Thursday, May 20, 2010


Banning Avenue Clinic
Family HealthServices Minnesota, P.A.
White Bear Lake, MN

When I moved from Moundsview MN to White Bear Lake MN, I changed medical clinics so I didn't have to drive all the way from my old clinic in Coon Rapids. I had been using Allina for years. I was very happy with them but it was just too far to go. I looked for a new clinic near my new apartment complex. I found Banning Avenue Clinic in downtown White Bear Lake. It's housed in a nice new office in a nice building. I thought I would be happy with it. It's run by Family HealthServices Minnesota. I haven't had any prior experience with them. I now intend to find a different clinic. I'm completely appalled and disgusted by their lack of proper administrative work. I've been given the run around and have not been treated well. I've made numerous phone calls trying to get satisfaction. All I wanted was my medical paperwork. I'm trying to get it in the midst of dealing with a brain lymphoma and getting ready to go into the hospital for extensive chemotherapy.

I was taken to St. Joseph's Hospital on May 5. They thought I was going to die. They thought I had a very aggressive brain tumor. Finally biopsy results showed that it's a CNS lymphoma, which is better than having what they thought I had.

It took quite some time for all the paperwork to get to my primary care physician. Apparently the hospital didn't know who that was. I have no idea why not. By the time I was temporarily out of the hospital and living on steroids to reduce brain swelling, I was spending a lot of time trying to get the paperwork in order. The hospital and clinic should have been the ones to do that. Banning Avenue Clinic was just terrible. I couldn't get any satisfaction at all. They kept putting me off and telling me it would get done. In actuality it didn't get done at all. It's still not done.

Banning Avenue Clinic has a lot to answer for. My doctor might be good, but the administration is totally unacceptable. I called again today but to no avail. I was transferred to their central processing department. They had no records of my lymphoma. None. Zilch. I was so stressed by then that I started crying. Then I screamed at the lady I was talking to on the phone. She transferred me back to my clinic. Then I was transferred a couple of more times. Finally a lady said she would look into it and call me back.

Look into it? They've been looking into it for two weeks now. What do these people do with their time all day? They certainly aren't helping patients to resolve these issues. This is unfathomable!

The lady from the clinic finally called me back a little while ago. She said they would need to see me before they could fill out my paperwork. I was previously told that they would fill it out. I expected it to be all completed by now. I'm waiting on my Vacation Donation, my short term disability from Hartford and a couple of other important papers. The Minnesota Department of Health, where I work, is waiting to get them. They can't do their part until they get all the paperwork from my doctor. The clinic is not cooperating at all. I have never in my entire life had such a terrible experience at a clinic before. There is no way I should have to be going though this while dealing with a CNS lymphoma and getting ready for an intense course of chemotherapy that will last eight weeks, followed by radiation therapy for about five weeks. After that I might have to have the Cyberknife treatment. Paperwork and administrative work is the last thing I should have to worry about.

Not only that, but the Central Processing Dept of this clinic told me that they don't even have a release form from me. I only completed about five of them. Such incompetence!

I was just told that the doctor can't complete my paperwork unless he sees me for this condition first. I have to go to the clinic tomorrow at 11:30 and see him. It's my understanding that the Primary Care Physician is supposed to be the one who deals with all the paperwork, which he or she often gets from any other hospitals and clinics that are involved in the care process. When dealing with a neurological problem, that includes my neurosurgeon, my neuro oncologist and others on my team. The Primary Care Physician is supposed to coordinate. He's supposed to complete the paperwork and send it to the proper place, in this case MDH Human Resources and Hartford Insurance. I was told that the FMLA papers have been submitted. I hope at least that part is true.

I might call my State Senator Sandy Rummel and let her know about this. This kind of runaround should never, ever happen. I've got enough to deal with regarding my health itself. A couple of weeks ago I didn't even know that there was something large growing in my brain that did not belong there.

It's my biggest hope that this kind of incompetence does not happen too frequently at other clinics. It should never happen at all. It's unthinkable!


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