Hooray! My son yells “Toilet!” and we head to the bathroom. He does his business successfully. I’m starting clean-up of the kid, praising him and I hear something.
Naturally, the phone rings. I still have a bum knee (partial tear of the posterior cruciate ligament) and the phone is what I was running to when my knee went out in the first place. I do not answer it. Thus, missed call.
I finally get out to the other room to check the answering machine. Had I actually made it in time and answered, it would be either (a) a wrong number or (b) a sales call/survey. Naturally, since I missed the call, it was (c) the pediatric advice nurse call I’d been waiting to receive for 24 hours to discuss a minor issue regarding my son. I don’t know about advice nurses elsewhere, but in my doctor’s office, they do not leave call back numbers. The sole content of the message was “This is so-and-so, the advice nurse, calling you back.” That’s it. She hung up with no return number. Of course. My question remains unanswered. It is after business hours and I do not want to navigate the circuitous telephone automated system.
I check the rest of the messages while I’m at it and there are two messages from our insurance carrier asking for the parents of (child’s name). I call the number back. This is the conversation:
“Blue Shield, how can I help you?” (After I wait on hold for three minutes)
“I’m calling you back. You left a message concerning my son.”
“Are you calling from the number where we left the message?”
“Okay, let me look that up….. And you are the parent of (child)?”
“Yes, I’m the mother.”
“Okay. Would you please read the last five digits of your insurance group number to me?”
“No, I lost my insurance card about three weeks ago.”
“Oh, okay. Well, I can’t talk to you then because that is the only way I can verify you are the parent of (child).”
“Okay. Well, why don’t you just call me back at this number? Weren’t you just going to talk to me if I’d answered the first time?”
“Yes. But I can’t do that now. Hold on, please. Let me check one thing.”
(On hold for two more minutes)
“I’m so sorry to have placed you on hold but I can’t talk to you unless I have your insurance card number. If you would like to hold, I can transfer you to that department and you can order a replacement card. You should receive that in about 7-14 days and then I can talk to you.”
“Well, my insurance is renewing in two weeks, so by the time I get the replacement card, I will have a new group number so this would be pointless.”
“I’m sorry ma’am.”
“Okay, well you guys called me. I didn’t need anything from you so, your loss.”
“Well, ma’am, actually, we wanted to talk to you about a new program that would cover your family’s medical conditions…..” and she proceeds to tell me about a whole new program that manages our health care with our own advocate.
In other words, she tells me why she called. And for the life of me I can’t figure out why they needed to verify I was my kid’s mother because really? It was a sales call.
I ended up telling her that I guess I’d learn about it with our renewal paperwork. She conceded that was true. So, that was really fun.
In the background, my kid has gotten hold of my car keys, set off the alarm to the car, spilled my soda in his Happy Meal box and on the floor, and proceeded to run around the house, alternately laughing and screaming.
Did I mention how I don’t like the telephone?
Oh – I don’t like the telephone.