Joan, I hope I'm wrong but it sounds to me like it's all financial. You said that your friend is again on Medicaid, but a different type. From research I did online yesterday, only regular Medicaid will pay for a transplant, as of July '99. She needs to see if she can switch to regular Medicaid. Also, to follow up with the foundation and see if they are on board with helping financially. I get help from a charity fund at Mayo, but have to reapply every year. If they plan to do a scan, an MRI or CT scan with contrast would make a lot more sense than a sonogram/ultrasound. Are you sure you have the right info on what they plan to do in Jan.? A scan will tell them a lot about her liver's current condition and also if there is cancer. An ultrasound is more low-tech and can denote masses and other changes, but is not the scan of choice when a person gets to the point of being a transplant candidate, or has/has had cancer...but is much cheaper than the others.
I hope this info helps. There is some sense to what they said about the holidays. There's not much regular staff around during the holidays, and unless it's literally a life or death emergency, I don't recommend surgery at that time. I don't like the gap between the scan and her being seen again, but I know that most transplant centers don't work as quickly and efficiently as Mayo (which has me seeing my hepatologist 4 hours after I have my bloodwork and scans.)
You are such a good friend to be trying to help her.