It is with a sad and heavy heart that I write this letter to you. The purpose of this letter is to inform you that due to health issues I need to retire. For many years now I have been battling many health issues. Unfortunately there are two conditions which have won the war; although, I think I have put up a good fight. They are both aggressive autoimmune diseases. One is an autoimmune neuromuscular disease known as Myasthenia Gravis and the other is an autoimmune disease known as Systemic Lupus Erythematosus. Unfortunately I have severe forms of both and they have both affected my entire body. There is no cure for these diseases and they will continue to progress. If I am to have any hope of stabilizing, I need to rest and start more aggressive treatments. Unfortunately, working fifteen hour days, doing at least twenty hours of paperwork on weekends, taking one week of vacation per year, and being on call 24/7 is not conducive to healing.
My last day of seeing patients will be April 23, 2015. My last day of working my regular schedule will be April 9, 2015. If you have an appointment after April 9, your appointment will be cancelled and you will need to establish with another Allergist/Immunologist for your follow up visit. You may come by the office at anytime during normal business hours to sign a release of records. From April 9 until April 23, I will see patients on an emergent basis only, as the staff and myself work on transferring your records. The office will also be open to administer allergy shots and Xolair until April 23. As you come in for allergy shots over the next month, you will need to sign a release of records and general release to allow me to transfer your shots to the Allergist of your choice. If you are a Xolair patient, please contact your insurance company and specialty pharmacy to let them know that Xolair deliveries will not be accepted by my office after April 23. My office will work with each of you over the next month to make sure your extract and medications are transferred to the Allergist of your choice. If you are one of my primary immunodeficient patients, I ask that you contact my office upon receipt of this letter so that I can transfer your records to a new Allergist/Immunologists. It is important that you contact the offfice ASAP, so there is no lapse in your care.
In order to tranfer your records, we will need you to sign a release of records which you can get from our website at www.allergyandasthmacenterbham.com or from your new physician's office. Email your request to firstname.lastname@example.org. We will do our best to complete the transfer as quickly as possible. We will keep our office phone and fax number active for approximately 6 months, after that you will need to contact us by the above email address.
Below you will find a list of other Allergists in the Birmingham area. They are aware of the situation and will help facilitate the transfer of your care, should you choose to establish with one of them. However, please be assured that I will be happy to transfer your records to any doctor of your choice.
I want you to know that it has been an honor and a privilege to take care of each and every one of you over the years. I want you to know if there was any other option, I would have taken it. Sadly, the consensus from all my doctors has been I have to retire. I am trying to be a good patient and heed their advice, “… doctor heal thyself”. For my complex patients, I want you to know I will be available to your new doctors to contact me, to help them in anyway with any questions they may have about you and to help facilitate the transfer of your care.
In the future, I will try to open a Facebook page in order to stay in touch with you. I will miss you all. Thank you for letting me to take care of you and your family over the years.
Dr. Susann Kircher, MD
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Allergy and Asthma Center of Birmingham