I finally found out the precise process for going through Veteran’s Choice to get any health care. First, you have to qualify (which I do, they even re-issued the card for me). Then you have to get your VA Health System primary care doctor to authorize use of Veteran’s Choice for every visit. Then you get to actually go to the local physician to get taken care of.
In the case of my possibly getting a hip/femur replacement, it means that I have to go to my VA PC doc, he’ll order x-rays, and then put a consult request into the VA computer system for me to be seen by the nearest orthopedics clinic – Fayetteville. Then Fayetteville looks over the x-rays and visits with me about my situation. IF they agree that I should have the procedure, then AND ONLY THEN will I get to see if there are any local surgeons who work with Veteran’s Choice – and that doesn’t even start dealing with the physical therapy after the surgery.
Double the doctor visits; double the x-rays, potentially double the wait time for treatment – and this is supposed to be BETTER care? I don’t think so! I was so upset by this revelation that I called my dad – and asked him to call his neighbor and good friend: US SENATOR JERRY MORAN to voice my complaint. He (dad) said he could do that today.
We’re in the process of finding a new home for the black leather, overstuffed, love seat we’ve had in our living room for the last 15 years. We still like it, and it’s not in bad shape (for sharing a home with indoor cats), but we need the space for the weight bench that I got to prepare for if I get the hip/femur surgery.
I’ve been doing some research, and determined that the hip replacement and the femur replacement are almost the same surgery. The difference would be that to replace the entire femur should actually be less time in the surgery, because they don’t have to cut the femur with a bone saw and screw on the metal replacement. But it will leave a larger scar. Oh well, to get full range of motion and weight-bearing capability back, I think I can live with the scar.
The weight bench has a leg curl/leg extension attachment, so that I can start with low weight and insanely high reps to condition the muscles before the surgery. Then, after the physical therapist gives me the all-clear, I’ll start working up to heavier weight and get these legs back into the condition they were in before the tumor – at least in theory.
The new weight bench was delivered by FEDEX this morning.
Oh, and in the middle of all the other stuff going on this morning – I got a knock on the front door. When I answered it was one of the city employees who worked on the new sidewalk through our front yard. He said that the city “came into some money” specifically allocated for shade trees over the new sidewalk, and he wanted to know if we were interested in getting a couple. I laughed – I was just on the Arbor Day Society’s website yesterday looking at what we might do along that same idea! Now all I have to do is go out and put some tomato stakes in the yard to mark where the shade trees should be put and the city will do the rest, within the next week! WIN!