Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Lovely Florida Medicaid...

I got on the phone today to try to figure out what happened to our Medicaid application. I faxed the last set of info almost 2 weeks ago (then left for a week for surgery) and hadn't heard any follow-up on it. Here's how my conversation went...

Me: I'd like to know where my application is at in the process
Her: You can call the info line to find out
Me: But you're my case manager and I sent you the fax. Did you receive it?
Her: You can call the info line to find out
Me: Can you tell me whether there's any other info that you need from me still to get things going?
Her: You can call the info line to find out
Me: So you can't tell me anything about my application process? Do you even want to know who I am to know whether you can tell me anything?
Her: No, you can call the info line to find out

So... I call the info line and wait on hold for 10 minutes listening to the recording that restarts everytime one of my kids makes noise in the background and it says "I didn't understand that" then again lists the options... I say "Case status" and put in my SS#, Date of birth, address, height, weight, hair color, and favorite color and it replies with "...................................... (dead space) .................... if you'd like me to repeat, press 1, if you're finished, just hang up."

Hmm.. that was no help. So I press * and get back to the main menu where I listen and realize that there are NO options to talk to a real person. So I start pressing '0'. "Sorry, I don't understand." '0' "Sorry, I don't understand." '0' "Sorry, I don't understand." '0' "Let me put you through to a customer service agent." Yessssss!!!!

10 more minutes on hold, a few times it stops talking in Spanish to me and rings a time or two making me think that it's going to put me through to a person only to again go back to telling me in Spanish how to use the automated phone system to get the info I want.

Finally someone answers- a *real* person and again I tell them all the details of my life, case #, SS#, birthdate, name of each child, number of teeth each child has and how long their big toe is. Her: How can I help you?
Me: Two weeks ago I faxed the last piece of requested info for my medicaid application and I haven't heard back on the status.
Her: It shows here your last activity was in June
Me: I sent info in June, then in July they requested more info and because they needed me to apply for SS#'s for my newly adopted kids, it took me 2 weeks to get it. I called to let them know it was coming and I faxed it two weeks ago.
Her: We didn't receive it. Do you have confirmation of the fax?
Me: Yes, I do, and it says it went through.
Her: Well, I still don't have it. In fact, because we didn't receive that information from you, this application is no longer valid because it's been in process for more than 60 days.
Me: You've got to be kidding me- I faxed it within the allowed time and have paperwork saying that I sent it.
Her: It's still expired in the system and can't be renewed.
Me: So you're saying I have to go back online and fill out the 20 page application again and start from scratch with this process again?
Her: Yes, that's what you need to do.
Me: I've already done this twice- each time they've requested different information from the time before in addition to the information that they'd previously asked for and each time it's been weeks between when I hear from them, giving me only a few days to take care of getting the paperwork.
Her: Yes, that sometimes happens.
Me: In addition to having to redo the 20 page (seriously NOT kidding, it's really 20 pages!) application, does this mean that the new date on my medicaid application will now be August?
Her: Yes.
Me: So the 3 months of 'back file' now begins in August instead of June when I applied this time?
Her: Yes.
Me: And there's NO WAY to find out where that other fax is and why someone didn't input it into our file?
Her: No, it's already marked expired on the computer.

UGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGG... So, tomorrow while Kristopher is at his first morning of preschool, guess what Mommy will be doing? Yep, filling out Medicaid applications.. again. Good thing I printed it before hitting 'submit' this time! But still, our first 2 hospitalizations with Emma and Micah are no longer in the 'covered' period, which REALLY stinks!

Ok, off my rant, almost time for pre-k open house this morning!


  1. Oh Meredith....I'm sorry. I do have to say though this post cracked me up.

  2. And you said this was going to be "boring", don't you just wish LOL I'm so sorry that you have to go throught all of this,I know it's not just a pain to go throught the paper work and phone stuff but you have 3 small kids that are totally dependant on you and you are supposed to be answering all of these stupid phone (sound sensitive) questions and not get to talk to a real person plu all of the papers. Hope your day goes better

  3. When making a phone call that you know you will need a real person for, don't mess around with all the questions/options. Just immediately start hitting "0" until it throws your call to an operator. Some phone systems are set up to dial "00" for the switchboard. I worked in customer service for almost 10 years and although this won't work in every case, it will work in the majority.

  4. hi Meredith. I normally don't respond to your blog, but I do love to read them. Our daughter has the same heart condition as yours.

    Anyways, as to the medicaid. When you apply in NC they will back date the medicaid for 6 months providing you have proof of unpaid medical bills. That means if you apply in August, and your application date is August, they will back-date your medicaid to Febuary if you can show them unpaid bills, if you didn't start having medicail bills until May, then they would issue the medicaid starting from May. Contact DSS again (I know easier said than done) and ask if they also do this in Florida.

    GOOD LUCK!!!!!!

  5. Make sure you make copies of the entire applications and save them in case this happens again. Also, I wonder it it might be better to send them in registered mail. Odds are that if someone has to sign for them, they will pay better attention? LOL we can hope right?

  6. I suggest you call our state senator, or local rep, (It is an election year) and ask for them to expedite your application and check on the process. Gma had to do that once and Nelson at the time was very helpful. Also do the thing tomorrow and if hand delivery is possible I can do that for you. With your medically fragile and multiple kids who are not ambulatory I think they should be helpful and can at least direct you to humans who will get involved and not read from a form to answer questions. Let me know. Mom

  7. I think you've been more than patient and should go above their heads. I would probably start with a supervisor, but if that didn't work I would contact my representative or perhaps a state insurance commissioner can help????

    It really shouldn't be this difficult --- hang in there!

  8. hello meredith, i have a question, do you have a blog policy?, can anyone just post a comment or this blog is just for your family and friends?, i don't have a blog & i don't know the rules. Liz (Boston)

  9. Merideth, I understand your pain. We are dealing with a simular situation regarding our adoption assistance for our daughter with DS. I have been fighting with them since Jan and I am still at it. The fact that you have to start all over does not sound right. I would try calling again and try to talk to a supervisor. Prayers for success!


  10. I have spent the past two Fridays at the Social Security office and "trying" to apply for medicaid. I'm sorry you're having such a difficult time with our lovely state, however, I feel comfort in knowing I'm not alone! Wishing you luck.

  11. Oh goodness, I am sorry, what a pain and am also mad that they made the mistake and you have to suffer for it. I have been filling out forms for a week, and they are just Meghan's , I have two more to go. Grrrrrrr.

  12. How annoying!! I hope it is being taken care of. What a waste of your time to re-do the whole thing!

  13. I am not sure how your new filing went. However, if there is any problem with this one I would suggest going to the office and bringing in your application in person. Ugh! I had a ton of trouble when we were applying for Medicaid and when I finally got it all done I had to go into the office. What a pain!!! I just kept praying Lord give me patience. Good Luck:-)