Wednesday, January 16, 2013

I'm Impressed!

Today I had two appointments at Kaiser Permanente.  This is the health care plan we have now.  I had some reservations about a group plan like this as it was Group Health that tried to kill me.  Well, maybe that is a little harsh, but tough.
I met with my new personal physician in mid November.  Basically a get to know.  She renewed my prescriptions, and we chatted a bit about my health history.  That was soon after I had tweaked my knee and she sent me for an X-ray to check it out.  Also said I could do some physical therapy, though I didn't.  
However she said I should go ahead and get a mammogram and pelvic exam.  I was able to schedule those for - today!  
First up was a pelvic with a Nurse Practitioner. I like these kinds of exams with a NP or CNM because I think they have a gentler touch and I know that they have more time allotted for a visit.  Then my mammo was scheduled for 45 minutes later.  One of the benefits of not having a cervix and uterus is not having to endure a pap.  But a pelvic exam is still warranted every several years.  We talked about my one remaining ovary, and I mentioned to her that it was suggested that I have it removed.  Because of  my breast cancer history, and because of the difficulty in doing a manual palpation externally due to some adipose tissue in the area.  In regular speak, it's too much fat over the belly.  Ovarian cancer is very hard to detect until there are symptoms, and at that point the outcome is bleak.  So removing the ovary will probably be best.  It was left in there when I had the other stuff removed in consideration of my heading into my last year of nursing school, and to have been dumped into menopause would have been cruel and unusual punishment!  But now it is doing nothing but hanging around, a potential source of cancer.  
Anyway, the NP said she would discuss it with the surgeon and get back to me.  We talked briefly about diet and exercise.  Off I went to my mammo.  Two no shows for the appointments before mine, so I got in early.  So glad to get that over with.  But now I have to wait until my old films are sent down from B'ham for comparison.  
I had only been home for about half an hour and BOOM there is an email from the NP.  Said she had talked to the surgeon and she first wanted me to have an ultrasound.  No sooner had I finished reading her email, and my phone rang, it was the imaging department calling to schedule my ultrasound.  WOW!  So I got on the books for the 25th.  In my reply to the NP I let her know that the appointment was made.  She wrote back to me within about half an hour and let me know the name of the person "highly recommended" to her for weight loss and I could call and make an appointment with them.  Which I did.  And they were able to do that on the same day as the ultrasound.  
I do love that I can access my own lab tests, and imaging results from my computer.  And my prescriptions are filled for 100 days instead of 30.  Pretty good things to report so far with this plan.  
One other thing to report today, I found an app that uses GPS to tell me how far I have walked, ridden my bike or whatever!  Just carry it in your pocket.  Gives you all the details, time, distance, calories burned, etc. And it was free!!  Which is really important since my PG & E bill was $439!!  For one month!!!  
More on that on a future post.  An investigation has been ordered.....


JoAnn ( Scene Through My Eyes) said...

How great that you like your new healthcare. We had Group Health - fondly known as Group Death before we had medicare - and now we adore medicare. We have access to all of our records, tests and scans, etc. online - which is nice ( all from St. Joe, not necessarily medicare - everyone has that access).

Good luck on the PGE bill - it is more expensive in CA - and more in the high rent areas - but that is outrageous.

Melissa said...

When we lived in California (1996-7), I found out how expensive utilities were! we lived in a small 700sf house, and the cost of utilities was much higher than in our current 2000sf house. Cost of doing business in CA I guess?

I'm curious about the app! what is the name of it?