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16 July, 2009

More health insurance blues

I received another letter the other day. I once enjoyed receiving mail but now I almost dread it. The last time I visited my GP I went for a blood test. Now, I couldn't have it in-house because my insurance didn't cover that (wtf??) so I went to another outside company. It was under my own recommendation that I have my blood tested as I wanted to check my cholesterol because a) it's nice to keep a check on that kinda thing, and b) my uncle had had a heart attack and there is a history of heart attacks in my family (he is fine now, btw). So, I figure I better get myself tested. Then two months later I get the bill from said company because apparently my health insurance doesn't cover silly tests like cholesterol testing, despite my valid reasons for it.

This shows that the health care industry isn't concerned about diagnosing potential problems early and thus saving the patient their health and their money but instead are content for people to become sick and THEN offer the specialists and a price of course.

I saw a recent figure about where folks spend most of their money when it comes to health care and the highest percentage was on prescription drugs. Not surprising as Americans are given prescriptions to help them deal with an existing problem and can gain instant relief, or some relief. However, if you are on a tight budget, why would you pay over $100 to have a test that may or may not tell you that you have a problem if you Doctor hasn't suggested it but it may be hereditary?


Paul Higginbotham said...

Your insurance company doesn't pay for cholesterol screening?!? WTF? Who's your carrier? Big Henry's Insurance Barn?

Something like that should be covered under a yearly physical exam. I'd call the carrier and raise a stink.

If not it just shows their shortsightedness, because catching something such as a chol. problem early could save a lot of money down the road.

BTW: A lot of pharmacies have started offering free blood screening now and then, so if your carrier isn't going to pay you should keep an eye out for those. I saw an ad for one at my local Kroger the other day.

All Click said...

It's called "BACKstreet insurance - Madoff Plan "LOLZ"" I believe. Something like that. I got a free pen and mousepad when I joined.

The Film Geek said...

We gotta stop calling it "insurance." That's part of the problem. When we buy flood insurance, it's on the hope we never have to use it. Same for home insurance--for those tragic events that we hope we never have to experience.

If we used flood insurance regularly, the cost of that would increase again and again.

We use health insurance over and over, and we buy into the notion the industry sells to us that because we use it often, it should cost us more. Bullshit. What we use (and need) is progressive and holistic health care, and from a health care system that values being used frequently.

Makes getting the mail a bit cheerier.

All Click said...

You are right, Film Geek. It shouldn't be called insurance, but perhaps "Health tax"?

I suppose it should really be called "surgery insurance" or "accident and surgery insurance" because it seems to be that I'd be just about the same cost wise paying for things myself without paying my health insurance.