Alright, so here is the deal...I'm angry. It could be various things. It could be the fact that I'm just blah as of late, but this issue hasn't helped me. Not one bit. So I will now rant about this issue. Consider this my open letter to Cabell Huntington Hospital. I'm going to use their name often, as hopefully someone in their PR department searches for the name over & over & that's how they came to find my blog last time.
So, for you new readers or people with bad memories, I'll now provide you with links to the back story. Feel free to skip over if you already know this stuff.
First, I wrote a blog about a response to a letter I'd sent. It was a nice, happy post with me happy over the results I'd received.
Then a couple months later I get a call from my midwife, telling me a director had gotten my letter & wanted to speak with me. There I also shared my angry letter with anyone who may have wanted to read it.
I'm not going to bother to link you to the post where I talk about it because I just mention it in passing, but I tried a few times & never got ahold of this woman. I was convinced it was pointless & just really some weird attempt to network with my midwife.
Same day I post that, I call again & she takes my call. Just about the call me, of course. Yeah, sure, right.
I then posted about that phone call, where she told me she was directed to my blog & how I was amazed she'd found it.
At the end of that call, she was going to call me back the following week. I forget if I mentioned the reason why, but basically she was going to check to make sure they already didn't have a support group for people who've lost children. She blew smoke up my ass (yes, she did), telling me how they'd send out letters, give me a room, provide refreshments, the works. If there was one, she was suppose to give me all the info about it for us, though I've looked & found nothing. So I was hopeful that maybe my loss could open a door for other parents.
But you see, that door never actually existed. It's been 2 weeks now & I've heard nothing. Hence me deciding smoke was blown up my ass.
In that convo she was kinda defensive about not being able to contact me on the phone. She claimed the number she had for me didn't work. Mind you, the patient advocate contacted me at the number without problems. I now assume that this woman never did see my letter, unless she read it on my blog. Perhaps it was written wrong on whatever report had to be filled out about my complaint & that's why they couldn't get ahold of me. Yes, I got a new number since then because of a new phone, but my old phone was still active up to pass the date when she contacted my midwife & said they couldn't get ahold of me. Please note, they could have mailed me anything at anytime if they wanted to contact me, but again, I think it was more of a way to insure my midwife didn't harbor bad feeling towards them. Gotta keep getting clients, you know?
She also mentioned my picture of Joel, which honestly makes me angry now that I look back on it. Do not compliment my sons picture as a way to suck up to me.
Cabell Huntington Hospital was the same hospital Jules was taken to after his seizure. That's important because of this...
We've already received our bills for that visit. A week to the day, that hospital visit was already submitted to my insurance.
Cabell Huntington Hospital never cared about me, never cared about my son. They obviously don't care when they don't give a grieving mother a phone call about a support group to help her grieve for her dead son. Yes, they deliver many, many babies. But I'm convinced that while some people working there may care, the hospital administration does not. Again, some do, but the people I've dealt with recently obviously do not. When a bill from a busy hospital is submitted & dealt with faster than an individual can call a mother of a dead baby back about a support group, that person does not care.
This doesn't take away from the first contact I had with a very nice woman named Jennifer. I continue to believe she was genuine in her comments. But anything after that has been a total & complete joke. And it's even more ridiculous that I wasn't the one who opened this line of discussion, they did. Me bitching & moaning because they won't respond to me if I started the contact would be lame. But to come to me & ask this & that...at least follow through. It's the least you can do. Really, it's the least.
Cabell Huntington Hospital...please know I think you are pathetic. Now part of my mind wonders if maybe, just maybe, that woman hadn't held us up for those few minutes my son would have been alive. He was not confirmed dead. Not finding heart tones with a doppler doesn't mean anything, what we heard could have been a faint pulse for all we knew. But as your fine employee sat on her ass behind her window being a sarcastic, power hungry cunt witch, my son could have died as we stood there asking for help for our baby.
Oh yeah, stop sending me bills for ultrasounds. I'm not paying you the $45 out of principal. In fact, I wrote a letter for that as well. Here it is, in all it's glory:
To Whom It May Concern:
I have received a bill for services on account number *******. On the bottom on said bill there was a notice telling me that if I dispute the validity of the debt I would need to contact you. This is my letter to notify you that I dispute the validity of the debt.
From this office what we now assume to be an incorrect report was sent to my provider from my 12/29/08 date of service, leaving out information that my unborn son may have a medical condition. It was never followed up on because we weren’t notified that such a possibility existed. We only found out in my 3rd trimester because we went back for a positioning scan while they believed we’d finally returned to find out if our child had a medical condition. On that day, we were told he did in fact have a medical problem & would need monitored weekly to insure his safety. For whatever reason, I’m not being billed for anything on that date of service in April.
On the 4/23/09 date my son was yet again misdiagnosed with not having the medical condition just a week before we were told he had. We were then told to not worry and not come back, that nothing was wrong.
Well, 3 weeks later my son was dead. I delivered my 40 week stillborn son, Joel, 2 days later after a 26 hour long induction. We have since learned that he did in fact have said medical condition, and chances are that lead to his demise, which could have possibly been prevented if my son was properly monitored those last few weeks.
Because of this, I find the services given to myself and my unborn child were incompetent at best, which leads me to dispute the validity of this debt based on the fact that services that are being charged for were obviously not rendered correctly since my unborn child was misdiagnosed with an obvious defect and possibly died from complications related to said defect.
I’m really unsure what is worse…being asked to pay for such incompetence or the phone call from the ultrasound facility I received following my due date on the day before my sons memorial service asking me how my delivery was and how my baby was doing since being born.
Thank you for your time
Here is where I was going to share more details of who I went to & who I saw, but Adam frowns on that idea. But I will say this...I love talking & if anyone would like any personal reviews of perinatal "specialist" in the area, please feel free to contact me.
But you know who I don't want to contact me? Cabell Huntington Hospital. If anyone there wants to do anything for me, it would be to contact the fine billing department & have me stop being billed for incompetent care at one of their related facilities.
My anger & bitterness about this situation was totally gone a few months ago. Totally. I no longer harbored any ill will to any of these people. Now, that's tarnished. And instead of leaving me with a feeling of vindication, I'm left with a feeling that my pain & suffering was thrown aside, that my request for a support group for myself as other parents was ignored. Maybe their billing department should start dealing with these situations. They are much more prompt.
If I'm ever lucky enough to become pregnant again, I will not use anything related to this hospital, nor will I use this hospital. I'll drive myself an hour away to Charleston to see people who maybe, just maybe, know what they are doing & will perhaps follow through on their promises & offers of assistance. And the more I think about that, the more I really do think what maybe could have been different...from that first ultrasound to that day at the OB window when we were denied emergency medical treatment.
It's disgusting, the entire thing. I deserve better, my son deserved better, every baby & parent deserves better. I will have to make peace with this myself, as no one affiliated will help me with it. I've had to make peace with more tragic things, so I know I can do it. I just really shouldn't have to.
But hey, at least Jennifer was nice. Too bad we can't clone her.
-Joel's angry mom