Starting a Private Practice, by Dr. Jim Nolan
OK, I am trying to do this right. I have gotten a business license, rented an office, bought the furniture, procured my NPI, EIN, got my application into CAQH, and NMHC, not to mention Xerox, and MSLA, and, now going for BC/BS, got my Medicaid #, re-upped my NM #1382, applied to the C&TPB for my LPCC and LADAC…
Whew, dang. This is a foreign country, with a new language, and rules I do not understand. You just do what you’re told, and it seems clear, or likely, that if you cross an I or dot a t, you will get the bum’s rush right out of the insurance paneling green room.
That being said, it APPEARS that I am within a nine iron shot of being formally paneled on the New Mexico Health Connection network, and I have a Medicaid number. Not that that means I can SEE any of those people yet. There is still one step (or is it 300 steps?) before you are OFFICIAL Official official.
It is borderline Kafka.
However, it appears to be do-able. Seven billion of our graduates are paneled on all kinds of insurance dealios—I see them all over the internet. I wonder, did they hire somebody to do all that for them? Are they just less impatient than I am? Maybe it’s a conspiracy to limit the number of Old White Guys on the panels?
I don’t know. But it is kind of Fantasy Baseball. Kind of Chess. I don’t like to play board games, because I get too competitive, and it feels crappy to win, and crappier to lose. But this kind of game is sort of OK—I feel like a wrestler in the 112 pound weight class going up against the 155 guy, but I’m fast, and I am pulling a draw here.
I think I will get paneled, and then all of the alphabet soup can get uploaded to all kinds of crazy forms, and sent through utterly inscrutable systems, past billing nerds in some unknown city in India, and then finally, when you wear ‘em down, they will say “Oh, what the hey, pal, you passed—you’re in the club—you’re a provider…”
And then you get to do good work with good people, who are looking to make their lives better, and you realize this is the work you were meant for all of your life, and then all of the ABC, XYZ, secret handshake stuff they use to daunt the faint of heart, all fades into the background, and you are now, dude, in Private Practice.