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Patient Story: Blue Shield of California and Landmark Making a Difference

My name is Shirley Ehlers. I’m in my early 70’s and live in San Diego. Not long ago, I fell in my home. My doctor told me to get to the hospital for a CT scan and labs, which I did. Everything was okay, but I was discharged to go home right before Labor Day weekend. My friends were traveling and busy with their lives, and unable to check in on me.

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Shirley Ehlers

Luckily, I’m a Blue Shield of California member and have access to house call doctors through Landmark, a new program for Blue Shield members like me who have several chronic illnesses. Without Landmark, I wouldn’t have had anyone else to call to check in on me. My primary care provider was happy to know that I’d be seen by a provider in my home. My Landmark doctor stopped in on Friday and Saturday, even helping to remove my cath lab dressing. They also sent my primary care provider notes about their visits with me so that everyone was kept in the loop.

It means a lot to have someone who really knows you, looks out for you, and comes to see you. When I had an atrial fibrillation (rapid, irregular heartbeat) episode, I called Landmark and the nurse stayed on the line with me for 45 minutes to see if my heartbeat would go back to a regular rhythm. When it didn’t, she had me call 911 and go to the hospital. There is comfort in having someone help you make the best decisions.

Another time, I forgot to take my morning medication and I ended up having another atrial fibrillation episode. I called Landmark and the doctor told me to take a second dose and that they would call me back within an hour. And they did! By then, my heartbeat was back to normal, so this saved me a $275 ambulance ride, and I didn’t have to be in the hospital.

I have been absolutely pleased with Blue Shield’s Landmark program. I have great primary care doctors, but sometimes they can be hard to get a hold of during the day, or after hours. With Landmark, I now have access to additional care I wouldn’t get otherwise.


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