For anyone who has ever met me and discussed insurance, you will probably know how much of a fan of “Best Doctors” I am.
For those of you who do not know what it is, a very quick and basic summary is that if you or your children (under 18) are get a medical condition – anything from a broken ankle through to something far more serious, you can get a second opinion from the best Doctors around the world on not only the diagnosis but also the best form of treatment.
It does not sound like anything special, but there are times where the NHS get it wrong. That could ultimately be the difference between life and death or living a normal life and not. Mistakes can be made by anyone, it happens so that in itself is worth having a second opinion, but what about treatments that are not available on the NHS? Your GP may not know about them. The best Drs who specialise in their field may know something your GP does not. I am and always have been a huge fan of Best Drs. I took it out when my daughter was born as she was in and out of hospital for the first 12 months.
Slightly embarrassing, but I do not believe it should be. I found a lump on one of my testes in May this year. I called the GP and went for an examination. The nurse thought it was a cyst but suggested I go for an ultrasound to be safe – I thought they were only for pregnant ladies!
I went for my ultrasound and the results of that came in, they confirmed there were no lesions and that there were just a couple of veins slightly larger than they should be but all in all there is nothing to worry about.
However, I was telling a friend of mine who told me about a friend of theirs. They had something similar, but it turned out to be cancer after the original diagnosis was a cyst. That then set me off panicking again, and I remembered I had access to Best Drs.
On the 6th July I completed a very small form on the Best Drs website – this was basically to confirm what the issue was and another box to state why I was getting in touch. In my case, I just wanted a second opinion.
On the 7th they came back and asked me to confirm my Insurance policy number via email.
On the 8th July they sent me some paperwork to sign – this was signed online and returned electronically (ie no need to print, scan etc).
On the 9th July I received a call from a GP. He then ran through what had happened, what had been carried out and asked if I had any paperwork from my GP which I already had. Whilst I was sending that over, he confirmed that they had access to specialists who he could liaise with if needed although from the discussions we had he did not think it would be necessary.
He read through the paperwork from my GP as there was only 1-2 pages. Again all whilst I was on the phone, and he more or less gave the same diagnosis and also answered a few questions I had regarding what I should be looking out for in the future.
We spent around 30-35 minutes on the phone talking through it all. Admittedly I did think there would be more to it than that but he was pretty confident (as was my GP in fairness) that there is nothing to worry about. But he also spent 30-35 minutes on the phone with me asking me if I had any concerns and what I wanted to know as well as providing other information and reassurance. It felt like a GPs appointment but with no time constraints and felt a lot more relaxed.
The good news is that I did not need to push it for the specialists to be involved. So although I never got to see them in full flow it was reassuring to know it is there and to be able to get that second opinion in 3 days – which would have been 2 days had I included my policy number on the form.