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Gastroenterologist Alin Botoman had been on hold for almost an hour. The drone of muzak taunted him on speaker phone.

It was the second day in a row he’d spent trying to get insurance to cover a dual CT/PET scan he’d already performed for his patient with esophageal cancer. The day before, after the insurance company unexpectedly denied the request, he’d called to contest the decision and spent an hour on hold. Finally, he was instructed to schedule a separate “peer-to-peer” call with a physician working for his patient’s insurance company in order to seek prior authorization for the tests.


Now the peer, a pediatric oncologist, hadn’t called him at the scheduled time. So Botoman decided to call the insurance company, and found himself on hold yet again.

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