BAKERSFIELD, CALIFORNIA -- Around mid-2015 I was referred to Kaiser Podiatrist by my Kaiser Primary. On my first visit with the Podiatrist he said that by looking at my x-rays of my ankle it looked bad. First he wanted to try medication and a tie up ankle support. After a couple weeks I called back and left a message for the Podiatrist saying that my current brace was not helping. When his assistant called back she said that I needed to come into the office and get an ankle support. At this time I told her that I already have the tie up brace, she then asked when got the brace? I told her she gave the brace to me on my first visit.
The podiatrist ordered a fitting for the Arizona brace at a local company. It only took one week to get into the local place for the fitting, but it took multiple phone calls to Kaiser and 6 weeks to get the brace. About 3 months later my medication ran out and using the brace daily I was still in pain. I made a follow up appointment with this doctor. During this appointment the doctor asked why I was still wearing the brace if my ankle was still hurting, I told him because you told me to wear the brace. His comment was "if it doesn't work then why do it." He then said that he wanted to try cortisone injections but he felt the shot would not work.
We also talked about another option if the shot did not work and this was I needed to have my ankle fused. He told me that I would have to drive south to have this procedure done because no one here could perform this procedure. After 4 weeks I sent a message saying I was still in pain. He wanted me to come in and talk about a follow up with another injection or consultation with orthopedist for surgery. After waiting ½ hour the doctor came in and we started talking about my options. He then pulled up my x-rays again and said that my ankle did not look too bad, after telling me on my first visit that my ankle looked bad.
It was at this time I noticed that he starting talking down to me and talking to me as if I were stupid. He told me that I could make an appointment here with a doctor and see if they would perform the surgery but he did not think I would get the surgery, after telling me that no one here could perform the surgery and that I needed surgery. At this time I told him if he wasn't going to refer me to a doctor down south why did you want me to come in and talk about my options, surgery and injection. He also told me that the injection would not work. Because of the way this visit was going and the way he was talking to me I told him this visit was over.
BAY AREA, CALIFORNIA -- I have worked in the medical field for more than 10 years as an administrator and office manager for both psychiatric and urgent care facilities. The strangest thing to me was the number of patients that came into these offices and paid cash for private services when they had full insurance through Kaiser. The comments on their intake forms often read: fed up with Kaiser policies. I recall a shudder running through my body when an orthodontic office I was working at offered only Kaiser insurance; I resigned from the position 2 weeks later.
At the urgent care I worked at the Doctor noticed that a 32 year old female patient had irregular blood work with regards to her liver. He said: "Get her a referral to oncology immediately." I fought and fought with Kaiser to get the appt for her, but with no luck. Finally, the Doctor himself called Kaiser and screamed at them to get her the appt as soon as possible. She was diagnosed with early stage liver cancer and he saved her life by forcing Kaiser to get her to the appropriate specialist.
Just recently, someone I knew passed away in a Kaiser facility due to lupus. At one point they thought she had cancer - so chemo was done. After she lost more than 30 pounds and all of her hair, they then decided she didn't have cancer. We are not even convinced that she had lupus to begin with. She was just 27 years old.
Worst of all is that the 'medical professionals' around her stole all of the jewelry off her body and pocketed gifts that were sent to her to keep her occupied during her long stay in the hospital. These things occurred at two separate Kaiser Hospitals. On her last day of life, the doctors administered morphine for pain. Her chart specifically noted that she has had severely adverse reactions to this medication and that it should not be administered to her under any circumstance. Her own mother's irate reaction to this got her barred from the facility. This is the quality of Kaiser. This is the level of care and respect you should expect from them.
BAKERSFIELD, CALIFORNIA -- I have been PRO Kaiser for years. Last year I needed a total knee replacement (Feb 2014) and I was sent out to an Orthopedic Surgeon who does not work for Kaiser. After the operation, I had to ask this doctor every other day for physical therapy, finally 3 weeks later he sent me for physical therapy. After six weeks I still did not have full movement of my leg, I could bend my knee to 72° degrees and straighten my knee to 8° degrees. It was at this time he wanted to perform a manipulation because I was not able to bend my leg more than 72° degrees. I did 6 more weeks physical therapy; again I have to ask for more physical therapy, this happen 3 more times.
At this time I can only bend my knee 90° degrees and I am still in a great deal of pain. After 5 months he said that he could no longer help me and said that I needed to get another opinion. I was then seen by a Kaiser Orthopedic Doctor, this doctor sent me to Kaiser Orthopedic Doctor now in Los Angles. This doctor said he could do nothing, then I was sent to Cedar Sinai Orthopedic Doctor, this doctor ordered two test. After 6 phone calls by me and two forms requesting medical records, to both Cedar Sinai Orthopedic Doctor and Kaiser Orthopedic Doctor, the request was sent to Kaiser.
I did have one of the tests at Kaiser Orthopedic and this doctor wanted to research MRI or CAT scan, he wanted to see which would be better. This Kaiser Orthopedic doctor said that this was the last visit, he said he could no longer help me, but he was there if I needed him. The other thing I noticed is that it is taking longer to get in to see my primary doctor, use to take 1 to 2 weeks, now it is taking 4 to 6 weeks and the wait time is taking longer. I no longer feel that personal touch at Kaiser, it could be because of all the issues I have had with my knee.
DENVER, COLORADO -- Kaiser says "Call 911 if you have an emergency," yet if you do and go outside Kaiser, you are not covered. They advise you to do that, claiming they don't want anything to do with you in a emergency. It is the first sentence you hear when you call their broad-based (every problem fits into one number) phone number, 303-338-4545 or 303-338-3800. How can they be the only one that can take care of you with coverage yet they send you elsewhere with no coverage for ALL emergencies to 911?
That is not what I call health coverage. You pay for health insurance but in a emergency have to go someplace else and then end up paying the entire bill, because you went outside THEIR network. Stay away from HMOs. They are as bad as they say.
BAKERSFIELD, CALIFORNIA -- I was given a referral by my Kaiser Doctor for an ankle brace. One day later, I received a call from the company that takes your information and submits to Kaiser for approval. One week after seeing this company, I called to ask if Kaiser has approved the brace for my ankle, they said not at this time, two weeks the same thing, three weeks the same thing.
At this time, I called members' service to talk about not getting the brace and about how long it takes to see a doctor, 6 to 10 weeks. We talked about how doctors are leaving Kaiser and this is why it is taking longer and he also blamed Obama Care. All this person could say was Kaiser is a 5 star medical company and here is the kicker, he doesn't have a hard time getting in to see his doctor. I still did not get an answer to my question about my ankle brace. This person just going on about Kaiser 5 star rating.
BAKERSFIELD, CALIFORNIA -- I went to Kaiser walk-in to have a lesion on my finger looked at. This doctor referred me to the dermatologist department. This took all of one week. The doctor cut the lesion off and said if it came back to make another appointment. The lesion came back and I called to make the appointment and they said it would take 7 weeks before anyone could see me. I then called Dermatology and Skin Cancer of Bakersfield, I got an appointment in two days. What is wrong with this picture? In the past it would take two weeks to your doctor or you could call and make an appointment with another doctor for the same day. Now it takes 6 to 8 weeks to see a doctor.
SACRAMENTO, CALIFORNIA -- After being on Kaiser from the age of six months to now at 58 and never having a problem, all that has changed. In the last few years the rates have gone up and up and service has gotten worse. It's all about the money. I have a chronic, painful condition - arthritis in my neck (diagnosed by a Kaiser Dr.) and TMJ. I have had an RX for a pain med and muscle relaxer for years, which was used only as needed and sparingly. I was sent a notice recently that they had assigned me a new Dr. after years of seeing the old one who never gave me a problem with refills.
I recently sent in a refill request for my meds and the request was denied saying I had to come in for "lab tests" and an evaluation to determine "if I actually had the condition and or if it still existed." What??? NO! I'm not stupid and know arthritis and TMJ do not resolve. They are permanent conditions and lab tests etc. are NOT necessary for these conditions. They only want me to come in and pay the MUCH higher than before co-pays to run tests that are not necessary and are worthless as far as my conditions.
They kept me going through tons of red tape and hearings I didn't request only to keep denying me my meds. NO more Kaiser for us. We are leaving and going to a new health plan. Kaiser is no longer the good company it once was. Now it's corporate greed.
SANTA ROSA , CA ., CALIFORNIA -- Please! If you have KAISER, HMO, for a few dollars more you can have an 'PPO'. If, you have serious issues, you need to venture on to a 'PPO'! It's literally a few dollars more. We "WERE" members through his work, and they were taking $40.00 month out of his check.
PPO..... $5.00 more a month! Prescription's 1/2 the cost!!! He went in and, was diagnosed to have hepatitis B, then they fraud gently said he has hepatitis A-C-D-E, and was charging his insurance $100's of thousands of dollars! They had us in there every 3-5 days, we were dropping $20's and $40's like playing the slot machines! Repeating the same test. I kid you not. You know us women.... IF, I DON'T GET AN STRAIGHT ANSWER, LIKE THE STRAIGHT QUESTION I ASKED, then you know, THEY'RE HIM HOLLEN YOU AROUND!!!
And, guess what O.M.G! Proof, it was just that! This the Santa Rosa, Ca. Located at #401 Bicentennial, the main one. Dr. **, his liver doctor, the gastroenterologist dept. O.M.G! Please beware. I had his primary doctor call me, he was like "Hi this is doctor **," I was like "hay! he's not here... he's at work!" He was like, "well you are the one I want to speak with... you're always together! You know... he's very, very, sick!!! He has less than 10 percent liver function, and he can die today or next year." (And, a little more said of the same.)
He's very sick from the hepatitis A-B-C-D-E. And I was already being doubtful. (Now keep in mind we know of the b, and he will out live all of us, not an issue.) Okay I get to the point I knew something was terribly wrong when a botched hernia operation went in with 1, and came out with 6. It was obvious for the need of a second opinion, they refused so we dropped them... and got a PPO and was cheaper (we see who we want, when we want for the same money! You see.... if it's a closed network, that allows them to lie, make up, and create bogus non- existing reports).
We had 4 test done Sutter, Memorial, Santa Rosa Community Clinic, and, UCSF, and O.M.G! It came back NEGATIVE!!! NEGATIVE!!! NEGATIVE!!! Never even came in contact (we all come in contact, 1/2 creates antibody to rid of those diseases, and the other 1/2, has issues). And the B.... he's so low, it's undetectable. That is 1 of 5, serious ongoing medicals procedures, being "ongoing" makes it to be one of the most expensive treatments to treat, because it's "ongoing" beside aids!!! And they charge the insurance up the "WAH- ZOO"!!!
They refused us second opinion, by law you can get a second opinion. They are one network... all one network. He now have "ANTHEM-BLU-CROSS" not the one, just anyone off the street can get. We know that can be pricey!! BUT through your work, of course it's going to be cheaper. You can get it but you to drop KAISER. They will have the option for you to have ANTHEM-BLU-CROSS, among others we liked ANTHEM. We so far LOVE ANTHEM. Kaiser is a poor man's insurance.
But Dr. **, the hernia dept. (he would refuse to see us even if we made an appointment, he would cancel, or do a no show!!!) concerning the 6 hernias that sticks out 10 inches I swear! There was a Dr. **, he popped up from absolutely nowhere and purposely jammed a 3 inch needle into the hernia and smiled like when you say "did it hurt"!! The nurse said "we need to file a complaint on him for his conduct!!" When we tried doing just that, we were told that he did not work there any longer!
Dr. **, primary doctor, he said "I'm sorry I can't get involved in this hernia drama", but urged us to keep asking the right questions!!! All these hernia issues, politics, we said "yeah we know it's a job..." I know we couldn't help but feel for him! Dr. ** - the gastroenterologist dept. Now! You make your decisions, and while you're doing that, don't count on the research on these doctors because they will come up as magnificent brain surgeons, and they cook for the needy... and pay for it all!!! It's ALL a bunch of crap!
As long as they Kaiser keeps their dues to the city/state paid, they can write whatever. REMEMBER IT'S A FREE SPEECH, and it's a network, within a network, so you're not going to find out squat. Here's the real messed up thing from the liver doctor **, she was like "yeah! His "doe doe" is a little high and his "gaga" is a little low" (and if that's all true then the only thing is in question to have done is a biopsy!). But no issue, then no biopsy. Yeah!!! We know now. Please good luck. I pray for you.
ONTARIO, CALIFORNIA -- I fractured my knee cap March 2011. It was shattered and surgery with hardware was used to reduce the fracture. I was referred to physical therapy. However, the woman to whom I was assigned never spoke to me or really provided me any real treatment. She was busy training a physical therapy student. I was unable to walk properly when released. I discussed this matter with the surgeon and nothing was done. I sought private treatment paying on my own.
By August 2013, I was unable to walk at all and in extreme pain. I saw their doctor. I was given a sheet of exercises. I persisted. I was given a referral to an orthopedists. X-rays were taken. The X-rays showed the arthritis but they denied the necessary treatment. They focused on my bad knee but I kept telling them it was left hip. I was seen by a physician's assistant who told me this was "my new normal." I was referred to Physical Therapist, but despite how crippled I was, I could only get an appointment every 3 or 4 weeks. The therapist tried to make an opening for me, but was completely overbooked.
On 12/31/14 I switched to Aetna on a PPO. My left hip is now completely frozen. It turns out the hip was completely arthritic and had been since August 2013. I am going to have a hip replacement. It is now June 2014. I have been walking with a cane and in severe pain. It has taken this long, after escaping from Kaiser to get treatment. My advice is to stay far away from Kaiser as possible. Despite their representations, they balance their books by collecting co-pays and denying necessary care. Beware.