How Kaiser Permanente treats people who complain — you could be next

[In early September we posted a letter written by Kaiser victim Jupirena Stein, that had been previously mailed to Kaiser CEO George Halvorson. Ms. Stein's health has literally been ruined by a botched surgery at Kaiser, and over a six year period she has collected extensive documentation supporting her claims. Halvorson's response? Zip. Zero. Zilch. Nada. The man's organization has practically ruined this poor woman's life and he couldn't even be bothered to reply. Instead, she had to call him.

Rather than a return call from the man himself, Mr. Halvorson saw fit to have his senior attorney, Mary Parks, call Ms. Stein back, and all Ms. Parks would say in response to Ms. Stein's heartfelt letter was that "Kaiser has no knowledge of any wrongdoing." Of course they don't; they never do. Except in this case it was an even more obvious lie than usual, because Ms. Stein has certainly informed Kaiser, on more than one occasion, of copious amounts of wrongdoing.

Mr. Halvorson has been sending out weekly email updates to all of his employees, and whenever the opportunity presents itself he makes a point of saying something similar to this quote from his 5-year anniversary post: "As an organization of caregivers, we all feel collective pain any time we mis-deliver care." Every chance he gets, he also likes to repeat that he sympathizes with people who have been harmed when a mistake has been made. But actions speak louder than words, and the reality of how Kaiser treats everyone who complains certainly doesn't include the kind of sympathy that involves willingly making restitution to anyone whose life has been destroyed by Kaiser; or even acknowledging any wrongdoing, as Attorney Parks made perfectly clear. We haven't been able to find one single Kaiser member who has been treated like a human being in a dispute with this "sympathetic" organization, and believe me, we have been actively trying.

Below is Ms. Stein's latest write-up, which describes in detail the hell Kaiser put her through while trying to get her issues addressed. If you think it can't happen to you, think again. You also might want to think twice before choosing to renew your Kaiser membership now that open enrollment time is approaching, or risk finding yourself among the future ranks of the harmed and ignored.]

The first year after my surgery

Please Keep in mind that I have all proper documentation to support my words. I believe (my opinion,) that KP’s doctors are treating patients to an extreme level of lacking medical knowledge, with disrespect, intolerance, and indignity.

Here’s why:

ABOVE ALL DO NO HARM

For centuries those words from the Hippocratic Oath have guided physicians in the care and treatment of their patients. This Oath became the nucleus of all medical ethics. In its most compelling portions, it emphasizes the profundity of the medical covenant, patient dignity, the confidentiality of the transaction, and the physicians responsibility to guard against abuse or corruption of his knowledge and his/her art.

American Medical Association (AMA) Principal of Medical Ethics — Rule number 1:

A physician shall be dedicated to providing competent medical care, with compassion and respect for human dignity and rights.

What I am about to write is so absurd it is hard to believe it, but this is all true.

I did not see Dr. Wolgat, Kaiser’s ENT/Professor in charge of my surgery before my surgery — at all. I did not see him during my surgery because I was obviously under general anesthetic. I have no idea if he was there or not. He said he was. He did not come to see me after I woke up, nor for those 2 days that I stayed in the hospital.

The first thing I can remember after I woke up, was that I had the most devastating type of headache one can imagine, and Dr. Timoth Wild asking me to smile. “Smile. Smile. I need you to smile for me.” Later on I came to understand, if I would be able to smile at that point in time, he would know his scalpel did not “hit” my facial nerve. He was certainly worried about it.

My family came to see me and so did Dr. Wild. On the second day before I went home, I saw Dr. Wild for the very last time. I asked him, “My head hurts badly, did everything go ok?”

He answered, “Yes, with the exception that at one point your blood was squirting out of your neck.” I was so impressed with his words, it reminded me of the movie M.A.S.H.

For the next 10 months I was in and out of Kaiser doctor’s office, at my request, being sent from one to another to another doctor. All of them told me that I was OK. That I was perhaps in need of psychiatric help because I could not accept the fact that I was diagnosed with cancer.

All of them lied to me about my injury. They “worked” carefully together, and all of them hid this devastating vascular injury from me and from my family.

NOTE: Ten days after my surgery Kaiser Permanente Pathology, come up with the diagnosis of a rare type of cancer (at that time) named Acinic Cell Carcinoma. It was found in my parotid gland, and involved 1 lymph node. KP cancer diagnosis is our next subject.

THE RADIOLOGISTS:

These doctors listed bellow interpreted many of my x-rays. Two of them, taken months apart, have the exact same wording. Only the dates had been changed as if there is a format for these things. None of them ever once mentioned in their reports that my sternocleiomastoid muscle was getting atrophied and my shoulder bones had fallen drastically out of place.

Dr. Deborah Anne Kass — License G40970
Dr. Daniel Edward Siedler — LN G49122
Dr. Chi-Wai Gerry Kwok — LN A50513
Dr. Richard Joseph Gabbay — LN G37772
Dr. Larry Edward Yeager — LN C39192

THE NEUROLOGIST:

Dr. Jeffrey Javerbaum — LN G33682

ON February 28th, of 2000, he did an EMG (needle electromyography) study on me to properly diagnose and answer my questions about what was happening to my sternocleiomastoid muscle (the big north/south muscle on the neck). Was it getting atrophied? My sister was with me.

His report says, “No atrophy or weakness. Clinically, I suspect that this is quite possibly a brachial neuritis” (BN is a rare syndrome of unknown etiology affecting mainly the lower motor neurons of the brachial plexus and/or individual nerves or nerve branches), and he continues, which is reported post-op (after surgery) in any location. It amazes me how much Kaiser likes to diagnose me with rare cancer and rare nerve condition.

Dr. Javerbaum — in front of me and my sister — tampered with the computer and changed the exam printout. Then he handed me a copy of this EMG results and said, “See? There is nothing wrong with you.” He recommended a shoulder sling, and that I try Tegretol (which is an anticonvulsant often prescribed as a mood stabilizer for those with bipolar disorder).

THE RHEUMATOLOGIST:

Dr. Alan David Lash — LN A35820

Dr. Lash injected cortisone into my shoulder. I still don’t know why. I insisted that he would not. At one point he said to me, “How are you ever going to know what is causing your problems? This is a process of elimination.”

When I asked him about the missing muscles on my neck and shoulder, just a few inches away from his eyes, he said to me, “I do not see whatever you see.”

THE PATHOLOGISTS:

Dr. Sudha Krishnamurth Rao — LN A54908

DR. L.T. Smyth – LN G40382

These 2 idiots diagnosed me with cancer in one lymph node THAT DOES NOT EXIST, causing me to have radiation treatment needlessly.

THE ENTs ( Ear, Nose and Throat doctor):

Dr. Harold William Korol — LN G17963

He was Kaiser Redwood City ENT Chief at that time. One would think that he, better than anyone else, would know what was causing me to getting sicker and sicker after my superficial parotidectomy surgery. I never expected him to lie to me and on top of that be so cruel. I saw him several times. He said I was fine and insisted I should go see a psychiatrist.

Dr. Robert Alexander Wolgat — LN G47484

He is the doctor that told me before my surgery that “Your gland is swollen. This gland duct often gets clogged. It almost never gets better. There is a doctor here that can remove this gland for you.”

Dr. Wolgat was the teaching ENT surgeon for KP Redwood City, California. 17 years of experience, he said. He did not supervise Dr. Wild, and I suspect he was probably not even present during my surgery. After my surgery I saw him several times. Each and every time he lied to me about my injury. He said repeatedly to me, “You will get better, just be patient. You will get better.” Over and over, for about 10 months.

THE SURGEON — he signed my surgery report:

Dr. Timothy Wilfred Wild MD, DDS — LN A61573

Was a resident at KP Redwood City, California, at the time of my surgery. It is beyond me that a dentist/doctor, specializing in ENT at KP can do such a devastating medical error. How could he have mistakenly dissected a major artery?

On his surgical report, Dr. Wild described how he “hit “my carotid artery or possibly my external jugular vein, this way: “…and then, there was a large vein sitting on top of the trunk of the nerve, I dissected it and sutured ligated it.” A large vein? Didn’t he know its name?

Mr. Bailey, my former attorney, missed this important information and ended up claiming a less important NON-EXISTING SEVERING of the spinal accessory nerve.

Today, Dr. Timothy Wilfred Wild is fully employed by KP Vallejo, Northern California, and he is the Chief ENT surgeon. Dr. Wild can be reached at (707) 651-1000 (ask for Head and Neck Department) or at the KP Vacaville Medical Center at (707)453-5000. Please call him and ask for his side to this story.

THE PHYSIATRIST (a doctor who specializes in diagnosing and treating problems of the musculoskeletal system, except for those physiatrists that work for Kaiser Permanente):

DR. William Lawrence Firch — LN G61851

How should I start talking about this quack? Please remember that by the time I saw Dr. Firch, my sternocleiomastoid muscle was already gone. My shoulder bones had dropped, I was having problems breathing, swallowing and my heartbeat was already out of rhythm. Dr. Firch ignored me. He had in his possession all my x-rays, MRI and CTs that showed all that I have described above.

I wish you could read his report. He says, “…she has had electro diagnostic evaluation through Dr. Javerbaum [the neurologist that did my electromyography and tampered with the computer to change its printout"] which did not demonstrate specific abnormality.”

And he continues, “…this pain she feels is all in her mind.”

He recommended that I take Valium. One would think he would be interested in CCing his report to my neurologist or my orthopedic surgeon right? No. Dr. Firch CC’d his report to my physical therapist and my gynecologist. Amazing!

Last but not least,

THE ORTHOPEDIC SURGEON:

Dr. John Bordy — LN G13812

After reviewing my x-rays he recommended that I see a chiropractor.

By the time I saw Dr. Bordy I was very sick. It became clear to me that something was dead wrong with my health and it was even more clear to me that Kaiser Permanente’s doctors were NOT going to help me with my deteriorating health. I never went back to Kaiser again.

———————

On October 6, 2000, I saw Dr. Michael Cohen, a private neurologist (outside of Kaiser.) That day, Medicare started paying for Kaiser’s mistake and to date still is. I requested, crying and begging him to tell me the truth: “What is happening to my body?” He told me that my sternocleiomastoid muscle had been atrophied to nothing and that he suspected nerve trauma.

I decided to get an attorney’s opinion of this “nerve trauma,” so I called the Blackman Law Group in Burlingame, California, at (650) 692-8124. Unbeknown to me, the corruption and fraud continued.

Mr. Blackman became very concerned that I was publicly involving his law firm’s good name with the word fraud, and in my opinion he was was not able to understand my reasons behind why I never signed Kaiser Permanente’s award check for $75,000.

As per my readings of reliable resources, literally every day thousands of patients throughout our country go under this kind of abuse from Kaiser Permanente. I know many patients personally that have a similar story to tell.

Do you know why KP gets away with this type of professional behavior? Because the DMHC and the California Medical Board allows them the privilege to.

In my opinion, either ALL Kaiser Permanente doctors that I mention here are obscenely incompetent, or they normally, openly and freely use medical corruption working together among themselves, taking their questionable medical behavior to the extreme levels of patient abuse — at all costs, hiding the devastating medical errors of their colleagues.

There are just no two ways about it.

Jupirena Stein

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124 comments to How Kaiser Permanente treats people who complain — you could be next

  • Cathy

    “As an organization of caregivers, we all feel collective pain any time we mis-deliver care.”

    He is half right. WE — the caregivers — do feel that pain. WE are the ones who have to deal with inadequate staffing and antiquated resources. WE are the ones who have to deal with doctors who really don’t care about their job anymore because they are so determined to make as much PROFIT as possible — not health care. WE are the ones who have to learn a new computer system every time the new (NON nurse) CEO decides they know what’s best for nurses.

    And after 12 hours a day when a doctor orders the wrong dose for a patient and WE don’t catch it in time, WE — I — do feel PAIN. Not collective pain. PAIN. HORROR. That all the money is being spent on CEO bonuses and company cars and VIP perks and DOCTOR PROFIT SHARING. And since that money’s being wasted there it isn’t being spent on hiring enough nurses to catch medical errors and enough pharm techs to catch medication errors.

    so please spare me the “COLLECTIVE PAIN” the “caregivers feel” speech. The CEO isn’t a caregiver. He’s a careTAKER. He can’t apologize to this poor woman who has had her life ruined. He can’t look her in the eye and say He’s sorry. Because he’s not. Because it’s his fault and he knows it.

  • PROUDLY, Lehna's Mom

    I am very sorry for what you had to go through and what you continue to go through.

    I don’t understand for the life of me how this organization can claim to be “care givers.” By the time the victims get through
    sorting through the altered medical records and constantly changing “facts,” they don’t know up from down. Facts aren’t really facts if they are not actual facts, am I right? This rewriting of history is even more dangerous than what the condition would have been without having any care at all! What is the point of seeking care if the motive by the caregivers is to cover their *ss, and let’s not forget, make a profit? Where is the value in that for the patient? There is NO value in a system
    like that. NO VALUE. Who wants to spend money to have their life ruined?

    It is unfortunate that the good nurses and caregivers, the ones who truly are good people and who truly are trying to do a good job, get caught up in such a corrupt system. The lack of staffing and resources starts from the top. EVERYONE else has to do the cleanup and pay the price. Unfortunately, the good guys at kaiser are being taught how to be bad. And that’s what corruption does. Corruption disrupts.

    “But actions speak louder than words, and the reality of how Kaiser treats everyone who complains certainly doesn’t include the kind of sympathy that involves willingly making restitution to anyone whose life has been destroyed by Kaiser”

    ABOVE ALL DO NO HARM. The day this becomes the motivation for kaiser will truly be a miracle right here on earth (and I say that with hope and anticipation!!!)

    First though, the weeds need to be weeded out at the root.

  • It is the epitome of poor taste and does show lack of proper training when any corporate representative acts pompously and affects an attitude of distance from the consumer. In this case the patient-consumer.

    Mr. Kaiser would never have conducted himself in such a poor manner. Mr. Kaiser was known for personally going to the people and making sure that they were doing well, and were being well cared for, especially when serious medical matters were involved.

    George Halvorson is trained first as a reporter Certainly he should want to investigate what his corporation has done to Ms. Stein.

    Maybe the following will help to make it clearer to Mr. Halvorson – the reporter – in case he truly has been left in the dark or has justified his actions to himself in order to retain his corporate contract.

    A number of people have seen the Stein medical documents – Kaiser’s set and sets obtained independently from Medical Authorities both within the United States and other countries which tell the true story. I believe that anyone at Kaiser would be hard put to challenge the source of these documents.

    The true story is that if any Kaiser doctor accidentally created this problem, then the doctor was sword fighting with his scalpel during the surgery. But if that were true with what medical authorities have since written in documents, Ms. Stein would not be alive today. That leaves only one other conclusion and that is this was not an accident. That makes it a crime.

    Here are some short facts, written here by one who has a copy of the documents and does have permission to write about some of them:

    1. Regarding the alleged cancer diagnosis made weeks after the surgery – the material provided by Kaiser was found by pathologists (note the plural) to have been obtained from another part of the body – far from the neck. Also pathologists have made a point of noting that the original slides provided by Kaiser and labeled as containing tissue that is part of Ms. Stein have another label underneath. That original label belongs to a man and his name is nothing similar to Stein.

    2. Dr. Wild was not Board Certified during the surgery. He did obtain Board Certification after the surgery and shortly thereafter became Department Chief. Pretty good for a physician just starting out.

    3. Four arteries and veins were severed at a location remote from the site of surgery. These four vessels were repaired with four different methods. These are the procedures required for Board Certification in Dr. Wild’s field which had not been satisfied until this operation. A question justifiably arises if this was an accident or a motive to satisfy certification requirements.

    4. Ms. Stein probably would never have known, nor have had a major medical problem if one of those arteries had not been put back together so poorly as to have seriously reduced arterial blood flow. That is what happens when you kink a tube inside an artery and can’t straighten it out again. You can’t just pull it out either to put in a new one without making the problem worse when it’s in such a location.

    Of great interest to a number of people is why in the world this physician would have used a material to stent one artery that clearly shows up on an MRI and other modern forms of imaging that was not approved for use internally in that time period but was being used internally for experimental purposes on animals. None of those animals that had this done to them lasted very long. Ms. Stein has suffered greatly.

    So Mr. Halvorson, the reporter, what do you think happened? Was it a way to satisfy a physician’s board certification or was there some experiment going on? It certainly does not appear to be any accident.

    Ms. Stein wants to talk to you about this. She even would be very happy to show you the proof so you would know first hand what your company is involved in.

    After the way she has been treated by your employees I think that a phone call from you is the least that she deserves.

  • After working in both Kaiser hospital and clinic in Sacramento, Ca., starting in the mid 1980′s to 1993 it has certainly been never ending nightmare, listening to patients and employees who are patients, that kaiser now entering into decades of operation, gets worse by the day. It baffles me that this can go on in this civilized world! What happened to Ms. Stein can happen to anyone. So far Kaiser has mananged to kill off at least 7 of my family members while charging medicare for hospice, morphine and other durable goods that were of no use to them and the same went for employees who have died because of deliberate medical neglect. Many of the ‘DOCTOR’s who worked in the hospital were interns and residents. IT was a very rare time that a staff doctor would visit their own patients upon and after admittance to the hospital. Many patients waited hours upon hours in the ER because the staffing was so poor in all departments. This has been one of the ongoing parts of the problem. Whenever the hospital staff needed extra help or anything related for the patients needs, we would be told it was “not in the budget”. I guess that has been one of ways Kaiser-a-non-profit has been able to amass billions, by denying basic needs for the patients which comes in a myriad of negligent and criminal acts. When the patient like Ms. Stein dared to ask or as Kaiser would consider an automatic rebuke or challege to them, they would automatically consider the patient for pyschiatric care-an intimidation, or acts of retaliation. Make the patients non credible to deny Kasier’s deliberate malpractice. Employees unfortunately suffered the same by sending them to psyche doctors and stuffing them with meds that would make them uncredible, immobile and unable to fight for themselves. Kaiser has a method of operation or as the police call it their MO, lie to maim and kill and then always, DENY, and of course , it is all for their profit. Medicare is Kaiser’s very own “permanente” personal ATM. I call it the kaiser killing fields #1 just to milk the public taxpayers out of billions of dollars for it’s own adminstration and it’s doctors profit.
    The state of California and it’s agencies like CMS-DMHC-DOI, the judical venue and it’s legislators have turned a blind eye to the horrors like Ms. Stein has had to unnessarily endure. The people who are supposed to protect the public and patients have done an abysmal job just to have a job with benefits and hopefully they don’t or won’t depend on Kaiser for their healthcare because they are not immune to the same criminal malpractice that happened to Ms. Stein and so many others. That and maybe, just maybe, STATE EMPLOYEES WHO ARE ON on Kaiser’s hit list like the rest of kaiser patients which would be to eliminate them and or their families cause these state employees would know too much about the REAL KAISER!
    I profoundly applaud and greatly appreciate her humanitarian efforts and contribution to our healthcare society for Ms. Stein’ efforts to expose the real Kaiser which is nothing but a #1 lying deceitful sieve for the obvious-billions of american tax payer funded dollars that criminally amasses more and more by eliminating patients through experimentation and flat out killing and PERHAPS most of all while enduring the repercussions of Ms Stein’s Dr. Mengele type of surgery and substandard care by Kaiser, albiet the poor quality of life that Kaiser left her with, she is still alive and perservering.
    I can only hope and pray that we all like Ms. Stein, live long enough to see the United States Congress and other top gov’t officals do it’s job BY GIVING deserved restitution to the patients and their families and shut the kaiser killing field DOWN!
    Dina

  • anonymous

    This part freaks me out the most. Ms. Stein was obviously an unknowing GUINEA PIG who was EXPERIMENTED ON. Why is Northern California so full of medical corruption? What Halvorson is feeling is COLLECTIVE INSANITY. Lets hope he takes his Haldol daily!

    >> Four arteries and veins were severed at a location remote from the site of surgery. These four vessels were repaired with four different methods. These are the procedures required for Board Certification in Dr. Wild’s field which had not been satisfied until this operation. A question justifiably arises if this was an accident or a motive to satisfy certification requirements.

  • anon

    Sure looks like a motive to satisfy certification requirements.
    Too bad Ms. Stein didn’t agree to being used as a guinea pig FIRST.
    How noble of them to jump right in and take over her body.

  • Julie

    That’s for the information on Dr wild, I looked up his web site, WHAT A HOTTIE!!

  • Admin

    Hey “Julie” — next time you try to impersonate a Harvard doctor, you might want to keep in mind that I can tell when it’s the same person posting comments with multiple names & email addresses, and that your location is nowhere near MGH. Your fake comments were deleted, but I left the silly one above as an example of your superior intellect. Nice try, dear.

    Let me add that your gift for remote diagnosis of a patient you’ve never even met is truly remarkable. You oughta take that act on the road. (Unless of course you have met her, which just makes you a creep).

  • Pam

    Sounds like a lot of bogus information from people who are not even doctors. See if you publish this one, I doubt it. If anything is creepy it’s this site, I read it for entertainment. Sort of like watching the Jerry Springer show! Guarantee you won’t publish this, only what fits your agenda, right? What a hypocrite you are!!

    [editor's note: This lovely human being accessed from Kaiser Permanente IP address 162.119.64.113, via a Yahoo search for *Timothy Wild MD* at 12:33pm Pacific time. Dr. Wild himself doing a vanity search, perhaps? Or maybe just a co-worker who likes to impersonate Harvard doctors, that suffers from some sort of bizarre fixation on "hottie" Dr. Wild. Thanks "Pam" for another stunning example of the sociopathic lack of compassion Kaiser's health care "professionals" have for their victims. Keep up the great work...makes our job here much easier.]

  • Thankful

    Sounds like another sicko on the loose! What a CREEP. Coming from KP, let’s consider the source. A person would have to be beyond sociopathic to do the things certain kaiser folks do.

    Yep I’d say, this just validates your existence Admin.

    Keep up the excellent work! Our safety depends on it.

  • [...] leading to much unnecessary suffering and sometimes death. A few recent examples are the cases of Jupirena Stein, Craig Pozzi, and a woman with West Nile Virus, who was repeatedly told her symptoms were all in [...]

  • anonymous

    The creep is George Halvorson.

    I sent him an email one time, and he actually responded. The email I sent detailed how my wife was ‘treated’ at a Kaiser facility.

    His response? ‘That can’t be Kaiser.’

    The sad thing is, he’s the one who is pushing for universal health care. He’s the one leading the charge. If he gets his way, we may as well all just take a cyanide pill.

  • Hannah

    Hey Ms.Stein,
    I’m sorry for the way these people treated you. It is DEFINITELY against the law and DEFINITELY a criminal organization.
    I can’t imagine what you went through when you found all this information out.
    My prayers go out to you. I’m not like all the other people who say “we can only pray….” and they don’t anyway. I am a serious Christian and I know that my prayers get answered, so if there’s ever anything I can do for you other than pray,
    please just let me know. I’m sure this website has my email address and they will let you know.
    This is wrong and SOMEONE should make a stand. We need to start a RIOT against this place. I mean, your story, a story of a stillborn child because the patient wasn’t treated??? Not right. At least not according to the Constitution or Medical laws.

    I hope you get the chance to read this and I hope that everyone else who reads my comment and has been a Kaiser victim will make a stand and not be afraid to RIOT outside their door.To NOT be afraid of sueing this place for all they have. You need PROOF,DOCUMENTS,(recordings would be SOOO awesome!), whatever you can get your hands on, and go to court.

    This cannot go on. They’ve been in business way too long.

    My deepest sympathy goes out to you,
    in Him,
    Hannah

  • Glynis Tolson

    Dear Ms. Stein,
    Your story broke my heart. We pay our premiums in good faith. We want to trust our doctors. What happened to you is, well inconceivable. I hope and pray that you get better. I will send you good thoughts and wishes with every cell and fiber of my being. Kaiser ruined my health, as well. I have been treated and regarded as a mushroom. My story cannot compare to yours, yet. Just tonight I suffered from a serious drug interaction that was condoned by a Kaiser pharmacist. My husband is an EMT. He saved me. I have to believe that somehow Kaiser will be held accountable. Most of all, I wish you well. I wish you heal. I hope you feel better. I put this out into the universe.
    Sincerely,
    Glynis Tolson

  • Carol J.

    I have just completed reading Ms. Stein’s story regarding her treatment at Kaiser facilities and the “qualifications” of her treating (and/or consulting) physicians. I am appalled and horrified that she had to endure what appears to be a continuing nightmare of medical treatment. That she is no longer a Kaiser enrollee speaks only to her acute sense of right vs wrong and her ability to continue to fight for her rights to be treated with dignity and respect.

    I am a former Kaiser employee who wore the badge and title of “Auditing Specialist”. My qualifications for wearing this badge included the fact that I was an Registered Nurse (for over twenty years at the time of my employment with Kaiser) and a certification of CCS-P (certified coding specialist) attained through intensive studying of the codes used for diagnosis and treatment of all diseases recognized by the DSM-III manual (listing of all known medical problems/symptoms for which a person seeks medical treatment for improvement/cure of their distinctive problems that have been recognized by the American Medical Academy and the Health and Human Services department of our government. (There has probably been some changes in this manual since my employment, but the general concepts remain the same as the intended original.)

    As an Auditing Specialist, I and my co-workers (some without the extent of qualifications that would seem necessary to perform this position) were responsible for reviewing the medical records for physician office visits to determine whether the documentation in the record “matched” with the patient’s presenting symptoms and/or chief complaints at the time of the visit. It may not surprise most of you that this “match” was rarely met (if you could even begin to decipher the physician’s handwriting!). Office visit notes were scribbled at the time of the visit (probably no longer than the 5-10 minutes allowed per patient to ensure that the MD could see the maximum number of patients in ant given day).

    If a diagnosis was even mentioned in the record it was an unusual occurrence. Treatment plans usually consisted of “return to clinic PRN” which means “as needed”, leaving the decision of whether further medical testing and/or treatment was “needed” to the discretion of the patients and significant others rather than to the physician to whom this responsibility is given at the time they take the Hippocratic Oath to “at first, do no harm.” While giving this responsibility to the patients, Kaiser was able to delay, postpone or make extremely difficult, the ability for the patient to make return appointments or receive a referral to appropriate consulting and treating specialists. Urgent Care employees, when questioned about the lack of appropriate documentation in the medical record, were not surprised, nor were they the least bit supportive of, the manner in which the physicians conducted and documented these office visits!! Given the opportunity to vent their opinions, it was apparent that most of the employees had very little faith or confidence that the patients were receiving the appropriate care in a timely manner (remember, each “visit” was limited to 5-10 minutes — if a patient could not express themselves clearly or did not have the ability to speak quickly and to the point about their symptoms, they were in the hallway, after seeing their doctors,looking dazed and perplexed about what to do next!!).

    In many instances, they were not even seen by MD’s, but rather by the Nurse Practioner in that particular MD’s office. (Drop by the Kaiser outpatient offices at The Orchard Medical Offices in Downey, CA (Southern California Kaiser Permanente Medical Group) and you will see a steady stream of patients at all hours of the day and night!)

    It would take reams of paper to even give a synopsis of the types of “errors” noted in the medical record and the corresponding charges requested by the MD. Yet, when these discrepancies were addressed in our audit reports, we were instructed by our supervisors and upper management (including the esteemed Medical Director of the group practice) to “find a way” to justify the charges or “look at it another way”. It is my firm belief that Kaiser has charged for services that were either not provided or where shabbily done. Let’s not even address the co-payments required by patients, to be paid at the time of the visit, or be charged an additional $15.00 for the privilege of being billed at a later date.

    As you may have gathered by now, I am no longer employed with Kaiser and if I had not resigned my position, would probably have been fired for my thorough review of the records I reviewed. I did not hesitate to speak loudly and frequently about the discrepancies I had found — and, as such, was not viewed as a valuable asset! (In fact, I had been “disciplined” and given poor performance evaluations for essentially doing the job that was required of me — audit for the complete and accurate documentation in the medical record).

    I had been, until 3/1/08, also been a Kaiser enrollee, receiving all my medical treatment from Kaiser physicians. I remember one time very clearly, after one of my “scheduled” appointments with a primary care provider, literally screaming at him regarding his lack of attention, while he showed me to the door. Didn’t do much good anyway — I had joined the Kaiser sheep fold and literally had no real recourse available to me. I admit that I held on to my Kaiser benefits for a long time simply because my employee benefits far surpassed any other type of insurance I could have obtained. My co-payments were ridiculously low!! I had surgery 3 times for recurrent bladder tumors, and paid only $5.00 for all of the inpatient services I received — including surgeon fees, anesthesia, medical supplies, and any other associated costs. How did Kaiser manage to keep my charges so low?? They were able to do so only because of the majority of their enrollees were paying upwards of $700 per month for their insurance benefits. To say that my health care was subsidized by the silent majority says it all!!

    I must apologize for generalizing and making it appear that ALL Kaiser physicians acted as depicted above, for I was fortunate to receive treatment from some very qualified and professional physicians — but, because of my auditing experiences, I knew which MDs met their responsibilities and could selectively choose whom I entrusted to care for me. It is with deep regret that I acknowledge that the majority of Kaiser enrollees do not have the advantage of this knowledge, and are made to endure the horrific experiences as outlined by Ms. Stein and others who have posted comments on this invaluable Web site.
    I am afraid to say that the only ones who “THRIVE” at Kaiser are the physicians who comprise the FOR PROFIT medical groups!!

    I also apologize for this lengthy post and would like to thank everyone who had the patience to read it in it’s entirety–
    I wish all current and past Kaiser enrollees the opportunity to have their medical needs addressed in a timely manner by professional and competent health care individuals. Alas, I cringe to admit, this may be possible only OUTSIDE OF KAISER!!

    Best wishes to you all,
    CTJ

  • I have been a northern Calif. Kaiser pt. for over 30 years and must agree the quality of care sucks. It sickens me the way they forcibly schedule appointments then you see a Dr. for less than 5 Minutes..most of the time they spend putting data in a computer. I have several non lifethreatening health issues..chronic.. that may well be treatable. It always amuses me that none of the Drs. ever scan charts before visits and act so surprised when I bring up the issues.So they really have dropped the ball on patient care. I too believe the Thrive solgan is a bunch of crap/\.
    Also, several years ago my husband had surgery for an encapsulated appendix..which they first diagnosed as pancreatitis. They assured us both a biopsy would be done while he was on the operating table. They lied. We waited 4 days while he was in the hospital for the results. On the last day a Dr. walks in chats with us and on the way out the door says,” oh, by the way the biopsy results were negative.” It was straight out of a soap opera. This was a turning point in my respect for Kaiser. Today I have empowered myself to take control and manage my care my way. I pick and chose who I see and when I see them. I complain when my medications are screwed up and I remind everyone to be self-reliant about their health care especially with Kaiser.

  • Bill F

    Previous responders! You have my heartfelt sympathy. I wonder why some law firm isn’t collecting information for a class action suit. No one individual can effectively confront this giant.

    Kaiser Permanente has been my trusted care provider since the early 70s. I checked into their San Diego Hospital on 23 March 2007 for a routine and low risk colonoscopy because I had justifiable concern about cancer. An possibly overworked ER nurse placed an IV at my right elbow, insuring it would be repeatedly exercised. It seeped blood almost immediately and the next day the floor nurse where I had been moved redressed it to no avail. The night nurse tried again by shoving the external plastic end of the IV catheter into the insertion hole in my skin. The next morning the day nurse removed the catheter to get me ready to go home. She conveniently didn’t note my elbow being a little inflamed around its entire circumference. I was too ignorant at the time to make an issue of it. Later in the day of discharge I noticed pus at the IV insertion site, treated it with Polysporin, and forgot about it. Two days later I couldn’t walk or talk and my wife called 911 which got me promptly to the ER and life saving treatment for sepsis at a Scripps Hospital. A Kaiser mandated move to its hospital followed by six weeks of IV antibiotics failed. As soon as the antibiotics were stopped around 10 May 2008 I descended again into sepsis to finally spend more than 13 touch-and-go hours in surgery and 3 more months in the hospital.
    My health and vitality are gone. Kaiser caused that for me.

    The protocol followed for my IV at Kaiser was obviously stupid, an almost guaranteed recipe for sepsis.

    Being human I have asked for an apology and have been stonewalled. I have also asked for some verifiable evidence that the situation has been reviewed and some corrective measures have been instituted. Kaiser’s answer is that it cannot answer. It hides behind “legally mandated confidentiality” and privacy requirements. Very useful!

    They have billed me for hospital admissions necessitated by the illness. I have asked them to suggest some compensation. Denied.

    Kaiser put out a socially responsible document in 2003:
    Patient Safety, Just compensation, and Medical Liability Reform,
    Kaiser Institute for Health Policy, 2003
    It’s on the Internet

    One has to wonder what went wrong.

  • Barb

    I am so sorry for your troubles. I too am dealing with a kaiser nightmare. My mother has stage 4 cancer because of medical malpractice. I wish someone could do something to stop the madness. Once in, you can’t get out. good luck to all who get sick and have kaiser insurance.
    Barb

  • Michael

    Barb, I feel your pain, my mother was lucky in thee fact that her oncologist was only a part time Dr. with Kaiser and had a top notch oncology practice at another local hospital so he was not your typical Kaiser Dr. He pushed with us for treatments and though he ultimately failed, it was not for lack of trying, caring, or pushing for resources for her. However, most other Dr.’s I have dealt with at ANY Kaiser facility have been pieces of work. Arrogant, uncaring and they know everything. (supposedly). I actually was able to prove a Dr. lied to me in the last three weeks of my mothers life and if I had not gotten her the hell out of the rehabilitation center they had sent her to she would have died there. it’s nice when you can prove the lie and hold the Dr. by the proverbial “nuts” but the best part was the reaction when she realized it… “uh, uh, you cant do that” exact words. I know there system pretty well and dont ever want to see someone else suffer because of a system that only cares for money. If you need help finding where to go to get things taken care of i will pass on any information i have that may help. nothing in return, just knowing someone is actually getting help and not going thru what my brothers and I did with Kaiser is satisfaction enough. I will check back for any questions every couple days. Good luck!

  • Richad Miller

    I am very sorry to hear this.

    Kaiser has many incompetent doctors

    Dr. Zemmar Lenoir misdiagnosed my uncle with arthritis 6 months ago. My uncle complained for 8 months and got regular checkup. He couldn’t walk and Dr. Zemmar Lenoir of Kaiser in Panorama City, Ca said that he had severe arthritis and prescribed him Vicodin. My uncle died last month of bone cancer, he had no arthritis. We have tried to sue Kaiser but so far they destroyed most of the records. All of the records that go back last year that have my uncle complaining were removed. Dr. Zemmar Lenoir is the most incompetent doctor and a big liar. I know of. He failed to do any tests on my uncle like a bone scan, MRI, Xray, nothing. I don’t know how this Dr. Zemmar Lenoir can sleep. Stay away from Dr. Zemmar Lenoir in Panorama City.

  • Diane

    Kaiser? are they in the business of health care? Really?

    I am in San Diego and find the care patient driven-to mean a patient has to self diagnose, go outside of the plan to get better if walking into Urgent Care or the ER does not work or go through so many doctors that you don’t even recall a name.

    I have a question. What does it take to get surgery in one’s own area and have a board certified doctor do the surgery? I live in San Diego and they want to send me to Los Angles for a back surgery. Why, they don’t have a board certfied dr that will do the surgery in SD. But hey, papers for the BC are in the mail…they even asked me if I wanted to wait for it. I have had a lower back pain problem for 2 years. this is the very end before I think nerve damage will set in. I am paying a specialist out of my pocket for a consult. I am so outraged at what I read on this site but I belive it all. My own cousin almost died while on Kaiser. She had cancer. They kept nuking her forever and I went with her to ask, where is her cancer. The reply from the top oncologist “Good question” I don’t know. (you’d think he would have read the records and did a little testing now and then in between the years of nuking her with chemo. She had ovarian cancer, breast cancer.

    After asking questions we already knew and Kaiser kept falling short, she was able to leave Kaiser,go to another plan and today she is cancer free after an immediate PET scan Kaiser refused and surgery, also refused. She has the tape recording of the Q & A with Kaiser.

    Years after she dumped Kaiser, her mother got a short form letter, saying something to the effect that her daughter had died. She is still alive and all that was at least 8 years ago.

  • Renee Jonson

    I am glad to heard I am not the only one that is being treated like a pile of discarded crap b/c I chose an HMO that is only worried about money and not health care. I have been trying to get my back fixed for 5 months now and ironically today (10-21-08) my job was featuring a benefit seminar and when I was hung up by a scheduler Christina Burns who apparently schedules for all the surgeries hung up on me! She basically told me i had a bad attitude and this wouldn’t help me get schedule. Thank God for Stephanie Woodword for being present during this very mentally distrubing situation. I was at work and I am a receptionist and was brought to tears by this. I am just trying to get my back fixed, but seeing and reading all these horror stories, is making me have second thoughts and deciding to go w/another provider. I am glad we have choses where I work!

    Renee Jonson
    Westminster Colorado

  • I am glad to heard I am not the only one that is being treated like a pile of discarded crap b/c I chose an HMO that is only worried about money and not health care. I have been trying to get my back fixed for 5 months now and ironically today (10-21-08) my job was featuring a benefit seminar and when I was hung up by a scheduler Christina Burns who apparently schedules for all the surgeries? She basically told me i had a bad attitude and this wouldn’t help me get schedule and than hung up on me. Thank God for Stephanie Woodward (a Kaiser Associate Account Manager)for being present during this very mentally distrubing situation. I was at work and I am a receptionist and was brought to tears by this. I am just trying to get my back fixed, but seeing and reading all these horror stories is making me have second thoughts and deciding to go w/another provider. I am glad we have choses where I work! This is hopefully the last phase of a terrible experience dealing with this system and I pray for all the other victims that have had to endure worst situations than me! Too bad they have the money to fight the legal battles and maybe if we start to look for other health care that will treat us properly and professionally and correctly this HMO might come back to the passionate side of customer service!?

    Renee Jonson
    Westminster Colorado

  • Evelyn

    I just want to add that I believe complaints on this page; I go to the Kaiser in L.A. and have experienced similar situations. It seems to me like every time I’ve gone to Kaiser within the last 10 years with symptoms, the doctors don’t have any idea of what diagnosis to come up with for the symptoms. It’s always me who has to suggest diagnosis to be tested for. If it weren’t for me who likes to inform herself about different illnesses I wouldn’t be able to contribute towards the diagnosing for the doctor. I am also currently on psychiatric medication and it seems like when the physician realizes this he/she disqualifies any of my requests. There attitudes seem to be – now that you have a mental illness you can’t come up with reason and therefore your comment does not count.

  • Barbara Bissell

    Oh my god, it is like reading about myself. Except I am still “kind of” healthy. I have experienced ineptitude, stupidity and the “referral to mental illness professionals when they can’t come up with a routine diagnoses” syndrome repeatedly at Kaiser. I actually did that and discovered that the shrink they sent me to doesn’t diagnose a thing. All she does is write a scrip. Which, in my opinion, makes her a licensed pusher. Thanks for the info, I’m going to change my provider the next change I get. I mean, these morons can’t even get an eyeglass prescription right. My last visit involved a gyn who squeezed my nipples so hard in her “breast exam” they almost bled, and then professed to have never heard about MRI exams as an altnernative to squashed-boob mammography. (Not good for women with highly sensitive breasts.)

  • Anonymous

    It never ends. Don’t bother with arbitration, it’s bogus and rigged. The judges get paid by kaiser. We’ll all get em another way. This can’t go on forever.

  • Jonathan Wright

    It makes my blood boil when I hear people suffering from the cruelties of Kaiser Permanente. It’s a big scheme. Although they say they care about their patients, all they care about is $$$. They spend more time teaching their new doctors how to talk to their patients. Wait!! I thought doctors already knew how to be empathetic and how to express themselves. The problem is that the docs become stuck in the whole system. By the time they realize that this is no way to practice medicine, they cannot find another job that pays as much and lets you work as little as Kaiser.

    Even among the Kaiser docs, there is a great unfairness levied against primary care doctors. They work like dogs and they have to see patients every 15 minutes. It’s just like a factory. A lot of Kaiser doctors are foreign medical graduates with questionable medical training and many suffer from inadequacies as human beings. Kaiser system has to be abolished or we will be better off driving/flying to Mexico or Canada to see a “real” doctor.

  • carla jose

    i would like to know how i can file a complaint to kaiser … my husband and i are very disappointed with their services

  • Sherry Herrick

    Sorry to hear about all this stuff with the KP docs. I’ve never had a problem with anything or anyone at KP in GA. I dont live in an area anymore where KP is offered, if I did I would sign up for medical services. I do hope that anyone with med issues do receive the best care and hopefully things will work out for the best in the end like my experiences did.

  • Well,
    Kaiser is not a Care Giver!. It is a For-Profit-Farm. All iot cares about money. You have to go there wait 30 to 45 minutes then you may be called. However, Once I was 10 minutes late – shame to to DC traffic. The Nurse Practioner told me she can not see me as I was late. I complain to Kaiser have not heard back. Obviously, nothing happened.
    I tried to change my personal policy from a higher rate to lower rate. I got a response saying that I have pre-existing condition and I have to pay more than twice what I am paying now. I am complaining to the Byreau of insurance.

  • saddened

    I have to say that my heart goes out to all of you after reading every story on this site. I am not even sure how I ended up on this site. I am currently a nurse at Kaiser and have worked there for 11 yrs. I am originally from a small hospital in upstate N.Y. and I will say that the system at Kaiser is not even close to what I was use to in NY.
    I can’t speak for anyone else that works at Kaiser, but I want to share with all of you what I am all about..I am currently in the pediatric clinic dept. in southern, CA. I truly do care about all of you that come under my care. What keeps me going sure isn’t the money…(There are plently of less stressful jobs out there that pay just as much!) For me, its a feeling of knowing that I have done the best I could to help my patients. Seeing that smile on my little patients face, etc. I have held the hand of a teen telling me she’s pregnant and doesn’t know what to do…I’ve cried with the family that just found out there baby has leukemia…
    I am not trying to make you think that I’m some hero because I surely don’t think of myself that way at all…After hearing all these Horror stories, I want you all to know that some of us at Kaiser really do care about you and what happens to you. It really makes me sad to hear your nightmares.
    I do also want you all to know that I truly believe eaach and every one of your stories, and am appauled as an employee to know that this is going on…I could also write a book on what I see wrong with Kaiser…I have though about going somewhere else many times because of what goes on and maybe at some point, I will. For now though, those little faces that I have come to know so well in peds are the sole reason I stay. I want to keep giving them the very best I have because they so deserve the best…
    I hope if nothing else, you all will feel my heartfelt apology for my fellow Kaiser employees behavior, its inexcusable and astounding and it never should have happened.

  • Dave

    Yup. Kaiser Permanente Sucks. Anyone who’s dealt with them for any significant amount of time knows this. They are:
    SLOW
    Takes FOREVER to see a doctor (for 5 minutes)
    EXPENSIVE

    And they have no interest in actually delivering care. For God Sakes, they don’t even give you the doctor’s phone number!

    Fuck Kaiser.

  • Sacramento woman

    I feel like all of you. My father was refused medical care because he was misdiagnosed and Kaiser won’t revisit any mistakes. Here is the lesson we have paid dearly to learn: If you are caring for someone, be sure to get a record of every visit, every time (it is too late later, Kaiser works the file over.) If it is incorrect, or you want something to add, do it. Ask the member services department for the procedures to put your input into the file. Just be nice. This is more work than we are used to doing. It’s something so time-consuming that we want to put it off. But don’t put it off. Maybe most importantly, take pictures, if there is anything to take pictures of. Take pictures of the doctor standing by the bedside, take pictures of the nurses and the aides. Ask to see sores, have them take bandages off for your pictures. Always carry a camera anyway, so you will get used to thinking about taking pictures. It’s all an act of love. And you are protecting doctors from having to lie. We want happy doctors, don’t we? Get the drop on them while the problem can still be solved. So they can sleep at night.

  • Mary Ann

    My son passed away April 24, 2008, after his primary care physician kept calling his pain “acid reflux”. When he refused to give him any more pain pills, my son went to ER and discovered he had lymphoma. They would never surgically remove the tumors on his kidneys, told him his cancer “of all cancers” would be the one you’d want because it’s 100% treatable, drenched him with chemo until he was too weak to get out of bed…claiming they would send him to City of Hope for a bone marrow transplant, then stated they couldn’t even remove the tumors because, “look at him, he’s too unhealthy now”. His oncologist refused to refer him stating, “we can do anything City of Hope can do for him here.” When he went to ER the last week of his life at another hospital, I begged the hospital not to let Kaiser send him back to the one in Fontana – I had a grievance against them, and Kaiser refused to send him to Orange County, stating “all of his paperwork is in Fontana”…The other city hospital said that his blood count was too low and how did Kaiser expect to treat his cancer, since you need BLOOD to be healthy. He was sent to ICU on the 22nd of April, his fiance and him did have a chance to be wed by a Catholic priest, thought the County of San Bernardino wouldn’t acknowledge it because they didn’t run a get a marriage license filled out (of course he was bedridden during all of this and one doesn’t think of paperwork, especially when you get a call saying, “your son is going to have a heart attack or stroke”. There were a couple of times other family members would go into the room and find the air unplugged. I would stay on the floor and hear other rooms alarms go off and no one respond to them. It was a horrible, horrible hospital and I try to tell everyone I know to get rid of their Kaiser. I had a Doctor tell me that “they are only good at Kaiser, if you don’t get sick!” I could go on and on, but the main thing (since they almost killed my mom too with a surgical slice of an extra vein during an angioplasty), someone has to get a class action suit against them and not for the measely 250000 “cap”. They need to be punished. I hate them and yes, that earlier person said it perfect—”F” Kaiser!

  • sickened in Kansas

    I can’t help but feel sickened by all that I have read here… I am a career physician assistant who ALWAYS, regardless of a patient’s ability to pay, seeks the truth in a complaint. I almost took a job in 2006 at Kaiser, I consider it a BLESSING I looked elsewhere, because my natural truth-seeking patient care philosophy would have surely been stifled. I wish all of you who have been injured in some way by Kaiser peace and retribution, and I pray that the madness is stopped. I am not a Kaiser employee, I am not a beneficiary of their health care, but I am a medical professional whose eyes have been opened, and I promise to not only carry your words to other health care professionals, but to always remember to DO NO HARM when caring for my patients. Thank you–

  • Sick to death of KP

    I’m so sorry to read what you have gone though.
    It makes what I’m going though look mild. But I’m not going to shut up about it. From the first phone call to kaiser I knew I was in for a Mr. Toads Wild Ride. They have lied to me since day one.

    I hope you can have some kind of peace in your life. And I would suggest to you Acupuncture.
    It helps my spinal injury.
    Sending you healing vibes.
    Thank you for sharing your story.

  • crystal

    HI
    kaiser has breached my privacy and they have admitted it after 8 month when human right office investigated. i dont know how to get restituition from hospital. i cant find any attorney in north bay area. please help

  • Admin

    As far as I know there is no private cause of action for a privacy breach. Maybe if there were some economic damages, but you’d have to contact a civil rights attorney to find out. Call the Bar Association to get some names to try.

  • Janet

    My heart hurts and my story is not unlike yours… I only pray that the President of the USA does not ask Kaiser to be the mainstream medical for all the poor people out there since no one can help us because we have Kaiser how can they help the people that do not have health insurance. I was having seizures because I was being over medicated and they kept saying that all my problems were in my head and sent me to a Shrink who believe it or not did NOT agree with the doctors… and after many EEGs they found a seizure and I was not faking it. I think if I were faking it I am in the wrong field and should have been an actress. hummmm I think that is the point most doctors were fake doctors, I do have a great doctor now and I am very glad for it. I do not go to Kaiser in the ER any more unless I have no other choice. I just stay home and hope for the best at least I am not a guinea pig and and have to suffer at their and hand and actually pay them to do so. I go when I think I can nto help myself. and at least I am alive to talk about it unlike some families here that are no longer with us..

    my heart goes out to you!!!
    Janet

  • Mike

    I have had it with my HMO, they ridiculed me, made fun of me and said I can’t have any side effects from pegasys interferon/ribavirin combo treatment. Then my dr. said he would give me some testosterone cream if it warranted it then refused when my tests show that I am very low and that is why I am having problems, I can lose my job if I don’t get stronger and back in fit again. But because of the interferon treatment it has effected my body in a negative way and my dr. said I should not have any side effects from it cause it is a natural treatment, I think I am a victim of malpractice cause of this. My doctor wanted me to get a colonoscopy and said I should get it on my birthday cause it would be a good present, and I found that to be appalling and very unprofessional, I was shocked. Then the nurse told me I must be faking it, cause she never heard of anybody having problems with the pegasys treatment, so then I joined a support group and they couldn’t believe the treatment I have been receiving and told me to make a grievance, well I did and 15 grievances later nobody has contacted me and the dr. still gives me bad advice or does not know what to do with me, I find that very difficult to take, I never heard of dr.s treating there patients this way, I am 50 and never had it happen to this degree in my life. Please help me so I can get better. thanks. One of my dr’s yelled at me when I needed short term disability and ridiculed me and told me that he can’t go home and I shouldn’t be allowed to go home. I think this type of treatment is serious when it is to this degree.

    My dr.s: Dr. Shvartsmann, Dr. Pagel, Dr. Parks in palm springs!
    I was told I was a faker and liar and they told my fiance the same thing that the treatment can’t harm you, boy were they wrong still suffering the effects of the treatment and now my testosterone is very low so he said he would give the treatment then today he said I can’t justify it and that was it, they won’t treat me but they will give me a bunch of tests, weeks of tests and they won’t help me, they know what is wrong but won’t do it. this type of abuse should be illegal at the very best I should have a law suit cause I could lose my job over this, cause I am still very weak and having muscle problems and fatigue. Not sure what to do yet except to notify everyone I can think of newspapers, lawyers, congressperson.

  • Mike Miller

    The bad thing is that they have way too much power you have to go through the HMO help center in california if you are from california or similar in another state. Try the insurance commissioner and try your local newspaper. I am not afraid to tell my story cause this has gone on for over a year for me now.

  • james

    Hey everyone, I’ve currently been on hold for 2 hours w/ Kaiser, trying to schedule and obtain important medicine for a cyst that is getting worse and worse by the day. My current ENT doctor is completely incompetent and is not helping, this is literally being dragged out, and I’m getting afraid for my health, I’m a young guy, 25, college student and I can’t get adequate healthcare from Kaiser! If anyone has any advice for me, or any helpful information please email me at hkp71984@yahoo.com,

    thanks james in atlanta

  • K

    First let me apologize for the length of the following..but I feel that it is a timely comment.
    That said..
    I feel for each & every one of you folks here.
    Now..
    Due to an Insurance change by my spouses employers..In Dec, 2008..I lost all my former Specialists and coverage..in one day!
    Effective Jan, 2009, I signed up with Kaiser “Senior advantage” program in Los Angeles County, Ca.
    I had a Dx of autoimmune overlap disease..MCTD..very serious, as it is all systemic.
    Kaiser promptly threw out this Dx..and have said for one year now, “That they don’t treat this, go have a blood test, and contact my primary.”
    In these last nine mos.I have progressed to a walker, a c-pap breathing machine, partial hearing & sight, as this goes untreated.
    I have four “sub-specialists and 6 MD’s..”supposed to be” specialists.
    I now have a case manager for pain classes.
    I have literally begged for help,only to be sent to Psychiatry & told I needed classes for anger management!
    I am preparing to expose these “Kaiser Kid Docs.”
    I have figured it out..kaiser Permanente has become a training facility. These so called “Specialists” are not even board certified for their specializations yet.
    They have to meet certain criteria including treating a set amount of patients.
    Often I feel that I know more than they do! I do my research, as I do not trust ANYONE with my life.
    It took 40 years to finally get this Dx.
    My former Double board certified Specialists had to go to my DNA with my blood work..then started the appropriate treatment, that saved my life.
    Now I have NO meds (after a year of tests)..and am sicker than I have ever been in my life.
    I am leaving Kaiser this month, to save my life.
    Bless all that have to continue suffering the Medical abuses & neglect.
    I will update as my journey progresses.

  • erika

    Do not point out your Kaiser psychiatrist’s lack of compassion or medical skill, because they will 5150 you on the spot.

    If you are stuck with Kaiser as your insurance, don’t relay on them to help you in any way. Find alternative low-cost therapists, support groups, etc.

    I sought treatment with Kaiser’s psych offices for 20 years — help never arrived, just pills & pills & pills and several bonehead psychiatrists who really couldn’t have cared less.

    I feel so much better now that I don’t use Kaiser for anything other than filling the ONE prescription recommended by a non-Kaiser psychiatrist.

  • Paul

    I agree.Try Kaiser on Maui=OVERT corruption; unchallenged.They are evil.They have ruined my life and continue to mistreat me.
    Can’t we take these THOUSANDS of complaints to the gov’t to get action?
    Or am I just too naiive?

  • K. Boyer

    My story follows the same story after story on this blog. Although I am a many year Kaiser employee, and I depend on the medical care I have encountered over 5 “incidents” where there is/was gross negligence and their cure was either more pills, psychiatrist, go to gym (127 lbs/ 5’7), they wrote drug seeking behavior on my chart due to a complete avulsion of a quad muscle accident, misdiagnosed for 2 years they kept telling me it was nothing,,exercise more, it must be a hematoma, it will take months to go away and they were not the least bit interested in helping me or finding out what was wrong.After I started to research my symptoms and reviewing my care , I first told the doctor what I thought it was after doing all my homework he laughed and me told me to lose weight and that he would order a mri just to show me I was wrong..turns out total avulsion of muscle,,,couldn’t be repaired, no one in kaiser had done it. Well we found one kaiser doctor who had done ONE, after mine, he had done two…mine didn’t work and 2 months in a wheelchair later,,I was told we could try it again.Kaiser denied me going to another surgeon who actually had experiance,,yes they love to practice and try new things on us as patients, without the expertise…I wont even go into the breast lump that I talk to 3 of my doctors about, no one, thats right not one “touched it” they all said it was scar because I had breast augmentation and revision 3 times. finally after mammogrom over and over i refused to leave the room until my primary touched what I felt,,,oh its nothing..yep and added “you are such a cry baby” I will send you to a surgeon just to prove it is nothing, The surgeon said the same sentence,,,your such a cry baby and it is just a scar, gee you had your breasts done 3 times?,,,well, the ultrasound found what I felt, after two years of complaining.To make it short, and it wasn’t, the metastatic breast cancer that spread into my lymph nodes was treated with a bilateral mastectomy and six long months of chemotherapy, complete with all the side effects that I was told, never happen, and they say,,we are really sorry. Me Too. but after the incisions infected and my doctor was on another vacation the vascular surgeon covering wants to take me to surgery again I asked him how many of this type of case he had done,,,that answer was none so..I asked for a plastic surgeon,,too bad not available,,it was said well it is friday.I had to stop chemo and then thank goodness I worked for a local wonderful plastic surgeon who took me to surgery the next morning and fixed the Kaiser Mess… I healed quickly, lost all confidence in Kaiser and I know they do not write the truth in the computer. I ask to see it when I go in and I ask to see what they write. for my leg they called it a minor repair of muscle,,on my mri complete avulsion of muscle, I asked them to change it,,and he did,,,so how is that done,,I will tell you, they can go back and add anything they want and they love the computer now because the handwriting was really a problem when you try to adjust the chart to keep yourself out of trouble.
    My daughter was treated for sore ankles , they told us it was nothing at age 14,at college scholarship acceptance and entrance a chiropractor was looking at her ankles and asked why she hadn’t had her “tarsal colition” repaired prior to college. When we went back to the podiatry, same doctor he said oh she will grow out of it..not….now another podiatrist at kaiser wants to fuse her ankle, she will never bend it again and the first podiatrist retired early after some other incidents and complaints,,,very timely. That is the same daughter of mine who had a miscarriage at week 14, D and C and two days later complains of belly pain,,,back to kaiser ultrasound and I see something,,me a novice,,Dr. says oh that will pass, antibotics and lots of sickdays with belly pain,,week after week calling to talk to dr, worried that she was not getting better,,,,really badly bleeding and THREE MONTHS LATER

  • Dear everyone:

    I am Jupirena Stein and I need to say this to all of you:

    Kaiser Permanente is a multi-disciplinary teaching hospitals chain spreaded throughout our United States.
    Kaiser, as other teaching hospitals, have a GRADUATE MEDICAL EDUCATION (GME Program.) Their GME program accepts doctors from anywhere in the world who wishes to became board certified. Kaiser’s own doctors are board certified at 82%. Quite amazing isnt it?

    So far … pretty normal right?

    Well, … here’s how Kaiser differs from all other teaching hospitals:
    -They are independent (i.e. not like an University that actually MUST obey the rules)
    -They do “things” among a very tightly closed medical environment.
    -They will change your medical records, add or take away as needed to get them out of trouble.
    - They have an arbitration system and the Department of Managed Health Care under their commend, at all times.
    -They are ruthless, cruel criminals.

    Now, … we, the patients pay Kaiser every month for their deliver of our healthcare which includes:
    1-pills, colds, emergencies of sorts, birth, x-rays, etc…
    2- the “previlege” of allowing their GME physicians to use our body parts as needed.

    They CAN and WILL use our body parts as if they (the GME Program doctors) have been exonerated from liability, accountability, medical ethics, respect and regard for human lives.
    Please see: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jRVT3N7eFhk

    So… get out if you can. But if you MUST stay, -protect yourself, your friends and your family.
    DO NOT BLINDLY TRUST KAISER PERMANENTE.

    Expose, Confront and Change!
    JS.

  • “Kaiser’s own doctors are board certified at 82%. Quite amazing isn’t it?”

    CORRECTION:
    Kaiser’s own doctors are board certified at 96%
    not 82% .

    My mistake, my apologies.
    JS

  • Nikkol

    MY GOD…..I am so sorry for everything you have been through. I actually cried reading this because I too have been treated badly by Kaiser doctors a time or two. Not nearly as horrible as what you went through, but enough to where my health suffered as a result of their “we dont see anything in your CT scan….and perhaps the pain is ALL IN YOUR MIND” comments. Really….WHO wants to have pain? Trust me…if I could think of anything else, I would have. Unbelievable. I hope that somehow you and your family have been compensated.

  • Ingrid Plaehn

    My mother is at Kaiser right now. I LEARNED from when they almost killed my husband! When she was in the hospital in critical condition, I PAID for a private care giver to sit with her day and night. My mother was treated well. Now mom is back with an infection. Those doctors said she didn’t have an infection, the nurses didn’t bathe her, etc. I have sued Kaiser before and I have made it known to the people who take care of my mother right now, after they were somewhat negligent. Surprise: They are watching out.

    BTW: They wanted to send mom to a rehab place after surgery:
    1. On the US government watch list for abuse
    2. 90% of short term patients come out with bed sores and double the amount of patients are in restraints
    3. Poor quality of care

    So, I passed. I hired more private care givers (am going broke doing it), moved in with mom (and have to leave my own family during that time)

    OH yeah, and when I mentioned it to doctors, nurses, clinical social workers and member services they are ALL like:” Oh my God, which homes are those – I don’t know anything about that” BULLSHIT!!!! They are all complicit – be it only through their silence!
    Some nurses were telling me hush, hush:”We knew, but we aren’t allowed to tell the patients. We strongly suggest that family members take care of the patient, but we can’t tell”

    I am going to the newspapers, to the radio, to the insurance commissioner, etc……

    MORAL of this: Pay for someone to sit with your family member or do it yourself if you can, take photos, take notes, even secretly tape them!

    Oh, I also brought food for the nurses, etc –it ALWAYS helps to have them on YOUR side.

  • Jack Shaw

    “…82%…”, “…96%…”.

    What’s the difference, when it’s not a full 100%??? A recent Kaiser/Colorado “Thrive” from 2009 claimed 90%.

    Is that supposed to reassure? Not me! It takes a descent into Hell for a board to decertify a doctor, making that stat. all the more meaningless.

    Jack S.

  • EDWINA YAMAT

    MY MOTHER WAS TAKEN TO KAISER ER IN HAYWARD ON 6/24/2010.SHE WAS KEPT THERE OVERNIGHT DUE TO A STRESS TEST SHE WILL BE ON, THE NEXT DAY.6/25/2010.I WAS TOLD BY THE DOCTOR THAT SHE HAS TO UNDERGO THIS BEFORE SHE CAN BE DISCHARGED.AFTER HER STRESS TEST AND ALL THE ECHOGRAM, SHE WENT BACK TO HER ROOM AT THE ER AT AROUND 4:00 P.M..6/25/2010 A DISCHARGED NURSE BY THE NAME OF CHRYSTAL CAME IN TO HER ROOM AND TOLD HER IN A COMMANDING VOICE SHE NEEDS TO GET READY. MY MOTHER TOLD HER, TO WAIT BECAUSE HER RIDE WAS NOT THERE YET. AND HER IV WAS STILL ON. CHRYSTAL TOOK HER IV OUT AND JUST LEFT MY MOTHER WITHOUT ANY GAUZE TO PUT ON WHERE SHE TOOK THE NEEDLES OUT. SHE TURNED HER BACK AND LEFT. MY MOTHER BLED , HER GOWN AND PANTS WAS SOAKING WITH BLOOD AND DOWN TO THE FLOOR. MY MOTHER SAW A NURSE HELPING A PT ACROOS THE ROOM. SHE CALLED HER AND HER NAME WAS SONYA. SAW MY MOM BLEEDING AND ASKED HER WHO DID THAT. MY MOTHER TOLD HER THAT IT WAS CHRYSTAL. AFTER CLEANING UP MY MOTHER AND THE FLOOR SONYA LEFT AND SAID THAT SHE WILL LOOK FOR CHRYSTAL. SUDDENLY CHRYSTAL CAME IN AND SAID WITH A LOUD VOICE, WHY WHATS WRONG,SONYA HELPED YOU ANYWAY AND IT’S DONE AND OVERWITH.THEN LEFT.
    THIS IS AN EXAMPLE OF AN UNCARING NURSE.THERE IS NO PATIENT CARE.MY MOTHER IS ON COUMADINE AND EVERYONE KNOWS THERE THAT SEEN HER THAT DAY. IF MY MOTHER WAS NOT CAPABLE OF CALLING SOMEBODY TO HELP HER , SHE WOULD HAVE BLED TO DEATH.
    MY MOTHER IS NOW AT HOME BUT WITH A BIG BANDAGE ON HER ARM AND STILL BLEEDING.
    I WILL BE CONTACTING MY LAWYER ABOUT THIS INCIDENT. WOULD LIKE TO HEAR FROM WHO EVER WILL EXPLAIN TO ME HOW YOU CAN HIRE NURSES LIKE CHRYSTAL. NO PATIENT CARE.

  • Most people don ‘t have an idea what HELL is like , unless you are/were and employee or a patient and all related families of Kaiser. Another sad part is that the medical industrial complex, HMO’s, other health care plans, insurance companies, pharmaceuticals, chemical and bio tech companies have a great military influence(many from the military worked at kaiser and also in workers compensation and in the VA-KAISER) and the treatment or lack thereof nowadays, is all the same.
    FrankenKAISER and the Dr. Jekyl & Mr Hyde or NAZI care is what we have to look forward to. All real doctors have to stand up together for themselves as CARING & COMPASSIONATE PHYSICIANS FOR THE SAKE OF ALL OF THEIR PATIENTS.
    GOS BLESS us all in our endeavors to demand real medical care, that we are not consumers but and humans who meed real medical care. A
    former employee/union steward and patient who saw fAr too many horrible things ABOUT THE MALPRACTICE AGAINST PATIENTS including knowing about the many employee suicides and a murder all here in Sacramento.Ca. The FBI helped cover up the murder. What and who is Kaiser? It’s called HELL! We need God’s help on this because no public official has even tried to go after kaiser much less succeed in closing them down like it should have been done 25 years ago when I worked there. Kaiser gets billions on medicare alone and no audit or accountability from our government. Even the govt is held accountable at some point but why not
    THE KAISER HELL?

  • Diane Danskin

    I have my own stories regarding Kaiser misdiagnosis regarding multiple family members and culminating in the death of my son. Right now a dear family friend is fighting Kaiser to authorize treatment for her mother at UCSF. This has been going on for months, delays, lies, ignorance…EVERYTHING as I read above in so many stories. I am ready to stand up, be counted and DO SOMETHING there certainly seems to be enough people out there who have been victimized by Kaiser…to the excellent administrator of this site….if you hear of something where they need a show of people to protest, write letters..please let me know. Thank you for this site it shows others they are not ALONE !!

  • Paul

    My Kaiser PCP TOLD me how to kill myself with my meds after I told him my pain is not the “livable” type (UNtreated), after another “doctor” told me “most of us just get used to it and live with it”(the pain).I doubt he had 2 failed back surgeries with a durotomy that nicked my L-lateral L4-5 nerve root,causing 4 days of clear fluid (CSF)leakage for which they pulled chucks several times per day,caused me a 5 day spinal H/A and left me with a permanently numb left foot,which I thought i could live with,but over about a 5 year period of time I developed scar tissue IN my arachnoid space,creating what is called “arachnoiditis”,which has NO cure, is a 10 on the pain scale, never goes away,and has evry bad pain label plus the one I use most=HIDEOUS!Kaiser NEGLECTED to file this as a Workers’ Comp case, which it was(IS), and I told them,with my ex-wife as witness.My PCP said “well, all they’re going to need to know is that we’re controlling your pain with meds”. My hearing came around,and all was settled in less than an hour,kaiser not even mentioned.Medical CLOSED because Kaiser did NOT do their legal duty! AND,I had an attorney!He said “he couldn’t MAKE him enter it into WC if he didn’t want to(LIE-HAS to by LAW!)…Hawaii is a very corrupt place.So I’ve been paying all my co-payments myself, which should have been WC.Now Kaiser says I owe them $6000 and sent collections after me.They also completely botched an abdominal surgery.They knew for 13 yrs that I needed a part of intestine cut out,”eventually”.”We just wait until it’s bad enough, then we cut it out”.I told them when it was bad enough-they denied it.I had an emergency bowel obstruction,they decompressed it with an NG tube-NOT fun with a broken nose and deviated sceptum!Blood and cracking bones in my face everywhere!Then they blamed it on the opiates I’ve been on for a decade(STILL with diarrhea from the stenotic terminal ileum)-it CAN’T be ileus if I have diarrhea!I told the “doktor” he was mistaken and why(I was a Paramedic for years)-you’d think they’d give me some cred-Kaiser NEVER did!The doc ignored me and let his erroneous Dx stand!My 2nd B.O.resulted in “emergency surgery”,AFTER 10 HOURS IN the ER! They gave me a “Barium-type enema” immed. prior to surg-it LEAKED all over me and the table!Told them=IGNORED all the way to the OR.I told the anesth. last,with tears in my eyes,knowing it was going to infect badly.BTW-I looked up to see how the tech was going to clean the Xray table-she just used MY sheet and gave it a quick wipe!That is raw sewage!And that is how I was cut on in Maui Memorial Hospital by a Kaiser “surgeon” named “Doctor” Sakai,the one who told me we “just learn to live with our pain”. My old Pain management doc died; now I have a new grad, passed off by Kaiser as a PAIN MANAGEMENT SPECIALIST!-they LIED! He is NOT! They are GIVING him that title ILLEGALLY for now until he puts in enough time,then legally by letting him work there as one while doing his Fellowship! He will pass our lax state boards after his req’d time spent,but he has NOT demonstrated ANY interest in learning (I am exactly twice his age)-my pain is older than he is,yet he won’t listen to this old man of pain-even old, medically trained man! He pegged me with about 6 erroneous Dx over 1.5yrs.Addict=NOT;(Even IF, Kaiser created one).MY meds are causeing my pain=NOT! They call that “Hyperanalgesic Induced Pain”,or a variation thereof.He cut my meds by 2/3!!!…50% in 2 months;knowingly&wilfully putting me into withdrawals by titrating my meds down way too fast!I told him so, but he ignored me.It happened.I asked to be hospitalized.I was told “we don’t feel comfortable managing pain in the hospital(MauiMemorial)…yet they feel good about leaving me home ALONE, withOUT medical supervision, in withdrawals, dehydrated,malnourished, dizzy & falling down, etc.,and he replied”…unless you want to be admitted to the psych ward”.!!! IS KAISER PSYCHOTIC? Geoffrey Sewell,M.D.is the head of kaiser in Hawaii.He has gone on record as stating “ALL of their ‘partrners’are board certified in their specialty.As stated before(above)by others, this is blatantly not true.I can also state it is patently UNTRUE. I’ve already written a book here, and that’s the TIP of the iceburg! I had an outside Kaiser MD state “Kaiser is so big now they are above the law”. He is a 75y/o MD here that is VERY highly respected,compassionate,and can’t get kaiser to even send records over for his 2nd opinion!I HAVE TO QUITE-MY PAIN IS MAKING DO SO. I’VE BEEN FIGHTING IT FOR A LONG TIME.IF ANYONE HAS ADVICE,I NEED IT.MY EMAIL IS . Please someone tell me there is an answer,somewhere! Isn’t there an attorney among us that will make a class action suit out of all this abuse and early death(I never got to that part).Some of you PLEASE remind me to come back-I am in so much pain I can’t remember follow-up to anything anymore!Thank you, and may GodBless you all!WE NEED AN ANSWER TO THIS CORRUPTION! All these CRIMES Kaiser has perpetrated against customers, or “patients” have been POSITIVELY addressed to the contrary by Kaiser personnel, usually high-up individuals,in writing,in their own publications.It is IN WRITING! HOW can they get away with doing the exact opposite of what they have claimed they practice and believe in and follow IN PRACTICE!? The end result=they are TORTURING me and KILLING me! Nither is an exaggeration. I know my medicine. I can’t believe young kids fresh out of medical school would hire up with them and so quickly adopt their “philosophy” in direct contrast to the OATH they just took, which means apparently NOthing nowadays, so quickly and so completely, assimilating themselves into the Kaiser “FOR PROFIT” half of the system so willingly doing ill to people can only mean ONE thing-GREED/VANITY. Giving them a TITLE straight out of med school strokes their “God Complex” egos,which are HUGE, and giving them $$$,which,for this system to work so negatively for the customers(I ca’t even call us “patients” anymore;we don’t fall under any category of “Standard of Care” that I have ever heard of,nor do they treat us as individuals and consider our “Quality of Life”. These are both well known medical terms. PAIN was also becoming known as “The 4th Vital Sign” toward the end of my Paramedic career. You don’t hear that anymore. That “10″Scale for pain is all but useless, but that’s a whole other subject. NO one at Kaiser has treated my pain seriously. They treat me as it I’m “The Bad Guy” for having intractable pain. I’m NOT apologizing for it anymore. I wore out my body serving mankind. What else can anyone want from someone? Sorry, I’m rambling. This was written in several sittings, as i can’t site for long. Yes, too many Kaiser employees, ex-employees and “patients” and ex-patients have comitted suicide from lack of appropriate care. When Kaiser wants you GONE, they want you GONE, and it doesn’t matter how. They even FIRE their own top surgeons; heads of their SAME departments for 24 years rather than pay a pension. Yet they’ll defend the malpractice of their own (ALWAYS settling out of court WITH gag orders)to keep their low level of care alive and financially THRIVING. Many think Kaiser is a “non-profit org)! NOT. They are 2 parts. A “non-profit” part, and a HUGE FOR profit part. Guess which one rules?
    I quit. For the few of you that made it to the end of this desperate & painful rambling, I thank you for your patience. I apologize. I used to be a decent writer. Pain will take everything away. Eventually even life.
    God Bless You All! I pray we come up with an answer to this horrible, tortuous health”care” crisis ASAP!
    Paul
    Maui

  • Paul

    Sorry, I forgot-The last gag pulled was “Think of pain as just a concept”.!!!
    I later told him I NEVER wished this pain on anyone until now. I wish it on YOU, and other PMS for ONE WEEK ONLY-he cut me off with an angry well thanks a lot! I should have thought fast and said “I thought pain was just a concept, why are you angry”?-But I told him to relax and not take it the wrong way, as first, it has a finite ONE WEEK period of time. Second, I’m NOT wishing you ill, I’m wishing you an education! People w/o REAL severe, chronic pain can NOT relate to those of us who have it. I see it everyday. “You can’t SEE it; how can it exist”? Like my quad friend from back in high school-he’s a high-vis disabled person. I’m “just” fat and old with several forms of walking aids,including wheelchairs, which don’t work on Maui. Enough. Just HAD to get that CONCEPT thing in there.
    Paul

  • Lorraine R.

    When I went on the web and searched for “Kaiser Complaints” I certainly didn’t know what I was in for. Totally unbelievable! I joined Kaiser in 1966. Back then they gave a lot better care then they do now. I have really seen a huge difference.

    My current problem is severe left shoulder pain for five months. First, I saw my GP who seemed content in just saying to take pain meds, use ice, bla bla bla. “I” suggested at least xrays to which she said we could do that if I wished. The xrays showed “mild artheritis” and she suggested PT. I said this hurt way too much to be considered “mild” and I refused PT and she went on to her next patient. I made another appointment with her and she said she still wanted me to go to PT. Then, I said I wanted a referral to Ortho. She casuallly said, “Yes, we could try that.” So, I waited for that appointment. That doctor agreed with my GP re PT. “I” (again) requested an MRI. The MRI showed a torn supraspinatus tendon and the doctor called me the same day saying I needed surgery. BUT, he was an Ortho doctor, not an Ortho surgeon, and I needed to see an Ortho surgeon. So, another long (2 month) wait for that appointment.

    In the meanwhile, I was in so much pain and not sleeping so my daughter took me to ER. We explained everything to the ER doctor and he said, “well, what do you want me to do for you?” He volunteered to call the surgeon to see if I could get a sooner appointment with her. He said he talked to her and she would call me the next day. You got it; no phone call. So I called Ortho and was told there were no notes saying anything about anything–zip, nada, nil, nothing!

    During this entire ordeal I have made about 30 phone calls for help. All they offer me are different pain meds to no avail. The meds work a little for 2 hours at the most. Trying to sleep is the worst — agonizing pain!!! Putting a little pillow under my arm helps but not much.

    I called Ortho again and the receptionist said to call at 8:30am the next morning to see if they had a cancellation. “Walla”, they got me in to see another surgeon a week earlier than with the first surgeon.

    On that visit, the surgeon said I needed an Arthrogram to see if the tendon was actually “torn” to see if the got the big surgery or the little surgery. He said I would have dye injected for that procedure. I told him of my kidney problems (which were in my Kaiser records on his computer. He then looked at my records, and said I had to have the big surgery with 8 months recovery time.

    I contacted my nephrologist (kidney dr.) and he talked to the surgeon. Together they decided there wasn’t enough dye to do real harm to my kidneys and I could do the procedure and I would be getting a phone call from Radiology the next day for scheduling. You guessed it; no phone call. I called Radiology and the receptionist said she would put the referral “on the scheduler’s desk” and I would be called the next day. You guessed it again; no phone call.

    So now I sit in severe pain and wait some more. I have taken almost 300 Darvocet-N pills since this started. Last night I took one at 7:30pm, 10pm, 3am, 6:30am then 10am. The limit is 6 daily but what can I do?

    My surgery is scheduled for the end of November. I cannot stand this pain but they don’t have the pain so they don’t care!!! I’ve contacted Member Services and filed two (2) complaints — both were “denied”.

    I am 72, live alone and fall a lot. The pain med is making me real dizzy, upsetting my stomach and I can’t sleep. Is there anhyone out there who has some advice for me?

  • M. Anderson

    KP is hideous and has been for decades.

    However, KP paitents are not captives. If you are not getting the care you need, go outside the Kaiser system. Or better, let your PCP know that you will be seeking an outside second opinion and if there is a signigicant difference in diagnosis and/or treatment plans, you will esclate this from a medical issue to a legal issue. Be sure to let KP know that you’re not going to limit your recourse to just a civil action. Based on what I’ve seen here, it would not take a huge effort to make some of these acts of neglect a criminal matter.

    I know many people will claim they can’t afford outside second medical opinions.. YES you can because the only other option is long-term suffering and/or death.

    Right now a close relative, who has been a KP patient for decades, has spent the last 10 years being treated for COPD when KP medical personnel knew he was suffering from congestive heart failure. They never told him he had CHF and they never treated his CHF until he had to have emergency open heart surgery last year. And he’s still in the hospital. They keep trying to discharge him to his home and his family has been diligent in making sure that he stays in a hospital setting until his medical issues are under control. We think KP is trying to get him out of their hospitals before he dies so they can clain he was well enough to go home so whatever happened after he left the hospital isn’t their problem.

    COPD is cheaper to treat than CHF. I believe that KP was betting that he would die of CHF before he even knew he had CHF because heart failure in patients who really do have COPD is not uncommon. As it turns out, this guy may not even have COPD.

    For those of you who are on the older side, BEWARE. For KP, it’s not about providing appropriate medical care it’s about whether or not you’ll stay alive long enough for KP to recoupe the cost of your medical care through your preimum payments.

    I know this sounds very paranoid, but just look at all the KP horror stories on the internet. Yeah, I know anyone can put anything they want on the internet and there’s no way to verify whether is fact or fiction.

    I know it’s fact because I’am withnessing it first hand.

    For anyone who has to stay with KP..be your own advocate and take the time to check out the info you are getting from your KP meidcal service providers.

    And may God protect you.

  • Admin

    Threatening legal action is NOT the way to get what you want out of KP, but it is a good way to get them to circle the wagons and never help you again. And by never help you again I don’t mean being a little bit unhelpful — they will actually go to extraordinary measures to deliberately HARM you, both medically and legally. I’ve heard from several people about KP even going so far as to report diligent relatives to child or adult protective services with trumped up charges, just to get rid of them.

    If you don’t want to be held captive by KP, you have to change health plans. Period.

    Best wishes to your relative.

  • P. Olkin

    Ms. Stein, Kaiser is an organization that has many problems. MY wife was happily continued on methadone for her chronic pain of fibromyaligia since 2000. Dr. Geroge Fong, of Kaiser Martinez was writing her Rxs. She then went to the CD in Walnut Creek and the Physchiatrist continued to write the drug for her CHEMICAL DEP. no less. WHen she was unable to comtinue to compoly with a strict program with no emotional support, she was 86′d from the program and forced to go the BAART Clinic in Antioch to continue the therapy “at our expense – on fixed incomes -.

    In January 2011 she decided to go COLD TURKEY off of the methadone and received ZERO support, either medically or emotionally from her doctor, George Fong. She has been in ab solute wracking and wrenching pain since then and still they refuse to offer any compasionate medical care. As per the Medical Board of California Guideline for Prescribing Pain Medication, revised in 2007, a physician cannot withhold pain relief medication from an addicted patient. Well Kaiser continuly does that. MY poor wife (OH YES, did I mention that she is DEAF and has been put into restraints -by 6 burly security people, and she only weighs 125 lbs- at the Walnut Creek ED because she was in so much pain she was signing large and overwhelmingly?????), she has been in so muchpain she would prefer to be dead then to continue to suffer like this.
    THe story goes on and on and now she is looking for a way to give Kaiser a taste of their own pain right back. SHe needs an attorney who will accepot a case on contigency and willing to take on the army of lawyers that Kaiser has as on organization which has iron-plated themselves.

  • Karen

    I’m so utterly appalled by these complaints, yet I am so not surprised as I have been a “victim” of Kaiser for the past 26 yrs. Just yesterday, I had an appt. with my “newly assigned” PHP, as my previous dr. retired late last year. He knew me and my chronic life-long medical history, had a pretty darned good repore with each other and he truly believed in my chronic pain, knew all about my two past separate cancer diagnosis’ and surgeries, treated me with my chronic kidney disease, diagnosed me when I experienced my very first T.I.A. episode-small mini-strokes(have had 5 more TIA’s since 2009), he knew I suffered with a bleeding ulcer as I had gone to the ER to have the dark red blood pumped from my stomach.He believed & trusted my word of my debilitating pain & did not hesitate to prescribe me with all the proper needed pain meds and muscle relaxers I so much needed just to take the edge off and try to manage and function with my daily functions. He “saw it, believed in it & treated me accordingly!” I also have Mitral Valve prolapse, severe Raynaud’s Phenomenom, chronic fatigue, chronic wide-spread pain, a history of stage3 cancer; twice!, have chronic kidney disease with left kidney failure, depression!..from all my chronic pain that adversely affects everything in my daily life, etc. etc.!! I am 43 yrs old and have had a Handicap parking placard since 1998 when I was 31! Also, when I was 17 I had Toxic Shock Syndrome, severe sepsis with my lowest blood pressure reading at 62/34..pretty much on my death-bed, double kidney infections, etc. At that age with all those health problems and multiple hospitalizations, I sure missed a great deal of school in my Senior year in High school. Who would’ve known then in 1985 the rest of my life would be riddled with even more chronic health problems?! I am a “frequent flyer” at any and all Kaiser facilities!…So much so, I should have my own reserved parking space, as I’ve spent a large portion of my life, time and $$ at Kaiser over the years.
    So, getting back to my doctors visit yesterday with this newly assigned rookie physician who knows nothing about my colorful medical history background, I had made the appt with her to discuss my need to finally seek Disability Retirement from my 21yr career employment from the US Postal Service. Even my supervisors highly recommend that I go out on Medical Disability as my obvious declining health problems are adversely affecting my job performance; chronic tardiness as a result that I can’t even get up out of bed or much less move quickly enough to get myself to work on time; “failure to be regular in attendance, perform my certain job duties dubbed as “poor work performance” etc! Bottom Line: I KNOW I can no longer be in the regular work force because my health steadily continues to decompose, and I do not need to be wrecking my health even further and faster by trying to keep up with the things I clearly can no longer do.
    The idiot(new) doctor I saw yesterday was adamant about refusing to support me in acquiring Disability Retirement and said, I quote “you just don’t meet the criteria for disability..I’m sorry, but you just don’t. There are so many people out there who legitimately need to be on disability and social security such as very over-weight people who aren’t as mobile as you are–after all, you got yourself here to this appt. without requiring aid or a wheelchair, etc” Needless to say, I was seething!! I asked her, “so in your opinion, what does a chronically ill and handicapped person supposed to “LOOK LIKE” to you?” Basically, she was telling ME that I wasn’t that bad off and the most she could do was give me a work acommidation letter. REALLY? So basically she was telling me by the looks of my outward appearance, that I wasn’t even close to being a candidate to file for Disability Retirement. Again, REALLY? Am I supposed to have a large tumor growing out of my ear, or 2 heads or look like my face and body was attacked and scarred-up by a pack of wolves?! Should I go out and get hit by a car and walk in there looking obviously mangled? Disabilities AND pain ARE OFTEN,if not always, obviously visible! and a GOOD doctor would recognize this!! As for me, look at my medical records charts which PROVE my bad prognosis’, blood tests,biopsies, surgeries, counless dr. visits, etc!! My medical record chart is NOT a typical chart; I’m on Volume3,which is also as thick as a phonebook just like Volumes 1 and 2!! OMFG!! AS IF I don’t already have sucky issues with my employer; the Postal Service who attacks and hounds me and my every move for being late due to chronic pain,etc. calling in sick, leaving work for dr. appts. Well YES YES YES…Kaiser has proven themselves at failing to provide me with even sub-adequate health care, and my employer..the USPS is just as bad. I’ve been associated with BOTH institutions for a very long time and I think both agencies should under-go the scrutiny of microscopic investigations! They FAIL people!! Unfortunately, both are highly recognized, demographically well-known associations. Yes, I’m thankful for a paycheck and for providing for my 2 sons (divorced/single mom) and having a decent paying job, especially in these rough economic times. Yet, I am admittedly & obviously a chronically ill, unhealthy person– a single mom of 2 sons and I NEED to be “PUT TO PASTURE” so I have a chance to live longer and pace my life around my sons and my relentless diseases and illnesses.
    In Summary: KAISER PERMANENTE SUCKS SO BAD. Where I live, even the Yellow pages under Attorneys and Lawyers specialize SPECIFICALLY against medical malpractice for guess who?…KAISER patients!!!!
    Believe me, if I had extra Money sitting around, I would go to a non-Kaiser doctor and pay out of pocket for proper, superior medical care and treatment…and then hire a lawyer against Kaiser’s nationwide negligence of proper adequate healthcare so me nor anyone else would have to suffer further heartache and loss over their disatisfactory, run-the-patients-thru-like-a herd-of-cattle, only to repeatedly return for MORE appts HEALTHCARE System!!!!!
    Open-Season…I can’t wait for it to come. Even if the premiums cost more, it’ll be far more cost-effective and worth it in the long run compared to my thousands of hours and $$ wasted on Kaiser’s less than mediocre healthcare. Kaiser does NOT treat people with multiple or chronic ongoing health problems; they only give flu shots and prescribe cough medicine.
    And that’s MY rant about Kaiser! -Karen

  • anonymous

    If you have any questions about Kaiser’s incompetance I suggest kaiserpapers.org
    makes interesting reading

  • Beverley

    How does one sue Kaiser? How long of time do you have? Kaiser abused me for over foruteen years, I almost died because of the terriblr care I received, wrongful diagnoises,wrongful surgery,. Fourteen years of pure hell, and life lost. Still suffering from their mistakes. Have not been well since 1983, when the Kaiser nightmare began.
    I can’t get any other healthcare mue to pr-existing conditions, created by improper care.

    Paying 740.00 plus a month for nothing. I go to the Doc, to afraid too. I have lost all trust.

  • Admin

    Regarding your ability to sue Kaiser you need to consult with an attorney.

    There are options for people with pre-existing conditions through the Pre-Existing Condition Insurance Plan provision of the Affordable Care Act. If you are eligible you can most likely get in for much less than $740/mo., but I believe you have to be uninsured for 6 months before you can sign up.

    More info here:

    http://www.healthcare.gov/law/provisions/preexisting/index.html

  • Rudi

    I believe the link below lists 2011 rates for the Pre-Existing Condition Insurance Plan. Might be a better alternative for those not receiving the proper care through Kaiser.

    http://www.pcip.ca.gov/Publications/PCIP_Premiums.pdf

    Out of curiosity, why even mess around with malpractice lawyers if none can take on your case? I mean, why not go directly to the CA Insurance Commissioner and the State Attorney General? The medical boards are useless. Seems to me that the insurance companies have made it so difficult for attorneys to recoup the funds invested in these cases (they have families to feed & mortgages, too), which means so many victims are left to suffer in silence. There must be some degree of protection still left, or have all regulations been torn down in Kaiser’s favor?

  • Rudi

    Forgot to mention that my link above for CA state PCIP premiums only. There are many states that have lower rates, as they’re run by the federal government. I don’t know why CA instituted their own, more expensive state-run PCIP program. Thoughts anyone?

    Anyhoo, as mentioned in post #62, kaiserpapers.org is an interesting read. Particularly disturbing is the scan of Kaiser’s physician handbook: http://selfincrimination.kaiserpapers.org/pooldoc.html

    Pretty sick stuff, if you ask me.

    Scanned docs of legal filings against Kaiser can be found here: kaiserbadnews.com

  • Kristen Lewis

    What I just read is what I have been going thru for 3 years. Now I have to start from scratch jumping thru hoops. I am so sorry you went thru this as I know how u feel but with my experience I know for a fact reports have been changed I have seen the MRI and spoke to a friend in the medical field and cannot even get medication that helps my pain. I am treated differently here by them in Oregon because I have non member financial assistance thanks to their refusal to fill out paperwork for my job and then the Drs note they did on my condition got me fired from my job. And now I have had to file disability but they wont even look at the papers for my lawyers.

  • Kristina

    OMG I feel like I have been reading complaints written by me. The poor person with the shoulder problem and the many chronic pain sufferers could be me. I have had 6 knee surgeries with more needed and recently have been diagnosed with Fibromyalgia and Myofascial Pain Syndrome. Note they are chronic pain conditions. I was sent to the pain mgmt program by my doctor. What hell that has been. I only saw a nurse practitioner and I never want to see her again. She told me there is no medical reason for me to be in so much pain that I am missing work. Her other comment was that I am too young to have the symptoms. Go figure. Guess I will go back home and come back in 20yrs eh? I was,on Darvocet for 4 yrs and Tylenol 4 for the last two. She said that since the codeine wasn’t working no other narcotics would. How does a pain mgmt program np not know that a body builds up tolerance after too long on a opiod. Hence the need for a stronger medicine. She also told me to provide her with scientific proof of that fact and the fact that narcotics work for chronic pain. Go figure…according to her narcotics don’t work for chronic pain. So what the hell are narcotics good for if not pain. She treated me so rudely and had me sobbing in tears. She made it seem as though their orientation classes and physical therapy were the answer. Well how the hell or why the hell would I do something that causes more pain when the medicine I am on does nothing to help me. Of course to hear her talk I should have no pain. Go figure…so attention all with Fibromyalgia and Myofascial Pain Syndrome you should not expect pain with your conditions or to be sick at all…certainly not to miss work, which is why the lovely Darlene at South Sacramento Kaiser’s Pain Mgmt Clinic would not give me a dr note for missing work. So I filed a grievance asking for stronger meds, a note for work, and an appt with Rheumatology. They only approved the appt request. Doctors I have never seen said that since 2 pain meds didn’t work no stronger ones would…the drs who said that were the Chief of Chronic Pain and the Chief of Medicine. So they too don’t know your body builds up tolerance?? Well I have til the end of Oct. to switch insurance and I will be doing so first thing Monday. Screw you Kaiser!

  • Cindy Lu

    Take heart all you folks who want to sue Kaiser. After not being able to find a lawyer to take my case ( unfortunately, I lived… I didn’t die ) – I did it all by myself and WON a settlement!

    No lawyers, no help and I am not a legal person… just one mad-as-hell patient who wasn’t gonna let it happen to ME. My Kaiser injury occurred in 2002 and by 2004, they settled. I let the facts speak for themselves.

    Do your home work, follow through and refuse to be bullied, belittled or excused. Get all the free legal resource help you can and go after them! I did… and won. I may be going after them again, regarding a recent ER visit for my mother.

    Even though my settlement was low… Kaiser paid! The biggest perk, however came from Kaiser’s own lawyer who said she had never seen a case like this win before… and with zero legal help. She said she was impressed and I felt vindicated.

    I keep a copy of the settlement check as a reminder to NEVER accept one inch of crap from Kaiser or their current herd of idiots.

    It CAN be … and has been done.

    GO FOR IT!!!!

    p.s. So sorry to all you folks who posted your horror stories… I wish I could help all of you! But.. hopefully knowing it has been done with NO lawyer… can give you inspiration. :-)

    NEVER give up and NEVER say “Die”

  • Janine

    This is a transcript of the 1971 conversation between President Richard Nixon and John D. Ehrlichman that led to the HMO act of 1973:

    John D. Ehrlichman: “On the … on the health business …”

    President Nixon: “Yeah.”

    Ehrlichman: “… we have now narrowed down the vice president’s problems on this thing to one issue and that is whether we should include these health maintenance organizations like Edgar Kaiser’s Permanente thing. The vice president just cannot see it. We tried 15 ways from Friday to explain it to him and then help him to understand it. He finally says, ‘Well, I don’t think they’ll work, but if the President thinks it’s a good idea, I’ll support him a hundred percent.’”

    President Nixon: “Well, what’s … what’s the judgment?”

    Ehrlichman: “Well, everybody else’s judgment very strongly is that we go with it.”

    President Nixon: “All right.”

    Ehrlichman: “And, uh, uh, he’s the one holdout that we have in the whole office.”

    President Nixon: “Say that I … I … I’d tell him I have doubts about it, but I think that it’s, uh, now let me ask you, now you give me your judgment. You know I’m not to keen on any of these damn medical programs.”

    Ehrlichman: “This, uh, let me, let me tell you how I am …”

    President Nixon: [Unclear.]

    Ehrlichman: “This … this is a …”

    President Nixon: “I don’t [unclear] …”

    Ehrlichman: “… private enterprise one.”

    President Nixon: “Well, that appeals to me.”

    Ehrlichman: “Edgar Kaiser is running his Permanente deal for profit. And the reason that he can … the reason he can do it … I had Edgar Kaiser come in … talk to me about this and I went into it in some depth. All the incentives are toward less medical care, because …”

    President Nixon: [Unclear.]

    Ehrlichman: “… the less care they give them, the more money they make.”

    President Nixon: “Fine.” [Unclear.]

    Ehrlichman: [Unclear] “… and the incentives run the right way.”

    President Nixon: “Not bad.”

  • Vicky

    Thanks Cindy Lu for your encouragement!! I’ve just begun my nightmare with Kaiser and I would truly appreciate some advice on how to go about the process by yourself. I too have been unable to find a lawyer to take my case so I will have to go it alone too….Please please, if you could guide me I would be eternally grateful….from one who has gone before to the next on the path….please help guide me!!

  • CindyLu

    Vicky… first,refer to this, from a website. You don’t have to go to it, I’m just listing it for info purposes. It’s just one of the best “sound bytes” of info out there to explain the process to you guys.

    (http://www.kaisermalpracticedoctorlawyer.com/Kaiser_Malpractice/Kaiser_Arbitration.aspx)

    Here’s what it says, in part -

    California Kaiser Arbitration Lawyer
    Medical Malpractice Lawyer Dr. Bruce Fagel

    If you are a Kaiser member, you may not be aware that Kaiser policy limits your options for recovery for injuries sustained due to medical malpractice. Kaiser Foundation and Kaiser Permanente include group health insurance policy provisions that prohibit policyholders from filing a civil lawsuit in court for medical malpractice. Consequently, arbitration is the only means a victim or his or her family can use to seek and recover financial compensation.

    Arbitration is a legal term that refers to a form of alternative dispute resolution that seeks to resolve a dispute out of court. This system was originally abused a number of years ago in Kaiser malpractice claims and victims were treated unfairly. As a result, a system was set up to help ensure that a neutral arbitrator is chosen to oversee proceedings. A semi-independent administrator selects 12 names from a list of approximately 200 names of retired judges and attorneys in either Southern or Northern California. From that list, the defense attorney and the plaintiff’s (victim’s) attorney can strike four names each. The attorneys then rank the remaining eight names, and the arbitrator will be chosen from this list. Each side then has the ability to choose a party arbitrator, or may remain with the single arbitrator whose decision will be legally binding for both sides.

    Statistics show that arbitration proceedings are often difficult for the plaintiff, as from 1999 to 2007 there were only 366 cases where a monetary award was given to the victim in a Kaiser malpractice case. The average award in these was approximately $500,000. There have been only seven instances where the arbitrator awarded in excess of $2 million to the plaintiff in a Kaiser malpractice case.

    - – - – -
    Here is a link to the OIA ( Office of the Independent Administrator )

    http://www.oia-kaiserarb.com/

    From there you will find instructions on what and how to do next.
    —–
    Basically, due to your membership in Kaiser, you can not sue them civilly – you must bring up ARBITRATION. Once you start the process, which starts with a demand letter to Kaiser, the office ( OIA ) will contact you next on where and what to do next.

    Kaiser will summon you ( you will receive a court summons ) for a deposition or two, where they will ask you questions which are recorded. After the depositions are given ( the other side responds too ) the OIA will decide if you have a case. If you do, they will again, tell you how to proceed.

    Once an arbitrator has picked up your case, the depositions are the main area from which info is pulled, at the arbitration meeting.

    At the arbitration meeting, you will be in a conference room with the arbitrator, Kaiser’s lawyers and a recorder at a table. ( No court rooms )

    Just have all your information together, timelines, list of damages, etc always available to you. Do your homework BEFORE the depositions and get as much of your side of the story, out at that time.

    ** Lawyers tip – walk into the deposition with just your shoes and clothes on and your documents. NO phones, purses, briefcase, or anything else. Once you bring an item into a deposition, it CAN BE open for investigation. Be smart, leave everything in the car or with a friend.

    Request copies of all documents from Kaiser, regarding your case and go over them with a fine tooth comb yourself. Most of it will be “hospital-speak”… but you can always gain more info from having the documents, than not – you should be able to find something in THEIR records that may help you and your case.

    GOOD LUCK TO EVERYONE WHO TRIES THIS!!!
    ( was done in state of California, btw )

    I’ll keep checking back, in case there are more questions.

    Vicky, if I help you win, I will be eternally grateful that I was able to help you. :-)

  • My name is Lawrence Bucher and like many who find themselves in the position of electing (choosing) from a multitude of providers in which Marriott (like many other corporation in CA) leaves employees and their spouses to select from, the best bang-for-the-buck was, without fail was KAISER PERMANENTE.

    From the beginning; signing up and under the not-so user friendly and deeply disconnected routine of KP.ORG, the process from the word “go” I felt little other than a car going through a Jiffy Lube, being routinely asked questions like, “how many days a week do you work out” from the nurse with the glossed-over catatonic look on their face– which came from asking this routine question over and over again.

    Indeed there was something missing. My story (upon request) was this first of many incidents which left me coming to a rather quick and disturbing conclusion: Kaiser’s business plan is to maximize the amount of patients doctor can see and to detour and cut expenses; deeper patient evaluation, scans, etc. KAISER PERMANENTE is little other than a classic case of a corporate push for market dominance/power and this push is made through many of the local corporation in the State of California and Kaiser members’ premium dollars ultimately pay for that corporate expansion.

    And while there is no way to end KAISER PERMANENTE, we can however, as a community force a greater health care system to the surface, as opposed to what’s been brought to the surface through said corporate take-over: Another self serving Insurance company.

    Please, if you or your spouse, or if you know someone with a not-so great story of a KAISER PERMANENTE or if you are simply tired of corporations who look out for their bottom line and in turn render employees with this not-so option of sub-standard Health care, please sign this petition.

    KAISER PERMANENTE SHOULD NOT BE AN ELLECTIVE IN YOUR CORPORATION OR OTHERS~ Lawrence

    http://www.imdb.com/name/nm1197142/ http://www.facebook.com/Lawrence.Bucher

  • Trina

    I had a very bad experiance with Kaiser my self. I took my son to DR. Scott Chiang Who is an ENT for breathing problem. He looked at me and told me that he could make my breathing better and could shave the hump I had on my nose and will make my tip a little narrower. He told me that the changes will be so minimal and no one will notice it. I end up with severly crooked nose, My tip is shifted to one side. My left nostril is almost gone. I got over 8 pumps all over my bridge. My nose is short and over projected. When I confronted my doctor about it he told me that they were all pre existing conditions. He insists that my nose was crooked before the surgery. I have lived with this nose for over 37 years one one including me ever noticed these issues about my nose. Instead of appoligizing he is making me think that it was not his fault and I was born like this. I hate dealing with this doctor. I called kaiser and complained about him. I asked to be sent to an outside kaiser doctor for a second opionion, but they cant see the problem. this experiance has changed me so much. I have been in deep depression for the past year.

  • Admin

    Kaiser doctors are trained to deny responsibility for any problem. Never forget: they don’t work for you, the patient; they work for the health plan that pays them and their malpractice insurance premiums.

  • julie (tried to post this as a comment)

    I have MS and have been having trouble getting the mental health care I need. In the past few years I have had a lot of losses in my life, including the progression of MS, with included mild diminished cognition.

    A few weejs ago I found out my service dog in training turned up with a disability himself, I have been crying uncontrollably for days, after raising him for 10 months and practically killing myself in the process. At 70 pounds and a puppy, I finally had to give him up to my trainer. I’m also applying for SSDI and nothing but hassles, rudeness and lies for them. Nice way to treat disabled people.

    I really need to see a counselor on a regular basis to work out these problems and serious problems from the past (family abuse for just one) that keeps surfaces now. They said they were short staffed and could only see me ONCE a month. I went through the complaint process, and of course everyone says the same thing, including the doctors, “The Psych department is short staffed and the counselor can no way see you once a week. She can see you once a month” So, I tried the once month approach. the counselor even had to cancel one month. so in 4 months I had 3 appointments. I finally told the counselor that this was not helping me -a once per month appointment, and again, “we are sorry, but we don’t have anymore time available” and so I told her this was wasting my time and gave up. Trying to work out my greif and depression on my own with drugs and books. I also complained to Kaiser and the same response, like a well rehearsed talking point, “we are sorry we are so short staffed.”

    Here I am again, in the same place, desperately needing mental health care. The only thing they respond to is if you say you are thinking about killing yourself. But that only gets you ONE appointment or you can call a hot line. I think maybe they HAVE to respond to this, or they would not. When I ask my primary care doc -who is a pretty good doctor and caring person – he says lots of nice things to me and does not answer my question of WHERE is the care I am needing.

  • Paige

    I went noticed I was being ignored, and the doctor began to authorize my medications too late, and when I’d miss a day of pills. I complained and the situation only got worse. I had Kaiser for only a few months, and began to get very high bills for treatment they gave me, then when it came to get the bulk of my treatment, they denied this to me. This would have got me better, but instead, the psychiatrist only delayed refills, tried to market me into many different groups, ignored my emails as if he thought I meant to seduce him: Nothing was even going on with me like this.

    I was then told I was too unstable, which I wasn’t, for the DBT treatment!! I didn’t by this for a moment. I’ve quit kaiser. To heck with this stupid psychiatric system. Meanwhile, while I was in their IOP program, the behavorial workers on strike, making excuses that they are too stressed and being short with people needed emotional suppport – isn’t this strike similar to another one I read about in here. During this strike, my treatment basicallyl stopped, the doctor was out, and I couldn’t get my refills this time either. I’m told I’m addicted to one drug, which I wasn’t. All this bullshit. Never ending. I have depression. I believe this Kaiser was only marketing psych drugs more than it wanted to really treat and get better all these patients I saw suffering horribly from the medication. All these patients being fooled. Two were enticed into receiving electroshock. I worry what happened to them. Meanwhile, while the therapists are trying to counsel us in IOP, some of them just couldn’t contain their disapproval and lack of concern. I was out fast. i’m okay now., I’m a survivor of psychiatric abuse. No. I’m not really crazy at all. I just wanted emotional support, but never found it, and only found worse problems starting at Kaiser.

  • Dee

    I had an appointment at Kaiser in Santa Ana on Macarther yesterday.. The ultra sounds tech, I wish I had gotten her name but oh well. She was Indian and extremely rude. I felt my visit extremely rushed, I felt very uncomfortable. I just had a mini surgery on my cervix so it’s been very sensitive. She puts the camera in me and it hurt a lot, I said “omg ow” She annoyingly replies “this feels like an ordinary cramp” giving me attitude for my pain? I looked at her like are you serious? Not even a “Sorry, did I hurt you?” Nothing I’m so bummed I didn’t get her name or complain that day to her manager but I will be retuning to this location only to do just that. Unfortunately I’m getting Kaiser from my father so I have no choice, but if I did I wouldn’t go back.

  • deejay

    I’m quite amazed at the quantity of complaints here and all over the web re Kaiser, but even more at the amount of detail and many, many similarities from one to another. It’s also repeatedly suggested here that any complaints directly to Kaiser will likely result in modification of patient records to make the chart fit Kaiser’s own assertions (or lack of such.

    Trying to fight this one by one is pretty darned difficult and probably will leave most complaining patients having little success in making it stick, and especially getting Kaiser to change how they deal with us.

    However, there is one thing that might help: the formation of a nonprofit Kaiser Patients Alliance group. Open to all current and perhaps past Kaiser patients (and/or patients’ family, caregivers, life-partners/spouses, etc.) with a small suggested donation to join and small annual dues (but free to anyone who is unable to pay or chooses not to), in many ways like a union. It could organize and study Kaiser, act as a focal point for confronting and pressuring Kaiser in all it’s several forms to give far better professional care and respect for the patients who are Kaiser members. Once it would have a core of a few thousand members, it would have a presence and strength that would be hard for Kaiser administration, healthcare professionals, and office staff to ignore or repeatedly disrespect. One major advantage would that it would “have the back” of patients struggling to get good and consistent care from this lumbering behemoth. I’d be interested to see others comments here re this.

  • Jae

    As patients, often times we are uneducated as to the dangers that lurk beneath the regular routine checkup. My story is a testament and an education lesson in one. I have decided to share with you, personal details into my medical conditions and history, as well as private email correspondences between myself and a few of my medical providers. I have done so, with the intentions on enlightening my readers into the thought process and lack of knowledge by providers that we often times entrust with our lives.

    As a child, as far back as I can remember, I always had a huge protruding stomach. I always had abdominal issues such as loose stool and what I use to call a nervous stomach. Around the age of eleven I remember being told by a doctor that I had slight scoliosis, and I remember having troubles with my joints such as a dislocating patella. As a pre-teen I had intermittent and almost non existent menstrual periods, which followed me into adult hood.

    All of this care, for each of these conditions was treated at Kaiser Permanente until I turned 23 years old, and I was terminated from my mother’s Health Insurance. I received paperwork to apply for my own insurance through Kaiser and to my surprise I was denied due to pre-existing conditions. BIG SHOCK!!!

    I could not believe the Health Care provider that had taken what I thought was good care of me from pediatrics to adolescence young adulthood was refusing to allow me back into their group, or as what I would like to refer to as a CULT. There were no other options such as a higher rate due to the possible need for additional care, but simply no because I was already sick, or as what they refer to as pre existing conditions. I was hurt to say the least and in 2001 I began employment with a Medical Foundation, as a Medical Records Technician. This was my first job in Health Care, and gave me my first insight to the medical world. This was at the time when all of the new Medications had just hit the scene and Doctors were giving out free samples like candy. The Lipitor’s, Nexium and the Paxil’s and all those drugs hit the scene. The “Drug Reps” would come into the Medical Centers and schmooze the Doctors and their staff with lavish lunches and all types of trinky office supplies with their logo on it,, such as pens, clipboards, post its, notepads, etc .

    One weekend some friends and I got together and celebrated a friend’s birthday. We were drinking jello shooters, and for the next couple of days I had severe abdominal pain, in the upper right side of my “large” abdomen. Be it that I worked at a medical center, on that Monday I saw my PCP while at work and she ran some blood tests and to my surprise I learned that my liver enzymes were elevated. Because I worked in the Health Plans Medical Records department, I had gained intelligence on the importance of my past medical history and records, and I therefore requested my complete medical history for Kaiser Permanente, and when they arrived, both to my and my Doctor’s surprise, my liver enzymes had always been elevated, as lab tests had suggested as early as 1995.

    While a Kaiser Member, my mother had NEVER once been told that I possibly had a liver condition, nor was I ever referred to a specialist, nor was any necessary tests other than labs done to probe deeper into what potentially ended up being “Primary Bilialary Cirrhosis (PBC)”. While under the care of my new Doctor’s I had been referred to a Gastroenterologist (GI), who ordered a complete liver panel, as well as everything from an MRI to a liver biopsy, to a referral to the Head of Hepatology at Cedar Sainai Hospital in Beverly Hills California, who in 2001 diagnosed me with early stages of PBC.

    In 2002 I moved to the Bay Area from Southern California, with my complete medical record history in hand. I remember having Pacific Care through a company I worked for, and I chose to see a Gastroenterologist in Berkeley, ca. Now I selected this Doctor for all of the wrong reason, because he like myself was African American, however after my initial consultation with this man and before he could review my past records, he looked me square in my eye and told me, “you don’t have PBC, you are too young to have PBC, you look fine”. At that time I suggested that he review my past records, and I made a follow up visit. When I returned, this physician sat me down, looked me in my eyes again and said to me sympathetically, “you have primary bililary cirrhosis”. That was the first time I noticed that my condition would not be taken seriously, based on my age and physical appearance. It also should have taught me that, you cannot select a doctor based on race, but that lesson unfortunately had to come later on.

    In 2006 I became employed with the Health Plan that had mis and undiagnosed me for all of my pediatric in to young adult life, Kaiser Permanente. I was hired into the Plans Grievance department, where I initially started off as a clerk, but was later promoted to a “Senior Case Manager”, where I was responsible for resolving patient complaints and requests. When I started working for the Health Plan, I was so excited as I had went from making less than $30, 000 per year at my prior job. My salary beginning at Kaiser was $44, 000 until i was promoted in 3 short months, and offered 54,000 annually. That was a significant pay jump, and for that amount of money, I sold my soul. At the time I had no idea that I would turn into an emotionless, robot, processing case after case for dissatisfied Health Plan members.

    The training that I received, to process these Grievances was minimal to say the least, and before I knew it I had member’s lives in my hands. Who am I? I’m a member myself.

    As a “Senior Case Manager” I processed Grievances and Requests for the Health Plan from everything to reimbursement of a copayment, to the request of an MRI, to the request of monetary compensation for the loss of a member’s life. Grievances/Requests are inputted into Kaisers Grievance system, and cases are distributed to the Sr. and Case Manager’s. All non-medicare members are afforded a 30 day grievance process, as explained in their long confusing Evidence of Coverage (EOC), 15 days during the initial Grievance and 15 days during the automatic Appeal (I think that has since changed). I was then responsible for sending the member an “Acknowledgement” letter, informing them that I had received their request, and I then informed the member’s of their rights under their Health Plan and our our Regulators this letter had to be sent out within 5 days of receipt of their initial allegation. Each letter that we used was pre-typed, and we were to fill in the necessary information to fit the member’s request. I then had to investigate the member’s request by, sending an email to the department head requesting information pertaining to the member’s complaint. Unfortunately for our member’s we could not ask the respondent to directly comment on any issue that may cause the Health Plan to admit any wrong doing. Once my investigation was complete, I then had to send the member another form letter informing them why we denied or approved their request. In that letter we also explained to the member that their case will be reviewed at an appeal level, and they would receive a “Resolution letter” once the final decision has been made. I would then have another 15 days to investigate, the member’s concern. Once a final decision is made, another “Resolution Letter” was mailed to the member informing them of the Health Plans decision, and there additional rights.

    Sounds pretty straight forward right? Wrong! Because our department does not work on weekends, we lose out on 4 days during the initial Grievance, and 4 days during the automatic Appeal. The loss of days hindered my investigation often times, and was not fair to the members. Often times our investigations were not complete, and due to strict time constraints we would make the decision to deny a member’s request based strictly on the member’s Evidence of Coverage and not the individual patient’s needs.

    Members have told me, “I don’t want Kaiser, I didn’t have a choice!”, or “soon as open enrollment comes around I’m switching insurance carriers” and when I left Kaiser in 2000 I vowed, due to my undiagnosed condition, of primary bililary cirrhosis, that I would never again trust this company with my life.

    It has been my observation that the decisions making to more often times deny member’s requests, than approve is based on the lack of compassion, the lack of training and resources, and the lack of adequate staff, hence poor research and rushed decisions. These poor members put their health/lives in our hands, and we would string member’s along through our rigorous and complex Grievance process, sending them form letter after confusing form letter, which causes most member to give up and lose out on a benefit they probably should receive.

    For more of my story, please read my blog http://mykptruth.wordpress.com/

  • Jae

    I am an ex-employee and current member of Kaiser Permanente…and I created this blog to tell my truth as a patient and one time “Patient Advocate”.

    http://mykptruth.wordpress.com/

    Jae~

  • kc

    why kaiser try to double charge costumers
    1. keep sending you statement for what is paid up front at checking desk.
    2.make you to see any provider while he is certainly refer to a specialist,the matter of time and double visit pay even on the same day.
    3.your provider never has a time to see you so you better to book random or regular unwanted appointments there may one of them match your need.this is only solution for kaiser members,hopefully.

  • wilfred s. nogami

    I am surprised at Kaiser peramente Hawaii, it seems that customer present and pass have mentioned that there factory doctors are from the University of Hawaii whom graduate and work here. The crux of the problem is a two fold need of a job and greed of money. The word of profession conduct is not in there doctors oath of do no harm. Harm is the way out for a cover-up of a non-profit, tax creation enterprise for a great rich physician whom have no quality control on care, responsible, dedicated service, and adherence to act in the best interest of we the patient. Founder Henry J. Kaiser would (1957) would turn in his grave if he knew of all these blunders by these professional doctors here

  • will nogami

    If you are a Ada, tittle II of the american with disablilities should have a federal representative to assist you. complaining is of no recourse for establishing a stop action against a wrong unlawful act by a professional (so called) physician for wrongful, willing misconduct, report this act to the state license bureau. This would definitely would place an investigative team to cease and decease the doctor from future blunders. I have two professional but no one has filed a claim against me. Think about a noisy wheel that need to be reported. HOSPITALS are INSURANCE they to registered to the state regulation board. god bless the patient whom have suffered.

  • s. phil

    I stumbled across this website by accident after I had my own preliminary dealings with Kaiser that left a bad taste in my mouth. My husband and I both live in Northern Calif.(Santa Rosa area); my husband is already in traditional Medicare, with a Medigap policy, separate pharmacy plan, etc. and I will be eligible for Medicare in a few years. I was researching plans and Kaiser was given a 5 star, top-rating for it’s Senior Advantage, HMO plan. By this, I mean that Medicare lists it as one of the top providers in the entire United States! We received some glossy promotional literature that played up all the features.

    However, when I called Kaiser to really get some substantial information and sign up for seminar overview (to enroll in Kaiser), I was stymied at every turn. The phone number given to me by Kaiser, never returned my calls: I was left on perpetual hold. I then tried to get my husband and I into the overview seminar and was told that I couldn’t attend since I was not within 3 months of turning 65! The lady who informed me of this wanted all kinds of personal information–just to attend a seminar about Kaiser! I was a potential customer! I then went to their website and found there was really no way to leave an email message without offering quite a bit of personal information and I knew phone calls were not being returned. All of this difficulty made me think twice. If it was this difficult getting some real preliminary information–what would it be like if my husband enrolled and we had a complicated issue?

    I am a degreed (two graduate degrees) Academic Reference and Research Librarian, with years of experience–and I couldn’t crack some real basic information I wanted about Kaiser! Needless to say, this rasied some real red flags. Then I happened to stumble upon your website! Thank goodness! But I am now appalled by what I am reading–and I thank all of you for perhaps helping my husband and I dodge a bullet! We are having real second thoughts about moving his health care to Kaiser HMO Senior Advantage.

    I was beginning to have some concerns about Kaiser (we live in the Santa Rosa area) when I talked to several neighbors who were in the Kaiser HMO. Any specialized surgery had to be done out of the area–and patients were going to San Francisco and the bay area south. I understand that a smaller population like Sonoma County would not support specialists, but it seemed to me there was a pattern of trying to treat locally till things got too complicated, then people were being shipped out. This disturbed me. Also, in the cases I heard about, a number of the patients ultimately died. I don’t know all the details, but I was a bit alarmed.

    Lastly, the compensation issue for doctors is raising a real red flag. Can anyone explain how the compensation of Kaiser’s doctors work with the Senior Advantage HMO? Evidently we pay premiums, etc then the government reimburses Kaiser for our care as well. It was very disturbing to read the post by the lady who was a trained coder (for medical conditons) and the allegation that coding got ramped up so that the government might be paying for conditions, treatments, etc. that might not have occured. Very troubling. Also, the consistent reporting here that medical records were conveniently “erased” or “edited,” etc. is a real cause for alarm. I have dealt with insurance issues for 40 years for my family and I have had to fight several cases, every step of the way. Information is power. I have no desire to do this again if something goes awry with Kaiser. It sounds like the odds are stacked completely against the patient. The binding arbitration clause, if something goes wrong, without the possibility of a civil lawsuit (maybe criminal, from what I’m reading!) is another huge cause for alarm. I have read so many overviews of arbitration–and the odds of a consumer winning at these boards is only a small percentage.

    Thanks to all of you. Bless you.
    Sincerely, S. Phil

    Anyway, we just made a decision. We will both stick with our present providers. We will not be going with Kaiser. Thanks again to all of you.

  • god bless

    good for you

  • god bless

    obama care and kaiser medicare policy bor the elderly, notice that there doctors are against seniors, the old commercial of we threat you like family, and thrive is a good way to great a raise for there working staff. The closure of clinics and discharge of registered nurses is the wrong venue. Get rid of these doctors whom have criminal records, you know this can be done on pip website. These varmints are killers!!!!

  • George Campbell

    The only thing KAISER cares about is money. I have a Implantable Cardioverter Defibrillator, (ICD) from St Jude Medical. This device has been identified as having a defective lead which makes it virtually useless. I have been a member at KAISER for more than 15 years. My wife past away in 2012 and I lost my coverage along with half of my income. The device was implanted in 2011 and it was shortly after this that I was informed of the defect and told that I would have to be monitored closely to make sure that everything was working properly. After my coverage stopped so did KAISERS concern about my condition. They refuse to take any responsibility for this mess and have instead put it on me to get medical care “elsewhere”. I am currently seeking legal help to get KAISER to accept responsibility for this. I am not asking for money, just the follow up care that they said was critical to make sure the device is working. As I did not build the thing or do the implant How does this fall totally on me?

  • Ken

    My and my wife’s issues with Kaiser are too lengthy for this board, and would serve little purpose. Suffice it to say they nearly killed my mother-in-law (thankfully my wife has power of attorney), severely exacerbated my wife’s fibromyalsia to the point where she can no longer work, led to my development of Atrial Fibrillation (which they still deny exists), and wrongfully terminated me from my work’s health plan. Fortunately, my wife and I started the company which carries the health plan, and I am the one in charge of deciding what plans we offer. Once our current contract with Kaiser is up, I will NOT be renewing it. I have heard horror stories from everyone I have ever known who had Kaiser coverage and I will no longer subject my employees to these hacks.

  • a very lonely member whom was let go by two treating physicians

    To whom it address;
    I am a member but it seems that two doctors have let me be on my own they did not file reports,nor any medications that I need be provided. This kind of activity of why does a physician have the right to make rules as to recording of office visits and why I visited the Kaiser Pernamente website to confirm the rules. I wonder if the two party system is applied of the one party. The reason for recording is for my benefit since I have a memory problem and my father had Alzheimer. There are times when I cannot remember where I place my keys, or my car, but I make sure I wipe my rear when I use the restroom. The reason why your laws on your site was check before use of a recorder. Federal laws state clearly that a no recording of office visits be posted.

  • s.l.h.

    here’s a fun one- i’m an ex K employee. i was attacked by a crazy co-worker at kiaser panorama city and injured. when i went to hr they covered it up. when i went to the police i was fired. the administer (Dr. John LaComb Ph.D.* degree also phoney * ) that railroaded me out on phoney charges recently settled out of court on a sexual harassment law suit, and last year lost a wrongful termination case among others. but kaiser keeps him there even though they know damn well he is embezzling them with false credentials. not even college grad until he mailed away for a diploma. of course they couldn’t have pulled it off w/o another bunch of crooks called seiu – kaiser so cal is corrupt but thick with good old boys. it’s hard to believe but it’s all true.

  • An importance notice to all work related injuries, co not seek kaiser permanete Hawaii assistance there have been cases injured workers with gang green and others that have had a coronary episode that never received an angio-gram or related service. Kaiser is not familiar with any hawaii laws and protocol treatment and report filings properly. If you have a cold or diarrhea go there, but a work related injury, forget about professional and proper protocol to address HRS 386.

  • janine

    People, if you are not already doing so, use the kaiser website’s messaging center to ask for help, or to report a situation. Use *short*, to- the-point messages to the doctor such as “this (name situation) is happening to me, and I need you to (name your need). Compile your evidence and print it. Never lose your cool and always make suggestions. Get full copies of your medical records yearly if you have time. Always make a report of your needs to your member service department. Get names of workers you speak to on the phone and note the times of the calls. Ask politely that your needs be met, it works better to be politely assertive. Record your conversations if you need to. Remember you are allowed to change doctors at Kaiser at any time without giving a reason. The Kaiser site explains that they agree you should have physicians you are comfortable with. Hold them to that promise. Keep trying if you are healthy enough to persist, but realize that Arbitration is unfair at this time in history. I tried that myself and you all are all correct when you state that you feel that way. *Please* make things better by joining forces with organizations that are fighting forced arbitration. Be part of the cure. I have been with Kaiser since 1986 and honestly, I’ve had bad experiences with care, some serious. Also have seen many mistakes with my loved ones. I stay with Kaiser because I would like to see it change and see them set an example. Thank you all for taking the time to document your situations. It grieves me that our country cannot provide better care for everyone. and bless you for expressing your views. Keep doing that, its important, and pray that others down the line are given the help they need because your stories *do* matter.

  • anonymous

    I had my own bad experience with Kaiser at the San Marcos facility in Northern San Diego County. I was given an OB/GYN appointment with Dr. Michael D. Manley. Wow, talk about a quack! I seriously do not know how this physician was able to evade suspicion by KP and the State of California medical board. This man is mentally ill in all true sense of the word! Scary! He acted inappropriately during a gynecological exam. I should have complained but there wasn’t another witness in the exam room and it would have been a he said/she said. Besides even if the State of California had been notified, he would have gotten a slap on the wrist like other scumbag doctors that commit unprofessional acts.

  • Anon please

    I have not seen this posted yet, but it happened to me: Kaiser takes out Restraining Orders against members who file too many grievances. especially after you win a grievance. Technically, it is illegal for a corporation to obtain an RO against an individual, so Kaiser pays employees, who are not licensed health care professionals, to perjure themselves & allege that the very calls you made while pursuing a legitimate grievance are “stalking” & “harassment”. Although a single employee is the named plaintiff, the traffic court [no kidding] judge is asked to extend it to “All Kaiser Permanente Employees”, which makes all further legitimate use of the health plan CONTEMPT of COURT! When I showed up in court to answer the contempt charge, I was in line behind another patient so charged. Only he was too bedridden to be there in person, so his wife was there to answer for him. Same prosecuting law firm, but 2 different Kaiser locations. This is an appalling Abuse of Process by Kaiser’s law firm, Buty & Curliano. Some consumer advocate should investigate & stop this.

  • anonymous

    “WHAT A MESS.”–surgeon’s name withheld out of respect for his privacy.

    Surgeons don’t make a habit of volunteering negative remarks about the handy-work of their fellow surgeons, but, “what a mess” was the exact phrase uttered by my mother’s second surgeon, a terrific Kaiser doctor in Los Angeles, to describe what he saw in the CT scan he ordered on my mother (whose identity won’t be disclosed either). Mom had beaten Colon Cancer in 2011, but the MESS her first Kaiser surgeon (Dr. Diana Cheng-Robles–I have NO problem disclosing her name) left behind caused insurmountable medical problems that could no longer be ignored.

    Despite agonizing neuropathy and post-op setbacks (which appeared soon after her initial surgery in May of 2011, necessitating another surgical procedure by Dr. Cheng-Robles to repair Mom’s mangled intestines—a procedure that failed to produce the desired result), my indomitable mother powered through it all and achieved a remarkably high level of vitality—unraveling colon, prolapsing intestines, and excessive rectal bleeding notwithstanding. She even reached her goal of resuming her 2-miles-per-day walking schedule (my parents have always been health nuts who walked several times a day and grew their own produce in the backyard). She went in for that third surgery with the new surgeon to have her insides repaired once and for all. She opted for the seemingly straightforward procedure so that her intestines would stop spilling out of the hole in her side. She also wanted to eliminate the need to change the sanitary pads (for her rectal bleeding) 10 times a day. She was far too active and young at heart to continue living like that.

    Mom was admitted in December of 2012, and the corrective surgery was a success; however, 2 days later, she aspirated gastric contents into her lungs and sustained chemical pneumonia, which nearly killed her then and there. The subsequent parade of ghastly medical crises that struck my mother is truly shocking and mind-boggling. Here are just a few of the never-ending ordeals that Mom endured on her 5 ½ month-long descent into Hell: cardiac arrest, pulmonary embolism (after which somebody performed surgery to insert a filter device near her heart), stroke, pneumothorax that required the painful insertion of a chest tube, a massive seizure (during which she bit down on the mouthpiece of the respirator and cracked a front tooth, which had to be pulled the next day), wildly fluctuating respiratory and blood sugar levels, kidney failure, small bowel blockage, improperly inserted PEG tube (which damaged the nerves in her stomach; had she survived, she wouldn’t have been able to eat—ever again), medication-induced memory loss, infected and forgotten tracheotomy incision when she had to go back on the respirator, malnutrition, and countless surgeries to correct the Kaiser-caused calamities—ALL of which could have been avoided with proper post-op monitoring.

    Mom’s life (and my father’s) became an excruciating nightmare, and she was aware and conscious through much of it. Kaiser moved her from one department or ward to another and then another (about 10 transfers in all, including an ill-conceived and brief stint at Antelope Valley Rehab Center, where she suffered the pneumothorax; she was far too unstable for rehab, but Kaiser transferred her to Antelope Valley because they needed her ICU bed), and each time they moved her, each new crew of nurses screwed things up, triggering additional impediments to Mom’s recovery. Because of her inability to speak, she kept looking at Dad and mouthing the words, “Take me home.” It broke his heart.

    An avalanche of ineptitude rolled down upon my feisty and sweet mother, each catastrophic surge coming in quicker waves than those that had knocked her down previously. Unable to recover from the unrelenting onslaught, Mom lost her battle with Kaiser (not colon cancer, mind you) and passed away on her 75th Birthday.

    During the awful months Mom spent wasting away in Kaiser Hospital, Dad drove 2 ½ hours for 150 miles—EACH WAY—every day, to visit his precious wife. When that became too draining and expensive for a 77-year-old war Veteran on a fixed income (it cost him about $1,200 per month in gasoline bills), Dad began traveling to the hospital every other morning, and spent those nights in a chair next to her bed, near all of the machines and monitors. Alas, on the last day of Mom’s life, Dad rushed headlong down multiple freeway systems, crossed several counties, wove through the streets of Los Angeles, and staggered into Kaiser Hospital, at 9:00 in the morning, only to discover that his angel had died an hour before he arrived.

    Mom’s death certificate lists several causes of death (and other significant contributing maladies, none of which were present when she was cleared for the surgery in December of 2012). These official causes are: Sepsis, Multi-organ Failure, Candida Urinary Tract Infection, and Pseudomonas Pneumonia. The “Other Significant Causes” are: Atrial Fibrillation, Vent Dependent Respiratory Failure, Small Bowel Obstruction, Hypothyroidism, Stage III Kidney Disease, Malnutrition, and Anemia (again, she suffered from NONE of these conditions when she underwent surgery).

    Incidentally, Mom’s female antecedents (mother, grandmother, and great-grandmother) lived well into their 90s. These ladies all spent their lifetimes consuming bacon, lard, eggs, butter, fried meats, and all kinds of unhealthy garbage that mom wouldn’t touch…you get the idea. Had it not been for the KAISER DEATH MACHINE, my mom would have lived and flourished for at least another 20 years. And my father’s beautiful spirit would not have been shattered beyond repair.

    WHEN IS SOMEBODY GOING TO DO SOMETHING ABOUT KAISER? (cricket…cricket…cricket…I guess it’ll never change. Kaiser is too powerful *sigh*)

  • Corwin

    I am too a former employee and patient of Kaiser Permanente’, and sadly i can say that this HMO is horrible, they have lied to the federal government to get money and their physicians do not really care about their patients or staff. They conspire with SEIU so any employee complaints are not dealt with and/or covered up, hoping they can blame the employee and fire them or coerce them into quitting. Sadly even though i have filed reports to such agencies as the AMA, AORN, the Board of Health and many others, i have seen no action taken by our govenment or authorities to change or correct any of these errors, or provide compensation to offended parties. I will be filing many complaints against certain professionals via consumer affairs, and any other organizations that might influence better regulation, and last of all, after many years, i am changing careers, as healthcare is not the paragon of greatness that many say it is in this country.

  • anon

    I’ve been a Kaiser member for over 15 years and I am still alive. However I can tell you from experience there is almost nothing that Kaiser does that they get right the first time. Even now in 2013 when I call (for any reason)Kaiser, even though their own patient bill of rights says specifically that any member is entitled to know the identity of the
    Kaiser employee they are talking to, 90% of the time it goes like this. “My name is Debbie and I am the only Debbie that works for Kaiser so you know who I am. Then I insist and wind up at member services complaining. This is a security issue, they use Social Security numbers in their files and if I don’t know who I am talking to I can not proceed and instead of medical care I spend hours with my blood pressure peaked, angry and ready to kill. KAISER CAN GO TO THE HELL WITH BARS, YES, MOST OF THEIR EMPLOYEES BELONG IN A PRIVATELY OWNED (FOR PROFIT) PRISON. If i continue writing I will need a real non-kaiser doctor for rage and disgust. Kaiser is better than no medical care, but don’t close your eyes or stop paying attention, they can kill you out of neglect and ignorance. The only way to come out alive is to treat everyone at Kaiser (yeah most doctors too) the way you would look after and guide a new non-toilet trained, blind and deaf 6 day old puppy! Good doctors are incredibly over worked, incompetent doctors work full days doing as much damage as they can all while pretending to be unaware of anything except those rare occasions when they get it right (rare is an understantment!!!!!!!!!!!)

  • frances dewolfe

    is this really happening? I sit in awe I know my 55yr. old daughter has been ignored I was hoping it was not true now I begin to guestion the situation thanks for the eye opener

  • Bob

    I was sent from KP Fresno to KP Redwood City for a brain angiogram. WHAT A JOKE…Dr. Chen Cardio…pompous arrogant jackass and worthless, looked at arm scar(cabbage artery harvest) and said whats that scar for??? Did u have carpal tunnel??? Dirty discusting totally inept institution filled with worthless doctors and most of staff!!! Oh and my brain angiogram!!! Frigging machine locked up quit…so Dr. and nurses went on coffee break leaving me ALONE on table while mechanic worked on it, yelled out “get in here” when my femoral artery blew out the tube and sprayed blood all over…what a frigging joke…never so glad to leave in my life…wife got pissed and told them off and took wheel chair put me in it and out the door we went

  • Raina

    I was attacked by a dog and was assigned a “doctor” randomly. I use quotes because she is not a competent human being. She fasly accused me of taking a medication that was not prescribed. The medication hydrocodon, which she did prescribe, metabolizes into the drug hydromorphone. I was called a drug addict.
    Any pharmacologist can tell that she made an error. I filed a medical grievance against Dr. Savage and Kaiser is trying to sweep this tremendous error under the rug.
    My trust was stolen along with proper medical care. I am still recovering from the dog attack and the stress that Kaiser has caused me has taken a toll on my health. It is despicable to me that this sort of treatment by a facility like Kaiser exists.
    I can see I am not the only one who’s life has been turned upside down at the hands of an incompetent “doctor”.

  • Barbara Crowley

    I have been a Kaiser member for almost 30 years and I have been very pleased with the care I have gotten at San Rafael and Woodland Hills but recently I moved to Colorado and it is completely different here. Since I rejoined (I had been a member here for 5 years before but never got sick and never needed more than fairly lite medicine.

    I moved back to Boulder last Spring and and it has been a tooth and nail fight for any little thing. Took me forever to get a primary care doctor. In fact it took months to sign up. It is as if they do not want new members. The online information is all wrong and they don’t pay any attention to it nor do they up date their online marketing propaganda. Some how we are supposed to find a woman who signs us up. She is not listing any place so I don’t know how we are supposed to find her. When I asked at Kaiser they gave the name of a man who does not sign up Kaiser members. Then I did get signed up but could not find a primary care doc. This is all completely opposite of my CA experience. Finally found a doctor and I like her a lot but she does not seem to understand how other departments work. I needed to see a plastic surgeon because of a cheek implant done 17 years ago was slipping down my face and is almost cutting through my lower cheek. It hurts and has caused permanent bruising. So I called Plastic Surgery only to find out they have a real bad attitude towards anyone who has had cosmetic surgery as if we are careless and to quote one nurse “irresponsible’ people. I know Kaiser does not do plastic surgery but two Kaiser docs in California offered to take it out for me. At the time It did not need removing bu tnow it does. This is NOT COSMETIC but Kaiser without seeing me, never saw a doctor because across teh board they told me they would not do anything and I had to go to an outside plastic surgeon. My financial situation has changed radically and my only income is now Social Security so I told them I cannot afford an outside doctor. The not listening to a thing I said on the phone all day, one of the doctors, said he would not do anything but I could get an appointment with him and pay $55.00 so he could tell me to my face he would not do anything but would refer me to an outside doctor. I could not believe what theya re saying. SO ia asked to talk to the doctor but was told – oh no he doesn’t talk to patients. I was stunned. Not only did they ‘diagnose me over the phone without ever seeing me they referred me to a clinic 30 miles from my home so I couldn’t possibly use them – One need transportation to and from the clinic. I am new here so I don’t know anyone to ask and they offered a paid transportation service to drive me about 60 miles. None of the KAISER PEOPLE HEARD A WORD I SAID. I AM NOW AFRAID OF KAISER COLORADO AND I CANNOT AFFORD ANYTHING BETTER. It is true the United States has the worse medical care in the world. For years I thought Kaiser was great and in CA they were for me but now I know Kaiser is really good if you don’t get sick but if you have something unusual they won’t help. But diagnosing over the phone is just BAD MEDICINE, BAD HEALTH CARE POLICY. In Colorado the patients comes last and they docs are number one important persons. But they are not. They are just training mechanics. I have doctors in my family and some of them are drunken careless docs but their patients don’t know that. Same with all docs. They are just human beings who made mistakes but because the AMA raised their status to godlike they really believe they are special. But we have no choice but to put our lives in the hands of some very bad docs. Diagnosing a patient over the phone is just plain unacceptable. DEciding not to help when they have not even seen the patient is very scary and backward. And the nurses gave some very bad advice – if you get an infection just get antibiotics. What!!!Have they not had their medical knowledge updated in 30 years. We now know it is not good to take antibiotics for every little thing. I am very disgusted with Kaiser Health care in Colorado.

    All I know is I has top care in CAliformia but Colorado is definitely

  • Barbara Crowley

    I just want to add. I don’t know what to do. I had no idea Kaiser was so black and white in their policies but they are. Suddenly no hormones for women – across the board. Have they not read the latest results from the big Women’s Health Collective research. It sounds as if Kaiser makes its decisions by journalistic writing not good medical research. I never knew that before. I studied Heath Care policy and analysis in Graduate school. Never were we taught taht One size fits all but Kaiser of Colorado has that exact policy for many things. It is obvious to me that many decisions are made for liability reasons and not good patient care.

    Oh well, I am stuck. Where else can I get cheap medical care in the US> And another egregious thing they do in CO is to create a hierarchy by creating three tiers of patients. The lowest if the ‘CORE’ member, then there is the Silver members who pay a monthly fee of $48 and then there is the GOLD member who pay $191 a month. AS far as I can see this completely ruins the spirit of Kaiser which was so good in my CA areas. First of all the member who pays $191 get anything except few discounts which would never add up to $2292 a year. This is entirely opposed to what Medicare is supposed to me. Kaiser set up this bogus hierarchy perhaps to grab more money from patients who are lead to believe they are getitng better care. They are not. On the other hand maybe they are but it’s not written policy just they way it’s done. So again Kaiser opposes the intention of LBJ’s Medicare by giving different tiers of medicine to those who agree or can afford to pay more. In CA no one a monthly fee and we were all treated equally. They only different was luck of the draw – e.i if you chose a good doc you got better care – if you got a jerk sorry but how could be know until it is too late.

  • JUAN

    We were idiots we realize now!!
    Me and my wife is very disappointed with their services of
    kaiser………..kaiser is only for healthy people. My wife has a heart condition that
    requires her to see a cardiologist, we have been with kaiser for over a year and she
    has never seen one. they sent her to see a psychologist instead.

  • Jesse

    I have only had KP for about 2 years and at first I was happy with it, but over the last year I have noticed what exactly people are talking about. When my friend at work said KP “let her husband die” I didn’t understand. Now- after going to the doctor for the same illness about 3 times and not being treated, I understand. My wife, was recently in the ER at Legacy (we live closer to there and it was 2 am) and ultimately diagnosed with a intestinal block. This is something that can be deadly. She had an MRI, was taken by non-emergent ambulance to KP Sunnyside as we were told (by legacy) she would be admitted and have surgery that am. By the time I got to the hospital, and to the ER where she was waiting, the “surgery team” and ER doc had been in, evaluated her, and determined she was not having surgery, she did not have a block and they have no idea what Legacy saw on the MRI. The ambulance crew told her on the way down, “that Kaiser has a habit of changing diagnosis’ and putting stuff off that needs to be done” so I guess they suspected this. Anyway, she went today to the follow-up appointment to see the “specialist” who said she actually had the NORO Virus” can you believe that? A blockage becomes the Noro virus- a virus of the stomach/that causes diarrhea. I told her we should have changed insurance when we had the chance in October, and I can promise you we will change this year-if we don’t die before then! Be careful people-get copies of your records and write it all down!

  • Meaghan

    I went to see Dr. Ian Slepian for an attack of Sciatica which I sustain every 3 or 4 years and prescribed vitmin D. Call again and did nothing. I asked fro ETODOLAC ER 400 mg that helped me in the past and was ignore .Only vitamin D.
    It’s ridiculous.
    I had to see an independent doctor, not prom Kaiser to get relioef on my pain

  • Helen

    I am writing this testimonial in hopes that it may speak to doctors about the way they classify or judge their patients. The last 15 years as a Kaiser patient have been humbling, demoralizing, embarrassing and at times devastating. Please don’t tune me out yet, I believe my story will speak to you and remind you of why you became a doctor. I had been an athletic person who exercised daily and was in optimal health.

    In 1998 I became pregnant with Daniel, my third child. He was special needs and although we were counseled to end the pregnancy, it seemed a relatively normal pregnancy. I noticed a lot of pain as he kicked and mentioned to the Doctor that I suspected I had an infection. This was overlooked and the symptoms got worse. Just before his birth my blood pressure was high so the doctor had me come back in and checked it again. She was satisfied and I went home. The pain when Daniel kicked got much worse and then I became sick. I knew I was not well. I had my husband take me to urgent care. As they were checking my in I started labor and told the nurse I was having my child and to hurry. We got in a room and I was hooked up to a monitor and the Doctor left. The nurse came back and said I was most likely dehydrated but not in labor and the contractions were not considered strong enough to substantiate “real labor”. I had delivered two children and knew I was in labor but my husband and I are not demonstrative people and we kept silent understanding the Doctor is the trained professional. She gave me an I.V. to help with the dehydration and told we could leave. I was amazed. I felt so sick I could hardly walk and as we made our way to the car the contractions got worse. I was determined not to go back in the hospital and embarrass myself further so I proceeded to get in the car. I could feel the baby coming and told my husband to hurry me back into urgent care this time with a tone that would get us attention. She, the same doctor who had sent me home moments before, was a bit smug as she saw me on her table again. Her expression quickly changed as she did a pelvic exam and found feet crowning instead of a head. She left the room in a hurry and I was whirled away.

    The Team was fast and ready to go and all seemed to be in order. They gave me a sedative but I could feel the incision as they moved along my stomach. The doctors talked amongst themselves that the same medication hadn’t worked on the previous patient and that possibly it wasn’t working for me either. As they infused a different medication the lights went out for me and the hours ahead only my husband can describe. When I did come out of the fog I was in the Maternity Ward. I felt very sick, not the normal recovery of a normal birth, every hour brought more pain and severe swelling. I was told that swelling sometimes happens after delivery and not to be alarmed. The pain became excruciating and I became very stiff and any effort to move caused great pain. It was as if my body was being locked in position and when I tried to bend it was unbearable. The thought of it still sends shivers down my spine. My temperature was very high so they did blood work and thought I must have Leukemia. I was becoming very fearful and my husband was in a daze of overwhelming emotions as I lay sick and his newborn son is in ICU. I was trying to make my way to ICU and I tried to get out of bed and managed to get myself in a wheel chair with the help of my oldest daughter. There nurses sat at the station and didn’t notice I thing when I collapsed in the wheel chair and went back to my room. I was so weak and my heart pounded so incredibly that I was feeling as if I was surely to die. I overheard the nurses chatting at the nurse’s station saying I was in a deep depression over my son being handicapped and I just couldn’t bring myself to see him. I was horrified! We knew our son would be special needs and had dealt with the reality of that entirely.

    I had not seen my obstetrician and had not yet seen the doctor who performed the surgery. It was day two or three by then, I can’t be sure as the days ran into each other. They had the IV’s going to get rid of the infection but I just wasn’t getting better. I was horribly bruising, my pelvic area was all blue, my body was doubling its size, My heart was pounding and I couldn’t breath as it hurt too badly. The surgeon finally came and seeing my incision infected he opened it up to drain. I was told this wasn’t uncommon and not to worry. The nurses in this ward had no experience in wound care and could be overheard saying, ” Why is she still here, she needs to be moved into another unit”. The cleaning of my wound was horrible, to say the least. There was a kind evening nurse that would speak sympathetically to me as though she understood my suffering, she seemed genuinely frightened for me. I was bruised on my entire back. Any part of my body that touched anything bruised but the nurses never looked at my body. I was never asked if I needed help to use the restroom or be cleaned. One nurse told me, “You will not get better until you get up and walk around, use the restroom, etc.”
    Day six? We aren’t sure as we were so overwhelmed, my mother came to visit, she was a retired nurse from Kaiser Fontana working in emergency, surgery, neurology;
    and was appalled at my condition and asked for an immediate MRI and demanded to talk with my doctor, everything changed. The nurses were suddenly kind, caring and sympathetic. The MRI could not be completed because I could not hold my breath. They said I had an anxiety attach, the sad truth was as I tried to hold in a breathe I started shaking uncontrollably with pain and illness. As the nurse was helping me on the gurney she gasps at the sight of my body. She was almost in tears and said, “why didn’t you say something?” What was I to say? No one was listening until my mother showed up and reprimanded everyone. My treatment improved with massive antibiotics, three or more running at once.

    I was sent home with nurse care and she eventually trained my husband to care for my wound. Healing came very slowly and I of course was not physically the women I was before, I accepted it. I started having difficulty laying flat as my heart would pound. My blood pressure was a little high but my pulse was in a normal range so a heart problem didn’t seem to be the culprit.

    This pregnancy was a very good and healthy pregnancy with no problems. Because of the memory of the birth of Daniel at Kaiser Fontana I decided to have my care at the hospital in Riverside. The doctor induced my labor a week before my due date to ensure that I wouldn’t deliver pre-mature as I delivered all my children fast and was living in a remote part of the mountain area. My labor became unbearable and I realized when I pushed the baby would move back again. As I was encouraged to push and was told, “the baby could be in danger, you need to push harder” I would give it all my strength as my bladder felt as though it was going to burst. The pain was incredible and I knew it wasn’t normal. After I was adamant that the baby wasn’t moving and was completely exhausted the doctor used a ventouse suction cup and was able to pull the baby out. To the doctor’s amazement the baby was face up. No one thought to find out if the baby was in proper position before labor was induced. I was so thankful that my baby girl was healthy and safe with no difficult recovery for either of us. Unfortunately, I would face some issues from this difficult labor.

    I started having a lot of pain if I stood too long and during intercourse. Daily activities became very difficult. Even shopping was limited to 20 minutes as the pain would become too uncomfortable. I was very careful about pain medications ( because I wasn’t sure that medication wasn’t the culprit behind my heart’s difficulty) so I rarely took them. I would complain to the same doctor who delivered my baby and her response was, “It is possibly the Human Papilloma virus and pain is something you will have to live with”. I was devastated as I kept getting infections vaginally, bowel movements were difficult and was miserable with the pain. A Physician’s Assistant suggested an anti-bacterial gel that really helped keep the infections under control. A nurse feeling sympathetic and believing I did have a problem that could indeed be solved, set up an appointment with a different doctor that she believed had the experience to find help for me. He examined me and scheduled surgery immediately. The surgery was longer than anticipated as he thought he would be doing a simple hysterectomy and discovered a mess was lurking in my abdomen. My uterus and bladder were fused together with tissue he had never seen before and a lot of it. As he was arduously separating the uterus from the bladder he cut a hole in my bladder. I felt much better after the surgery, except for the bladder spasms, and resumed my normal activities. ( I fully recovered from the cut in my bladder and no longer have spasms, just leakage that I may have had anyway due to having a child in my forties.)

    Unfortunately, the heart symptoms were becoming worse. I would have the pounding and nausea with any work that took a lot of arm movement above my heart, like washing windows, painting and even doing my hair. The problem with laying flat started up again. These symptoms started just after my recovery from surgery. I had a couple incidents where I knew I was in trouble and would get pain in my jaw and neck. I got a test done on the vein in my neck as I thought maybe therewas a blockage. Tests came back fine and all vitals were in perfect range. My symptoms persisted. Oddly enough, the veins in my arms and hands had the appearance of string. My legs began to swell and noticeable veins started forming along with my hands swelling, especially during exercise, and an intolerance for heat, that created swelling. As you can imagine any Doctor I went to was exasperated by my problematic symptoms that seemed irrational and derived by a hypochondriac. I was labeled with the stigma of “Anxiety Disorder” and my symptoms were discarded and I was treated with condescension. I had two young children to care for and watched myself get worse. I was constantly asked to take medication to alleviate my issues of anxiety. What a nightmare! I was fairly convinced already that medications had compromised my health and I was asked to take more. I would agree but did not take the anti-anxiety drugs. I had taken some anti-depressant when my daughter was first born but their use did not alleviate my physical symptoms, although they seemed to help me hormonally. So I managed life and watched myself get worse but still persisted in getting Doctors to listen, if they would. They did hook me up to a Halter for a short time and I was given treadmills and EKG’s, but nothing was learned.

    In 2011 my symptoms began to worsen to the point I stopped doing anything that would take walking or physical output of any kind. I even cancelled a planned vacation that our family was much looking forward to. I knew a heart attack was coming. Everything I did required breath I did not have. At times I could not get off the couch as I was so weak. I no longer could sleep laying down and the veins in my arms looked like strings rather than veins while the veins in my legs were huge and puffed. My doctor took every test imaginable and was so kind to give all her efforts to help in finding a cure. My blood pressure had become very low and even a treadmill still looked good and showed no problems. The only Kaiser professional that believed my heart was struggling was a Nurse Practitioner who had me sent to Saint Mary’s for observation. He said to me, “If you were my Mother or Sister sitting in front of me I would have that heart checked.” Sadly Saint Mary’s sent me home because I didn’t have the “typical” symptoms.

    On August 18 I had what I thought was indigestion in the evening. I wasn’t sure because the sensations were extremely painful. The next morning, August 19th, 2011, my heart was racing but this time it was more intense and pain settled underneath my jaw and in my neck. I knew what was happening and had my then 10 year daughter call 911. When I arrived at Saint Mary’s Hospital all the regular protocol took place. After a couple hours a Kaiser Doctor came and said I could go home. I was shocked and feared that if and when this happened again I might have few options. A nurse came to have me sign final papers and shared that she was going to push for a little more time to wait on a test. I asked, begged. the Kaiser Doctor to let me stay a little longer for the results of the test that would show in fact if I had really had a heart attack. It was so bizarre to know what is going on inside your body but you can’t prove it to anyone because their tests deny it. She came back sometimes later and said the test barely proved I had a heart attack but it was enough for them to look further. I was elated and thankful to have had that nurse at that time who cared to think outside the medical box.

    I was admitted and scheduled for angioplasty. It didn’t take long to find the blockage and I lay there thanking God that this was all not just a mental condition but that it is and was real all those years. The doctor had a hard time keeping the vein open so another doctor was asked to do it and he was successful. I laid flat in that hospital bed with symptoms gone, that fast I could tell the difference. Everything else didn’t matter at that moment, I was laying flat and enjoying it!

    If only this would have been a new start! I had been suffering from digestion problems and found before this time that I had small stones but didn’t have them removed. Just after the stent was put in I started having pain from my gallbladder. My cardiologist from Kaiser said I could not get the surgery done as it would compromise the newly placed stent. The vomiting alone I think compromised the stent but I waited it out. I was hospitalized once and Doctors hoped for an approval from the Cardiologist but it was not given. I found it ironic because my husband and I had gone to see the Doctor about familiar symptoms that were troubling me and I was completely ignored, in fact the doctor would not look at me but talked to my husband as if I was not present. I was again made to feel as a hypochondriac. The doctor spoke to him as though he should be reassured by her that I was in absolutely no danger and was doing fantastic. Then why could I not be relieved of the horrible pain I was in? She denied every request made by other Doctors to have my Gall-bladder taken out. My digestive system so deteriorated that I never knew when an attack of pain would come, even drinking water would set of an attack. I became increasingly ill. One month before the year the doctor requested I wait was up, the pain became so severe that I knew I was in trouble and the vomiting started which was nothing but bile. They scheduled the surgery but said it would be three days until I was stabilized enough to go into surgery. I did very well and was able to get the surgery done sooner. The infected gallbladder had infected my pancreas and my liver was having problems as well. The state of my digestive system has been life changing to say the least. A day doesn’t go buy that I am not challenged by it’s dysfunction.

    The blood thinner I was on made me bruise profusely, if I touched anything knots would form in the center of these unsightly bruises. I was scary to look at and it was very difficult for my family to see me this way. I developed horrible hemorrhoids and swollen varicose veins. This medication was not agreeing with me. Every trip to the hospital they would examine me in a very peculiar way and I was made to believe they were looking for signs of abuse as my bruising was so severe. Their searches, which included looking at my rectum, were demoralizing; on one occasion a nurse was openly offended that she had to treat me in this manner. Interestingly enough the medication was never considered the culprit although on the label of the prescribed medicines label it says, “inform the Pharmacist immediately if severe bruising occurs while taking this medicine”.

    Why I came in today:

    I am suffering weakness and pain in my legs now. If I walk to much they shake and I lose confident control of walking. The varicose veins need to be dealt with but I come with great trepidation. I also am coming in today because I have constant Urethra pain
    caused by what I believe is a fallen bladder. These same symptoms happened before they did the bladder surgery. (If I didn’t mention it when they did the Hysterectomy the doctor had to put my bladder back in position and tie it there.) I saw a doctor maybe a year ago or so as I knew I was having problems again. Her comment was that it wasn’t severe enough to take action yet. I feel it is now.I don’t know if I should see a Urologist or Gynecologist.

    Sincerely,

    Christine Darwazeh
    Medical record # 2815885

  • chris lacourciere

    my mother in law is under p care they have over the past several years put metal in her wrist, her ankle and her hip/femur and she is allergic to all of it they will give her nothing for the pain stronger he 15mg of morphine that is not re3ally morphing and make this 73 year old woman give a UA before they will even give her that and the last time she saw her PCP and we questioned the metal and the care she is receiving we were told we should find a different PCP. They have threatened her with coming to her home and making sure she has no other pain meds in her home and if they find some she will go to jail and have also told her if she goes outside of KP they will drop her and she will get no other type of insurance. ever! I have tried to tell her that KP can not do that but she is scared of going to jail if she sees another doctor and gets the meds she needs. and she is now so depressed and scared that I have problems even getting her out of bed between the pain and depression and the fear she is almost ready to call it quits so now what should I do ????

  • Yolanda M. Macaraeg

    The Kaiser in San Jose, Ca. KILLED MY GIRLFRIEND. She went in for a simple procedure, and something wasn’t sterilized. She got really sick. She went back, because she was getting more, and MORE SICK. She went back into surgery, and woke up with a pace maker! She was only 34 years old, with no history of heart problems. Her battery was running low, but they insisted that she wait another 2 weeks until her scheduled appointment. HER BATTERY RAN OUT, AND SHE DIED.
    I have INTRACTABLE MIGRAINE. Kaiser was giving me 5 miligrams of DILAUDID PER DAY. Then it went to FOUR MILIGRAMS OF DILAUDID PER DAY. When I asked for better treatment, and a different approach, THEY LABELED ME A DRUG SEEKER. Kaiser Kills Permanetly!!!

  • In 1998 after my mother died, I grieved really hard and my siblings could not take it. So they sent me to Psychiatric ER. There I cried and screamed because of my loss . But this one Doctor could not take my screaming and yelling. He came to the holding room where I was and began choking me. A nurse stood by him and laughed at me as he yelled and said shut the he’ll up nigger. He was an intern at the time. S.F General Hospital. I reported him but of course the supervisor took his said and told me to get psychiatric treatment. I was not shocked because it was a county hospital for the poor. Sadly this same Do flat or works for Kaiser Walnut Creek. Right next door to my department. I work there to. He probably don’t remember how I look but he knows that’s what he did to me. DR.YOKOMOTO. I did not spell his name right but I know my violator.

  • Kimberly Davis

    I had my thyroidectomy at Kaiser Fresno in June 2010. Since then I have lost my career as a nurse and am rarely out of bed. The surgeon was a General Surgeon and not a Head and Neck surgeon. My parathyroid glands were taken accidentally leaving me with permanent hypoparathyroidism and low calcium levels. I just received the news yesterday that my left vocal cord is permanently paralyzed as the surgeon nicked the blood supply to my left laryngeal nerve. This surgery should have been done by a Head and Neck surgeon. This has been HELL. I need to know what to do????

  • Kim

    I was diagnosed with Stage 4 Colon Cancer metastatic to the ovary. I’m in my mid 30′s. After surgery and one round, that’s right one round of chemotherapy…my oncologist told me I should start thinking about quality of life and not quantity. My cancer has recently come back in the form of another tumor. I was told that maybe “I had too much hope when I was first diagnosed.” What kind of medical professional says that? Oh wait, the colon surgeon said he would remove the tumor “AS A FAVOR.” Well sign me up for surgery. The worst part is Kaiser has denied my right to be referred to an outside physician. I’ve exhausted all my resources and don’t know what to do.

  • I have only begun down the same paths of inadequate care, lack of personalization, lack of genuine care,coverups, incompetant care, cou’s by nurses assessing me as not the victim of their abuse as is rightly so, but as them being victims of me being abusive??me? after 4 months of non healing wound because of their lack of knowledge in wound care, my non healing wound became Horifficaly Gross with the eventual end of removing my leg or dying from it.Non of the indignities I suffered at their hands were ever ever ever addressed to them, nor were they in anyway reprimanded by their superiors,all they ever said in the face of Dr.s orders to do what he wrote that they are supposed to follow verbatim and by law and one REFUSED to follow Dr.s orders, all of them said (and all were RN’s not just nures aides or LVNS but RN’s “we only do simple”"dressings”.Told by upper level bosses , I was , the excuse, that I needed a higher level of care than they could provide me with and after that my appt center drop down list of providers previously seen was blocked by an RN to now only include only my primary Dr.s name, since when and where do they have the RIGHT to go in an route my appts to an RN and refuse me the right to be able to make my own appts with dr.s I have already seen, for them to have access to my “web site” I use to check for messages,see or cancel appts, and they BLOCK IT, telling me i have to have appointments on such and such dates and I have NO WAY to make the appts?NOT EVEN THROUGH THE APPT CALL CENTER??OUTRAGE IS ALL I FEEL, KAISER PERMANENTE IS BOGUS INADEQUATE SUPERFLOUS,AND NOT DEFINITELY NOT COMPASSIONATE, KIND, OR ADEQUET FOR SERIOUSLY ILL PEOPLE..HATE THEM.

  • Shannon

    I could spill many examples of Kaiser inability to manage Healthcare what I really want to know and do is make a difference. I want them to NOT sign more new patients and I want existing patients to try and push back! I am sooooo frustrated and I’d really like to turn this negative energy into something positive. How can we take the giant down?

  • m

    My wife and I have had to switch to Kaiser after 22 years with same Dr. Blue cross P.P.O. we have had same Dr. for 22 years, we always got the best treatment, we had to switch to Kaiser 5-1-14, the cost to keep Blue Cross was $678.00 bi weekly, we had to switch to Kaiser, we have all Dr.reports,X rays, she has broken plate and loose hardware in foot, her other foot is shoot, her knees need to be replaced,arthritas throuhout her body, failed foot surgery, and other ailments, she want on S.D.I. 4-1-13, she tried to return to work as security guard, pain on her feet was to much, on 7-14-2014 the Dr wanted to put her on S.D.I. SHE DECLINED, we were ready to purchase house, needed income for loan, wife got terminated from jod after 7 years of dedacated service, went back to Dr on 7-18-2014 to ask to get back on SD.I.Dr declined, told her to apply for unenploymamy wife is crippled, she has applied for S.S.I. The Dr. in my opinion is telling her to break the law, she is unable to work, she has gone to see pyschiatrist,pain management,we keep getting the run around,I will continue to persue this matter, with all documentation we have they have no cause to make her suffer, this is wrong and there will be consequnces,we will not stop, and obtain lawyer

  • Jupirena Stein

    How can we take the giant down?
    Dear Shannon : The answer is VERY simple, what’s difficult is to educate the public.
    We all know that KP is a HUMAN SUBJECT RESEARCH HMO/TEACHING HOSPITALS.Right?
    Sooo … KP uses their 9.5 million patients for PRIVATE research.
    PRIVATE research companies pays KP BILLIONS $$$ in exchange to use their menbers body parts for their resaerches. Becouse KP only deals with PRIVATE money, they do all their crimes “privately.”
    What we need to do is this:

    1- Educate the public as to what KP really is.

    2- Have their status of UNREGULATED PRIVATLY FUNDED HUMAN EXPERIMENTATION RESEARCH COMPANY and change it to being regulated by the federal government. –
    The OHRP {The FEDERAL OFFICE OF HUMAN RESEARCH PROTECTIONS.}

    KP will DIE if they became obligated to be honest, ethical and non-criminal … What do you think?

    Please Google: Stop Unregulated, Privately Funded Human Experimentation In The United States

  • EX Kaiser

    Best website ever. I have been through the ringer at Kaiser as well, and later even worse so by private docs in the same Bay Area. Being older and wiser now I have come to realize that doctors are so busy changing paperwork to cover themselves and to make all treatments appear successful and having cured the patient (which does not follow if you had 1 treatment but needed 90 more anyway) that the tangled web of lies cannot be undone, by any means.
    Doctors HATE IT when you ask questions or have other opinions that are unbeknownst to them. Just this week, I had a doctor take MY old records I had with me at the time and refuse to return them. No kidding.
    Never offer old records to any doctor. Don’t tell them who you have seen either because they will info to contact each other and, as a unit, form the same opinion. They hate to contradict each other more than to have a incorrect diagnosis that will harm the patient.
    I have also learned by researching that there is a site called the Student Doctor Network. You would think these residents of every and any type of specialty would be hammering away theories about how to 1) cure cancer 2) cure blindness 3) more effectively help patients and so on, but that is not the case. They are longtime doctors and medical professionals of every stage of their careers warring over MONEY. Who makes more, who deserves more, how to make more and how to cheat on exams, ripoff patients and insurance companies. If you don’t believe it, take a look at it yourself. Medical professionals are becoming worse than lawyers.

  • April W

    Once you get into pain managment you are screwed. they cancel appoitments your pcp wont treat you for the pain anymore. You tell them multipale times the pain meds are working and they do nothing about it. But keep canceling the appointmens and do nothing about the grievance you filed. This company is shame there caring about the people commericails is scam. People be aware they dont want to treat the ill only healthly people who dont see a doctor on the regular.

  • One more bit of major importance … watch and learn. -please.
    clique here, http://youtu.be/owKkwGrYr8I
    or if you prefer Google: Kaiser Permanente Crimes and its Accomplices Dr. Timothy Wild MD,DDS,FACS and a Criminal

  • Underestimated

    Well, all I can say after reading through all of this?? Kaiser is by far the sketchiest, unethical, careless, innapropriate, abusive, corrupt etc health care organization out there!! Thank god for SCREEN SHOTS of them stalking a patient on social media, tampering with medical records, direct INSULTS to cover up their SKETCHY and INNAPROPRIATE behavior and I will probably be their next victim and patient in the ground to young by their unwillingness to admit to their FAILURES and innapropriate behavior!! I am sitting here with an infection of my body and severe heart palpitations, vomiting ETC but to scared of them to call for help! It’s sad to know they would probably rather I’m dead so their secrets and wrong doings don’t become VISIBLE and PUBLIC!!! A SCREEN SHOT of what they’ve committed, written, stated, to stupid to to think about what they were leaving on my voicemail, recorded conversations” for quality purposes”, names/dates/times/photos/job titles on the social media network they were stalking me on and other things they would not luv to have made public? Is priceless!!! I wonder where I might want to blast it before my heart and nervous system that they have let kill me gives out! They were very wrong to underestimate me and the fact I actually have a brain! I hope if something does happen, that what I leave will help the other patients being treated like complete shit!!!!

  • Nicole Stewart

    I am very sorry for your experience with Kaiser – I would also like to post mine below – if that is okay.

    Kaiser Center – Reston, Dr. Tammy Rosenthal – Last November I saw Dr. Rosenthal for the first time / first pregnancy. First off, she was very rude to my husband and I. I went in for the first internal sonogram and I was obviously nervous. We felt rushed through the appointment. During the exam she showed me my baby’s heart beat on the monitor which was wonderful. Wrapping up the appointment, she discussed my A1C1 levels from recent test as I am type 2 diabetic. She told me that my levels were slightly higher than they like and recommended that I proceed with an abortion and “end the pregnancy” to then try again later once glucose is under tighter control. She told me that I will most likely have a miscarriage by 12 weeks and if not the baby would most likely have problems developing essential organs. In addition was at high risk for complications that could be fatal for myself. She then asked me, without giving me a chance to discuss with my husband, in privacy, if I would like to go ahead and do that – that day.

    I have always considered myself “pro-choice” in that if a woman couldn’t fulfill her pregnancy she should have the OPTION to abort – within reasonable timeline. However, I had just witnessed life in my body, a heartbeat, and I had no reason to assume that the life inside me would not survive. I told Dr. Rosenthal no. She honestly seemed disgusted with me, but said ok and finished up the appointment, setting goals for glucose levels & exercise routine. I admit it was a hard decision, especially since a doctor whom I had no reason not to trust had just told me my pregnancy was essentially a dud. My heart told me (and luckily my husband agreed – since I couldn’t confirm at the time) that I had to give this life a fair shot.

    I am happy to announce that my baby boy, Matthew Noah Stewart, born 6/23/14 is completely healthy. He had no issues at time of delivery or to date. Praise God. I did have issues with preeclampsia late in my pregnancy that led to a C-section, but this condition happens to mothers that are otherwise entirely healthy. It’s the risk you take with pregnancy.

    I want to share my story as I think Dr. Tammy Rosenthal was completely out of place to professionally recommend an abortion. In my case (obviously not all cases, but such is life) everything worked out perfectly. I can’t help but think… 1.) What if I decided to follow her advice 2.) How many other women had followed her advice & what if… It breaks my heart every day to think of that.

  • Vencheza

    These stories are all very sad but does not surprise me. I stumbled upon this site today and read many stores. My mother died in 2012 after going to the Urgent Care Kaiser, Lancaster where they observed her for over an hour and a half while clutching her heart, extreme anxiety, sweating and vomiting and then she had a heart attack. They only had given her an Ativan prior to the heart attack and that was after me complaining. She was then taken to the local hospital which Kaiser has a contract. I made several attempts to have her transferred to the Heart Hospital Kaiser Sunset and was refused each time. She was told she had pneumonia and placed on Palliative Care and sent home. The heart doctor they brought in at the hospital told my mother that “The Cost would Outweigh the Benefit” to be a candidate for heart surgery and that “She did it to herself,” being a former smoker. They prescribed heart medication that was not covered by Kaiser that cost $500 for a month and then took her off it after a week. I called 911 three times and the third time she was placed in the ICU and intubated for 10 days until she died of multiple massive heart attacks. She tested positive for Valley Fever the day before she died. In addition she contracted C-Diff while in the ICU. I filed a 10 page complaint to MediCare with no avail.
    My dad now has Dementia and still on Kaiser, he just got out of the hospital with Acute Renal Failure, and he cannot walk due to neuropathy. I have emailed his doctor and a nurse called me today after I emailed them about getting MediCare to provide Home Health due to the fact he is Home Bound, released from a hospital stay and uses a wheelchair (http://www.medicare.gov/coverage/home-health-services.html)and they said they never heard of it before! I can almost see how this is going to end.

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