Help me choose a pulmonologist

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nage234
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Help me choose a pulmonologist

Post by nage234 » Thu Jan 02, 2020 7:27 pm

Hello,

I am turning to the collective wisdom of the group and asking for your help on a potential serious health issue. I am currently being treated for GI issues and the GI doctor asked me to reach out to a Pulmonologist as he noticed something on a recently performed CT scan. I had really bad experiences choosing a doctor and don’t know where to start. The doctors I dealt with seem rushed and don’t spend more than 5 mins with me understanding my concerns (including the current GI doctor and hesitant in going with his referral). I did the usual searches on google, yelp, healthgrades and read the reviews but not sure how to narrow down my choices.

Ideally I am looking for a doctor who will take time to look at my reports and give me his advice on how to proceed.
I have decent PPO insurance and willing to pay for concierge medicine (this seems to be focused more on internal medicine). I live in Los Angeles. Will be grateful for your help.
Last edited by nage234 on Thu Jan 02, 2020 7:36 pm, edited 1 time in total.

sport
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Re: Help me choose a pulmonologist

Post by sport » Thu Jan 02, 2020 7:32 pm

Ask a doctor (any field) you trust for a referral.

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Johnsson
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Re: Help me choose a pulmonologist

Post by Johnsson » Thu Jan 02, 2020 7:40 pm

I have used the internet to find doctors. Referrals from friends are best. If not, I use Healthgrades.com for the geographic area and specialty I'm looking for. Then look at the reviews and read the comments. It works best in highly populated areas.
'In theory there is no difference between theory and practice. In practice there is.' Yogi Berra

anonenigma
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Re: Help me choose a pulmonologist

Post by anonenigma » Thu Jan 02, 2020 7:45 pm

sport wrote:
Thu Jan 02, 2020 7:32 pm
Ask a doctor (any field) you trust for a referral.
+1

There are 63 listed at Cedars:

https://find-a-doctor.cedars-sinai.edu/ ... y+Medicine

tenkuky
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Re: Help me choose a pulmonologist

Post by tenkuky » Thu Jan 02, 2020 7:46 pm

Fortunately, you are in the LA area which contains 2 of the top 5 Pulmonology programs in the US. See here..
https://health.usnews.com/best-hospital ... ulmonology

As for individual doctors, I concur with the recommendation angle (friends/family/your doctor) as online reviews are less than accurate and can be skewed depending on number of reviews etc.

Regattamom
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Re: Help me choose a pulmonologist

Post by Regattamom » Thu Jan 02, 2020 8:11 pm

I have found the specialists that I see through Facebook support groups dedicated to the health issue I have. I found this to be a much better way than reviews online. People in the group who have seen the doctors are available to answer your questions. Most Facebook support groups are closed or have a closed option to help with protecting privacy.

Even if you are dealing with a GI issue but looking for a pulmonologist, a GI support group will most likely have people who have also seen pulmonologists.

I am very happy with my team of doctors now. Good luck to you.

livesoft
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Re: Help me choose a pulmonologist

Post by livesoft » Thu Jan 02, 2020 8:11 pm

I will predict that you will probably not be able to get an appointment in the time frame that you desire for anyone recommended to you, so you will end up at a physician that actually has a time slot open.
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Triple digit golfer
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Re: Help me choose a pulmonologist

Post by Triple digit golfer » Thu Jan 02, 2020 8:15 pm

Sorry to hear about your issues and I hope it all turns out well.

I would ask local Facebook groups or perhaps ask your neighbors on the NextDoor app.

sambb
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Re: Help me choose a pulmonologist

Post by sambb » Thu Jan 02, 2020 8:16 pm

Ironically - good doctors have large referrals and take a long time to get in, and may spend only a brief time with you. On the other hand, an empty waiting room and a doc that spends 1 hour with you might seem great, but you have to wonder why they are so empty. Of course there are exceptions. Goo dluck.

Regattamom
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Re: Help me choose a pulmonologist

Post by Regattamom » Thu Jan 02, 2020 8:23 pm

sambb wrote:
Thu Jan 02, 2020 8:16 pm
Ironically - good doctors have large referrals and take a long time to get in, and may spend only a brief time with you. On the other hand, an empty waiting room and a doc that spends 1 hour with you might seem great, but you have to wonder why they are so empty. Of course there are exceptions. Goo dluck.
Luckily, I found the exceptions and I am hopeful OP does, too. Also, I would add that it isn't always how much time is spent, but whether you are heard and understood. Great staff also makes a huge difference and knowledge of current studies and resources.

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Re: Help me choose a pulmonologist

Post by LadyGeek » Thu Jan 02, 2020 9:09 pm

This thread is now in the Personal Consumer Issues forum (doctor).
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Doom&Gloom
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Re: Help me choose a pulmonologist

Post by Doom&Gloom » Thu Jan 02, 2020 9:13 pm

Do you not have a primary care physician that you trust to recommend or refer you to a pulmonary specialist?

DW & I have the same PCP. She has referred each of us to various specialists--including a pulmonary specialist for me. AFAICT she has not missed yet on a single specialist.

kjsammy
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Re: Help me choose a pulmonologist

Post by kjsammy » Thu Jan 02, 2020 9:43 pm

Hello,

My plan is to see a direct primary care doctor when necessary. S/He will be expected to know a lot, give me information, keep me safe from the medical machine and provide excellent referrals when necessary.
Do I know I will find that? No
I hope you do.

Look into direct primary care. It is not the same as concierge. If the person is not worthwhile, well, that is the end, one less patient.
There is a better chance of finding help with them than the 5 minute guys at the human processing factories.
You should not have your time wasted.

Online patient ratings of doctors is not worthwhile.

Here is a story of someone who found help by going to a Dr that did not accept insurance (no idea if direct primary care).

https://www.washingtonpost.com/health/m ... story.html

Might be useful one day:
These surgeon ratings are useful, the ratings come from outcomes. This data is several years old, should be updated soon. Beware though. The ratings are based on very restricted data. A two star surgeon is very risky. They can hide the harm they do and so that it does not show up in the ratings.

https://www.checkbook.org/surgeonratings/default.cfm

The podcast below is (as someone else wrote) extraordinary.
The information applies to everyone.
Dr Hyde describes what you need in a Dr. Somewhere in there. A bit time consuming but really worthwhile.

Listen to podcast here:
https://ralphnaderradiohour.com/medicar ... advantage/
Transcript here:
https://ralphnaderradiohour.com/wp-cont ... script.pdf

Dr. Fred Hyde: ... The truth is that there are very few parameters that boards of directors of non-profit have with which to measure the effectiveness of individuals. You almost never see health outcomes.
You almost never see malpractice suits, adverse incidents--anything that would be a proxy for bad outcomes as one of the measures. You see
profitability, you see adherence to so- called quality metrics, which are government collection of information, which are subject to a lot of gaming, but you don’t see a lot of outcomes. You almost never see surveys of public attitude--what do you think about x hospital? Did
they take care of you recently? What was your experience like? No one’s ever seen that. So we’re paying people without, frankly, having a lot of bottom lines. You could at least say, with regard to the investor-owned hospitals, at least they have a bottom line. They know how much money the place is making. They know what kind of dividends, if any, are going back to the investors. They know what kind of share appreciation is taking place; the non-profits, not so much. Very difficult to see a relationship between outcomes that matter to
patients and compensation that matters to executives.

...

Dr. Fred Hyde: This is an example from a small thing. The federal government tries to measure quality by having reports from hospitals about important adverse events--something called hospital-acquired conditions, which included hospital-acquired infections. When they
started having financial penalties, associated with hospital-acquired infections, you know what happened? A lot of patients suddenly turned out to have POA infections--present on admission. Who knew that you
had your urinary catheter infection or your central cell line infection? Well it’s just nonsense. What happened was, as soon as you put money incentives or money limitations--wage and price controls on these things--the people who are being paid a lot of money on the
other side, figure out a way to game it. So, the POA infection sort of took away from the success, which people were announcing, namely a decline in the hospital- acquired infections. We didn’t have any
decline in hospital-acquired infections. We had a decline in the net number that were attributed to the hospital, because so many of them were so-called POA or present on admission. Now, that’s a small example, and it’s subject to a lot of shaving around the edges. I’m
not sure, I really like the idea of control so much. I do like the idea of making sure that there is transparency, and that we do not have the agglomeration of market power, which gives disproportionate influence to the larger networks, corporations, investor-owned chains--whatever they are. We don’t need to have the markets skewed at
the outset. Transparency and some kind of competitive climate, but of course, most of the people who espouse competitive climates arebamongst the most anti- competitive of our legislators--some kind of
competitive climate that essentially says, that if we can persuade your doctor that this is a good place, then your doctor will persuade you to come here when you need a hospital.

Best wishes.

toofache32
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Re: Help me choose a pulmonologist

Post by toofache32 » Thu Jan 02, 2020 9:47 pm

nage234 wrote:
Thu Jan 02, 2020 7:27 pm

I have decent PPO insurance and willing to pay for concierge medicine (this seems to be focused more on internal medicine).
When people say this, I'm always interested to know how people determine the "quality" of their PPO insurance. And if those characteristics are from your viewpoint or the doctor's viewpoint.
I too support Direct Primary Care and I wonder if they would know a specialist who meets your wishes.

sport
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Re: Help me choose a pulmonologist

Post by sport » Thu Jan 02, 2020 9:57 pm

What is "direct primary care" and how does it differ from having a primary care doctor in a PPO plan?

toofache32
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Re: Help me choose a pulmonologist

Post by toofache32 » Thu Jan 02, 2020 10:12 pm

sport wrote:
Thu Jan 02, 2020 9:57 pm
What is "direct primary care" and how does it differ from having a primary care doctor in a PPO plan?
https://dpchealthcare.com/how-it-works/faq/

boglegirl
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Re: Help me choose a pulmonologist

Post by boglegirl » Thu Jan 02, 2020 10:22 pm

toofache32 wrote:
Thu Jan 02, 2020 9:47 pm
nage234 wrote:
Thu Jan 02, 2020 7:27 pm

I have decent PPO insurance and willing to pay for concierge medicine (this seems to be focused more on internal medicine).
When people say this, I'm always interested to know how people determine the "quality" of their PPO insurance. And if those characteristics are from your viewpoint or the doctor's viewpoint....
I'm not the OP, but to me, "decent PPO insurance" would mean a broad network of physicians, and a not-punitive policy for going outside that network. So for example, most ACA individual polices wouldn't be included in my definition because in my state they have very restrictive physician lists, and some pay 0 for out-of-network.

toofache32
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Re: Help me choose a pulmonologist

Post by toofache32 » Thu Jan 02, 2020 10:48 pm

boglegirl wrote:
Thu Jan 02, 2020 10:22 pm
toofache32 wrote:
Thu Jan 02, 2020 9:47 pm
nage234 wrote:
Thu Jan 02, 2020 7:27 pm

I have decent PPO insurance and willing to pay for concierge medicine (this seems to be focused more on internal medicine).
When people say this, I'm always interested to know how people determine the "quality" of their PPO insurance. And if those characteristics are from your viewpoint or the doctor's viewpoint....
I'm not the OP, but to me, "decent PPO insurance" would mean a broad network of physicians, and a not-punitive policy for going outside that network. So for example, most ACA individual polices wouldn't be included in my definition because in my state they have very restrictive physician lists, and some pay 0 for out-of-network.
Do you try to assess how the insurance treats your physician and hospital providers administratively and financially?
Last edited by toofache32 on Fri Jan 03, 2020 8:42 am, edited 1 time in total.

sawhorse
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Re: Help me choose a pulmonologist

Post by sawhorse » Thu Jan 02, 2020 10:53 pm

Doom&Gloom wrote:
Thu Jan 02, 2020 9:13 pm
Do you not have a primary care physician that you trust to recommend or refer you to a pulmonary specialist?

DW & I have the same PCP. She has referred each of us to various specialists--including a pulmonary specialist for me. AFAICT she has not missed yet on a single specialist.
sport wrote:
Thu Jan 02, 2020 7:32 pm
Ask a doctor (any field) you trust for a referral.
My experience is that recommendations from primary care and other doctors is very hit or miss. Often they recommend people that they know personally, such as classmates, but they don't know how that person is as a physician. However, there have been a few times when a doctor said that they definitely don't recommend a certain doctor. When they do that, I'm pretty trusting that that doctor is someone to avoid.

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nage234
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Re: Help me choose a pulmonologist

Post by nage234 » Fri Jan 03, 2020 5:38 am

Thank you all for your suggestions. I will ask atriums for referrals and healthgrades.com for screening and hopefully find a good doctor.

carolinaman
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Re: Help me choose a pulmonologist

Post by carolinaman » Fri Jan 03, 2020 10:32 am

nage234 wrote:
Thu Jan 02, 2020 7:27 pm
Hello,

I am turning to the collective wisdom of the group and asking for your help on a potential serious health issue. I am currently being treated for GI issues and the GI doctor asked me to reach out to a Pulmonologist as he noticed something on a recently performed CT scan. I had really bad experiences choosing a doctor and don’t know where to start. The doctors I dealt with seem rushed and don’t spend more than 5 mins with me understanding my concerns (including the current GI doctor and hesitant in going with his referral). I did the usual searches on google, yelp, healthgrades and read the reviews but not sure how to narrow down my choices.

Ideally I am looking for a doctor who will take time to look at my reports and give me his advice on how to proceed.
I have decent PPO insurance and willing to pay for concierge medicine (this seems to be focused more on internal medicine). I live in Los Angeles. Will be grateful for your help.
The best referrals come from people in the health care system. Nurses know who the good docs are and those that are not (equally important). I never put much weight on personal referrals although they are more helpful that online ratings which I never find helpful. Referrals by your PCP may or may not be good, depending upon his objective which may be to drive business to his golfing buddy or he may be pressured to direct patients to doctors within their practice whether they are good or not. I have had mixed success with PCP referrals.

Charlotte Magazine does an annual survey of docs in our area which is based upon ratings by docs in our area. They break ratings down into specialty areas. I have found that survey to be very helpful in searching for new docs. There may be an equivalent survey in LA and, if so, it could be helpful.

OldBallCoach
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Re: Help me choose a pulmonologist

Post by OldBallCoach » Fri Jan 03, 2020 10:45 am

If you have the means I would get on a plane and go to the Mayo Clinic...they are usually pretty easy to work with insurance wise and they seem to get things figured out really fast. A close friend of mine went there with a very complicated issue ( Amylodosis ) and Mayo had it figured out and him back in treatment back home faster than he could even get an appt with the usual docs back home. Wish you all the best in your recovery friend.

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Re: Help me choose a pulmonologist

Post by Broken Man 1999 » Fri Jan 03, 2020 4:22 pm

I have always used my PCP of 20 years for referrals for any specialists. We could call the specialists, and get an appointment almost immediately by mentioning my PCP.

Most of my specialists have long-term relationships with me, a couple nearly as long as my PCP.

OP, if you feel rushed with your doctors, replace them. That is inexcusable if you aren't getting your needs met. If you can't develop a comfortable, trusting relationship with your doctors, move on. I couldn't use a doctor like you have described. Trust is extremely important to me.

I am very respectful of all my doctors when it comes to their time. But they more often than not choose to chew the fat with me when I show up in their office. Only one specialist is not in a single doctor practice, so there is no one looking over their shoulders with a stop-watch.

Broken Man 1999
“If I cannot drink Bourbon and smoke cigars in Heaven then I shall not go. " -Mark Twain

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WeMigr8
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Re: Help me choose a pulmonologist

Post by WeMigr8 » Fri Jan 03, 2020 4:48 pm

Check with the staff at the Pulmonary Rehab programs... THEY know who the good ones are! Best wishes!

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dm200
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Re: Help me choose a pulmonologist

Post by dm200 » Fri Jan 03, 2020 5:09 pm

I tend to place high credibility on information and recommendations from nurses.

Nurses are much less likely to be golfing buddies with any Pulmonologists.

Perhaps you might ask your PCP for a suggestion?

In the past, on several occasions, when getting a referral to a specialist from my PCP, she just looked at a list - that were in the applicable insurance network. One time she referred me to a specialist (Rheumatology) that I judged to be very, very "far out" or a bit of a "kook" - in several ways. Fortunately, the problem turned out to be quite simple to fix - and there were no drug, surgical or any other kind of medical intervention necessary.

I am a bit surprised that this GI doctor would leave it to you to find a pulmonologist.

Sometimes it can be helpful, when seeing a Physician/specialist, to have someone go with you and help with communication between you and the physician. Just earlier today, for example, I accompanied my wife to an appointment with a general surgeon about potential surgery to deal with some issues. While I almost never experience or perceive that any physician/surgeon/specialist does not take me seriously when I have problems/symptoms/etc., for some reason my wife commonly experiences (or perceives) that physicians/specialists do not always fully take her issues as seriously as she believes they should.

boglegirl
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Re: Help me choose a pulmonologist

Post by boglegirl » Fri Jan 03, 2020 5:54 pm

toofache32 wrote:
Thu Jan 02, 2020 10:48 pm
boglegirl wrote:
Thu Jan 02, 2020 10:22 pm
toofache32 wrote:
Thu Jan 02, 2020 9:47 pm
nage234 wrote:
Thu Jan 02, 2020 7:27 pm

I have decent PPO insurance and willing to pay for concierge medicine (this seems to be focused more on internal medicine).
When people say this, I'm always interested to know how people determine the "quality" of their PPO insurance. And if those characteristics are from your viewpoint or the doctor's viewpoint....
I'm not the OP, but to me, "decent PPO insurance" would mean a broad network of physicians, and a not-punitive policy for going outside that network. So for example, most ACA individual polices wouldn't be included in my definition because in my state they have very restrictive physician lists, and some pay 0 for out-of-network.
Do you try to assess how the insurance treats your physician and hospital providers administratively and financially?
How would I go about doing that and what could I do with the information I obtain? I don't have a choice of insurance providers. Luckily I have a choice in health care providers and can go out-of-network if needed.

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Re: Help me choose a pulmonologist

Post by fru-gal » Fri Jan 03, 2020 5:58 pm

Doom&Gloom wrote:
Thu Jan 02, 2020 9:13 pm
Do you not have a primary care physician that you trust to recommend or refer you to a pulmonary specialist?
This. Also if time is important, your internist may be able to talk to the specialist about getting you in promptly. (Personally I would never go back to having a "family doctor" vs, an internist; The latter are much more skilled, imho.) I would also go over the situtation with your internist.

If you don't have an internist, then since you are apparently geographically in a hotbed of pulmonary doctors, I would look on their websites and pick someone who has degrees from first rate universities and is in an age range to have experience but not ancient (I write as an ancient person who dislikes ageism, but my experience has been that ones in their 80s are apparently coasting as a hobby and not providing good care.)

Although I would deal with this seriously and promptly, I will add to the radiologist's post above that I had lung nodules caught by accident that turned out to be nothing.

toofache32
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Re: Help me choose a pulmonologist

Post by toofache32 » Fri Jan 03, 2020 6:11 pm

boglegirl wrote:
Fri Jan 03, 2020 5:54 pm
toofache32 wrote:
Thu Jan 02, 2020 10:48 pm
boglegirl wrote:
Thu Jan 02, 2020 10:22 pm
toofache32 wrote:
Thu Jan 02, 2020 9:47 pm
nage234 wrote:
Thu Jan 02, 2020 7:27 pm

I have decent PPO insurance and willing to pay for concierge medicine (this seems to be focused more on internal medicine).
When people say this, I'm always interested to know how people determine the "quality" of their PPO insurance. And if those characteristics are from your viewpoint or the doctor's viewpoint....
I'm not the OP, but to me, "decent PPO insurance" would mean a broad network of physicians, and a not-punitive policy for going outside that network. So for example, most ACA individual polices wouldn't be included in my definition because in my state they have very restrictive physician lists, and some pay 0 for out-of-network.
Do you try to assess how the insurance treats your physician and hospital providers administratively and financially?
How would I go about doing that and what could I do with the information I obtain? I don't have a choice of insurance providers. Luckily I have a choice in health care providers and can go out-of-network if needed.
I doubt anyone can accurately assess this, but just wondering if anyone every looked into it. There can be a threefold difference in what each insurance pays for a given code, but I never hear anyone concerned about how this might affect the quality of their care. Sometimes insurance fees are way less than the cost of providing the service. I do a common procedure where my fee is around $600. It costs me almost $300 in supplies and materials to provide the service. Cigna would pay $54. So I quickly learned to tell Cigna patients I cannot help them. I probably could have found ways to cut corners and use inferior products but that's not how I want to practice.

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ram
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Re: Help me choose a pulmonologist

Post by ram » Fri Jan 03, 2020 9:32 pm

nage234 wrote:
Thu Jan 02, 2020 7:27 pm
Hello,

The doctors I dealt with seem rushed and don’t spend more than 5 mins with me.

That is the norm these days rather than the exception.

Ideally I am looking for a doctor who will take time to look at my reports and give me his advice on how to proceed.
Essentially every doctor will advice you on how to proceed. Anyone who can reach the decision about the advice in 5 minutes in unlikely to take 10 min just to satisfy you. Especially when 10 other patients are waiting.

A newly minted doctor may be your best choice as he may not have a full practice and may have extra time to spend with you. Training for becoming a specialist physician is extensive and any "dumb" guy would most likely have been weeded out long before he reached his current position.
Ram

rtt22
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Re: Help me choose a pulmonologist

Post by rtt22 » Fri Jan 03, 2020 9:42 pm

OldBallCoach wrote:
Fri Jan 03, 2020 10:45 am
If you have the means I would get on a plane and go to the Mayo Clinic...they are usually pretty easy to work with insurance wise and they seem to get things figured out really fast. A close friend of mine went there with a very complicated issue ( Amylodosis ) and Mayo had it figured out and him back in treatment back home faster than he could even get an appt with the usual docs back home. Wish you all the best in your recovery friend.
+1 for Mayo Clinic in Rochester MN. Wife and mother both had operations done there with no complication at all.

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Random Musings
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Re: Help me choose a pulmonologist

Post by Random Musings » Fri Jan 03, 2020 11:48 pm

rtt22 wrote:
Fri Jan 03, 2020 9:42 pm
OldBallCoach wrote:
Fri Jan 03, 2020 10:45 am
If you have the means I would get on a plane and go to the Mayo Clinic...they are usually pretty easy to work with insurance wise and they seem to get things figured out really fast. A close friend of mine went there with a very complicated issue ( Amylodosis ) and Mayo had it figured out and him back in treatment back home faster than he could even get an appt with the usual docs back home. Wish you all the best in your recovery friend.
+1 for Mayo Clinic in Rochester MN. Wife and mother both had operations done there with no complication at all.
+ 2 for Mayo Clinic. A neighbor went there for a relatively rare medical issue and the family was impressed with the team approach used.

RM
I figure the odds be fifty-fifty I just might have something to say. FZ

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DrippingSprings
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Re: Help me choose a pulmonologist

Post by DrippingSprings » Sat Jan 04, 2020 4:55 am

Another possibility that might bear fruit is to visit the pulmonary wing of a local hospital and talk to the nurses about their opinions.

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Re: Help me choose a pulmonologist

Post by oldcomputerguy » Sat Jan 04, 2020 6:59 am

This topic has run its course and has been locked. See Medical Issues:
Questions on medical issues are beyond the scope of the forum. If you are looking for medical information online, I suggest you start with the Medical Library Association's User's Guide to Finding and Evaluating Health Information on the Web which, in addition to providing guidance on evaluating health information, includes a list of their top recommended sites.
Update: See below --admin LadyGeek
"I’ve come around to this: If you’re dumb, surround yourself with smart people; and if you’re smart, surround yourself with smart people who disagree with you." (Aaron Sorkin)

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Re: Help me choose a pulmonologist

Post by LadyGeek » Sat Jan 04, 2020 9:15 am

Requested by a member, this thread is now unlocked to continue the discussion.

Please avoid detailed medical advice.
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boglegirl
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Re: Help me choose a pulmonologist

Post by boglegirl » Sat Jan 04, 2020 6:18 pm

toofache32 wrote:
Fri Jan 03, 2020 6:11 pm
...
I doubt anyone can accurately assess this, but just wondering if anyone every looked into it. There can be a threefold difference in what each insurance pays for a given code, but I never hear anyone concerned about how this might affect the quality of their care. Sometimes insurance fees are way less than the cost of providing the service. I do a common procedure where my fee is around $600. It costs me almost $300 in supplies and materials to provide the service. Cigna would pay $54. So I quickly learned to tell Cigna patients I cannot help them. I probably could have found ways to cut corners and use inferior products but that's not how I want to practice.
That makes sense.

And I guess if I had Cigna and doctors started telling me "I don't accept patients who have Cigna" then I would factor that in to my determination of whether or not I have decent PPO coverage.

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nage234
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Re: Help me choose a pulmonologist

Post by nage234 » Mon Jan 06, 2020 5:12 pm

Random Musings wrote:
Fri Jan 03, 2020 11:48 pm
rtt22 wrote:
Fri Jan 03, 2020 9:42 pm
OldBallCoach wrote:
Fri Jan 03, 2020 10:45 am
If you have the means I would get on a plane and go to the Mayo Clinic...they are usually pretty easy to work with insurance wise and they seem to get things figured out really fast. A close friend of mine went there with a very complicated issue ( Amylodosis ) and Mayo had it figured out and him back in treatment back home faster than he could even get an appt with the usual docs back home. Wish you all the best in your recovery friend.
+1 for Mayo Clinic in Rochester MN. Wife and mother both had operations done there with no complication at all.
+ 2 for Mayo Clinic. A neighbor went there for a relatively rare medical issue and the family was impressed with the team approach used.

RM
Was it Rochester MN clinic too? How do you approach Mayo. Just call the 1800 number or fill in the online form for consultation and go from there?

EnjoyIt
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Re: Help me choose a pulmonologist

Post by EnjoyIt » Mon Jan 06, 2020 5:34 pm

Some really good advice above and I want to re-cap some of it:

Ask you internist/primary care doc on who they would use for their family member?
Ask any large pulmonary center to talk to some of the nurses and ask who they trust and would use themselves in that group may lead to good results.

I don't know if this is common or not, but I have noticed poor quality physicians who care more about money than their patients tend to consult specialists with similar attributes.

I would also like to add that unfortunately it requires a medical degree to understand if your doctor is a good doctor. Taking only 5 minutes to do a job is not necessarily a sign of a bad doctor. Taking the same 5 minutes but making those 5 minutes be perceived as longer is a sign of good bedside manner but again not a sign of being a good physician.

Good luck with your search and I hope whatever was found is nothing serious.
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Random Musings
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Re: Help me choose a pulmonologist

Post by Random Musings » Mon Jan 06, 2020 8:03 pm

nage234 wrote:
Mon Jan 06, 2020 5:12 pm
Random Musings wrote:
Fri Jan 03, 2020 11:48 pm
rtt22 wrote:
Fri Jan 03, 2020 9:42 pm
OldBallCoach wrote:
Fri Jan 03, 2020 10:45 am
If you have the means I would get on a plane and go to the Mayo Clinic...they are usually pretty easy to work with insurance wise and they seem to get things figured out really fast. A close friend of mine went there with a very complicated issue ( Amylodosis ) and Mayo had it figured out and him back in treatment back home faster than he could even get an appt with the usual docs back home. Wish you all the best in your recovery friend.
+1 for Mayo Clinic in Rochester MN. Wife and mother both had operations done there with no complication at all.
+ 2 for Mayo Clinic. A neighbor went there for a relatively rare medical issue and the family was impressed with the team approach used.

RM
Was it Rochester MN clinic too? How do you approach Mayo. Just call the 1800 number or fill in the online form for consultation and go from there?
Yes, MN. Next time I see them (they are always out and about), I will ask. They have also been to the Cleveland Clinic and John's Hopkins. My guess is that the rarity of the genetic disorder probably generates interest due to a low worldwide sample size.

Regards

RM
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nage234
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Re: Help me choose a pulmonologist

Post by nage234 » Mon Jan 06, 2020 8:55 pm

EnjoyIt wrote:
Mon Jan 06, 2020 5:34 pm
Some really good advice above and I want to re-cap some of it:

Ask you internist/primary care doc on who they would use for their family member?
Ask any large pulmonary center to talk to some of the nurses and ask who they trust and would use themselves in that group may lead to good results.

I don't know if this is common or not, but I have noticed poor quality physicians who care more about money than their patients tend to consult specialists with similar attributes.

I would also like to add that unfortunately it requires a medical degree to understand if your doctor is a good doctor. Taking only 5 minutes to do a job is not necessarily a sign of a bad doctor. Taking the same 5 minutes but making those 5 minutes be perceived as longer is a sign of good bedside manner but again not a sign of being a good physician.

Good luck with your search and I hope whatever was found is nothing serious.
Appreciate it.

rtt22
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Re: Help me choose a pulmonologist

Post by rtt22 » Mon Jan 06, 2020 9:25 pm

nage234 wrote:
Mon Jan 06, 2020 5:12 pm
Was it Rochester MN clinic too? How do you approach Mayo. Just call the 1800 number or fill in the online form for consultation and go from there?
Look at the list of doctors in the specific specialty and have some idea of who you'd want to see, then call the dept phone number. Some departments at Mayo require a letter of referral from your doctor, some don't. They all want all the scans (not just the reports) sent to them first. That was our experience 5 years ago.

radiowave
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Re: Help me choose a pulmonologist

Post by radiowave » Mon Jan 06, 2020 10:13 pm

carolinaman wrote:
Fri Jan 03, 2020 10:32 am

The best referrals come from people in the health care system. Nurses know who the good docs are and those that are not (equally important). I never put much weight on personal referrals although they are more helpful that online ratings which I never find helpful. Referrals by your PCP may or may not be good, depending upon his objective which may be to drive business to his golfing buddy or he may be pressured to direct patients to doctors within their practice whether they are good or not. I have had mixed success with PCP referrals.

Charlotte Magazine does an annual survey of docs in our area which is based upon ratings by docs in our area. They break ratings down into specialty areas. I have found that survey to be very helpful in searching for new docs. There may be an equivalent survey in LA and, if so, it could be helpful.
+1, nurses work with MDs daily and if you know and trust a nurse especially one who works in an acute care setting, they can typically give a candid review. Ask him/her which MD they would trust with their loved one.
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toofache32
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Re: Help me choose a pulmonologist

Post by toofache32 » Mon Jan 06, 2020 10:24 pm

Fascinating how some people choose an "institution" and not a specific doctor. As if the institution does some sort of vetting process.

mouses
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Re: Help me choose a pulmonologist

Post by mouses » Mon Jan 06, 2020 10:31 pm

toofache32 wrote:
Mon Jan 06, 2020 10:24 pm
Fascinating how some people choose an "institution" and not a specific doctor. As if the institution does some sort of vetting process.
Sure they do. We're talking doctors here, not dentists.

toofache32
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Re: Help me choose a pulmonologist

Post by toofache32 » Mon Jan 06, 2020 10:40 pm

mouses wrote:
Mon Jan 06, 2020 10:31 pm
toofache32 wrote:
Mon Jan 06, 2020 10:24 pm
Fascinating how some people choose an "institution" and not a specific doctor. As if the institution does some sort of vetting process.
Sure they do. We're talking doctors here, not dentists.
huh?

toofache32
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Re: Help me choose a pulmonologist

Post by toofache32 » Mon Jan 06, 2020 10:45 pm

Let me rephrase that. I have been on both sides of this. I sit on my hospital committee which reviews new physicians. And I have also applied for medical staff at multiple hospitals. And I fill out the paperwork for my residents every year when they go to their new hospitals around the country, It's basically a cursory review to make sure you don't have board complaints or felonies. There is nothing to assess if you are actually a good doctor or a leader in your field. This demonstrates the success of "branding" by institutions.

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dm200
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Re: Help me choose a pulmonologist

Post by dm200 » Tue Jan 07, 2020 10:19 am

In this time of medical "specialization", perhaps (do not know about pulmonologists) you may need/want a certain kind (subspecialty) of Pulmonologist (by education, training or experience).

For example, I need to have sinus surgery next month. Of the ENT specialists, it turns out that not all of them actually regularly do that type of surgery - so I needed to be referred to an ENT that regularly does this surgery.

brandy
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Re: Help me choose a pulmonologist

Post by brandy » Tue Jan 07, 2020 11:57 pm

Regattamom wrote:
Thu Jan 02, 2020 8:23 pm
sambb wrote:
Thu Jan 02, 2020 8:16 pm
Ironically - good doctors have large referrals and take a long time to get in, and may spend only a brief time with you. On the other hand, an empty waiting room and a doc that spends 1 hour with you might seem great, but you have to wonder why they are so empty. Of course there are exceptions. Goo dluck.
Luckily, I found the exceptions and I am hopeful OP does, too. Also, I would add that it isn't always how much time is spent, but whether you are heard and understood. Great staff also makes a huge difference and knowledge of current studies and resources.
Choose one that does not have air fresheners, scented candles or incense (esp burning! :oops: ) or any other fragrance products spewing chemicals into the air in the lobby, office, or any rooms. If s/he is abusive in any way, run. Those chemicals cause respiratory as well as other problems, including mental, emotional, social, and other problems. Of COURSE they know it!
They should also have fragrance free hand sanitizers. Try to get one who is not in a "sick" building. My last one was terrific, but his building was so bad it got so I couldn't go in to his office.

I too think I found the exception. It seems many md's are hard to get into the first time--wait time is about 3 months. I don't want to wait 3 months when I'm sick or injured to see the doc. The one I did find, I got in to see right away, and I too wondered about that. My first two appointments were afternoon, and I was surprised there were few cars in his spaces. Others have been late morning, and there are people coming and going. I Can get in (so far) in a day or so of asking for an appointment.
I had fallen a few months ago, one md said surgery. This family practice/osteopath pushed my bones back into place over several visits. It's been almost two weeks since I last saw him, and I'm thinking I should see him soon again.
For the last several years, my primary care docs have been women. I would prefer a woman, but this man has done so well for me. He was a respiratory therapist before getting his md. So he has (some) knowledge of respiratory problems. AND, he has a sign at the check in station to please respect other patients and not wear heavy fragrances to appointments.
He's been good for me in those respects. Wish he were a woman...
And he was the only one I could get in to see to get my prescriptions filled before they ran out. He does listen, we actually talk to each other.

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Re: Help me choose a pulmonologist

Post by Spooky » Wed Jan 08, 2020 12:48 am

I would not get on a plane to the Mayo Clinic, for something that might be nothing. Lots of people have CT scan findings that are nothing.

It might be reasonable for the OP to talk with his PCP about this lung finding. PCP can also talk to the radiologist who read the scan about whether they think it is just something to follow or whether another specialty needs to be involved.

I would recommend against choosing a physician by any sort of patient satisfaction grading system. Various studies have shown that women and minorities will get worse scores. ERs with TVs will get better scores. Clinics with prettier facilities will get better scores. But that's not important to your health.

toofache32
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Re: Help me choose a pulmonologist

Post by toofache32 » Wed Jan 08, 2020 9:20 am

Spooky wrote:
Wed Jan 08, 2020 12:48 am
I would not get on a plane to the Mayo Clinic, for something that might be nothing. Lots of people have CT scan findings that are nothing.

It might be reasonable for the OP to talk with his PCP about this lung finding. PCP can also talk to the radiologist who read the scan about whether they think it is just something to follow or whether another specialty needs to be involved.

I would recommend against choosing a physician by any sort of patient satisfaction grading system. Various studies have shown that women and minorities will get worse scores. ERs with TVs will get better scores. Clinics with prettier facilities will get better scores. But that's not important to your health.
Those that hand out more Vicodin get better scores too.

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dm200
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Re: Help me choose a pulmonologist

Post by dm200 » Wed Jan 08, 2020 11:28 am

Spooky wrote:
Wed Jan 08, 2020 12:48 am
It might be reasonable for the OP to talk with his PCP about this lung finding. PCP can also talk to the radiologist who read the scan about whether they think it is just something to follow or whether another specialty needs to be involved.
I would recommend against choosing a physician by any sort of patient satisfaction grading system. Various studies have shown that women and minorities will get worse scores. ERs with TVs will get better scores. Clinics with prettier facilities will get better scores. But that's not important to your health.
Yes! I have subscriptions to the local area Consumer Checkbook, which publishes various kinds of Physician survey rankings. For those ranked/evaluated by patient experience/satisfaction, I read them and find them "interesting", BUT place little or no credibility on them. I have reached this conclusion because I have seen several Physicians where I had a very poor experience myself - but the published rankings were very high.

That is very interesting about women and minorities being more poorly ranked by patients. That has not been my overall experience.

In our case, now, being with Kaiser, it is my opinion that Kaiser tends to more successfully screen out poor physicians. Years ago, when not with Kaiser, I had two occasions where I believed a Physician I saw was a complete "quack". Fortunately, in both cases, I was able to just not see that Physician again.

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