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feedback about Menlo Park Surgical Hospital
On November 6,2018, I was scheduled to have surgery with a Dr. Gatow at the Menlo Park Surgical hospital in Menlo Park, Ca. at 11am in the morning. I was told the hospitals business hours were from 7am to 1:30 pm. Because I live 3 hours away they scheduled me for the 11am time slot. When I arrived, they put me into a room where I changed into my surgery gown and was told to wait for Dr., and that they were ready to risk me right in, (because I was last patient of the day). I sat in a room and waited for two whole hours, I looked about the halls and found no one anywhere. I searched for someone in other nearby rooms or at a desk somewhere and found no one! After two hours, I finally found a cleaning person with a big frown on her face, (I caught her off guard) and she went to find someone for me. Finally, the Dr. came in an a few minutes later they took me into surgery. In recovery, I woke to some nurse assistant who was SHOVING MY PANTS ON MY LEGS AND TRYING TO PUSH MY SHOWS ON!! She actually broke off part of my toenail in this process. I was quite groggy from surgery and asked her what she was doing and if I could stand up to put my own clothes and shoes on, because it would be easier than her frustrated attempts to get me dressed and the hell out of there! I remember telling her she had beautiful long hair and asked if I was her last patient of the day, and she was very abrupt in her replies to me. I realized she was very upset to have to work overtime. I did not get released until 3pm. She did not give me a wheelchair to leave in and when I walked out I was very dizzy. I saw no one anywhere upon my leaving the hospital, I guess they all went home.
It was the worst experience I have EVER HAD having surgery, and I have had 11 surgeries. I will never go back there again, and I have cancelled my next surgery with Dr. Gatow for my other hand. He did not want to address any of my concerns about my bad treatment at all! And I have to this day not gotten any APOLOGY from anyone! HORRIBLE AND UNACCEPTABLE EXPERIENCE.I would not even rate them one star!
My rating is based on my experience with the administration, not with the doctors and nurses who were excellent. Last year we had dismal health insurance coverage resulting from poor choices on the Covered California website (critical review yet to be written). That coverage did not pay for any "out of network" expenses, and all of our existing doctors were "out of network" ... same Anthem Blue Cross plan, but some clause online excluded PAMF from coverage. Our favorite doctors are at PAMF, so we self-insured for the year and paid for every visit on top of our $2K/month insurance payment. When checking in at Menlo Park Surgical Hospital, we declared that we were self-pay and that our insurance did not cover this surgery. On top of that, we were told that if we didn't pay up-front we would have to pay 30% more -- no advance notice of that policy. We might have reconsidered the surgery if we knew ahead of time that it was going to be more than $40K -- there were other options. But we plunged forward, and paid up-front to receive the pre-pay discount. We asked for and received the self-insurance discount, because our insurance did not cover Menlo Park Surgical Hospital (or their anaesthesiologist, or their room charges, or ... ANYTHING).
We received and paid a number of bills in the three months after the surgery, as various charges came in. Then six months later we received a bill for almost $10K, with no explanation -- when we called in, we were told that because we had health insurance (that did not pay a dime for this surgery), they were disallowing our self-insured discounts.
I pointed out the Kafka-esque nature of disallowing a self-insured discount when our insurance did not cover any of our expenses, especially since we had been up-front about the situation from the beginning. I was told that they would review my request to have the discount reinstated, and would get back to me no sooner than two weeks later ... and when I pointed out that the early payment discount would not be available in two weeks, I was told "too bad".
Very pleasant people each time I have called in, hiding behind bad policies that have nothing to do with patient care (or logic) and all about extracting as much money as possible from each patient. Those without insurance are especially ripe targets.
So, I would suggest that if your insurance is less than gold-plated you reconsider whether this is the hospital you want to patronize.