Saturday, August 15, 2009

Link

Sheria at The Examined Life wrote about insurance and made excellent points. Be sure to check out her blog. Here's an excerpt:

Some 47 million people in this country have no health insurance. That number doesn't include the people who are under insured--they have insurance but not enough to cover a major illness. Insurance companies can deny coverage to an insured person who has paid premiums for years, alleging that a treatment is experimental. You can challenge it, but you may be dead by the time a decision is made in the case.

An insurer can refuse to insure an individual with a pre-existing condition unless you are part of a group policy through an employer or your state has a high risk pool plan. Of course, there may still be a waiting period before any treatment connected to your pre-existing condition is covered.

At one point, I was considering going into private practice, so I investigated how much I would have to invest in health insurance. After I dutifully applied online to Blue Cross Blue Shield of North Carolina, listing that I am a diabetic, have atrial fibrillation, sleep apnea, and congestive heart failure, BCBS informed me that I was classified as uninsurable, but if I was willing to pay $3700 per month, they would provide me with a minimalist insurance policy.

When I was done rolling on the floor and laughing hysterically, I politely declined the policy. In spite of all of my diagnosed problems, I haven't been hospitalized in 10 years. I take my meds, exercise, see my doctors regularly, and eat healthy most of the time (chocolate is health food of a sort). Without insurance, I wouldn't be able to afford my meds or see my doctors, and would certainly cost the system far more with visits to the emergency room. I'm fortunate. I had the choice of taking a state job with health insurance benefits.

However, I know that everyone isn't so fortunate and I do believe that is is my responsibility, our collective responsibility as a society, to ensure that everyone has access to preventive and maintenance health care. That's what the proposed health care reform plan is about. Those of us who understand this have to speak up and serve as a counterpoint to drown out the lies being spouted that threaten to derail this renewed effort to ensure that all of us have access to quality health care. There are people whose lives depend on us.

5 comments:

Ms. Moon said...

This is another thing about our present health care "system"- people are forced into jobs they don't really want in order to get the benefits they need. Our system makes it almost impossible for people to start their own businesses (the very backbone of our capitalist system when done right) because they can't afford what they would have to pay for their own insurance.

David Dust said...

Debi is going to have problems with this...

Joy said...

At one place he worked, my son had catastrophic coverage insurance and it was awful. Brendan had to have dental surgery when he was two, and they had to pay it all themselves. The hospital and doctor worked out a payment plan. He was working and had insurance, but it only covered major disasters. No prescriptions or check-ups or anything like that. It was really scary.

Sheria said...

Hi Joy, thanks for highlighting my entry!

Berry Blog said...

It really is a kick in the teeth to pay in for insurance for years and then get denied coverage for any number of reasons. I still don't understand my insurance but am told it is a good one by peers in it. but the years I put into dental insurance seem wasted. 1 k per year-how ridiculous. Might as well not have it and in fact am considering dropping it.