What can I do when a primary care physician refuses to speak to me even though I have POA for my mother?

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Mental Illness and privacy laws are tougher today than before. However, there are ways to ask questions which don't break the HIPPA Rules. NAMI, National Alliance on Mental Ilnness, has a handout of good questions for relatives of someone with a mental illness which comes from their free Family to Family Course.
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Guardianship for an incapacitated individual has its limitations, as well. Seems they listen to the patient, and even if that person does not possess sound judgment, their wishes are respected. This is the right of every individual, and protected by law. You and I have that right, as well. Even for those with mental illness, who cannot make rational decisions, it seems our participation is "by invitation," and the individual's request for privacy protected. Where mental illness is involved, this can become quite interesting...
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We have Kaiser Permanante, and they had my mother-in-law sign a form that gives me permission to hear whatever she hears. She wanted all of us that are hands on caregivers to have equal knowledge and input. Since all of Kaiser is linked together via computer, whoever is with her at her appointment, gets to make a decision at the time if one needs to be made. It's pretty handy.
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I agree you need to find a doc that will deal with you as her caregiverand if her present doc is in a group I would report him to the director of the group.
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Annalidiot is right, when I made my comment earlier I assumed that your mother had dementia and could not make safe decisions. But a POA is very limited if the person is competent. You would need "conservatorship" if you wanted to be completely in charge.
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You didn't say what the issue was that you wanted to discuss with the doctor, but you may consider the fact that even a DPAH (healthcare proxy) cannot supercede your mom's direct relationship with her doctor - as long as she is competant and she is speaking to the doctor it doesn't automatically give you any authority.

Please don't take this as a negative - but being named to "speak" on someone's behalf in a POA is not carte blanche. If you are not able to sit with your mom and have her tell the doctor that she wants the doctor to speak to you directly or privately then your POA means nothing until she is unable to speak for herself. the term "Power of Attorney" is very misunderstood when it comes to family and healthcare.

So let us know your exact situation if you will and maybe someone can help or at least commiserate with you. Remember, those rules are there for the patient - not the family.

What is it you want to discuss? What reason did the doctor give to not talk to you?
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I recently had the same problem at Torrance Memorial Hospital where my Dad is. I called the hospital and had the doctors with whom I could not communicate taken OFF my Dad's case. As well, I have lodged a formal complaint with Medicare and with Secure Horizons.

The problem with the insurance company is that may REQUIRE other "secret" forms in addition to your POA and for the past 3 weeks I have gotten the run around from Secure Horizons while my Dad has been in the hospital without a voice. Finally, my sister, who is an attorney got them to "cough up" the fact that you ALSO need a form called an an Authorized Representative Form; this is specific to Secure Horizons. In addition I found out that Secure Horizons PURGE their systems each year of your carefully filed POA so it is imperative to REFILE your POA and other required paperwork EVERY year. This is absurd but then Secure Horizons is absurd.

This is what I have learned so far.
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Get a HIPPA and take you with you to all her Drs. This way you cannot be denied
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Just have the doctor speak to your mother in front of you. He can't throw you out of the room.
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Hi~As far as I know-you need POA for Health, and the records can be released to you-or your physician will speak with you. It is very important to have this. Having Just POA-can me that you are overlooking a host of other issues, which was also stated in by another person who replied. If you have POA for medical issues, and the doctor still refuses to go over matters with you, it is time to fined another physician/neurologist.
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