Posts Tagged ‘Health care’

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I am a proud liberal

August 30, 2009

I doubt if there’s anyone who is capable of decidely picking up and carrying the torch that Senator Kennedy did for so long. I grew up in the 60s,   witness to such a deeply historic time. It is why I have such intolerance for neocons who are quickly becoming the speakers of the Republican party, drowning out their moderate colleagues. To Limbaugh, Beck, Hannity, Rove, Cheney, Palin, Bachmann, and all of their cohorts – there is a special place in hell reserved for you all. Your devicivness  and blatant lies that you scream out (evidently they believe the louder they are the more truthful they appear to be) are mindful of petulant children who’ve been at the feeding trough too long and find yourself without dessert.

Enough pandering to bipartisanship. Push the original health care bill  through and to hell with the naysayers. Find your goddamned backbone and just do it.

Mark Karlin has a great post over at Buzz Flash

And I remember at Yale — many, many years ago — when he came to speak to the political union.  Protestors were advocating violence as a solution to a political issue of the time and interrupted his remarks.  Kennedy let them have their say and then — his voice audibly breaking and trembling — admonished them that he knew personally the toll that violence takes upon a family and that it was not what our nation was about, nor would it yield anything but loss and pain.  You could have heard a pin drop as he sucked the air out of the room with his spontaneous reaction from the depth of a wounded heart.

I am a Liberal.  I am a PROUD Liberal. And I will never feel intimidated, ashamed, or threatened by those of you who aren’t. Ever. Again.

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What citizens in Canada (and other countries) have to say about their health care

August 22, 2009

http://www.avaaz.org. Go read and become enlightened.

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Those 1%ers are whining again

July 26, 2009

The rich keep getting richer and the poor, well…you know about the poor. Now before you go shouting “commie-pinko-socialist-blahblahblah” and throwing your drink at your keyboard, understand that I don’t have a problem with anyone making money. Hell, I’m all for EVERYONE making money.

Here’s something to keep in mind when you hear the bitching and moaning about those making more than $280,ooo a year: That wealthiest 1% that we’ve been hearing about for years and years? They’re not only getting more of a share of American $, their tax rate is at its lowest in 20 years. Read the rest of this entry ?

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Colonoscopy, Insurance, More $

July 22, 2009

More aggravation than anything, but another example of what’s wrong with the insurance industry. (Yes, I was very satisfied with how the c-scope went, the clinic, and very happy everything was okay. That’s not what this is about.)

My employer recently changed insurance providers, much to my doctor’s happiness. CIGNA was who it was at the time of my colonoscopy. I received an additional bill for $40.00 from the clinic that did the procedure.

Here was the process:

  1. Initial visit $40
  2. Day of procedure: $120

That was supposed to take care of everything on my part. However, on the day that I received the additional bill from the clinic, I received an “Explanation of Medical Benefits” from Cigna. The total charge for the procedure was around $1,400. There was nothing unusual about the procedure, no added medication, surgery, etc. Everything had been cleared through the referral process (and this was a test that CIGNA was encouraging me to have because of my age). So a month after the fact, I’m told that my plan liability was a little more than $200, and I’m responsible for another $40.

Now this might not seem like much to you, but to me that’s like going to buy a pair of jeans and they’re marked $40, which you pay; then after you’ve left the store, you get a call saying that you owe an additional $20 for.

Shouldn’t the cost be the cost? The patient liability be all settled ahead of time? I’m going to pay it, of course.I can appeal, but if it goes anything like appealing my traffic ticket did, it would wind up costing me more.

Oh, and you saw where there were an additional 5 million who lost their insurance; which brings the number of Americans without insurance to over 50 million. I hope you aren’t one of them.

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The fight for health care is personal, part 1

July 20, 2009

There are over 47 million Americans without any health insurance. None.They don’t qualify for state aid because they either make too much money or the state/s aren’t taking any more enrollees. Before you get your panties in a wad over the “making too much money” part, some are managing to pay premiums on children who have a chronic illness, or the “too much money” means they are above the poverty level according to government standards. For some, they simply can’t afford the premiums. Correct me if I’m wrong, but didn’t the Republican overhaul of bankruptcy disallow filing due to high medical expenses?

When it became all to apparent that my mom, at 84, could no longer live independently, I brought her to live with me. I had always promised her that there would be no nursing home for her, and it was a promise that I intended to keep. Two years earlier, an RV had run a red light and slammed into their car, killing her husband almost instantly, and severely injuring her with a fractured pelvis, 8 broken ribs, dislocated shoulder, abrasions, and more. Determined not to remain in a wheelchair, she learned to walk all over again. She lost that ability due to illness prior to moving in with me. Once here, she needed a walker and a wheelchair to get around.

Her medicine ran over $1,000 a month. When the Medicare prescription drug revision/ modification was passed, it dropped the cost to several hundred a month. Her previous physician strongly suggested that she get involved with other seniors, so we enrolled her in an adult day care that she attended 3-5 days a week; that was around $2,000 a month.

Medicare would not cover a home health aide coming out to assist with baths, dressing, etc., so we took care of it on our own. The local hospital had a program where physical therapists would come to the home, but she was placed on a waiting list because they were short staffed. After having gone through their hoops to make sure she’d benefit from the PT, no one was available. Insurance would not cover having a private one come out, so we were at the mercy of attempting to do it ourselves.

Respite services were expensive…at least I considered it expensive at $15 – $20 an hour depending upon the physical limitations of the client. There were 3 days that we used their services: 1 was for a wedding, 2 were for day trips out of town. Neither Medicare nor her supplemental policy paid for that – otherwise we would have used it once every week or two. She loved visiting with others, and honestly we needed the decompress time.

When she developed an irregular heartbeat in the Spring, I drove her to what was alledgedly a fine  hospital 5 minutes away. It was the last time she was in my home. She was admitted to the hospital, where 1 week later she suffered a stroke because no one in their physical therapy department could be bothered to come up an sit her up – even though her doctor had instructed them to. When she missed a meal because no one would feed her (she had extremely limited use of her arms due a late onset of Parkinsons), I made sure that I was at the hospital to feed her every meal. A nurse couldn’t be bothered to put down her magazine and come see about her IV going off for 15 – 20 minutes.

Medicare said after x number of days (I believe 30), that she had to be dismissed. So they moved her to a rehab facility about 15 miles away. Her care was good, but she wasn’t making adequate progress according to Medicare, so she had to be moved to a nursing home that would provide at least some rehab. It, too, was a nice place, but again, after a certain number of days, because she wasn’t meeting the Medicare requirements of progress, she was being discharged.

I felt like I was in a nightmare. Before she’d gotten sick, she was able to help somewhat in getting up, but now, there was nothing. The stroke that she’d suffered in the first hospital had taken the last bit of strength that she could muster. It was then that I broke down. I didn’t know where to turn to protect and help my mom. Her Medicare wasn’t going to, nor was her supplement. What do you do, where do you turn? She’d worked so  hard all her life. The irony – she was a nurse.

The one person who’d believed in me always, and doors were closing. She was in her 80’s and so her life wasn’t valuable evidently.

A supervisor from the nursing home helped us. There are private residential homes that provide care, 24/7.  But guess what? Medicare and her Blue Cross supplemental did not cover. It was $2,000 a month just for her to live there. Any extra services would be added. We found one, a good one, that was 5 minutes away. Within 2 months, she’d been hospitalized twice as her poor little body weakened. It’s what the body does when it’s ready to let go – it gradually shuts down.

When the doctors said that she was dying, Medicare covered her Hospice. Mighty big of them, as they offered no encouragement to her recovery. Their encouragement was for her to die.

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The Lion roars, his most powerful yet

July 18, 2009

So much he has done to help out the working and middle classes. He continues to do so, even when he is going through so much. He doesn’t have to, you know. He could just pack it all in and call it a day, but the warrior carries on, and for that, we are grateful. Read the rest of this entry ?

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Health care reform w/ public option NOW!

July 12, 2009

What would you say about 350+ health care industry lobbyists haranging members of Congress?

sphere of influence Read the rest of this entry ?