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Family Physician
Family Physician, Doctor (MD)
Category: Health
Satisfied Customers: 12816
Experience:  Emergency Medicine and Family Practice for over 26 years
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Doctor refuses to prescribe insulin

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I called my doctor today to have my insulin prescription renewed. Not only did they tell me that they would not prescribe the insulin, they also told me that they have no record of me being diabetic. I informed them that not only do they know I am diabetic, but I have a copy of the last prescription that THEY wrote for me for my insulin. I was able to get a copy from my local drug store who filled it. They told me that if I want a prescription for insulin, I would have to see the doctor first and have tests done to prove I was diabetic. At this point I am thinking "This is ridiculous". So they then proceed to tell me that the soonest appointment I can get is next Friday. I have enough insulin for about a day or two at best left. My question is.... Is this some sort of malpractice or something? Who can I complain to? I could very well die because my doctor doesn't keep good records, and flat out told me it wasn't their problem if it's not in their records.
Where do you live? How long have you been on insulin? How long have you seen this doctor?

Did you talk to the DOCTOR, or just the staff?
Customer: replied 9 years ago.
Reply to Family Physician's Post: I live in Florida, and I use Humnalog Pens. I've had diabetes and have been on insulin for 11 years now. I have been seeing this doctor for about 2 years now. I used to live in NY and never had any problems getting my medication from my doctor there. This doctor has been pretty horrible since I started going there. I am currently seeking to find another doctor. I spoke with the staff. They refused to put me through to the doctor. I find it ridiculous that they claim that they had no idea I am even diabetic when they have prescribed me insulin before.
Actually Insulin is available without a prescription - Most type of insulin do NOT need a prescription (although an individual pharmacy may establish their own policies.)

I do not know if your particular pharmacy would give you Humalog without a prescription - but that is one option.

I agree that you need to find a new physician. The other option you have - going to an ER or an Urgent Care Clinic.

Also - after hours, you may have a better chance - the office staff isn't there, and the answering service can contact the physician (or the covering physician) to get a prescription.
Family Physician and 4 other Health Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 9 years ago.
I left a message with the after hours service that they not only know I have diabetes, but that I also have a copy of the last prescription that they wrote me for my insulin. I asked them how it's possible that they have no record of my diabetes. The doctor, sounding very annoyed that anyone even question their office practices, returned my call and told me that they are sending me a discharge paper and told me to find a new doctor. There seems to be something VERY wrong here. There has to be some sort of law against this, no?
You could indeed file complaints with the state board of medicine in your state, and your insurance company. Some insurance companies (usually HMO) "credential" doctors, and if they get enough complaints - they will "deselect" the physician.

If your insurance company requires you to have a "primary care physician" - then you could call them and inform them of the problem.

The SHORT TERM problem is getting the insulin - I would check with the pharmacy if you can get new vial without a prescription. Otherwise - an urgent care clinic or an ER are you best choices.

I wouldn't get ANYWHERE near this doctor as a patient. I would find a new physician ASAP, and have your records transferred (sign a records release at your new doctor's office)
Customer: replied 9 years ago.
I've gotten an appointment with a new doctor in my area. Unfortunately, he cannot see me until next Wednesday. I was able to get a vial of insulin from my local CVS. I am going to follow up anf file a formal complaint with the state medical board. I can't believe a doctor could be so extremely unprofessional and unconcerned about their patient's health. Thank you for your help and advice. It is greatly appreciated.