Thursday, September 27, 2012

Soap Box Derby

Dear Obama Care..  I have a question.

Where can I get me some of that???

Five days a week, I catch three seconds of about ten different songs that sneak into my fabulous state of REM sleep, as the crushing blows become increasingly violent against the snooze button on my alarm clock. 
My alarm clock that is set 27 minutes fast in a hollow effort to trick my mind into thinking it is later than it is..

And even with my inept math skills, and my slumberous state, my mind is still able to calculate the 27 minute advance on the clock. Times or multiplied by the seven minute abyss between smacks of the devils button.

Until finally I surrender, and with my eyes still closed, head for the shower..  Wash, dry, make up, dress, brush teeth and pour coffee in a styrofoam cup.. Fighting road construction, school buses, train traffic and an endless stream of moony (not mooning) drivers, making that chronic trip what could easily be programmed into auto pilot.

And why do I put myself through so much abuse before 8:00am every day..

To go to the place where I WORK doing the JOB I was hired to do..  And when I’m finished WORKING at my JOB, I get PAID for the WORK that I DID.. And the WORK that I DO after hours as I am on call 24/7.

And on my 20 minute lunch break, at my JOB, I don’t eat lunch.. Instead I try to squeeze in errands to the places I need to go that are closed or that I am unable to go to, when I get off WORK at 5:30 or 6:00pm..  And at those places, I am generally elbowing my way through retirees and/or NON-workers.

When it’s all said and done, I get PAID for my WORK.. But BEFORE they hand me a pay check they take out taxes that I PAY for having an income.  Some of those tax dollars are used to pay for non-worker expenses. Medicaid, Financial aid, subsidized housing, Link cards.. 

They also take out a hunk of money for HEALTH INSURANCE for my family, that I BUY through the company that I WORK for.   HEALTH INSURANCE that if I decline to BUY, I am asked to sign a waiver and provide proof of alternative coverage because Obama Care says everyone has to have health coverage.

What do I get with the HEALTH INSURANCE that I PAY for?

1.       I get to pay a $500.00 out of pocket, up front deductible for each family member insured.
2.       I get to PAY a co-payment for all services rendered.
3.       I get to be told what doctors I am allowed to see based on which medical group is covered in my HEALTH INSURANCE plan.
4.       And if by chance I find, let’s say, a lump in my breast, I get to:
·         Call one of the doctors in my covered medical group to schedule an appointment for some time next week.
·         Go to the doctor’s appointment to discuss my concerns, and hopefully be examined.
·         Have the doctor refer me for a mammogram, sometime next week.
·         Go to the mammogram and then go home (or usually back to WORK).
·         Wait until my follow up appointment with my doctor, sometime next week.
·         Have the doctor refer me to an oncologist.
·         Schedule an appointment with the oncologist, sometime next week.
·         Go to the appointment with the oncologist and be told I need more extensive tests. Likely some blood work that with be sent to a lab in a different town with results available, sometime next week.
·         Go back to the oncologist to hear the results of the blood work and be told a breast biopsy is in order.
·         Schedule a breast biopsy, for some time next week.
·         Use a sick day or vacation time to have the procedure and wait for the results that will be ready sometime next week.
·         Go back to the doctor for the biopsy results and for the sake of tedium, we’ll just say it was nothing to worry about.

But you get the point..

Now let’s replay this game under the premise that when I got pregnant for Andrew at the age of 19, I decided it would be easier to just hang out at home instead of working a full time job and putting myself through nursing school with a toddler in tow.

In that interpretation if I had found a lump in my breast I could:

1.       Bee Bop my way into the emergency room which has now become nothing more than a doctor’s office.
2.       Tell them I was having pain in my chest/breast area.
3.       Have and x-ray and/or mammogram.
4.       Have blood drawn and sent to a lab on site.
5.       Wait awhile laying on a bed with a TV. remote in my hand and button attached to my bed. A button that if I push, I can have a nurse bring me a diet Pepsi or an extra blanket.
6.       Have a doctor come in and read me the results of all the test performed in the last couple of hours.
7.       Have said doctor either tells me I have the all clear or tell me that I need to see and oncologist.
8.       If the latter, the E.R. staff will call around to see what oncologists will see me with my medical card, and schedule me an appointment.

I will have spent only the afternoon lying around, and made no phone calls for myself to receive further treatment.  All at no cost to me..

Or..  As a hard WORKING employee PAYING for my own HEALTH INSURANCE, I can wait 7 weeks, deal with the ramifications of taking time off work, pay a $500.00 deductible and 20% of all fees, assuming every medical provider is in my covered medical group and stand in line at CVS behind the dude buying Twinkies and Mountain Dew with is link card, to get an ice pack for my sore mammogrammed breasts.

Now before I start getting a bunch of nasty grams, I have a disclaimer.

I am in no way opposed to Medicaid, Financial aid, WIC, or any other government assistance offered to deserving people.   Which in my mind would be a displaced employee, a person in school or any other program that could make them marketable in the work force and/or someone recovering from an injury or illness..

As a matter of fact, I applied for Financial Aid during my last semester of Nursing School.     I was awarded a medical card for my 4 year old son, and $32.00 A WEEK, that was taken from his father’s pay check as child support..  No WIC, no food stamps, no subsidized housing, no child care assistance.

Disclaimer over.

A couple of points.

1.       You can get an associates in 2 years..  6 months after completion of an associates, you should have a JOB and be PAYING for your own HEALTH INSURANCE.  If you flunk, cash flow stops.
2.       Look around.
·         The streets are full of litter.
·         There are elderly people sitting in filth because they cannot do for themselves and do not have family that can or will help them.
·         There are kids that are virtually raising themselves.  Parent’s work too many hours, strung out, disinterested in their children.  Become a mentor.. Big Brothers/Big Sisters is always looking for matches for kids that might not otherwise have an adult role model.
·         There are beautification programs throughout every town.. Go help plant some trees.
3.       There should be two separate Link cards.
·         The first one with 90% of the total gift.  This card would deny junk food.  Only accepted would be meat, milk, veggies, cereal even frozen pizza.
·         And because I don’t think anyone should go without a HoHo and a soda, the second card would have the remaining 10% for snack food.
·         Link card should be attached to your driver’s license or state ID. All merchants would be required to scan the Link card and the driver’s license to verify a match.
·         No more selling a $60.00 Link card for $30.00 because the Escalade is out of gas.
4.       Anyone receiving any kind of government assistance should be able to pass a drug screen at established intervals.
Would you not have more pride if you were actually earning that money?

Had it not been for supportive parents, I would be just another statistic.

In retrospect…   How do I get me some of that..  I’m tired of fighting with my snooze button.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Outstanding Kerri and well said. You will be happy to know once the Affordable Care Act / Obama Care is totally implemented coming this January you will not only be paying for your insurance but that of the dead beats you speak. Legal and/or shall we say not legal will still get all the advantages at a higher premium rate for you . Great system and am waiting with bated breath. Right gag me with a spoon!!!!