I went to see my GP this evening to get a repeat script of some long-term medication I am on and came out with a team care assessment plan and a chronic disease management plan.
My team care assessment plan is a list of all the medical professionals who are currently treating me whilst my chronic disease management plan is a list of all my health problems, who is treating them and what they are doing about them. I am not ashamed to admit that after I left my GP’s office I had a bit of a cry. I had always held out some faint hope that once they finally diagnose me they would be able to fix whatever is wrong with me and I would be able to get back to my life. However, when your GP start writing phrases like ‘to improve mobility as much as possible’ that hope flicks and then promptly dies.
However, it is not all bad, now that I have a chronic disease management plan, Medicare (aka the government) will now pay me back $50 for my next 4 physio appointments plus $50 for a podiatrist appointment should I need one. Also, I get my long-term drugs in bulk now.
I have to go back in 6 months to see my GP for a review of my chronic disease management plan when hopefully I will have an actual diagnosis. At the moment, my official diagnosis is long-term non-specific myalgia and findings suggestive of hypermobility, which means I have muscle pain that has been going on for ages but no one can work out why, plus I have loose joints which just adds to the whole problem.
Also I was let in on what my rheumatologist has in store for me when I go back to see her, either a spinal MRI to rule out neurological problems or an electromyograph (EMG) to rule out muscular problems or if I am really lucky both. That means I have to look forward to having a needle containing electrodes stuck in my muscles and a really long time stuck in an MRI machine. Oh joy.
I have a physiotherapy appointment tomorrow over at the Arthritis and Pain Management Clinic so hopefully they will be able to put me on the right track to getting some of this stuff sorted out.