In addition, some of the suppliers on the Medicare list informed me that they did not offer diabetic testing supplies and they couldn't imagine how they wound up on the list. I was forced to move on to the local pharmacies.
She sought the help of another worker who determined that she had entered my Medicare account number incorrectly. Finally, we were making progress. Next, she wanted my drug provider's card. I explained that that wasn't necessary because testing supplies were not considered a drug, they were covered under Medicare B the balance to be picked up by my supplemental insurance. No, she wanted my drug card. So, though she didn't really need it, I gave it to her. She was ready to roll.
I didn't want to sound like a broken record, but I thought it important to convey to these people, and by now I'd drawn the attention of several including the rotund and bespectacled pharmacist that these supplies were covered by Medicare Part B and my supplemental. I did note also that according to the information on the Medicare site CVS accepted the Medicare payment as payment in full so no supplemental would be required. They knew better.
Their lack of understanding about how Medicare worked especially in regard to testing supplies was very frustrating. I couldn't believe they had never had to deal with this issue before, but evidently they hadn't or, if they had, they'd been dealing with it improperly.
Fat boy, the pharmacist, started getting feisty. "Can’t you see?” he sneered. “This takes time.”
"Can’t you see?" I responded. "I want my prescriptions back." They were not quick to comply, forcing me to add, "Now!"
I got there around two thirty and saw that Adrienne wasn't on duty. This wasn't immediately alarming, but when the girl asked for my insurance card I knew I was in trouble. Once again I tried to explain to these health professionals, the substitute pharmacist included, that testing supplies were taken care of by Medicare Part B. When they wanted to charge me twenty bucks, I informed them that my supplemental insurance would pick up the balance. They refused to consider this possibility, implying that I was confused. The pharmacist was particularly adamant, insinuating that I didn't know what I was talking about.
So, I paid the money and got out of there with my supplies before they changed their mind. By this time I was almost out of test strips and couldn't start all over again with another drugstore.
Subsequently, I called Medicare, and Florida Blue, my supplemental, and both affirmed that I was right. Big deal, being right hadn't done me much good so far. A rep from Florida Blue called Publix and tried to explain to them how these transactions are supposed to go down with Medicare paying most and my supplemental picking up the rest. I don't know who he talked to, and I don't know if they believed him. But, I'm still waiting to hear back. He suggested that if Publix didn't straighten out the problem and give me my money back, I should seek out another vender. Easier said than done, I say.
Which brings me back to where I started. Why were these changes made? Whose bright idea were they? Why am I now forced to deal with a bunch of people who don't know the first thing about Medicare, when the people at the mail order house had been thoroughly schooled in the proper procedures? Do any of the geniuses in Washington actually think this is better? For who? That's what I want to know. For who?