I’m in the process of trying to get my first prescription for ADHD medication, and the whole process has been quite confusing. It’s taken a month now from the moment I first asked my doctor about what to do, until today where I’m texting a completely different primary care physician, hoping he can mail me a prescription that I can take to my pharmacy. I’ve never picked up a prescription for myself before (till now, I’m on no other medications), so I don’t know what will happen from there.
It just feels frustrating that it seems like I’m stumbling my way through this process instead of following a clear and concise roadmap to treatment. I guess the internet algorithms notice how much ADHD content I’ve been reading online and showed me an ad for DoneFirst.com. The website seems to suggest that it makes the whole process as quick and painless as possible. The price seems reasonable, too, although I don’t have much of a frame of reference.
Has anyone ever tried DoneFirst.com? How was your experience?
For context, this has been my journey so far:
- Start counseling via BetterHelp after coming to terms that something is wrong with me affecting my work and personal life.
- After two months, therapy has helped a lot, but I realize there seems to be something inexplicable and physiological holding me back.
- Start researching ADHD. Discover How to ADHD YouTube channel and other resources online.
- After a week of reading and watching, I become convinced that I have it.
- Talk to my doctor about getting a referral for testing for ADHD. This is where the frustration begins. I would later learn that a PCP can evaluate and prescribe without getting a specialist involved, but my PCP didn’t tell me this. She just took my copay and did the bare minimum of what I asked .
- Call all of the referrals given by PCP. Some only treat children. Others are out-of-business.
- Ask for a list from an insurance provider - call all thirty on the list. Half only treat kids or seniors. A bunch is out of service.
- Manage to get a call back from a few psychologists. Take the one that can set up the fastest appointment: ten days away.
- Go in for evaluation takes about 3.5 hours. The psychologist informs me that it’ll take two weeks for her to write the full report. She also tells me that as an adult, my PCP could prescribe without the report.
- Go back to my PCP. I tell her what the psychologist told me. She says she needs to either see the report from my psychologist or get evaluated by her office directly. If I had known the latter was an option, I would have done that, but now I’m not going to pay for two evaluations. I decide to wait for two weeks.
- After two weeks, receive the report from my psychologist, forward the report to my PCP, and set up an appointment for Friday afternoon (shelling out another copay). The appointment lasts 10 minutes, where she informs me that she can’t write the script and that it needs to be referred to a psychiatrist. I repeat what the psychologist told me; she insists a psychiatrist needs to write the script. I ask her for referrals.
- I call all of her referrals; none of them work.
- I go on my insurance provider website to pull up a list of psychiatrists. No one is answering the phone because it’s Friday evening at this point.
- I drive to a couple of hospitals - they all tell me I would need to go their outpatient care, which doesn’t open until Monday. Or I can go to the emergency room - but I have no idea what that would cost. I give up for the day.
- I stumble upon ZocDoc and book a telephone appointment with the first doctor to see me on a Saturday. He’s out of network, so I pay a higher fee for the office visit.
- I don’t remember why, but the doctor says he can’t write a prescription that same day, but that he would call my pharmacy and see what their prescription requirements for Adderall were.
- I give him the contact info for the nearest CVS pharmacy. The pharmacy is closed; the doctor says he’ll try again tomorrow (Sunday).
- The next day, no update.
- This morning, I got a text saying the pharmacy only accepts hand-written or e-script prescriptions. Unfortunately, the doctor’s office can’t do an e-script at this time. They can mail the hand-written prescription, but I would need to cover the cost of express mail. I agree to cover the cost of express shipping.
- Here we are now; I’m waiting for a confirmation from the doctor’s office that they mailed the prescription and for a link to pay for the express mail.
I have a feeling there are way too many unnecessary steps here. The final doctor writing my prescription hasn’t even seen the report I waited two weeks to get. Don’t know if he still needs it; he hasn’t asked for it yet. I’m an adult in my twenties. What has your experience been getting your first prescription as an adult?