I applied for some patient assistance programs through the drug companies that make my medications. I started only with the 2 insulins that I use. Within a month, I had an acceptance letter for Humalog. The insulin would be shipped to my doctor's office where I would go pick it up. The letter said that the insulin should arrive within 2 weeks.
Enter Felicia, the patient assistance program coordinator for the practice. After 1 week, I call to see if the insulin had arrived. It had not, but she says she will call when it comes in. Another 2 weeks goes by, I hear nothing, so I call her. She says she hasn't seen anything, but she will look around and asks if I am using vials or pens. I tell her I am using vials. She says she will call me back.
She calls me back and asks how much insulin do I use per day. I tell her. She says, "Well, I have 8 bottles of Humalog in here that are not labeled as samples, so they must be yours." Based on further conversation, the insulin had been there at least a week. I go in and pick up my meds.
A month later, I get approval for my Lantus. I call the office and ask if it had arrived, as the letter stated it should be in the doctor's office within a week of the letter being sent. I got this letter on Feb 13th, it was sent on the 10th. On the 13th, the insulin had not arrived. However, they did have a spare bottle in the office that had not been picked up by another patient that I could have to hold me over. I did have refills left on my last prescription, which Felicia had asked about, but at about $110 a pop, I could not afford to get it refilled at the pharmacy, hence getting into the assistance program. This bottle could hold me over until the shipment came in.
A week later, I called again, still no drugs. I give it a break and called again Thursday last week. Still no drugs. I call the program on Friday and ask them about if/when the drugs were shipped. After confirming the correct address, they tell me the drugs were signed for the morning of Feb 13th and who had signed for it. I call the office again, speak to Felicia, ask if my drugs had arrived, she says no. I tell her I had just gotten off of the phone with the program and told her what they had told me. She says she's going to look around and call me back.
I get a call back and she says she has 4 vials of lantus that aren't labelled, so they must be mine. She says that sometimes the packing labels, while they will have the patient's name on them, the name is very tiny and can be missed by office staff. She said she'd talk to the front desk ladies about it. This is where I pretty much stop believing most of what she says. Yay for passing the buck!
Throughout all of this, I also found out that my father-in-law who is also a patient there and uses a few of the assistance programs, has had very similar issues with her. She submits the wrong forms over and over, refuses to take responsibility and make phone calls, etc. He's way worse off than I am (currently in the hospital recovering from triple bypass) and really desperately needs his drugs. I could always pinch some pennies and not pay a bill or two to get my drugs, his are far too expensive to do that.
Today I will be going up to the office to pick up my drugs, submit paperwork for another drug, and hopefully talk to the office manager to lodge a formal complaint about Felicia. She's screwing around with peple's life-saving medications that we cannot afford. In this economy, she can certainly be replaced by someone more competent (me me me!). I plan on updating once I speak to the office manager.