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How often do you take your CWD to endo?

Discussion in 'Parents of Children with Type 1' started by SarahKelly, Jul 8, 2011.

  1. SarahKelly

    SarahKelly Approved members

    Nov 14, 2009
    We're debating having my son only go to the endo twice a year...what's your opinion. I'm beginning to wonder why we're told to do every 3 months. Isaac's A1C's have never been above their desired range, he's growing steadily, and well to be honest it's really expensive to go. Currently there is a $250 charge surcharge per visit because the clinic is located on site of a hospital. Our insurance decided to stop covering this and we don't qualify to have the charge reduced. So, every time we go there is a co-pay of $50 plus this $250. It's just too much.
    Do you believe that this every 3 months is just an arbitrary set standard? If we're diligent parents there should be no issue, right?
    Just looking for opinions and what others have done over the years.
  2. DsMom

    DsMom Approved members

    Nov 9, 2010
    We go every 3 months as well...and it does seem a bit too much. All our endo does at appointments is look at his pump, ask a few questions, weigh/measure, blah, blah, blah and check what his A1c was. He provides lots of support via email or phone if we need it...the frequent visits seem superfluous. We've been using the home A1c tests lately...so we can keep good track of that on our own.

    I think twice a year would be plenty for us.
  3. Tigerlilly's mom

    Tigerlilly's mom Approved members

    Dec 3, 2007
    Do you leave the endo's office every 3 months feeling as if "you got your monies worth"? Or was it a waste of your time (and money)? Do you receive valuable information/insight and guidance at those quarterly appointments?

    We go every 3 months, but our visits are covered. Honestly if I was paying out of pocket I think I would reduce it to 2 or possibly 3 a year. I do feel as though our team is supportive and listens to us and considers what works for us, but don't know if I find our visits valuable enough to pay out of pocket for them 4 times a year.

    As with all things, you need to do what works best for you and your family. Don't forget if you find that twice a year isn't often enough, you can always go back to every 3 months.
  4. Beach bum

    Beach bum Approved members

    Nov 17, 2005
    Yes, it's a set standard because A1c is a 3 month snapshot of bg range.
    Have you talked to your endo about this? Maybe they can help you with the insurance.

    I think if you are not having problems and stay on top of things and check in with endo at the necessary times (ie. illness, emergency) then if it works, why not. You most likely are not the first one to have this happen, and unfortunately, you won't be the last.
  5. Midwestmomma

    Midwestmomma Approved members

    Jan 26, 2008
    We go every 4 months, so 3 times a year. I agree, if you don't "get your money" worth, then maybe go down to 2 times a year.
  6. emm142

    emm142 Approved members

    Sep 7, 2008
    I go every 6-9 months, so once or twice a year. My a1Cs tend to hover in the 7s.. And I can see roughly how I'm doing from meter and CGM readings.

    I get nothing meaningful from appointments. They never last more than 15 minutes. I think my last one was under 10.

    It's different over here because the NHS pays for appointments, but anyway, it's a waste of government money to pay for a useless appointment for me. And it's a waste of me leaving work / school. And, frankly, a waste of the petrol money there. :p
  7. Kayeecee

    Kayeecee Approved members

    Sep 20, 2009
    This is going to sound cynical, but that doesn't usually stop me. I think the reason we are told to come every 3 months is because that's exactly how many visits most insurance plans will cover. Other than prescriptions, I get very little out of the visits and after we finish our second full year in September, we'll scale back, as well. I get much, much better information on this forum than I do in the end's office.
  8. hawkeyegirl

    hawkeyegirl Approved members

    Nov 15, 2007
    I've stretched ours out to 3 times a year. If we were paying $300 a visit, I'd go down to one a year. We do home a1cs anyway, and at this point they don't have anything left to teach us.
  9. Ali

    Ali Approved members

    Aug 1, 2006
    You might consider just having an A1c done for the visits that you are not feeling are very helpful. I suspect your Endo would be happy to work out that type of plan with you. Ali
  10. Connie(BC)Type 1

    Connie(BC)Type 1 Approved members

    Nov 11, 2005
    I have my A1c done every 3 month, I see whichever Doc I need, when I need, Haven't been to the endo in over a years, she gets all my lab results and would call me if necessary, or email me.
  11. Becky Stevens mom

    Becky Stevens mom Approved members

    Oct 14, 2008
    I agree with this totally. Our insurance plan demands that we go every 3 months and that we see the dietician once per year (talk about a waste of time and gas:rolleyes: ) We also get very little out of the visits after 7 years of dealing with type 1. I think that it would be adequate to scale back visits to twice per year considering the financial ramifications of going twice as many times as that, I know my family could not afford that right now. If you wanted to see how the A1C is doing between visits you could get a home kit. These are around $20-$25 I believe
  12. kiwikid

    kiwikid Approved members

    Dec 29, 2005
    Would you be able to get prescriptions if you didn't go in?
  13. ChocolateLover

    ChocolateLover Approved members

    Jul 29, 2008
    I would consider going every 4 months in that situation...

    I would consider going every 4 months in that situation and then go from there. When making the next appointment it would be easy to wait a few weeks rather than skipping three months.

    I would also check to see if the endo practices at another location. We don't have the site fee but many other specialists have more than one office.

    I would check with your HMO to see if there are other ped endo's in your area.

    I hope you find a solution that works for you. :D
  14. zell828

    zell828 Approved members

    Feb 20, 2008
    We go every 3 months.
  15. mom2ejca

    mom2ejca Approved members

    Dec 9, 2008
    Good point... our former clinic (children's hospital) had a sign in the waiting room about prescriptions. I don't remember exactly, but I think you had to be seen within the prior 6 months or they had the right not to call in or renew rx's. I think there was also something about "no shows" for scheduled appointments.
  16. sarahconnormom

    sarahconnormom Approved members

    Mar 12, 2008
    We go every 3 months. All I pay is my $40 copay and insurance covers the rest. For now we will continue going 4 times a year. I like our endo and we spend a lot of time looking over his numbers and talking. Connor also gets a very thorough head to toe physical exam. The total appt time is at least 60 minutes with about 30 minutes with the endo.
  17. Hudson_Rocks

    Hudson_Rocks Approved members

    Apr 21, 2011
    We are on the every 3 months schedule, but may scale back as well. It's an overnight stay for us, and that can get expensive. Come winter weather, we may have no choice but to skip December's visit.

    The 2 appts we've had with this endo, yes I feel we've gotten our money's worth, though only one of them was with the doctor, the other the PA (they both spent a lot of time with us though).

    The boys and my husband are on a separate insurance, and that allows 4 "up front" office visits a year at the $35 co-pay. After that I'm not sure, but I think it's a percentage. So if there are only endo visits, no problem. But Hudson has to go for other things too, like I took him in for a knee issue to the regular ped in June, so that ate up one of the $35 visits. I'm sure we are past the 4 visits now already, so the one in September I'm not sure what the cost will be.
  18. NatBMomto4

    NatBMomto4 Approved members

    Mar 24, 2010
    We go every 3 months, but my husbands insurance is great and we only have to pay the $25 copay. We are also only a little over a year into dx.
  19. joan

    joan Approved members

    Aug 31, 2009
    There have been many, many visits where I felt we did not get our moneys worth. Finding an endo my son respected helped a lot, but I am so happy now that I always brought him every 3 to 4 months.

    Now that he is going to college, I have him set up with a new adult endo near his university. Its just normal for him to go that he doesn't think any different. I am happy he will continue with his every 3 to 4 month visits at college. Hopefully those visits will stress of the importance of good control, keep his A1C in check and give him someone to talk to if any d issues arise.
  20. Lisa P.

    Lisa P. Approved members

    May 19, 2008
    I really need to write a letter to our endo thanking him.

    I believe his office makes $150 off of each regular appointment with us. I honestly believe this is because he does not want to price himself to the point where kids can't see him frequently. He is plenty busy, and I know other ped specialists charge $250 for a visit.

    He comes to our local city several times a month, and the facility itself charges almost $120 for use, so that nearly doubles the costs. We've decided to go ahead and drive an extra two hours rather than pay that, as much as we like our local office. There may be a way you can avoid the facility fee, if you ask.

    I think when all is going well and home A1C tests are available it's perfectly reasonable to factor cost in on these things, and not go just because some arbitrary rule says to. There's the opportunity cost factor, For $300 you can buy a trampoline that will do wonders for bg control! You can buy lots of fresh produce instead of nabisco products. You can buy a class with peers to make those rough diabetes days easier. Weak examples, but you know what I mean, it's not just that $300 is a lot of money, it's money that could go to a college fund or to a charity that feeds starving kids. If you feel you have a better use for it for your family, I think it's perfectly reasonable to go longer between visits.
    Last edited: Jul 8, 2011

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