MS MobilityStrength Multiple Sclerosis

MS MobilityStrength Multiple Sclerosis
As a person with MS, I bring a personal commitment to the work I do.

Tuesday, February 4, 2014

Living with a Serious Chronic Illness

Hospice Care and Palliative Care are not just for 'Seasoned' Senior Citizens.

   Recently I attended a program at our local Senior Citizens Center. Even though I DO NOT look like a 'Seasoned Citizen', I am 59, Ouch! I had my blood  pressure checked, it was OK My bone density, I already new I was pre-osteoporosis. Cholesterol, quick check, OK.
    Many tables with all kinds of handouts and Free stuff. One table caught my attention. Crossroads Hospice. We started chatting about what Hospice is and I learned that Hospice is more than just a service for dying cancer patients. Hospice care is a type and philosophy of care that focuses on the palliation (to relieve or lesson without curing) of a terminally ill or seriously ill patient's pain and symptoms, and attending to their emotional and spiritual needs, also known as Palliative Care. 
     I asked if they assist patients with Multiple Sclerosis? Yes they do. So they do not need to be dying from their illness for assistance? NO!
    Diagnosed with Multiple Sclerosis (MS), a progressive disease of the nervous system, in 1997,  my MS has been on a slow but steady progression over the years. I know that I will not die from MS but complications of MS can be detrimental to my life. I never thought about end-stage multiple sclerosis.
    For people living with multiple sclerosis (MS), the journey from diagnosis to end-of-life may range from a nearly normal life expectancy with death from cancer or heart disease to a more progressive disease course with increased disability and severe debilitating symptomatology. 
    Due to the unpredictability of MS, it is imperative to help patients plan for possible outcomes in ways that enhance quality of life and foster independence and self-actualization for as long as possible. Health care professionals are encouraged to explore and discuss Palliative MS Care options and strategies throughout the disease course in order to avoid the pitfalls of last-minute or nonexistent plans of care.
    With diseases such as MS, for which there currently is no cure, palliative care expertise can help in all stages of the illness. A palliative approach offers help with symptoms, and help in anticipating and planning for issues and decisions that are likely to come up as the disease progresses. This ensures that a person's wishes will be met at any stage of the disease. At the end-stage of MS, people commonly face some particular challenges. More...
    There is also another website to visit that is a Community Information and Resource Guide for the state you live in. Check this website out~ Serious Illness 
    These agencies are here to help you with information, referrals and support service.

Please also visit my website: 'MS MobilityStrength Multiple Sclerosis'

Thank you for your interest in my blog.

Monday, February 3, 2014

What NOT to Ask at Your Annual Wellness Visit

Caution: Not all wellness visits follow the protocol as written below! Check with your doctor and/or insurance provider.

What is a Wellness Visit?

An annual visit with a primary care physician (PHP) to receive your yearly physical and discuss your health.

Annual Physical Exam: The Basics
The physical exam is an essential part of any doctor's visit. Surprisingly, though, there are no absolutes in a routine physical. A good doctor may be thorough or brief, according to your individual circumstances, any new medical concerns you may have, and his or her personal style. A good doctor will spend time listening to your concerns and providing counseling for your particular needs.

Most people have experienced many aspects of the annual exam.

History. This is your chance to mention any complaints or concerns about your health. 
Your doctor will also likely quiz you about important behaviors, like smoking, excessive alcohol use, sexual health, diet, and exercise. The doctor will also check on your vaccination status and update your personal and family medical history.

Learn more at WEB MD 

I was diagnosed with Multiple Sclerosis (MS) in 1997 and I have two doctors, my Neurologist and my Primary Care Physician (PHP). I see my Neurologist every 6 months and my (PHP) once a year for wellness visits or as needed.

In November of 2013 I had my yearly wellness visit with my (PHP). Everything went well and I had a new medical concern that I discussed with her. Remember I have MS and I was experiencing something out of the ordinary. This was my chance to mention any complaints or concerns about my health right? 

My statement arrives from this worldwide known health care facility and I was charged for TWO visits, for the same day, 1 preventive visit and 1 office visit. I make the call to inquire as to why I was charged for two visits?

Are you sitting down? (I know you are) Well here it goes~ I was charged for 2 visits because my new medical concern had nothing to do with my preventive visit. But she is my (PHP) and shouldn't I mention any new medical concerns I have? I remained calm, (inside I was doing a slow burn). The customer service person tells me that there is an allotted time for preventive exams and asking about a new medical concern adds more time to the appointment thus the additional visit charge. I added, (with a little irritation in my voice), that I was asking about an MS symptom, which the doctor knows I have, and if this is something that should be further checked? This customer service person stood firm with the way it was billed. 

I questioned her about future preventive visits and asked if I should remain quiet and not express any new medical concerns? And she said yes.
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