3 Feb

I’m telling you all – this cancer thing is literally a full time job. UGH! I am doing pretty well actually. But, today was just one of those days where I had to spend a bunch of time on the phone, navigating, pleading, arguing etc. with my insurance provider (or, actually the branch of it that I am in – Greater Newport Physican’s Group – GNP) and the medical facility where I receive treatment (and have been receiving treatment since April 2nd, 2009, my first day of chemotherapy).

Anyway, I got a call from GNP this morning telling me that they believed that everything was worked out, (see today’s earlier post: “Now What?”),Β  but, that I would hear the final word from the treating facility. Anyway, I finally got my answer – that I WOULD be able to continue my needed treatment at their facility at the end of the business day today.

You can be sure there was talk amongst lawyers today on this one. I may sue them, I may not. But, most certainly I have grounds to do so. But, right now my focus is and must be on being cured. So, after hearing the crappy news this am that my former doctor was not going to allow me to continue treatment at their facility, I had to go through a ton of hoops, make a bunch of calls, sit around and wait by the phone (skip my physical therapy treatment as well – because God forbid I should miss their call and then where would I be) and just deal with stupidity all day long.

But, Dr. Hurvitz up at UCLA told me something a long time ago that yet again gave me the courage to go after these people and fight for what I am supposed to have – she said: “Lisa, you are in the driver’s seat with them.” (She told me this after I had told her of what had happened – my near death experience caused by their negligence, the inaccurate information I was given by my doctor, his refusal to even read my file, it is far too much detail for today – and, besides,Β  it is all covered in this blog – if you care to read all about it, just go back to April and start there) πŸ™‚

She said that I was in the driver’s seat because what they had done and what they have failed to do for me was “complete malpractice” (the anaphylactic shock that was caused during my second chemo from their prescribing the wrong premedications prior to my treatment, etc.)

So, why would I want to stay there, you might ask? I don’t have to see the doctors there and the doctors do not administer the treatment. The nursing staff does. And, one nurse in particular – Dawn, is the only person who can consistently get in an IV line. She is also, just a saint and absolutely saved my life – truly – she did.

I really would not be here today if it were not for Dawn. There are other excellent nurses there but, Dawn is sort of my angel. I was seconds away from not coming out of anaphylactic shock – I knew I was dying, I couldn’t breathe, and I felt everything in my body just collapsing in on me – by far the scariest day of my life. I could not speak, I could not alert anyone to my situation – it all happened so incredibly fast. But, to my incredible, incredible great fortune, a woman who was there visiting her mom (and happened to be a cancer nurse) walked into the room as I was going through this and immediately grabbed Dawn. Dawn acted so incredibly fast and truly saved my life. So, you might say there is a bond there. The treatment that I receive now is not chemo, but it still requires an IV and it still presents some potential risks (I am just a tough patient – I react to things in ways that many don’t). So, I feel most comfortable having Dawn.

It will probably be a little weird returning there now that everyone knows how I feel about my former doctor – but so what. I felt it last time. And, last time I was there, Dr. Burtzo already knew anyway – it was clear from the fact that every time he had to go to the nurses station – he would walk all the way around to avoid me – kind of amusing actually. He usually comes by the treatment area and says something stupid to us (the patients connected up to IV’s). An example of one of his stupid sayings is “Oh, look at you? You’ve got the best seat in the house!” – referring to anyone who is hooked up, getting hours of chemo in a particular chair that has a view of the outdoors. He says the same thing every time. I wonder if he has ever had an original thought. But, not last time πŸ™‚Β  He was quite noticeably over on the other side and walked all the way around to make that happen. Well, I guess he will be getting a little extra exercise on my treatment days. Ha, ha, ha.

Trust me, I didn’t, and won’t, miss him one bit πŸ™‚

So today was another day hijacked by cancer, but at least I won. I just wish I didn’t have to fight so hard for it. It is tiring and all-consuming. I had other plans for today. But, for now at least, it looks like we are back on track.

So hopefully tomorrow I can get to today’s planned “to do list”.

Much love to all.


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