Insurance companies and defense attorneys frequently question injury claimants on their specific degree of pain and suffering. Knowing this is a subjective element of damages the big corporations and their hired guns move next to the medical providers to seek better clarity. Inevitably there is the case where the doctor did not believe the patient was truly in pain but subsequently prescribed pain medicine. Why on Earth would a medical provider be at such odds with themselves? It must be because he fears legal repercussions and higher insurance premiums, right? Or is it because he is paid more, or even paid by the pharmaceutical company?

Two articles caught my attention over the past few days:

  1. "Diagnosing a Patient as a Faker" by Melinda Beck of the WSJ– reporting on several issues in medicine and not totally in line with her eye catching headline. However, she cites the Archives of Internal Medicine, 2011 indicating: a) Prescriptions rose nearly 50% from 2000-2009, b) Abuse of opioid pain relievers is the second leading cause of accidental death in the U.S., after car crashes, and c) 15%-20% of doctor visits in the U.S. involve an opioid prescription; and
  2. "Doctors Already Know Secret to Better Health Care" by Walter Ezell in The Greenville News-illustrating the need for more in depth time between patients and doctors, not just quick visits, drugs, and positive reinforcement for negative health habits. To quote Ezell’s article: 

Only medical doctors can prescribe prescription medicine or perform surgery. This isn’t necessarily because surgery and drugs are the most important contributors to human health, but because in the wrong hands, they are dangerous.

Here is the paradox. Because doctors have a monopoly on drugging and invasive procedures, and spent a lot of money to join the guild, they get paid more for those practices and need to get paid well. There is an economic incentive to do more drugging and surgery, with little incentive to give patients the time, empathy and wisdom that are critical to achieving optimum health.

Doctors who want to address the whole person (and there are many) are swimming against the tide of their own economic interest. Unless they are working in an academic medical center, or already involved in an alternative practice, they may not have time to lavish the needed attention that each patient deserves.

We could all use more in depth time with our doctors in explaining all that ails us. The doctors may prefer more one on one time but being mandated by corporate interests within the hospital administration and/or through pure bottom line views of paying overhead, can’t manage this need.

Patients are certainly to blame in going into the doctor’s office and not being as detailed as possible in explaining mechanisms of injury or symptoms. Of course, some patients probably take advantage of this being their only human interaction outside their normal day and talk about unrelated issues.

The bottom line is that only doctors can prescribe pain medications and only patients can control their adherence to healthy habits. Unfortunately there is too much subjective gray area in between and too many entities vying for a piece of that control.

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Photo of Trey Mills Trey Mills

Floyd S. “Trey” Mills III knows that suffering a personal injury through no fault of your own can be a nightmare for the victim and his or her family

Mr. Mills was born on April 24, 1978.  His parents, Floyd S. “Butch” Mills,

Floyd S. “Trey” Mills III knows that suffering a personal injury through no fault of your own can be a nightmare for the victim and his or her family

Mr. Mills was born on April 24, 1978.  His parents, Floyd S. “Butch” Mills, Jr. and Patricia Yarborough Mills, were originally from Newberry, South Carolina, and soon after the birth of Mr. Mills, his parents brought him back to be raised in the same county they grew up in.

Education

Mr. Mills attended Newberry Academy from grades K-3, Gallman Elementary 4th grade, Rikard Elementary 5-6th grade, Mid-Carolina Middle School 7-8th grades, Mid-Carolina High School from 9-12th grades, Clemson University, and Walter F. George School of Law at Mercer University.

Health Crisis

While Mr. Mills was a junior in high school he was chosen by his school to be a representative to Boys State.  This was a great honor and would have been an even better experience except, while at Boys State, Mr. Mills became unusually ill with blackouts, night sweats, and back pain.  Fortunately for Mr. Mills, his mother was an ER nurse at Lexington Medical Center, but unfortunately, for Mr. Mills that did not change his diagnosis of Acute Lymphocytic Leukemia.  Along with his diagnosis, Mr. Mills received a prognosis of two weeks.

Obviously, Mr. Mills has been blessed with his second chance at life and those who have been wronged by health care insurance companies and other types of insurance companies can feel confident in knowing that Mr. Mills can not only empathize with them but fight fervently for their side.  Mr. Mills’ cancer experience and his mother’s arduous yet unsuccessful battle against lung cancer were very trying times.  However, those real-world battles and experiences were nothing compared to the administrative and billing wars he had to encounter with Blue Cross Blue Shield Health Insurance. It seems BCBS would deny any charge over $1,000 without rational reasoning therefore prompting Mr. Mills to go to law school and carry the torch for those that were too ill to fight for themselves while the school yard bully beat them down.

College

Mr. Mills went on to Clemson University where he was very active in student activities along with academic accomplishments.  Mr. Mills was invited to join Calhoun Honor’s College, Sigma Pi fraternity, Golden Key National Honor Society, Student Government, IPTAY Student Advisory Board, and Tiger Brotherhood. Mr. Mills also worked as a student employee with IPTAY Scholarship Fund under the direction of Bert Henderson, formerly the Associate Athletic Director of Planned Giving at Clemson University.

Early Life

Mr. Mills was unsure of where his hard work and life experiences would best provide an adequate return to the outpouring of kindness he received during his cancer experience. Having received many blessings from the American Red Cross, Mr. Mills went on to be an Apheresis Donor Recruiter under the supervision of Barry Pollard at the American Red Cross Blood Donor Services in Columbia, SC after graduating Clemson University.

Running from his true calling, Mr. Mills fled to Guadalajara, Jalisco, Mexico to Teach English as a Foreign Language (TEFL).  Having spent a semester of college in Madrid, Spain, Mr. Mills thought he should be assisting foreign countries. Mr. Mills was certified by the Vancouver Language Centre in Guadalajara for his TEFL training.  Mr. Mills was in Guadalajara only a few months when September 11, 2001 occurred and helped him focus on his life priorities.

Law School

Mr. Mills went on to law school at Mercer University and clerked each summer trying to determine how he could best serve those less fortunate.  The corporate law firms never truly provided him with that personal feeling of assisting the common person in need.  It wasn’t until Mr. Mills became the first law clerk of the South Carolina Trial Lawyers Association under the supervision of Linda Franklin and lobbyist Michael Gunn that he realized where his education, life experience, drive, and hard work could truly benefit those who have been personally and directly affected by the negligence of another.  Mr. Mills wanted to be a coveted and much needed plaintiff’s trial attorney.  More importantly Mr. Mills realized the power of the faceless insurance companies, misinformed legislative members, and the true power of money and lobbyist in dictating laws.

What’s the one service you pay for all your life but you are actually penalized if you ever have to use it? Insurance.

Trammell & Mills

Mr. Ernie Trammell gave Mr. Mills his big break at leveling the playing field against the faceless and heartless insurance companies.  Mr. Mills works tirelessly every day in an effort to bring justice to those who have been wronged.  Mr. Mills has worked on both sides of the law and has been through some harrowing life experiences.  Mr. Mills has been tested and tried by many of the more traumatic events that life has to offer and now provides his services to the public.

Who would you rather have on your side? Someone whose resolve has been tested and tried? Or someone who has intertwined their morality and greed in such a way that they can’t tell one from the other?

Why haven’t you hired Mr. Mills to be your attorney yet?

Would you listen to the devil on how to get to Heaven? Then why listen to insurance adjusters?