Anonymous Medical Care
August 15, 2007 10:17 AM   Subscribe

How can someone get an anonymous physical?

If someone wanted to get an anonymous physical, complete with labs, how could they do that?

No Social Security numbers, no I.D.s.

This is in California.
posted by small_ruminant to Health & Fitness (12 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
 
hmmm, off the top of my head suggestion. Go to a low cost family practice center, pay cash give false identification information on the forms and take out a POB for them to send info to.

Outside of the question, personally I don't think it is a good idea, for a number of reasons, but especially if there is a chance of public health risk.
posted by edgeways at 10:46 AM on August 15, 2007


Don't clinics require picture IDs since this whole horrible HIPAA thing?
posted by small_ruminant at 11:01 AM on August 15, 2007


I'm not sure about California, but where I live I've had no problems omitting SSN's from the doctor registration forms. The only place that ever brought it up was a hospital ER. No one checks the identity info either. So just make up an identity when you check in, don't use insurance, and pay cash on your way out.
posted by hodyoaten at 11:35 AM on August 15, 2007


Thanks, hodyoaten- glad to hear it.
posted by small_ruminant at 12:00 PM on August 15, 2007


Sure, go in the doc's office and let them know what your situation is- be up front, tell them you rather not give your name but need some medical advice. Whip out that wallet and pay up front for an office visit. You can come by to pick up the results under John Doe in a week or so and then you are done.
posted by bkeene12 at 1:06 PM on August 15, 2007


If there's a clinic in your area that primarily treats homeless youth, but also does sliding scale treatment for adults, they won't have a problem with you not giving an SSN or showing ID, and lab work won't be an issue either.
posted by cmonkey at 1:15 PM on August 15, 2007


Okay. Glad to hear it. So just walk in and explain it to the receptionist, and go from there.
posted by small_ruminant at 1:56 PM on August 15, 2007


Unless you are having a recent gunshot wound looked at you won't have problem
posted by bkeene12 at 2:03 PM on August 15, 2007


Nope. No gunshots, and nothing communicable.
posted by small_ruminant at 2:21 PM on August 15, 2007


If you do give a fake SSN, don't just make something up. That could potentially inconvenience someone in a really annoying way. See here for 'safe' fake numbers. There is a possibility that some medical billing software or system might immediately reject these as fake, but if that happens you can just say you transposed a digit and try something else.
posted by Rhomboid at 4:40 PM on August 15, 2007


Just FYI, you don't have to give a fake social. The magic phrase is, "I don't use my social security number as identification." In fact, don't even volunteer that information, just don't fill it in on the forms.

I've told medical professionals this when pre-scheduling appointments on the phone (on the rare occasions when they ask in advance).
posted by digitalis at 10:14 PM on August 15, 2007


Rhomboid, that's great information. Thanks.

digitalis, I'm not so worried about the SSNs as I am the photo IDs.
posted by small_ruminant at 11:11 PM on August 15, 2007


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