My Mom is on 25 mcg of Fentanyl every 72 hrs. We just saw the doctor last Friday and had a follow-up appointment for September. Today I got a call stating that we had to see the doctor every month and that it is a new requirement for this medication. This really makes it hard since I am her transportation to this doctor and I do like to travel myself. Is this requirement really true or are they trying to rip off the insurance company?
Added 6 Jun 2010:
Thank you all so much for your comments and I'm sorry I haven't gotten back sooner. My Mom fell on 30 May and broke her distal fibula. She spent from Sun to Thurs in the hospital and is now in rehab (don't know for how long). I'm going to discuss the situation with her primary care doctor and if he is willing to handle prescribing her patch without her having to see him every month then that is the way we'll go. I also waited for about 29 hours trying to get her blood transfusion ordered by her hematologist--primary care took care of it, so I think the hematologist is out also.
It is okay to talk to the doctors sometimes about the situation there are some places that will help with transportation so she doesnt have to rely on you to get her there. Also maybe they will understand and change the requirement for her so it wont be so hard on both of you.
Not all opiate based medications (such as tylenol #3, vicodin) require a monthly visit. Unfortunately, fentynl is one of those meds that (by law) can not be issued refills. Nor can it be phoned in. It's also against the law for doctors to pre-date prescriptions. Since your mom is on the lowest dose of fentynl, maybe there is an alternative medication that she could be prescribed? As an example, since I am not able to drive, I have a designated person who picks up my prescriptions at my doctors for me and fills them. The pharmacy has copies of both our ID cards. Not every prescription requires a doctors visit. It is true that fentynl can not be prescribed more than a 30 day supply, but it is not law that she needs to see the doctor monthly. Heaven forbid, but what if your mother were bed ridden? I realize the inconvenience this has caused. But fentynl is a highly abused medication that is 100 times more potent than morphine and has caused many deaths.
I would talk with her doctor and see if you could designate someone to pick up her prescriptions for her. Good luck on finding a solution.
I am on 2 Fentanyl patches ( 50 mcg & 12 mcg ) every 48 hrs and I see my doctor every 6 weeks. I do have to drive over 1 hour to get to the pain clinic to pick up the script every 30 days because my insurance, medicare will only allow 30 day supply. I live in VT. It is a federal law that you or somebody that you allow to pick up the script in person and take it to the pharmacy. I see my doctor every 4 - 6 weeks in order to keep on the patch. I am watch carefully to make sure I am not misusing or selling the patch. I have been doing this for 2 years. The patch does work for pain and it is good for people whose stomach can't other kinds of pain medicine. I know that every doctor's office has his or her requirements. Good luck - Cherie
- Fentanyl Information for Consumers
- Fentanyl Information for Healthcare Professionals (includes dosage details)
- Side Effects of Fentanyl (detailed)
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