Saturday, September 27, 2014


I will have a complete story on Monday or Tuesday - I am just trying to verify the spelling of the name of a particular cardiologist.

To keep this short my cardiologist called over to Valley Baptist to see if they could do a quick heart blood enzyme test.  I was then going to do a follow up with my VA cardiologist.  The cardiologist team at the VA Harlingen may be the best in the LRGV.

After getting to Valley Baptist I was ignored for over 4 hours.  Clearly they did not see an emergency.  The emergency room doctor then tells me, before he even listens to my heart and lungs, or does the blood work I need to be admitted for an emergency cardio cath.  My cardiologist saw no need. 

I tell him to do the blood work first and then I will decide.  After several hours the nurse tells me the VA had approved the procedure and that I was being admitted.  She could not tell me anything about the test results.  Thursday night when I met the first and only cardiologist I saw I would have walked out, but for the fact it was about 10:45 p.m.  You see maybe 2 years ago, although I made the appointment with Jaime Silva, I saw this doctor instead.  I never saw Jaime Silva.  A report of the test results was prepared for the VA. 

The first thing my VA doctor and I noticed was, whoever the report was for, it was not for me.  My entire medical history was wrong along with some other identifying information.  Other than my name, nothing appeared accurate.  If they had my medical history wrong, why would we believe the report was otherwise accurate?  Nothing in my medical history then and Thursday night had changed except now he was recommending an emergency cardio cath.  I was tired so I stayed to speak with the cardiologist who had agreed to do the procedure on Friday.  The one I saw no longer does the procedure because of over exposure to radiology.  My research shows he is 58, but he looked like he was in his late 70's.  This is why I need to verify his name.

They kept me up all night long doing the same testing over and over again.  One time they came within 5 minutes of one another for more blood work - which meant poking me again.  Short of a true medical emergency I should not be given blood thinners.  My colon is subject to bleeding which is made a lot worse by blood thinners.  This cardiologist had my medical history and with no indicator for blood thinners ordered two very painful injections into my abdomen.

Anyway Friday pasted with more and more tests, with no one willing to tell me what was happening, other than they could not do the procedure because the VA had in fact not approved anything.  About 2 p.m. I was told they had the approval and the doctor was on his way.  When I was leaving the nurse told me she informed Dr. Gomez of the approval at 11 a.m. and was surprised he had not seen me because he had been up on the floor several times.

At 4:15 they told me the doctor wanted me to remain in the hospital, with no evidence of a problem, until he could get to me on Monday.  I was done.  There was clearly no emergency - just billing fraud.

I will be filing a formal complaint with the billing fraud section at the VA. 

Until Tenet Healthcare is no longer the owner of Valley Baptist, it will take me being forced into Valley Baptist before I go back.  It was all fraud.  The cardiologist who saw me at night goes to VB to convince people they need to allow first Jaime Silva to do cardio caths and if you reject Jaime Silva he then tells you Jaime Gomez.  Jaime Gomez is the one who never saw me and tried to get me to hold over until next week while they continued to bill the taxpayers.

I said enough is enough.  They had me sign a statement I was leaving against medical advice even though they had no record by any doctor supporting the claim.  Valley Baptist is about holding people for billing fraud based on fear.

These pictures are from my room in the telemetry unit - this means heart monitoring.

This is the proof that Tenet Healthcare cares not about what is happening in its Brownsville facility.  This is what happens when the VA gives exclusive contracts to certain entities.  The same is happening with its new exclusive contract with TRI-West.  It is time the VA end its contract with Valley Baptist.
Under TRI-West veterans are being denied outside care while TRI-West tries to find doctors who will agree to their billing.  Before TRI-West we could go to any doctor willing to bill Medicare rates. We have now lost our outside doctors, and in fact cannot get outside care because TRI-West cannot find specialists who are willing to work under their terms.  TRI-West's profits are more important than the care of veterans.
With TRI-West good luck calling the person assigned to you.  You will always get voice mail and they do not return calls.  Good luck using their complaint system.  It is designed to keep you from filing a complain.  If you want them to read your complaint you must limit the words otherwise it is so small they cannot read it.  Then you must wait for them to receive it in the mail, and then another 7 days for them to investigate.


Anonymous said...

Bobby, I have found the Harlingen Valley Baptist better in terms of Physicians and hospital care even though it is owned by Tenet. Have you tried Valley Baptist in Harlingen?

BobbyWC said...

Yes - that was before Tenet bought it - it took threat of a lawsuit to get them to give me my medical records. The VA did not have them as alleged by VB, and they would not give them to me. The head of the hospital had to order them to release my medical records to me. The test results were inaccurate. The harness was improperly put on me so the readings were bad.

The one they had on me Thursday and Friday past kept on turning off and the taps kept falling off and no one would come to fix them. After a while I would reapply the taps myself. It was wireless so the nurses should have seen at their station it was not working - the problem is they were not working so they did not know.

These guaranteed contracts take away competition and excellence. There are many doctors who still care even with a guaranteed contract - but far too many just go for the money without a concern for the quality of care.

Bobby WC
Bobby WC

Anonymous said...

" I tell him to do the blood work first and then I will decide."

The blood work will tell you if you had a heart attack. However, the cardio cath. will tell you if your arteries are clogged up and the need for a stent or a bypass to be done. From my experience, cardio cath. save you lots of pre-test cost and truly give you a picture of your heart condition. This is no criticism of your actions but if you have a heart condition you do not need additional stress in your life.

BobbyWC said...

You are 100% correct about the cardio cath. But here is the deal - they kept on running the same tests over and over again which showed nothing.

My abdomen is black and blue from the two injections.

My cardiologist told me before I went to Valley Baptist my blood flow is very good.

He just wanted the blood test as part of building a picture.

It is a lot cheaper for the VA to schedule the cardio cath than to hold someone in the hospital for 5 days doing endless tests.

They never should have taken the care from my cardiologist. There was no emergency. Why created the extra costs.

I only agreed to stay because they told me the VA agreed. This was false. I found it odd because by cardiologist saw no urgency - but an emergency room doctor who had not even listened to my heart had decided I needed this emergency cardio cath - I was ready to leave then - except my doctor wanted the blood test done.

But then they told me the VA agreed I should get the test. I assumed it was my cardiologist - then I learned the next day they never got permission.

When they told me I had to stay in that dirty room - the shower drain was broken and could have cut my foot - there was no urgency - the decision could have been made at the VA by my cardiologist who would have chosen someone he has confidence in.

On the cardio cath I so agree. Finding doctors now who consider the stress test worthless is easy. They have had too many patients die on them after a normal stress test. But a lot keep on doing the worthless test because they make their money on procedures and the stupid insurance companies would rather pay for multiple tests instead of the one.

While I agree in some cases another test may be better - depending if they know the real problem - nothing is better than the cardio cath - and now that they can go threw the arm it is safer and I hope cheaper since it does not require you spend the night in the hospital.

My bigger issue is there was clearly no emergency.

The VA is subject to billing fraud every day. It is up to us veterans to identify it and report it. Stealing money from the VA makes you [not you - I mean the doctors and hospitals] the lowest form of life.

Bobby WC

Anonymous said...

Cardio cath. will tell if your blood is flowing freely through your arteries. If everything is fine, you can leave the hospital the same day. However, if they have to put a stent in your artery, staying a day in the hospital after the procedure is advised in order to monitor against a blood clot in your system. When it come to the heart, your body will tell you if there is an emergency. You learn from experience the hard way.