Last night I mentioned there would be some new videos coming out. Sanders Campaign announced there would be some new ad buys too.
Here’s the newest one, released a couple of hours ago:
When I see the surprise health care bills, I remember e-mailing the scheduling coordinator to put me in touch with someone to give me financial figures for what my insurance covered vs what I had to pay out of pocket for my total knee joint replacement. No one could give me a straight answer. Finally, I figured out on my own what extra co-pays were, and all of the incidentals, such as:
- a better water therapy system to ice my leg ($200)
- cleansing sheets to prep for surgery
- a cane ($12)
- co-pays for allergy tests to ensure I wouldn’t have any issues with the implants $120.00)
- co-pays for home health care by a nurse and physical therapy (PT), both at home and 2x weekly outpatient PT ($320)
- a walker ($10, but the hospital billed the insurance company $195 for a $10 item)/li>
- a plastic leg sleeve to wear over my knee wound while showering
- prescriptions ($90)
Other incidentals not paid by insurance include my med CBD card (and caregiver’s card), CBD related medications, doctor’s visit to qualify for medical CBD, and other supplements.
The bill was $83,000, and it looks to be aligned with what Medicare pays for reimbursement to most hospitals. I paid $350 for my hospital stay that took care of most of that. So except for more PT, my insurance isn’t much better than Medicare, and we still have to go through so many hoops to get approval for the number of sessions, etc. I just get bumped in the line a little sooner.
First hand, I saw what happened to a 93-year-old woman who broke her leg. Other than giving her low dose meds, there was not a surgeon available until midday the next day. When Sanders says he wants to see improvements as well as an expansion of Medicare, I see the two must go hand in hand. She was in pain all night, but didn’t complain very much. Someone had given me a rose while in the hospital, and I left it for that older woman to foster her continued courage.
Exercise and nutrition are a big part of the process. I dropped 38 lbs before surgery and lost another 16 since then. It costs more to eat less because healthy food and supplements are more expensive than processed food. I also joined Weight Watchers for Free, but pay for digital membership for keeping track of my food. In addition, the Bennys have a couples’ membership to a community recreational center, and I tried Curves for a while (which is very good for those of us who wear Silver Sneakers; I just wished my organization offered wellness plans such as Silver Sneakers). I was able to plan ahead 3 months.
I banked up nearly 3 months of sick leave and used about 2 months of it. Could I’ve returned to work after a month? Yes, if I had to. Would I have been sufficiently ready for all-day pain still at 5 weeks PO? For me, absolutely not.
When Bernie had his heart attack, he was fighting for us. And I have verbalized more than once to my primary care physician that some of the rules for the healthcare system seemed laborious for both doctors and patients.
That’s part of my Bernie story.
What other news or thoughts for today? Consider this an open thread.
— Brent Welder (@BrentWelder) January 28, 2020