick with the withdrawls. All I ask is that anyone who reads these posts, please include me in your prayers. I feel I'll need every one of them. Thanking you all in advance, Jetchef1958


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PostPosted: Tue Sep 27, 2011 10:51 am 
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Please don't let this push you off sub too soon! If you do not feel you are ready it could be very dangerous to your recovery. May I ask what dose your at? A proper taper can take a long time, even up to a year. Sub is so powerful that you should get down to around .125 or so before jumping. Which means you will still be stuck with this Dr. for a while.

I encourage you to use the Dr. finder at the top of the home page and call other Dr.s and ask questions. I see a psychologist/addiction specialist and notice people have more success with these type of Dr.s because it is all they do. If you find one that answers your questions correctly, make an appointment, even if you have to wait a month or two.

I agree with what Hat said, my Dr. charges $100 for a monthly visit. He does not take insurance but it is because he is a small private practice with just him and one office girl and they do not have the man power to deal with the claims. At every appointment they send you home with a bill that has all the codes and info that is needed and you can submit the claim yourself. Also this applies to all his patients not just the one's on sub. He spends 30 min with you at every appointment and more if necessary. I have his personal cell number and am welcome to call him anytime day or night. He is also very understanding and is switching me to generic subutex because my insurance will not cover my meds. If you need ua or blood work he sends you to the lab so your insurance will cover it. I could go on and on about other great things about him. I just want you to see there are Dr.s like this out there and you could find one.

Of course if you decide to taper off and stay with your current Dr. we will all support you and help you thru in anyway we can. Whichever road you choose I wish you the best! Keep us posted.


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 Post subject: Greedy Doctors
PostPosted: Tue Sep 27, 2011 1:36 pm 
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Jetchef1958,

I sure do know what you are talking about. When I moved I ran into the same problem and thought every doctor in this town was terribly greedy and rude.

Called my insurance rep and she said there was a code for Sub treatment. But it was actually talking to my old doctor who told why they do that. My last Sub doctor took my insurance with copay as paid in full. When I brought up this subject he said that the time spent with each patient exceeds the normal allotted time so they have to charge more. He didn't because they are humble people who actually care about their patient. He would spend at least a half hour with me and more if I needed it.

Other doctors aren't as caring as he was. I found another one similar to him but it took two days of phone calls cross referencing the Sub doctors with my PPO approved doctors. At least I found one or I would have to drive 6 hours to see my old Dr. No way could I afford what they were charging.

And I too have heard that same phrase about finding the money to supply our addiction! Wrong! I used my insurance for at least half of it and paid cash at the pharmacy for the rest so it didn't cost me that much. Obviously I was headed for an arrest so I sought help.

Do some phone calls. Like Brezzy_Ann said, there are doctors out there but they are few and far between. It takes a lot of work to find the right one. And even then, it's no guarantee you will find one. Sorry dude.

Good luck finding a caring physician.

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PostPosted: Tue Sep 27, 2011 1:49 pm 
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Jetchef,


Im sorry you have such a crappy doctor. I am lucky....my doctor is great. He takes my insurance so I pay nothing out of pocket to see him. My insurance also pays for most of my sub too. I only pay 20 bucks a month. He spends about 20-25min with me or more if I need it.

I agree with the others, I would try to find a new doctor. There is no reason you should be treated like shit at a doctors office, no matter what your diagnosis.

I will say a prayer for ya jetchef, and I hope that things work out for you.


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PostPosted: Tue Sep 27, 2011 8:58 pm 
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First I want to thank you all for your support. And Breezy, I am at 16 mgs daily. The one thing that I've always known since the early days of active addiction. Addicts such as myself seem to handle the rough spots in life a little differently. I say this because I have absolutely no family to speak of. I do live with my girlfriend but our relationship is having its own issues. My parents are both gone, the only other family is a brother and a couple cousins who shook me loose long ago due to the fallout from my addiction. Even though I haven't touched anything but the Subs for almost a year now, I tried to reach out and wound up getting my hand slapped for my trouble. And the kicker is that my disease never impacted them in the ways that addiction can when the addict gets desperate. I never stole money, property, nothing like that. I guess I embarassed them from my behavior or something. But to be totally honest, I don't know if there was a certain action that I did to piss them off to the point where they don't care whether I live or die. When I was at my lowest point, I attempted to take my life on Thanksgiving Day 1994. When I arrived at the hospital the Social worker wanted my brother's phone number. She called his house, I don't know who she spoke to but they told her to call them back after I'm dead. I guess the point I'm trying to make is that when I posted my story about the greedy Drs. you guys posted me back with wonderful kindness & understanding. It just backs up what I've always said about fellow addicts. If you're an addict, sometimes your best friends are the other addicts. And for me, when it comes down to it. All we really have is each other. We understand the pain that fellow addicts endure on a daily basis. Be it physical or emotional pain, it all hurts. And I want to thank you all again for being there and giving your support so freely. God bless you all!!!


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PostPosted: Tue Sep 27, 2011 9:41 pm 
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Thank you that was a very kind post and I am so sorry that your family has treated you that way. We get labeled as bad people, selfish, why don't you just stop. There are so many people that just don't understand the torment and guilt we put ourselves thru, if it was as easy as to just stop then there would be no such thing as addiction. I am very blessed to have an understanding family but even they don't totally get it, how could they? I agree with you, unless you've lived it a person couldn't possibly fully understand. I don't want to be this way but I am so all i can do is try to improve my life.

I am very happy you feel supported here because that is the reason this forum is here. We are a group of people with a common problem and a common goal and we work together to help all of us reach that goal. I have benefited greatly from this forum and it sounds like you will too. I know what it feels like to feel alone in this problem but stick around because you are not.


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PostPosted: Wed Sep 28, 2011 1:24 am 
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I agree that there are unscrupulous Suboxone doctors who exploit and overcharge addicts, but I wanted to point out something about your thinking in your original post:

You said multiply 20 patients a day times 20 working days a month times 200 bucks a visit and your doctor is making 100K a month off of Sub patients, but that would be 400 patients. But the patient limit for Suboxone is 30 patients for the first year, and then 100 patients after that.

I'm sure that there are doctors who are making money off their Sub patients, but probably not 100K a month.

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PostPosted: Wed Sep 28, 2011 7:32 am 
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Maybe I wasn't clear. What I didn't tell you is that this Dr. actually has many, many more than 100 patients. Let me explain. This guy subcontracts other Drs. to come into his building 2 or so days a week to handle the patients that put his practice over the limit. His practice is in Pgh. Pa. He has patients coming in from hundreds of miles away, from West Virginia, Ohio, & some that travel for almost 6 hours one way. Some come in once a month, others he makes come in every 2 weeks, and each visit for the month is $200. Some even come weekly and pay $100 a week!!! So believe me when I tell you, this guy is making $100,000 a month easily. He has such a bad reputation that certain insurance companies won't fill the Sub scripts. You have to pay cash. And I can't help but to believe that there has to be some kind of kickback for prescribing the Sub Film. I was seeing one of the subcontracted Docs and I told him that I couldn't afford the $10 per film cost. So he started giving me the generic Subutex which I got at Sams Club for $2.90 per pill. 1/3 of the cost of the film. When the other asshole Doc found out I was getting the generic he freaked out and told me that "HE DIDN'T CARE about my problems" I was getting the film or nothing at all!! And if I didn't like it, I was welcome to go elsewhere. I couldn't believe what I was hearing. This coming from a man whos job it is to take into consideration his patients concerns. Not use his prescribing authority as a weapon against the people who need it most. He has probably at least 4 other Docs that come in his office and see his patients then write the scripts using their license so the 100 patient limit is preserved. I hope that I clarified the story for you. Thanks, Jet


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