I have asked myself the very same question. Last year my PCP got sick and ended up in the hospital for sometime and his patients were just left hanging for a few momths. He eventually hired a part-time pain Doc to come in and see his PM patients so they could get their meds. He wasnt able to come back to fulltime status and even though he certainly is old enough to retire he didnt want to leave his patients with other course but to find another Doc knowing how hard that would be for us. 90 percent of his practice is medicaid/medicare.
The new fill in Doc would not take either of those and no insurance of anykind since he had already retired and didnt know how long he was going to stay out of retirement. that left us the patients having to pay $120 a month for a visit to get our meds,he would not do refills either no matter what your on.
That is alot of money to someone drawing less then $900 on SSD. I have paid it since July of last year and in the office this month the receptionist told me to ask for a itemized statement and medicare would refund 80% to me. I was enraged. How come no one told us we could have been doing this all along? I have had to do without alot just to be able to get my meds each month and pay for that visit.
I did as she asked and talked to medicare and they will reimburse me. That will be a good chunk of change coming back to me and I sure can use it. Still makes me mad and I cant figure out how they sleep without remorse as many folks I am sure lost their PM for the inability to pay that $120.
You can talk to the Doc but it doesnt mean you will get past the front desk on your next visit without the money in hand. I suppose if they make adjustments for one they would have to make it for all so the out front folks dont usually allow the Doc to do that.
Sorry you have had to go thru this but I until the laws change regarding how they charge and how much if that's possible there will remain those who get better care based on ability to pay or not.