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Passions in Poetry

Five Thousand Dollars for Healthcare?

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Balladeer
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25 posted 11-21-2008 11:26 PM       View Profile for Balladeer   Email Balladeer   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Balladeer's Home Page   View IP for Balladeer

I'm sure we have nothing to worry about now, with Daschle in charge.
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26 posted 11-21-2008 11:56 PM       View Profile for serenity blaze   Email serenity blaze   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for serenity blaze

Was that sarcasm?
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27 posted 11-22-2008 12:39 AM       View Profile for Balladeer   Email Balladeer   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Balladeer's Home Page   View IP for Balladeer

hehe...ask the voters who finally voted him out of office only to see him come back as our new health czar. Between him and Hillary being considered as the new Secretary of State, we're not seeing "change". It's more like a remake of an old horror movie.
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28 posted 11-22-2008 03:46 AM       View Profile for JenniferMaxwell   Email JenniferMaxwell   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for JenniferMaxwell

“I'm sure we have nothing to worry about now, with Daschle in charge.”

You’ve read Daschle’s book “Critical: What We Can Do About The Health-Care Crisis” and agree with his proposals, Balladeer?
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29 posted 11-22-2008 01:45 PM       View Profile for serenity blaze   Email serenity blaze   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for serenity blaze

Ask me if I trust any politician.

Last time I felt this much burning fallout, I'd campaigned for Edwin Edwards. (Actually, it was more like campaigning against David Duke.)

And for any and all who are disappointed by Barack's choices, he's got to work with what he has...and you'd be vexed to find someone with experience who didn't work with the Clintons. I'm finding his choices bold and interesting.

But back to my topic? Rest assured that Karen the Karenoid will hope for the best, and prepare for the worst.

So I'm on to the next--I may get in to see Dr. Tannenbaum before Christmas.
YEP. That's his name.

The gods still laugh at me, too. Sheesh.

Ho Ho Ho, everybody.

sigh

JenniferMaxwell
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30 posted 11-22-2008 02:49 PM       View Profile for JenniferMaxwell   Email JenniferMaxwell   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for JenniferMaxwell

I've been trying for six weeks just to schedule an appointment - the problem, no insurance. Hope I live long enough to actually get one. Can't afford any more midnight rides in the meat wagon.  Nearly $600 for a mile and half ride, but the EMS guys are wicked cute. Overnight in the Emergency room to fight off nasty attacks by rogue histamines costs me three months pay. Dog food's not too bad if you get the kind that makes its own gravy. Looking for a Canadian to adopt me. I do windows.

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31 posted 11-22-2008 03:27 PM       View Profile for serenity blaze   Email serenity blaze   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for serenity blaze

Oh I understand...

I saved up enough coke rewards to get a portable DVD player just for emergency room visits. They replaced the chairs in there too so that you can't lie down. Our insurance company is looking for a way to drop me, because my marriage and identity has been in question for a few years now.

Funny, they didn't question the payments.  

If I'm overly amused at the brouhaha regarding Barack Obama's birth certificate, it's because I only exist to the government when it is time to pay.

My Live Birth Certificate was lost long ago in a purse snatching incident. THEN I neglected to promptly file my marriage with The Social Security folks. THEN for some reason, the city I was married in opted to transfer their vital records to New Orleans which went under water, and whatever is left of those records are apparently filed away in storage where no one lives (wiped out by Katrina) and no one seems to work there either. THEN the Federal Gov't passed some weird Homeland Security Law which requires a form not used in The State of Louisiana (which follows that persnicketty Napoleanic Code Bob K was talking about) so I am now in the midst of a literal identity crisis.

I can't get a legal I.D. and I have to explain all of this to get a check cashed, as well as at the emergency room, I couldn't vote, my son is having problems getting cooperation from FASTA and I am having my 19th nervous breakdown.

I suppose it could be worse. (I hate even typing that because everytime I do, it DOES get worse.)

But at least I'm not president-elect.



I'd like to see somebody try to "vet" me. *laughing*

I'm laughing but not without sympathy Jen.

My pesky little medical problems are what happens when someone doesn't have health insurance. So let's hope that you won't turn forty and find yourself having to replace a lifetime of preventative care with emergency procedures.

But I doubt you have the bad habits that I employed either.

Talk about your free radicals!

But I ramble.

All this for hugs.





I'm gonna go play with my dominoes now.

*wink*
JenniferMaxwell
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32 posted 11-22-2008 03:59 PM       View Profile for JenniferMaxwell   Email JenniferMaxwell   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for JenniferMaxwell

Think out of the box, Karen, identity theft could be the answer to all your ID probems. But do pick someone with no pre-existing medical conditions or else they put you the high risk insurance pool. I checked out the cost, still haven't stopped laughing/crying. Unless I find me a rich man, or a childless Canadian couple, I fear my future is filled with 50lb bags of Gravy Train and midnight meat wagon runs to plead for the compassion of the Sisters of Mercy.
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33 posted 11-22-2008 04:03 PM       View Profile for moonbeam   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for moonbeam

See, this is where I think that maybe sleeping in a hard chair in a cold hospital waiting all night for an ambulance to take my Gran(m) back to her nursing home isn't so bad ... I mean at least it's all free!*

Thank you NHS.

*or is it? Grinch?
moonbeam
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34 posted 11-22-2008 04:07 PM       View Profile for moonbeam   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for moonbeam

Jenn, you're young, healthy and in the Land of Opportunity, and you're pondering on rich men and gravy covered dog food?!  
JenniferMaxwell
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35 posted 11-22-2008 04:19 PM       View Profile for JenniferMaxwell   Email JenniferMaxwell   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for JenniferMaxwell

They have chairs in your hospitals? Wow!

Grinch
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36 posted 11-22-2008 04:21 PM       View Profile for Grinch   Email Grinch   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Grinch

quote:
*or is it? Grinch?


Nope - it costs but I think it costs less in the long run.

I actually believe the NHS is too cheap.


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37 posted 11-22-2008 04:36 PM       View Profile for serenity blaze   Email serenity blaze   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for serenity blaze

I really hope that didn't translate as whining. I'm one of the lucky ones.

I'm lucky.



And yes, Jen, the upside of no medical care is that there is no diagnosis of pre-existing conditions.

And please folks, please don't think I'm hogging the misery machine.

I'm well aware that there's more than enough to go around. I didn't mean to turn that into a "top this" contest.

Which reminds me of some of those well intentioned e mails, usually entitled with something like, "Next time you feel bad about your life, read this". They generally show people in various stages of suffering. I'd like to take a moment to thank those who load my inbox with those things that are supposed to cheer me up by asking me to look at even more suffering that I can do nothing about.

That's the ticket.

Add guilt and shame to clinical depression.

It really makes my day to see that stuff.

I should paper my walls with um, I dunno, Holocaust photos, so I can shame myself into comparative bliss.
JenniferMaxwell
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38 posted 11-22-2008 04:59 PM       View Profile for JenniferMaxwell   Email JenniferMaxwell   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for JenniferMaxwell

In this "Land of Opportunity" there are 47 million (more now most likely) of us without healthcare insurance. My employer doesn't offer it, I work for a very small company. As a single person I simply can't afford it, and now even if I scored a job with a company that does offer insurance, it won't help because I now have "pre-existing" condition, one that's not going to go away, that won't be covered.

Karen, the stories need to be told so there a chance for a change in our healthcare system, so keep on telling it like it is.
moonbeam
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39 posted 11-22-2008 05:23 PM       View Profile for moonbeam   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for moonbeam

I don't know about the detail of your healthcare system Jenn and Karen, but I do know that practically everything I read about it compared with ours, is negative.

The NHS definition of "chair" is broad.
serenity blaze
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40 posted 11-22-2008 05:38 PM       View Profile for serenity blaze   Email serenity blaze   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for serenity blaze

I'm not even sure if there exists a single definition for our healthcare system. I have had a few different plans in the past eight years--and each was different.

I do know what my doctor said to me, prior to surgery. I had suggested that since I had other problems as well, why didn't he just order my MRI with contrast.

He looked amused.

"You're assuming that I am in charge."

Everything, and I do mean everything has to be justified to my healthcare provider. So even though I could have had one MRI that would have sufficed for two specialists--that was denied. And of course, the second should be approved. Afterall, I'm one of the lucky ones with very good insurance.

(This is the second time this has happened too. I'd tried to do the same thing on previous policy--a company that went under...go figger?)

It boggles my mind when common sense is too complicated.

And I don't mean to be snarky, I'm just having a crummy day. I'm human, here behind the screen.

Sometimes when something hurts I say "ow".

Other times I just practice "displacement".

And the waiting, for me, is the hardest part.
serenity blaze
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41 posted 11-22-2008 06:25 PM       View Profile for serenity blaze   Email serenity blaze   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for serenity blaze

A story, for Jenn (and moonbeam).

I'd blogged this in another forum, so I just lifted it and cleaned it up a bit.

I thought just thought I'd share this. I'm not sure if it's funny, or horrifying.

But it's not all that unusual.

Here ya go:

* * *


I went to the doctor's office today--on time for once. Before I walked in, I couldn't help but notice a gray-haired gentleman, his face all contorted, clinging the pebblestone facade of the building. So I walk through the exit door, because the entrance door was now closed (it was the other way around last week) and the place was packed. But...I have an appointment, right? Um...almost.

"Do you have an appointment?"

"Yes," I said proudly. (I almost never have my act together, in case you haven't noticed. Y'think it's a theme?)

"Your name?"

"Blah-blah." (Edited to protect my identity. )

"Ah..we don't have you down--didn't anyone call you?"

Well yes, I have received phone calls, but only one was for me.

"No, I didn't receive a phone call--there's a man outside who is sick." I said dumbly, as if I didn't see an entire waiting room of sick people when I came in.

Blank stare.

"Your films did not come in."

"There's a man who looks very sick outside."

"We know."

"Can you come back the same time next week?" Um, well, next week wouldn't exactly be the same time but I said:

"Okay."

So I went outside and lit a cigarette, because I was standing next to the pole for the sneaky exile people who, like me, KNOW they stink of smoke and there is no hiding that kind of stuff from the doctor. I phoned my husband, watching the sick man, get even more contorted, sweating profusely, his hands on his knees, kind of wavering.

My son answered the house phone.

"Tell Dad to just turn around and come pick me up."

(I swear I feel like luggage.)

"Who is this?" WHO IS THIS?

"Yo MUDDA!"

oh. grunt-stretch-ooooookay...

"Don't you dare go back to sleep."

I hung up the phone. Or, rather, I snapped it shut. I despise the damned cellphone. I always hit the wrong buttons. Fortunately I still had it in my hand when it vibrated. (Y'see? I'd hit the vibrate option.)

"Hello?"

"Oh crap--I was trying to call Dad." My son was still sleeping, obviously.

"No, son. I have the cellphone." I was watching the sick guy grip the wall again.

"This means you will have to actually remain awake to tell Dad to come get me." I snapped the phone shut again, and tossed into the great abyss of my "go-to-the-doctor" purse.

The sick guy went down to one knee and started wretching.

Oy. This is bad.

I started to go back into the exit door, and my purse rang.

(Y'see? I'd hit that damned button again.)

"Hello?"

"Who's this?"

"What the HELL is the matter with everybody today?"

"Oh. Hi Karen!" It was our friend, 'Bala-blah.'. "Are you screening his calls today?"  He asked, referring to my husband.

"I'm at the expletive doctor."

"Well it's about time." Yes, yes, it is about "time" but I didn't want to go into details. I am the queen of bad timing. Bad Timing sums of the very essence of the conception of me.

"I'll have him call you back, there's some guy puking out here."

"There's a man puking in the waiting room?"

"No, I'm not in the waiting room, I'm outside."

"What did the doctor say?"

"I didn't see the doctor today!" I was now clenching my teeth.

"Are you going to see the doctor today?" (This guy calls me every day to yell at me to go see the doctor. He just doesn't get it--apparently.)

"Well if you are already there, don't you think you should at least say hello?" (He considers himself a comedian too.)

ARGHHHHHHHH. Butthole. sigh. But he's a butthole who loves me so I just say--

"I'll call you back, there's a guy puking his guts out here."

"You have the worst luck." Not as bad as some, I thought, looking at the puking guy.

"Can I call you back?" I didn't wait for an answer but snapped the phone shut again, resisting the urge to toss the damned thing, and I went back inside to inform the receptionist, who was putting a "Out to Lunch" sign in the window.

I tapped on that little pane.

"That guy is out there puking now."

"We know." She closed the window and put the sign in place.

And these are the people I am going to for HELP? OY.

"Out to Lunch" No kidding.

I walked back outside to see a car had stopped, and someone was trying to assist the puking man. My husband had pulled up in the truck, and I had to do the twisting maneuver to get in it, because he didn't think to purchase a truck with a running board. (These little minor annoyances, they add up, yanno?)

"There's a guy puking over there."

"They know." I sighed and gave him back his phone. Immediately, the phone rang just as I handed it to him. It was our friend again.

"Hello!" My husband was suddenly cheerful. "Yeah, she's with me now. There's a guy puking in the parking lot."

"He knows." I said. "Let's go try the dry cleaners."

"Yeah, we're going to the dry cleaners now."

We drove off and left the puking man behind.

(I really do worry about everybody...)

* * *

I know that's not an explanation of our healthcare system--or is it?
JenniferMaxwell
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42 posted 11-22-2008 06:55 PM       View Profile for JenniferMaxwell   Email JenniferMaxwell   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for JenniferMaxwell

It is and it's brilliant! Well done!
moonbeam
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43 posted 11-23-2008 04:44 AM       View Profile for moonbeam   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for moonbeam

What are you pootling around here writing poetry for Karen, you should be writing sit-com.

The only point that comes out of this that I can see (apart from the fact that your son needs a better alarm clock) is that health provision over there suffers from the same malaise as ours.  

Waiting.  

Waiting while ill seems to be a requirement whatever the financial arrangements in healthcare.

It will always be so because alongside sex, our illnesses rank right up there as the #1= human obsession.  Go to any dinner party, any bus queue, any office tea break, any board meeting, any G8 summit, and there we will be, luxuriating in the latest disease or malady that we or our nearest and dearest or, failing that, Angelina Jolie, has succumbed to.  

And is it any surprise really when our entire media is fixated with medicine and health, alternately scaring the hell out of us, and then patting it better, and all the time filling our screens and papers with this pill, and that lotion, until at every slight twinge we run off to a medical profession who eventually get so heartily sick and tired of our pathetic wimpyness that they become inured, hardened, overworked to the point that the really sick people get treated in the same cavalier fashion as the 90% of time wasters.

Gone are the days where, as Alfred Pennyworth said in "Batman and Robin": "a gentleman never discusses his illnesses".    

Until this culture is changed Karen, and people stop expecting that the State will nanny every little financial trouble, and the medics will nanny every little sneeze - until this culture of blame and demand (just look at the wording of the ads these days: "Grab this" "Get yourself that") is reversed, doctors and nurses will never be able to do their jobs properly.
rwood
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44 posted 11-23-2008 10:26 AM       View Profile for rwood   Email rwood   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for rwood

not just health care either.

the pharmaceutical corps are a force of their own to contend with.

One of my loved ones must pay, out of pocket, $700 a month for 2 bottles of pills. There are no generics, yet, to choose from, and the pills are not an option. Insurance won't cover pre-existing cond. as we know, so he's stuck for the rest of his life with little to do but pay out.

seems such should be illegal, you know? to push a drug inherent to life for a person and he stands to lose everything trying to pay for it.

sighs.

Grinch
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45 posted 11-23-2008 11:20 AM       View Profile for Grinch   Email Grinch   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Grinch

Ouch!

In the UK the NHS caps prescription charges - you pay £7.50 for each item on a prescription or you can pay a one off pre-pay charge of £100 that covers you for unlimited prescriptions in a 12 month period.

serenity blaze
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46 posted 11-23-2008 12:25 PM       View Profile for serenity blaze   Email serenity blaze   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for serenity blaze

Nodding about the pharmaceuticals.

There is no standard price on meds either. A pharmacy can charge whatever they like. I've personally seen differences of up to fifty dollars on some meds.

For example, my beloved percocette (which I am grouchily mourning) once cost thirty (with insurance, mind you) at one pharmacy, and then I discovered I could get them filled for four bucks, right down the street.

It's infuriating, especially considering how many elderly are living on social security and their med costs cut into their grocery budgets and utilities.

There ought to be a law. (Unless one was passed while I was sleeping. )

I have a love/hate relationship with painpills now. I changed my mindset a bit when I started thinking of the big lobbying pharmaceutical companies as glorified crack dealers, but then? I drank my gallbladder to death.

A tip: Do not consume white russians, cheese, pepperoni, jujubeans and toasted pumpkin seed. *shuddering*

I've said it privately, and I'll say it publically:

It is like trying to pass a...pine cone.

 
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