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Cost of Dr Klimas/Rey

Discussion in 'ME/CFS Doctors' started by Fuschia, Aug 27, 2014.

  1. Fuschia

    Fuschia

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    The Miami clinic is taking patients again, but only with the new doctor, I didn't quite catch the name, Dr Viero I think? I'm coming from abroad so don't have insurance.

    I asked for a breakdown of the costs but couldn't get any info. I really need to pin that down before I leave. It's very frustrating. Can anyone tell me is that a regular thing for doctors in the US not to know the price going in?

    Surely the cost of the consultation at least is a set fee. I'm kinda starting to wonder is it a bad sign that the information is so inaccessible.
     
    Last edited: Aug 27, 2014
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  2. minkeygirl

    minkeygirl But I Look So Good.

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    I think some other people here have had problems getting info from them. If you search around here you might find something someone said.

    I know a guy who saw them and was forever having issues with billing but that was through the University of Miami and not the office.
     
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  3. Fuschia

    Fuschia

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    I just can't get past reception. I need to know

    1) Rough idea of cost
    2) How many days I need to be in Miami for
    3) do they take people without insurance (from what I can see on the website, they do)

    I was told by reception that the doc can't communicate with patients before the consultation. Fair enough, but am getting so little info. I wonder if they're not telling me the cost in case I try to hold them to the exact figure? Seems strange though.

    I was speaking to the Kendall clinic. In people's experience, any difference between Kendall and Davie on this? No luck from the main NSU care-line either, they just offered to transfer me.
     
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  4. SOC

    SOC Senior Member

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    A typical office visit is about $270, I think. Your first visit is likely to be exceptionally long and so will have an "extended visit charge" which could be $200 or more. Labs can be a lot more expensive. If you don't have insurance to cover labs, you may find them far too expensive. I believe we are talking thousands of dollars if you get the immune testing, which is a major reason for going to INIM.

    It is still hard to communicate since they moved to NOVA. I think the university doesn't have it's act together yet re: INIM. The doctors -- Klimas, Rey, and Vera -- are horribly overworked and don't have time to deal with non-patients. You won't get past reception at this point.

    I would say it's not unusual for US ME/CFS doctors to not be able to tell you the full cost ahead of time. Yes, they should be able to tell you the cost of an office visit, but the biggest cost is testing and what tests you get depends on what the doctor learns at your intake visit.

    Since you are not in the US, you may not be aware that stated medical costs are extremely high in the US. This is, in large part, because instead of the government covering most of the medical cost (as happens in countries with socialized medicine), we have a for-profit system of insurance. So a well-insured patient doesn't necessarily pay excessive costs, but uninsured patients pay the full burden because none is covered by the government or insurance.

    I prefer the Davie clinic, but go to Kendall most of the time because it is closer to the Miami Airport. The Ft Lauderdale airport is MUCH easier for a PWME to handle. Miami Airport is the worst I've ever been in. Unfortuately, I can't fly into Ft Lauderdale from where I live without having hours-long layovers in major airports :depressed:, so Miami Airport and Kendall for me.

    Try calling the Davie clinic. I think their office staff can be a bit more responsive .
     
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  5. Kati

    Kati Patient in training

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    Back in 2010, I payed about 2500$ worth of labs ( give or take). You don't want to skim too much on that unless you come with some results, but Dr Klimas is an immunologist, she (and likely her team) is likely to request cytokines, NK cell function (about 450$ in itself), virus titers, on top of hormones and regular bread and butter blood pannel.

    I returned at a later date for an exercise test, but I had at the same visit a tilt table test (which was 500$) so I was in town for 3 nights if I remember well. She may want to give you some IV fluids to top you up, so don't be surprised if the initial visit last 4+ hours when they're all done with you.

    They usually set up a skype/ phone visit to discuss lab results, probably 1 month later. (Add 100-200$ for that)

    i did not regret to go see Dr Klimas in 2010. Getting the validation, black on white blood test results and tilt table test done. It is very worthwhile in my opinion.

    Best wishes, Kati

    By the way I am from Canada. I am certain they see a fair amount of international patients
     
    Last edited: Aug 27, 2014
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  6. charlie1

    charlie1 Senior Member

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    Hi Kati, after that skype appointment did you receive treatment with regards to your lab results?
    If the NK cells are low, or if a virus is found, what is done about that if you live far away? Would it mean traveling on a consistent basis to receive IV or can antivirals be given orally?

    I'm from Canada also (Ontario)
     
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  7. Kati

    Kati Patient in training

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    @charlie1 some of the treatment that Miami clinic recommended didn't need prescription. Some of them did and in Canada in order to fill out a prescription here you need a canadian dr to sign them. This was a problem.

    My dr is now located in California, and the treatment regimen required me to fly down there on a few occasions, and my current regimen is daily pills but they are quite expensive.

    i strongly suggest for Canadian patients to write to their parliament representant so that they can heceive competent health care here in our country. Why are we accepted to be treated second class when we have paid into the health care system? Not acceptable.

    If each one of us write to the health minister and demand research funding for this disease, and health care, our voices will become a roar and we will be heard and respected.
     
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  8. charlie1

    charlie1 Senior Member

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    While in the States, I have filled prescriptions from American Drs in the past and put the medicine in my luggage. Could this not be done ?

    Without you divulging any specifics, would you say that after finding out your results from INIM, you switched to California b/c there would be more treatment options available there? I'm asking this b/c it would be nice to stick with one doctor if possible. I am only now considering going to a CFS specialist after 3 yrs of runaround here in Canada (I hear you about our health system :( ) and it would be nice if I didn't have to pay to have tests duplicated. I'm trying to be make the wisest choice for the sake of expense and the best treatment for my issues. (PEM being the biggest)
     
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  9. Kati

    Kati Patient in training

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    Yes absolutely, you can bring back 3months worth of prescription at a time.

    and I moved to the San Francisco clinic because i knew I could not carry on with the 7.5 hours flights from Vancouver.

    i agree with you that you need to pick a physician who is in agreement with your choices of treatment, if you have much choice. For myself, I wish to be treated agressively, with medical treatments. You may find out that it is not everyone's choice. It is important to know what the physician you are choosing has to offer and whether down the line they will be offering new treatments and/or clinical trials which is important to me, but again not for everyone.

    also all of your expenses for visits to drs out of country can be declared in your income tax. save your receipts.
     
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  10. charlie1

    charlie1 Senior Member

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    Yes,agreed! I'm just in the process of trying to decipher all that information now. Also what I have to consider before getting my hopes up, is are they accepting new patients.
    7.5 hrs on a plane....I couldn't do that! Dr. Enlander is closest for me, then probably S. Carolina next Florida .
    Actually closest is Dr. Lerner in Michigan as I could drive there but I think he mostly treats with IV infusions and I don't know if the scheduling would become a problem for my driver. (if I indeed tested high for viruses).
    I obviously need to do more research on what services each doctor offers.

    Oh, I didn't know that :) Thanks!
     
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  11. charlie1

    charlie1 Senior Member

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    I know some of you have been trying to speak to someone (anyone!) at INIM in Florida so I thought I should post this information.
    I have tried for many weeks now to get someone to answer the phone at INIM in Florida but have only been able to leave messages. Finally today I received a call back being told that none of the 3 doctors there are accepting new patients but that I would be put on a wait list. No indication was given as to where I was on the list nor what timeline to expect.
    @Hip , I'm not sure if this is something that would be appropriate to add to the portion of the roadmap re: doctors
     
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