In March of this year, 2008, I scheduled a "free" initial consultation at Med 1st. After seeing and hearing on the television and radio, all the commercials (and even infomercials) about how wonderful the Vax D is that they offer, I was excited that I was finally going to get some relief from the pain I had been suffering with for years!
When I arrived at the office, I was met with a building that was outdated and dirty looking, much to my dissappointment. The women in the office looked and acted very unprofessional. I was handed a stack of paper work that took me approximately 25-30 minutes to complete.
In the paperwork was a diagram of the human body that you were to circle any part of the body that had pain and indicate what type of pain you had. For example, sharp, numbness, etc.. Also there was a form that asked you how the pain impacted your activities. I was very honest and on most I indicated that I just had to be careful when doing some activities and that the pain was mild to moderate. This was only a very small part of the paperwork I filled out.
I was then taken back to a teeny tiny little room. I swear I have never seen a medical exam room as small as this room. I sat there for what seemed like a long time. Finally a very nice nurse came in and asked me some questions, took me in the hall and weighed me and then left, only to return to say that doctor Foltz or Folz (I can't remember his name) didn't like that room because it was so small and dark, so I was being moved.
When he finally came into the exam room where I was finally placed, I was immediately struck by his unprofessional manner. He was saying things like, "I thought for sure I'd being giving you injections in your back today" and "I don't see any lortabs listed on your list of medicines" This is just a small example of what he said to me. He was also cracking stupid corny jokes, which I didn't find funny or necessary. He seemed to be making light of my situation.
I was quite surprised at his demeanor. He told me that he usually sees people who can hardly walk into the office. I told him that I could walk, but I did have back pain and I was not interested in any injections or medications (which he couldn't prescribe anyway, being a chiropractor)
Basically I felt dismissed by this doctor. After explaining that I was intersted in Vax D and only Vax D (Vax D is a traction type of treatment) This doctor (and I use the term very loosely) begrudingly agreed that it might help and that we would start that day. After he walked out in the hallway I heard him say something to someone else about having me see a physical therapist.
Then the nice nurse came back in and told me to put on a gown, because they were going to take xrays. So I put on the gown and she took the xrays and after checking to make sure they turned out, she told me to get dressed.
After I was dressed another woman came into the room and sat down with some papers that she wanted me to sign. I asked her what they were and she told me that Med 1st was out of network for my insurance and that there would be a either, $200 or $300 copay. (at this point several months later I don't remember which it was) So I signed the papers thinking the next step for that day was for me to do Vax D. She then told me to go to the front desk. When I arrived there, the lady wanted to schedule another appointment for me and I told her that the doctor had said I was going to do the traction that day, so she said "hang on a minute, let me call (so and so) to see if they are going to do it" She made a call to another office and then told me that nobody answered, but they never do Vax D on the first day. By this time I was totally frustrated with the whole scenario and quite frankly the only person that even acted like they had one iota of common sense was the nurse, so I was ready to get out of there.
I talked to my family about how this doctor just wanted to do injections in my back and how he reinterated several times about how much worse off his other patients were than me, etc.. I decided I wasn't going to go back. I had done my "free" consultation and I was done with this bunch of clowns! Not one person in that office knew what the other was doing. There was a terrible lack of communication. The doctor had a terrible bedside manner, the women at the front desk looked like street people. All in all it was a very unpleasant experience.
Fast forward to May 14, 2008. I received a bill in the mail for $50 some odd dollars. When I called to inquire as to why I was being billed for a free consultaion I was told that it was for the xrays. I told her I didn't request them, the doctor did and I shouldn't have to pay for them, because I had only wanted the free consultation. She told me that the last set of papers I signed were papers saying that I would pay for xrays and that it would apply to my deductible or copay.
I told her that was a crock because the xrays had already been taken when I signed those papers. She was very short with me and I told her that this was a set up and bunch of bullshit. She said, and I quote! "Honey, I'm not going to listen to this" I told her I wasn't her honey and hung up the phone. I then called the office (the other woman I was talking to was at the billing office) I talked to Peggy this time. Peggy told me that was just the way it was...period. I said, so I'm paying $50 for nothing? She said I could "borrow" my xrays if I wanted them? Borrow them? Who borrows their own xrays?
That very same day, I was mailed a letter stating that my account had been turned over for collections and that I was not to call the office and the amount was raised to $300, instead of $50!
I then looked them up on the BBB website and see that they have an unsatisfactory rating with the BBB. http://evansville.bbb.org/WWWRoot/Report.aspx?site=105&bbb=0482&firm=94941
At this point I'm not sure what's going to happen. I should have been given 30 days to pay the bill, but on the very day that I received the first bill, I'm turned over to a collection agency!
So not only is the doctor a quack, the office personnel is a bunch of vengeful old thin skinned bats!
I'm going to be contacting the BBB and the Attorney General on Monday. At this point, I'm even considering an attorney.
Stear clear of Med 1st.