Effective March 1, 2013, claims may be filed online
This was already a brand new feature in December of 2012 when my husband was hospitalized at Mercy General in Sacramento CA for a Quadruple Bypass Open Heart Surgery December 21st. The hospital staff referred us to the site to fill out the required information to begin my husband’s State Disability on December 26th when we completed the form. We were given a “Form Receipt Number” after registering to give to his doctor so that he could complete the Physician’s part of the form online. Since we didn’t see the doctor the day of my husbands discharge we were told to call the doctor at Sacramento Heart when my husband was released from the hospital to give them the Physician Receipt Number. He was released December 28th, 2012. We do so and make the call. They will not take the number over the phone, he has to bring it in. First stressor! My husband had an appointment already scheduled for January 4th, we would give it to them at that time. We did so! It’s important that I share with you part of this story because new people become eligible for State Disability for Family Medical Leave everyday. There are a number of reasons why a person becomes disabled for a period of time. Whether it be from something as seemingly simple as maternity leave to an emergency life saving surgery to a car accident and so forth filing the proper claim by both parties, patient and physician is needed for benefits to be approved and received.
The new online system was suppose to make filing simpler, with less hassle, and stress, making it a smoother process and overall transaction. It hasn’t been! 2 weeks after the December 4th appointment, we sign into EDD SDI online only to find “Pending Physician Form” Second stressor!
My husband has not had any income now for 44 days.
He begins making calls to his doctors office and speaking to the only person who apparently takes care of processing patients disability claims in that office. She will have absolutely nothing to do with filing his claim via the new online system. She claimed it was too much work and that it was only her there. There was no compromise! Third Stressor!
All this while my husband was also trying to recover from the painful surgery. She would have to create a “Physician/Practitioner’s User name and Password account and enter my husbands “Form Receipt Number”. Each new patient would only require her log in and enter their “form receipt number” and information. Nearly flawless! Or so it seemed. One really would think that she would want to get ahead of this now and learn it before she is slam dunked with all the new people who will be choosing to file this way or who may be required to do so. Finally she told us that we would have to use the paper form, bring it back in to them for them to fill out, sign, and fax to EDD. We asked if they had the form, she said no but we could get it online. Funny how she can refer us online for a form, but not deal at all with the form we filled out via online.
We located the form online, requested it and then had to wait for it to arrive in the mail. When the form came approximately 4 days later it asked if we had filed online and if so to add the “Form Receipt Number”, we did! We then had to take it back to Sacramento Heart to be filled out by the doctor.My husband returns home and we later find that the lady at the doctor’s office cannot fax it to EDD as she initially told him. He had to drive all the way back to retrieve the form and mail it in the envelope the form came in.
He should not even be doing all this driving back and forth yet. He’s still hurting from the surgery. We know he was put out of work for 6 months, but as of yet he has not received any State Disability Benefits. It is crucial that employees of medical facilities dealing with state disability claims be trained immediately to understand their part in the new online filing process. People rely on their benefits to keep a roof over their head and food to continue healing. If the person we spoke to would have only listened, she would have been taught. She would have learned from us and we would not be in further financial stress. My husband continued to try to explain the online process to her. Instead, she was rude and arrogant. She did not want to hear our problem, but made sure we knew hers. Very belittling. This is not a situation of a patient not filing a claim in a timely manner. It is technology moving forward and someone not wanting to have anything to do with it until they are forced to. Or perhaps even not being ready for it, but it’s here and it’s now.
So that there are no misunderstandings my husbands Cardiologist, Surgeon and Mercy General Hospital took care of him well in regards to the surgery and aftercare itself.
If we had known this new online system was not implemented to be a smooth transaction without errors, we would have opted for the paper form and snail mail way, but we did not!
Be aware and beware this process may not go as quickly as you may anticipate, we are still waiting.
Now with this specific Effective March 1, 2013 date, I hope that change is made right away…Otherwise more families will have to rely on the goodness and love of their Church for their Mortgage payment.
And just pray from there.
It is now February 12th, 2013.
Physician form is still pending.