I want to discuss a growing problem for many who care of or live with chronic illness. This is a growing issue that poses a particular problem with those who require on-going medical care, but it is effecting a large number of people.
I have Rheumatoid Arthritis. I was diagnosed in December of 2014. I began treatment after my initial appointment with a rheumatologist in April of 2015. Within this last year I have started therapy with multiple medications to help control the disease and slow the destruction of my joints. Unfortunately, the time required to wait for my initial rheumatologist appointment and the severity of my disease had already destroyed multiple joints to the point of needing multiple surgeries. Disheartening still is realizing at the end of 2015, I would no longer be able to afford my healthcare, with insurance.
I’m not the only one. In a recent thread on social media, a friend shared about how upset she was about the $800 bill she received from one test to a recent trip to the children’s hospital with her daughter. This sparred a conversation with numerous other people who were experiencing the same thing. All those responding had insurance with high deductible plans. The families and their employers are paying premiums for plans that don’t pay anything until a deductible of several thousand dollars is met. This is sadly becoming the norm for families like mine that live on a limited budget and don’t have the money to meet the financial burden required to use the health care system.
I have a disabled child and I have a chronic illness. Thankfully our state offers assistance to children with medical handicaps that helps assure my son doesn’t go without the medication he needs, but the system isn’t perfect. Social security and insurance isn’t automatically provided to underage children with disabilities. Many times the only coverage is through private insurance. I can recall many of our own horror stories as well as those of other parents with special needs children who have had to fight with insurance only to run out of medication for our children. It isn’t right.
I spent the better part of December wondering how I was going to continue my medical care. We have since received generous help from friends who helped meet some of our financial needs, but we still don’t have enough money to pay for the necessary doctor’s appointments and medication I require. Now we have to see if my doctor’s will work out payment plans, see me less often, and reduce my medications to help me try to meet the financial demands of my illness and those of our family.
I guarantee many people are lying in bed with the same worry, how can I afford to pay for my care and still buy groceries or pay my mortgage? I know because I’ve talked with them. Parents are sick over the large bill they received because their child had an unexpected visit to the hospital, the caregiver to an aging parent is worried because they have to figure out how to pay mom or dad’s mortgage while they spend time at a nursing home in rehab, or a parent of a child with severe epilepsy is crying because insurance is using every last tactic to stop shipment on the only medication keeping their child seizure free. How is any of this okay? Is anyone else ready to speak out about this? I hope so because no one should ever have to compromise their health care but sadly this is happening every day.
4 thoughts on “Insurance Rant”
I have written about this on my blog in a post called Your Money or Your Life. My whole family has chronic Lyme Disease, and we cannot take antibiotics due to allergies. Treatments are not covered. The good docs do not take insurance. Tens of thousands later here we are…. it is an absolute nightmare!
Thank you for sharing! Although it’s nice to know my family is not alone, it isn’t something any family should have to endure. Sadly we are living in a country where chronic illness also means to be chronically broke! *d*
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Fortunatley my insurance pays for my meds and Dr. visits, but it doesnt pay for much else, not the braces I need, not the wheelchair I will eventually need, nor the physical and Occupational therapy I need, all of that comes out of my pocket, or rather it would if we could afford it.
I get what I can afford, and try to stay as active as I can with my photography, but so many times I feel as though its not fair. and it isnt.
We do the same. We get what we can and do without as long as possible and unfortunately any assistance that may be out there is hard to find. Once found, it is difficult to get. My son just got fitted for a wheelchair. I anticipate a fight with the insurance. We will all just keep going along and hoping something will change and no one will have to do without on account of something that is supposed to help us get what we need when we need it.