I finally spoke to my pathway coordinator! I almost missed the call! The phone rang at 1600 sharp, but I was napping on my day off from school. When I heard my cell phone ringing, I rolled over, angrily snatched up my phone, determined that the long distance number was a person I probably didn’t want to talk to and sent the call to voicemail.My eyes drifted back shut and then snapped back open. Shit! I called the number back, but it was a generic return number that went to an automated service for Eviva. Luckily, the nice lady left a voicemail and we were able to connect five minutes later. As she explained it, her job is to help guide me through the pre-bariatric surgery process to prevent me falling between the cracks. On top of reviewing my personalized pre-surgery gameplan, she also gave me the contact info for my surgeon, future nutritionist, future exercise physiologist, medical assistant, and insurance coordinator. She was prepared with out-of-pocket (after insurance) price quotes for both types of bariatric surgery I am considering and additional information related to the costs/coverage associated with surgical centers versus hospitals.
During this call, she made me aware of concerns she had related to insurance qualifications through HMA. My surgery approval will be dependent on maintaining a qualifying BMI and associated co-morbidities. If my BMI drops at any time the need for additional qualifying co-morbidities increases, yet if I am not adherent to my diet/exercise plan I may also disqualify myself based on noncompliance. She advised me to adhere to the plan as best as possible, but not to sabotage myself. I appreciated her honesty. Fat surgery politics! A bunch of bullshit, I tell . My head was swimming with sleep, frustration, and information.
The pathway coordinator left me with final guidance. While I await my appointment consultation with a nutritionist, the date that will mark the first day of my six-month medically supervised diet, I should tackle as much of my pre-diagnostic screening checklist (labs, specialists, etc.) in an attempt to proactively circumvent unforeseen challenges.