Thursday, September 30, 2004

You're policy doesn't cover that

To be as inelloquent as possible, the state of health coverage in the U.S. sucks. I've become intimately aware of this problem over the past couple of years as I've seen my family impacted. My mom discovered she had cirrhosis more than a year ago. They don't know why she has it, but there it is...a bum liver. As you can imagine, this is a serious problem that will eventually require a transplant. Continuity of care is important to ensuring her health is being properly monitored; however, I swear that over the past couple of years her company (where she has worked for more than 20 years) has switched her health insurance 3 times. This means she has had to switch doctors 3 times. At one point, her insurance didn't even give her the option of seeing the only liver specialist in town. She has a freaking potential terminal illness people...doesn't she have the right to the best care available?! Got the idealism beaten out of me with that one. My grandmother, on the other hand, has been able to stay with the same doctor for many years but is finding the cost of prescription drugs is forcing her to choose which pills she can afford to take. Hmmm....should I get medicine for my blood pressure this month or do I want to get the pain pills for my arthritis? What the hell is wrong with this country?! Somehow we can find more than $150 billion to spend on the war in Iraq, but we can't manage to come up with a health care system that works. Now I, who religiously pays for my health insurance every month and rarely goes to the doctor, find out that a medical procedure I'm looking to have done is not covered. Why I found this surprising is beyond me.

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