Our Medical System

I can tell you one thing without a doubt, my quadruple bypass surgery which I had in 2010 cost a lot of money.

I can take the most money which I ever made in one year,and double it….and it still wouldn’t be HALF of what that surgery and the subsequent recovery cost, and is still costing me in terms of medication,etc. If I hadn’t been working, and had good group insurance, I have no doubt I would have died. I just simply don’t believe my care would have been as detailed and comprehensive. Maybe I’m wrong…I don’t know. Experience over the years tells me I’m at least partially correct.

But even the group insurance at work was pretty expensive. A lot of people who worked where I worked complained about the high cost of the group insurance, but when you have bypass surgery…well….

The weekly cost of the group insurance was five times the cost of what I pay per month for my iPhone.

I find it hard to believe that people who do not have insurance get the same treatment and care as people who have good and decent insurance. I sometimes wonder if people who have had heart attacks in the past, but didn’t have insurance have been sent home from the ER with antacids and told they had bad heartburn. Am I being too skeptical here? Am I being too much of a cynic?

I know that hospitals and doctors are sworn to give care, no matter what a person’s insurance status, but do you think that sometimes in the past that ideas and philosophies have filtered down from the top at “for profit” hospitals which have perhaps caused people to be sent home who should not have been sent home? Do you think there have been some deaths because of that? I hope not.

I hope that in the future, when our county’s policies on Healthcare change again…and make no mistake about it, they are going to change…I hope that in that future, with whatever we are going to get to replace what we already have, I hope that no decisions are ever made to not give people who don’t have insurance the same treatment as people who are able to afford good insurance. I hope that poor people will be able to afford some kind of insurance, so that theory doesn’t have to be tested out. I’m not sure if they will or not.

What we have had was far, far from being a perfect system, but I think it was something to build on, if there had been any consensus to actually fix the things which were wrong with it, and build on the framework which it had put in place. I find it so hard to believe that the greatest country in the world cannot come together to find a system which would take care of all it’s citizens when they need medical help. I fear that what we as Seniors are going to lose much of what we have. I hear and read about the “Medicare advantage” plans going away…and they are very helpful plans. I hear and read of Medicare being changed to some type of “voucher” system and I am concerned. I hear about the costs of prescriptions skyrocketing beyond the means of many Seniors to purchase them, and I am concerned.

I fear of one day laying on a hospital bed, with some more stopped up arteries and have some Doctors discussing behind closed doors whether it’s worth wasting the money to try and salvage my old ass again. I tell you what, if that ever happens, I will gladly…gladly…give up my iPhone, especially if I’m still at the point where I feel like I would be useful to my loved ones if I were salvaged again,….

… and especially if I had the will to go forward with vigor, and not just go on and rest forever.

..

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