The key issues I had included: lack of transparency, inflexible/nonsensical policies, use of a cookie cutter clinical approach, no physician interaction outside of major procedures, and Dr. Goodman's terrible bedside manner...Don't expect to see your doctor or any doctor during most of your visits...She has a cold demeanor and is outright condescending when you ask too many questions...Dr. Goodman will not transfer more than 1 embryo and will not transfer mosaics.
The office staff was the one saving grace for RMG. They were kind, had great follow-up, and very responsive. They regularly provided information through the patient portal. I really liked the use of the patient portal because that allowed me to go back and reference directives given to me after my ultrasounds...Strengths: office staff Weaknesses: accessibility of doctors, use of technicians versus doctors in appointments, won't accommodate schedule of a busy professional, won't share information, not told gender of embryos, processes cause significant delays in care
How was your experience with Sandy Goodman at The Reproductive Medicine Group?
I would not recommend Reproductive Medicine Group or Dr. Goodman to anyone. I have since moved my care and money to a new practice. My experiences with RMG consisted of 2 IUIs (1 resulted in a chemical pregnancy), 1 retrieval and 1 failed embryo transfer. The key issues I had included: lack of transparency, inflexible/nonsensical policies, use of a cookie cutter clinical approach, no physician interaction outside of major procedures, and Dr. Goodman's terrible bedside manner.
Lack of Transparency: Don't expect to see your doctor or any doctor during most of your visits. The techs that complete all your monitoring visits are not allowed to tell you anything and that includes potential number of eggs or share any information about the thickness of your lining for your FET. Someone from another department will call you before the end of the day with next steps. You will not be told the gender of your embryos either which I knew going in and dealt with. I foolishly thought this was all standard practice across all fertility clinics but I learned it is not. In contrast, my new doctor shares and educates me throughout the ENTIRE process. There is a monitor directly in front of me so he can point and count the eggs with me. He ensures I know what to expect before each retrieval. Dr. Goodman told me that they will not share this information (reminder: this is about your own body) because they don't want to create unrealistic expectations. So, they choose to keep you completely in the dark.
Inflexible/Nonsensical Policies: You will waste a lot of precious time if you embark on your IVF journey with this clinic. RMG refuses to complete the long list of to-dos concurrently. As an example, they have to get all your results before they will let you sign consent forms which they require you to do with Dr. Goodman who has very limited availability. By the time your results come in, they give you an appointment 2-4 weeks away because Dr. Goodman is booked. The office staff insists it is some kind of law that the doctor is present at the consent signing even though she is there for 1 minute to ask if you have any questions before a nurse comes in to help you fill out the forms. I consistently faced delays in care due to her schedule. I understand that doctors are busy but this was ridiculous. I had to wait 4 months between my retrieval and FET due to all the administrative hurdles RMG created. I can't even count how many times I heard,"Dr. Goodman doesn't see patients on Fridays" or "Dr. Goodman is on vacation". On the other hand, my current doctor provides me with his cell number, works weekends and expects me to text or call him if I have questions. THAT is what I expect when I pay $12k-$15k for a medical service and you should expect that too.
The Cookie Cutter Approach: I do not feel that Dr. Goodman did or advised on anything that was clinically incorrect and that is based on follow-up questions I asked my new doctor just to see if his answers differ. However, it feels like she uses a standard copy/paste approach for her patients. I was a fast stim for my egg retrieval and she never bothered to adjust my medications to slow the growth and to obtain higher quality eggs. It felt like she set the protocol in the beginning and let it run with no additional follow-up. My 2nd and 3rd retrieval (not with RMG) consisted of a lot more medication tweaking which yielded higher quality embryos.
Limited/No Physician Interaction: I rarely saw Dr. Goodman and never spoke to her on the phone. Of all the appointments I had, I saw her for the initial consult, saline ultrasound, 1 FET and 2 follow-up appointments after the IUI failed and the FET failed. She did not do my retrieval or either of my IUIs. I believe their IUIs are always done by nurses. For the retrieval, Dr. Goodman was again not available so this was done by another doctor. Techs complete all the ultrasounds for your retrieval and FET prep. If you're lucky, you may catch your doctor breezing by you in the hallway. If you have questions, you will need to call the office and talk to a nurse. I've never had Dr. Goodman answer any of my questions unless she is sitting right in front of me.
Bedside Manner: I don't need a therapist but I also need my doctor to understand how difficult the infertility road is and that I have a lot of questions floating around in my head. There were several occasions when she was outright condescending. One of her responses that I will never forget is when she said, "I can't be here all day going over all these scenarios with you". That was in response to my many questions about what comes next and when.
At the end of the day, I should have done more research so shame on me for not doing it. If you want to be valued like a human being, 100% clued into what they are doing to your body and what is happening to it then this is not the practice for you. Believe me when I say, you can find better care elsewhere.
What's one piece of advice would you give a prospective patient of Sandy Goodman at The Reproductive Medicine Group?
Fertility options are limited in this part of Florida. If you do not have the luxury of going out-of-state then think about the things that are most important to you and make sure your doctor can live up to your expectations. If RMG is your only option, I would highly recommend talking to several doctors in the practice before choosing one. Lastly, if at anytime during the process you feel that your care is inadequate then pause to consider other options (e.g. new doctor/clinic). It is tempting to plow forward given how impatient we are to hold our future baby in our arms but at the end of the day it's emotionally draining to deal with subpar care.
During treatment, were you treated like a number or a human with Sandy Goodman at The Reproductive Medicine Group?
There is a lot to be desired in Dr. Goodman's bedside manner. She has a cold demeanor and is outright condescending when you ask too many questions. While some clinics/physicians want you to feel that they are there to support you through this hard journey, Dr. Goodman does not. I had to wait MONTHS between treatments because I could not get on her calendar. Responses from her office staff included "she doesn't see patients on this date" or "she is on vacation". You will never see Dr. Goodman or any other physician outside of the major events like the egg retrieval, embryo transfer or consults. All ultrasounds are conducted by techs and she never once called to check-in after an egg retrieval or embryo transfer (even when it results in a negative test).
Describe the protocols Sandy Goodman used in your cycles at The Reproductive Medicine Group and their degree of success.
Egg Retrieval: Menopur, Gonal F and Lupron trigger (6 retrieved/2 normal)
FET: Estrogen (2X weekly) for approximately 2 weeks and daily Progesterone injections for 5 days prior to FET
Describe your experience with the nursing staff at The Reproductive Medicine Group.
The office staff was the one saving grace for RMG. They were kind, had great follow-up, and very responsive. They regularly provided information through the patient portal. I really liked the use of the patient portal because that allowed me to go back and reference directives given to me after my ultrasounds.
Describe your experience with The Reproductive Medicine Group.
Strengths: office staff
Weaknesses: accessibility of doctors, use of technicians versus doctors in appointments, won't accommodate schedule of a busy professional, won't share information, not told gender of embryos, processes cause significant delays in care
Describe the costs associated with your care under Sandy Goodman at The Reproductive Medicine Group.
Describe Sandy Goodman's approach to eSET (elective single embryo transfer) vs. multiple embryo transfer at The Reproductive Medicine Group.
Dr. Goodman will not transfer more than 1 embryo and will not transfer mosaics.