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machine gun kitty

health insurance rant

I learn something new about my health insurance all the time. So today I found out that even though I pay the big bucks for a "no deductible" plan, I still have to pay 30% of all surgeries that I get. I had a biopsy in December (nothing major or life threatening and everything was fine) and apparently the insurance company considers a biopsy to be the same as surgery. Said biopsy took 5 minutes, including a brief numbing shot so I wouldn't feel it. I hardly consider that surgery. So the 30% of the doctor bill and 30% of the lab bill came to almost $100. Not a big deal unless you consider I pay $388 a month for my health insurance.

Why am I paying nearly $400 a month for health insurance if I have to pay $100 for a doctor visit?

Lately I've been very tempted to take a big risk and drop my health insurance for 3 months just to save an extra $1,100 - just because I think it's highway robbery to have to pay $388 a month for it. But they smacked down that little plan by announcing that they would no longer offer my "no deductible" plan. Those of us on the plan now can keep it as long as we stay on it. But if we drop it, even for a day, we can't get back onto it.

I think health insurance is like gambling away $388 a month at the casinos. You only win if you have a major illness or accident. Only that isn't really winning when you consider the larger picture. So health insurance is just a no-win situation all the way around.

Comments

You wouldn't like it here because in MA it is mandatory to have health insurance unless you are dirt poor. Yes you read that right... if you own your own business you have to pay health insurance or be fined nearly $2,000 a year. It's unreal. Our health system is such a scam. If I go to hell I won't see the devil I will see a President of the HMO's!

Actually, I like the system you have there. It drives the cost of monthly premiums down when everyone is required to have health insurance. In your state, my $388 per month might only be about $200 per month.
I still have trouble comprehending the healthcare system down here.. I'm thankful I have great coverage through my husband's work (for the record he is dual citizen living half his life in both countries) but know I've been very lucky to have grown up in a country with universal healthcare and have continued recieving great care here as a privilege.. and that is where I have issue. Health care coverage shouldn't be a privilege but a right. But know that everyone in Canada pays for the universal coverage in higher taxes. We didn't mind and most Canadian's don't mind, either, for the health of all.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Canadian_and_American_health_care_systems_compared

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=npnfbF_PEVc
This is why a national insurance that's under government oversight is so damned necessary. We're getting gouged because these companies CAN. It's also why the government needs to put a cap on the medical expenditures the hospitals/doctors are throwing out there these days. Just because we need morphine before they can cut us open should not be an additional charge.
That's much like every other insurance out there. It's always a gamble. You have auto insurance (and generally pay through the nose with it) HOPING that every time you get in your car, or heck...you don't even have to be in the car or moving it) that someone doesn't hit it (and that if they do, THEY have insurance). We pay house insurance hoping that nothing ever happens to our house. You pay life insurance, hoping that when/if you die, it's enough to help the people you leave behind...

Insurance is one of the biggest gambles/scams we've got going, and now for the most part, almost every single sort is legally required!

And trying to get money OUT of the insurance people if your number comes up and something DOES happen? That's nearly impossible.
In year between my mother retiring and becoming eligible for SSI, she payed $1200 a month to continue her health insurance.

If you are able to insure yourself, do it. I've not had health insurance in 6 years, and thus haven't been to a doctor in that amount of time, because I can't afford the office visit.
Sometimes it helps to find a doctor who is willing to work with you. I haven't had health insurance in seven years, but my doc lets me pay for visits in installments, and gives me sample packets of more expensive meds when he has 'em. So far I haven't had a coronary or anything, and it's been WAY cheaper to pay-as-I-go than to try and afford monthly insurance premiums, even figuring in my regular medication bills.
I know too many people who either ended up in the ER or needed surgery...and had no insurance. You could be in debt $5,000 to $10,000 overnight if you don't have health insurance. I'm just not willing to take that risk.