So, remember how I had that great Nurse Practitioner? Well, the same time I got pregnant, she left the clinic I was attending and went to work at an AIDS clinic. She sent my files to an OB, and to the shrink at the Reproductive Mental Health Centre, to make sure I would get proper care. Only the shrink says she isn’t responsible for my prescription/dosage on Wellbutrin – she said a GP should be following that. The OB said the same thing. So I needed a GP.
Took me forever to find one, and she’s this timid little newbie East Indian/South African lady who has the enthusiasm of the young but the lack of confidence that comes with being completely inexperienced. I’ve seen her a couple times and she fails pretty hard at monitoring my depression. For one thing, the first time I saw her she handed me the Hamilton scale with the idea that I should fill it out myself.
To help her get a better baseline for my depression, I promised to get her my files.
This has been an odyssey of complete ridiculousness. First of all, getting my files away from the clinic where I saw my NP was like trying to wrest federal secrets from CSIS. I called twice and no one knew how I could do such an unconventional thing as that. I went down there and got sent to this bureaucratic library o’ files where I had to sign a bunch of paperwork to “release” my information to my GP. But they had difficulty with WHAT files they were supposed to send.
“All of them,” I said.
“Okay, so, like, we’ll send your test results and stuff.”
“No, I want ALL the files sent, because my GP wants to get my depression history so she can know how to monitor me better.”
“Okay, so we’ll just send the files that relate to your depression then.”
“That’s ALL the files.”
“Okay, now, from what dates?”
After that fiasco, I went to the Reproductive Mental Health Centre, where I see a counsellor ever week. I asked if they could have my assessment from the shrink sent to my GP. They said sure, all my doctor had to do was call and ask for them. I gave them the name of my GP, so they would know who was calling.
“I don’t need to sign anything?”
“Nope, just have them call and leave a fax number.”
So I go to the GP’s office, and give them the number for the shrink, and sign a form THERE saying I authorize them to collect this information. It is clearly marked with the clinic’s letterhead, and they fax it immediately to Reproductive Mental Health with a request for my files.
The next time I went in to see the counsellor, the lady at the counter was like “Hey, what’s Dr. Walker’s fax number?”
“I’m supposed to send files to a Dr. Walker…”
“I don’t have a doctor of that name. My doctor’s name is *entirely different East Indian name that also ends in r*.”
“Oh, okay, maybe that’s it. Do you have her number?”
“No, not on me.”
“Okay, we’ll try and look it up, and if we have any problems we’ll call you.”
So I got a call today.
Lady: “Hi, I was wondering if you could give me the number for Dr. Walker? They asked us to send your files.”
Me: “I don’t have a Dr. Walker. My doctor’s name is *entirely different East Indian name that also ends in r*.
Lady: “Oh, okay, maybe that’s it. Do you have her number?”
Me: “I can look it up on the BC College of Physicians and Surgeons website.”
Lady: “Are you near a computer?”
Me: “Sure…” I start typing in her name at the BC College of Physicians and Surgeons website.
Lady: “What kind of doctor is she? Is she your obstetrician?”
Me: “No, she’s my GP.”
Lady: “Oh, okay, and you’re Googling her number?”
Me: “I’m looking it up on the BC College of Physicians and Surgeons website. They list all the doctors.”
Lady: “Carol? I’m getting another call. Can you call me back when you finish Googling her number? Thanks.” *click*
*fifteen seconds later*
Other Lady: “Reproductive Mental Health.”
Me: “Hi, I was just speaking to someone about my GP’s phone number.”
Other Lady: “Okay, when was this?”
Me: “Less than a minute ago?”
Other Lady: “Oh, then you want Ester. Hang on.”
Yet Another Lady: “Hello, BC Women’s operating service.”
Me: “Uh… I’m waiting to speak to the woman who wanted my GP’s number.”
Y.A.L: “Sorry, hon, I can’t help you with that.”
Me: “Can you please transfer me back to Reproductive Mental Health, please?”
Man: “Mental health.”
Me: “Is this Reproductive Mental Health?”
Me: “Could you send me there, please?”
Other Lady: “Reproductive Mental Health. Are you holding for Ester?”
Other Lady: “Ester just went home for the day. Can you call her back?”
Me: “Can you just please give her my GP’s phone number?”
Other Lady: “Oh, okay, sure, what is it?”
I give the number and hang up the damn phone. I swear, if they call me back…