Alright…two major gripes. I tried to just suck it up, but these are BOTHERING me a lot.
The famed DC-area Eye Center with Dr. Boutros: I received LASIK surgery in January 2001 and loved it. LOVED IT! I told everyone I knew to get LASIK. EVERYONE. After my surgery and the initial follow-up appointments, I tried to go every year…mostly because I was still in the habit of going yearly after wearing glasses and contacts for ten or twelve years. I asked one of the optometrists a few years ago if I still needed to go yearly, since my vision was great, and she told me every 18 months would be fine. That was December 2004. Meanwhile, Life happened, and as in most cases, I forgot to make my appointment for June 2006. In fact, I didn’t remember to make an appointment until a few weeks ago when I started having trouble seeing well while driving at night. I go in, and sure enough, my vision changed (although I had both the technician AND the optometrist tell me that it might be because I was still nursing Cooper…don’t know how, but whatever). The doctor tells me that it’s a minor change, but not really enough to warrant corrective lenses (hello, is she the one driving at night after many hours of staring at a computer screen?). I asked her how bad it had to be before they’d do surgery again, since my vision is guaranteed, and she told me that since it had been so long since I had last been in, that my warranty was void. WHAT?!?!?! Supposedly I was supposed to come yearly for check-ups as part of keeping the warranty on my eyes. People, I honestly do not recall that stipulation…if I had, I would’ve had all sorts of reminders all over the place. And, if that’s the case, how come I was told by a doctor that every 18 months would suffice? Or why hadn’t I received a single reminder card EVER in the 7 years I had been attending that practice? I truly think that they didn’t send reminder cards to help allow people to naturally forget about their yearly check-ups so that they can minimize their chances of paying for someone’s additional corrective surgeries.
VPI Pet Insurance: Ginger needs a new hip…or at least a weird sort of corrective surgery that actually removes the ball of the femur to create a false joint somehow (yeah, don’t pretend to understand human medicine, let alone veterinary medicine). The vet told me it would run somewhere around $800-$1,200. Yeah, that’s dollars, not pesos. *sigh* So I called our pet insurance to see about how much they would reimburse us for the surgery and was told they do not cover hip dysplasia…at all. I asked the rep on the phone to repeat himself. No, I had heard correctly. They will cover all sorts of thing, but not hip dysplasia. He went on and on about how it’s congenital in many breeds, etc., and I interrupted, hopeful, “but she’s a Boston Terrier…they aren’t susceptible to hip dysplasia, just luxating patellas”. He said it didn’t matter, and that they don’t cover luxating patellas, either. So to all of you who have dog breeds where hip dysplasia and/or luxating patellas are prevalent, do NOT get VPI Pet Insurance. Go somewhere else. I actually found one company that does cover it, but they won’t cover it for pre-existing conditions (which would be the case for Ginger). I can’t say that I blame them for having that stipulation. But I cannot believe that a pet insurance company would not cover one of the most prevalent issues with large dogs. Obviously if one of the parents has hip dysplasia, the puppies would have a large chance of having hip dysplasia, too. But hip dysplasia can happen to a puppy that has healthy-hipped parents, just like other birth defects can sometimes spontaneously occur, which is most likely Ginger’s case. But VPI doesn’t care that my poor pup has arthritis severe enough that she will walk on only her three good legs, and cries when she can’t get up on a couch or bed to be near one of us. She’s on pain killers right now to help her manage the pain and get her leg muscle built up again, but she’s only 2-1/2 years old and has many many years of life ahead of her. So shame on VPI, and here’s praying that the vet will allow us to pay them in installments.
Okay…thanks for letting me gripe and complain.