What we discovered is that back in 1999, Congress passed a bill (the Millennium Bill) that, in part, covers costs for veterans receiving their main health care at VA hospitals/clinics at non-VA hospitals.
There are some qualifiers, such as coverage until patient is stabilized and can be transferred to a VA hospital. Not sure how this is going to work for us, but our local hospital knew dh is a vet and made no mention of this bill or applicability to his case, nor did they mention transferring him to a VA hospital.
As for the radiation, the VA oncologist can recommend it be done locally and this used to be a given. The rules have changed on this but it is still possible the VA can rule this is okay. Otherwise, dh will probably end up down in D.C. for the six week treatment. Regardless, the VA will cover the costs of the chemo drugs necessary.
Still jumping through hoops. Had to pick up the pathology report/slides to take back to Martinsburg next week.
As for the actual trip--nightmare for me. My car is scheduled to have work done on the rear idler arms and a couple other things on Monday. Dh did not feel safe to take it out of town, so our youngest drove us. Her car is small, two-door and the backseat is even smaller. Since dh is 6'2", I sat in the back. Sardine can. With a lock bar across my chest. Stupid seat belt kept tightening up any time I moved. I ended up riding the last leg home without a seat belt.
We stopped at Cracker Barrel after the appointment for lunch. Dh had a mild seizure immediately after we were served. Fortunately the Valium kicked in fairly fast (within a minute) but they are so disorienting for him that it took a while before he felt safe to eat. His seizures are focal seizures, limited to facial muscles and speech. Usually for half hour or so after one, his speech is slurred and difficult to understand.
By the time we got home, he was thoroughly exhausted and I wasn't in much better shape. Being bent like a pretzel for nearly two hours made for an excruciatingly slow exit from the car and the feeling didn't return to my legs for an hour.
Hopefully my car will be back on the road by next Thursday.
Once again, thank you all for your love, hugs and warm wishes. They truly are a huge help.
And Sammie, we haven't met a doctor yet that we have not felt they were concerned, knowledgeable and up-to-date. And our local hospital is pretty much state-of-the-art as it is only three-years-old.
A tired dog is a good dog.