August 23, 2011
I thought here would be a good place to let folks know of some current office issues and upcoming changes. First I wanted to mention the fact that your medications are abusable and sell-able. This may be a shock to some of you (although I have absolutely no idea why it could possibly be). I keep having patients tell me that their medications were stolen out of their purse, their car, or their medicine cabinet. They then assure me that NO ONE knows what they are taking. For the clueless out there, I know, my office staff knows, the Pharmacy workers know, your family know, your kids know, etc etc. Count up the numbers, out of every 8 people who know you take these meds, 1 to 2 are either drug dealers or addicts. You can’t tell who they are by looking. I treat them for a living, and I would have a problem identifying them on the street. Get a safe, and keep your medications in it, taking out only your daily supply. I am tired of being asked for refills, and will simply fire patients for being irresponsible with their medications. Pain and addiction treatment medications have street value, simply put. Stop being naive about what you are taking.
We have a policy of drug testing EVERY SINGLE patient in the office, not just ones we become suspicious of. If you don’t have insurance, or if you have Medicare or Oregon Health Plan, then be prepared to pay additional money for any office visit where you are asked to give a sample (to cover our cost of the testing). Insurance patients will be charged based on insurance co-pays. This will be mandatory, and refusal to give a sample on your part will in turn mean a refusal to treat on my part. For those that wish to try to cheat the test I should probably let you know in advance we are not going to have “cut off” levels like most labs, so we will find the drugs at a very low level. If you are screwing around with illegal drugs while taking pain medications then please plan to find another doctor. If we find illegal substances at any level, we will simply offer a detox and referral to the doctor of your choice, sending along a copy of the drug test with every referral note.
Other changes are coming in the office as more and more doctors are losing their practices to increased regulatory scrutiny we need to find ways to stay open. For this we will be changing office practices when it seems we need to.
Filed Under: Dr.s Notes
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