SurgeryPlus Member Spotlight: Back In The Water After Chronic Pain

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A Fish Out of Water

James “Jimmy” Parker was an active guy spending much of his free time under the Florida sun on the water or the tennis court. At work, he was climbing the ranks at NextEra Energy. As his work experiences and responsibilities grew, Jimmy felt optimistic about his future at NextEra and in life. However, one day in 2014 changed everything. Jimmy suffered a traumatic back injury that would lead to years of pain and surgeries.

“I slipped on the porch and went down five steps landing on my back. It really changed the course of my life,” Jimmy recalls.

After his fall, Jimmy relied on a previous doctor to suggest a local area surgeon. This resulted in Jimmy receiving aggressive treatment for his condition including several unnecessary procedures. Worse, it brought his life to a halt. He was out of work for six months for recovery, and he was forced to stop the physical activities he once enjoyed.

Although thankful to have some relief, Jimmy began experiencing severe pain again five years later. When the pain became unbearable, Jimmy’s family and friends urged him to get help. Jimmy contacted the NextEra HR department for guidance. His HR leader encouraged Jimmy to take advantage of SurgeryPlus, an employer provided benefit. Jimmy called SurgeryPlus beginning the healing process.

A New Wave

From the first phone call with his Care Advocate, Jimmy recognized the SurgeryPlus difference. SurgeryPlus provided a list of Surgeons of Excellence who were better equipped to deal with Jimmy’s condition. From the list of highly qualified surgeons, Jimmy found Dr. Robert Masson, a board-certified neurosurgeon who specializes in a holistic approach when treating his patient’s injuries.

“As soon as he saw my MRI and before my first appointment, Dr. Masson called me to discuss his findings. He talked to me like a neighbor or best friend. It was comforting to feel like he would be taking care of my treatment and that he cared about me as a person.”

While Dr. Masson handled the medical plans, SurgeryPlus stayed by Jimmy’s side ensuring the logistics were in place for his surgery. “SurgeryPlus made everything easy. They checked on me after appointments and gave me a pre-paid debit card to handle my hotel and meals. I really felt supported by your team.”

Jimmy proceeded with several procedures with Dr. Masson correcting past surgical issues and getting the treatment he needed to live a full life. Through this experience, Jimmy and Dr. Masson formed a bond that extended beyond the operating room. Dr. Masson has become a trusted ally in Jimmy’s health journey and future tennis opponent.

Dr. Masson expressed his feelings about SurgeryPlus in an interview. “I’ve never felt comfortable with the overwhelming bursting at the seams practice where we are months out. SurgeryPlus is turnkey and patient specific with a concierge philosophy that supports patients and providers. SurgeryPlus allows me as a physician to focus on delivering the highest quality of care. It’s a treat to participate in a program like this. It’s how healthcare should be.”

Diving Back Into Life

“The real goal isn’t surviving surgery; the goal is resuming normal life.” Dr. Robert Masson

Since his surgeries, Jimmy is back on the water doing what he loves. More important, he wakes up every morning pain free and enjoys better days at work. His SurgeryPlus experience has given him a new lease on life as well as some healthy new habits. “It has been a night and day difference that has impacted my mental state for the good.”

Determined to embrace all that life has to offer, Jimmy began exercising and eating better losing over ten pounds. His blood pressure has dropped, and he finds it hard to remember the pain he felt because he feels so great now. Jimmy is grateful that his employers provided the SurgeryPlus benefit allowing him to heal and live a full life.

Smooth Sailing with SurgeryPlus

SurgeryPlus is committed to improving the lives of its members through high quality care without the surprises of large expenses. Every member is treated with an individualized approach specific to their needs and situations. From our Care Advocates to our network of providers, SurgeryPlus believes a member first philosophy is the key component to successful health outcomes.

When members heal and get back to living, their employers see the difference in morale and engagement. The positive impact of SurgeryPlus is felt by employers from fewer missed days of work, decreased turnover, and significant cost savings on surgery related claims.

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