So I spent several hours up at the big hospital this morning trying to get myself into the system. I’ve been seeing my old doctor up until this point because his office is closer to the school where I work. Since it was a clinic that was affiliated with the big hospital, no one expected it to be that difficult to transfer to a new doc for my last couple of months.
Yeeeaaaahhh… should have expected that nothing would be so simple.
First, I parked outside the wrong door, on the complete opposite side of the hospital from where I eventually needed to go–a distance equivalent to at least four city blocks. Once inside, it took me three stops (and a wait at each desk) to actually find the person I needed to talk to.
The process needed to begin at the office of the financial counselor, who would take care of my insurance transfer. When I approached her secretary, I was told that I couldn’t see the counselor unless I had brought “proof of pregnancy.” I stared at her over the top of my mountain of a stomach, incredulous. But no, the obvious proof was not enough–I needed written documentation from my doctor’s office. So I began filling out a request form to get my records sent over from the clinic. This seemed to appease the front desk lady, so she went ahead and let me get in line (The financial counselor does not take appointments; you have to go to her office and then wait for her to be available).
After a little while I was admitted to the counselor’s office. I signed a flurry of paperwork and paid $300 in anticipation of my hospital stay (Funny how the red tape disappeared when it was time for them to take my credit card!).
Next I had to get in another line to see an intake nurse. She was nice, but was obligated by law to go over all “new patient” information, which is usually what you get when you first find out that you’re pregnant. So we talked about nutritional supplements, dietary restrictions, optional screenings, changes that will happen (have happened!) to my body, and my family medical history. Our visit ended and I received a packet of free magazines and promotional materials with an encouraging sticker on the outside of the envelope: “Congratulations! Your having a baby!”
My final stop was to sign up for childbirth classes, which apparently I should have done six weeks ago. I learned that normally I would have been out of luck because classes are not offered in July, except that some random teaching nurse happened to be skipping her vacation this year. So the good news is I could get into the class (which I did), but the bad news is that the only option was to go on Tuesdays, which is when we usually enjoy our strange shared meals with our church small group. I am sure that birth classes will be way more fun, though, especially for Stephen!
Anyway, now it’s all taken care of and I’m officially transferred. I will miss my nice doctor from the small, easy-to-navigate office of the Waco clinic, but I’m glad to get settled into the hospital in the town where I actually live.
And as of today I’m 30 weeks- 10 to go!