I got some less than encouraging news this morning.
I had a conversation with a representative of the Massachusetts DIA’s legal department. After I explained my situation to her, she told me that while what the plastic surgeon’s office told me they want to do is unethical, it is not illegal and does not constitute abandonment. She referred me to some information on the Agency’s web site to back this up.
This made me very unhappy.
On the other hand, my wife made a call to the Massachusetts Medical Board. While they basically told her the same thing that DIA told me, the person she spoke with told her that we may have grounds for a complaint as far as the ethics of the actions they want to take are concerned.
One thing that I’m pretty sure about is that the surgeon is not aware of this situation yet. As I mentioned when I originally talked about this, the phone call I received was from his practice manager, and she told me that the doc was not reachable. So it’s possible that he may (slim chance, but a chance nonetheless) decide to do it. If he doesn’t, then I’ll have to start the process all over again with a different surgeon. And I will file a complaint. Plus, Martha will let the various ratings agencies (groups like Best Doctors) know what happened and ensure some negative ratings for him.
If this ends up leading to other problems (the biggest one that I can see happening to me is job loss) then I will be seeking relief one way or another.
I hope none of this happens because I have a real need of getting this done. But I have to be prepared if it doesn’t. And that prospect just really, truly, sucks.
UPDATE: Not long after I posted this, I got a telephone call from the claims adjuster. I figure that between the message I left on her voice mail that was a cross between anger and a plea, plus the tirade I blasted the practice manager with, somehow the 10% difference that they were fighting over was resolved….
I’m having surgery next Monday after all.