Last friday, I had an appointment with the lovely Trans Health Specialist in Tacoma. I did not expect to walk out the door with a bag full of balls, (You can thank my friend Kat for that lovely image) until she told me I would be.
Then the pharmacist told me first that testosterone requires a hardcopy of the prescription, and then, after waiting fifteen minutes, that it requires prior authorization from my health insurance. This is the prior authorization that should have been submitted back at the end of May when I got my referral for the Trans Health centre. They said they would call them, and then call me back to let me know what the deal was. By this time it was 5:30 on a friday and there was no way I could call my health folk to bitch at them.
This morning, the hardcopy of my prescription came in the mail.
The prescription that came in the mail, billeted for Gender Dysphoria, was for ibuprofen.
Five minutes on the phone with my health insurance, and I'd gotten the "not medically necessary" rhetoric again. So I informed him that while I'm sure he has no idea what it's like to contemplate self-surgery with a twenty-two and a bottle of gin, I do, and that the whole "not medically necessary" thing was bullshit, and them being fuckheads. Then I hung up on him.
Ten minutes later, I was back on the phone, identifying myself to the nice, helpful lady on the other end, and telling her that I was too incoherent to talk right now so my roommate would be speaking for me.
Half an hour later, and my roommate had excersized her diplomacy skills, and I had a prescription waiting for me at my local clinic an hour after that. I currently have a month's worth of T in my bag, and an appointment to go and get them to teach me how to give myself an injection tomorrow.
So about that prescription for ibuprofen...
What my roommate eventually found out was that the pharmacist in Tacoma had found the "substitution permitted" box checked (Which means things like "dispense 200 mg/ml at 1/4 cc, rather than 100 mg/ml at 1/2 cc for cost and efficiency reasons") and substituted ibuprofen for testosterone.
That's not what "substitution permitted" means, mister pharmacist...
Because of course. Taking ibuprofen will cure the dysphoria...
(Beyond that. Ibuprofen was on my chart because I'd told the doctor that I was taking ibuprofen, purchased over the counter, as needed for pain. I'm still not quite sure why it was on my list of prescriptions...)