Friday, March 19, 2010

Stupid Stupid Arm 2

I have a radial head fracture which sounds like the name of an Indie band.

Yesterday, I had a consultation with an orthopedic surgeon who suggested I try to avoid surgery. That's kind of like having a vegetarian say, "Try the veal."

Apparently, they would have to re-break and do a bunch of other nasty things that I'd rather not think about. Instead, we're going to try physical therapy. I have my first session on Wednesday.

I am uninsured which, I have found, makes medical people nervous even when you wave around a check book and a credit card. Through each step of the process, various folks have said to me, "Would you like to apply for charity?" They've done this without even asking about my financial situation. I began to think, "How bad off do I look?"

So far, this whole ordeal has cost me about $700. That includes the X-rays at the urgent care center, a visit to my GP, another round of X-rays and a visit with an orthopedic surgeon which includes a follow-up visit. With physical therapy and another round of X-rays, I'm probably looking at another $400-500 before this is over. Assuming of course, I won't eventually need surgery.

Now, I don't exactly have $1200 to burn (and this probably means we won't be going on vacation this year) but it's really not much money considering I may regain use of my arm. Most people spend that much on cable in a year.

When the doctor tried to bust my chops about not having health insurance I said, "This is going to cost me far less than insurance premiums." He said, "I guess you're right." You're damn right I'm right.

In fact, $1200 is only two months of premiums here in Jersey.

If Congress passes Obamacare this week it'll be a crime against our country. Allowing me to buy catastrophic insurance across state lines is all the help I want.

If Obama really wants to help this nation, he'll sink research money into why the medical community is allergic to cash.


Peter said...

FYI: My monthly premiums are over $1200.00 for a bare-bones plan that with five of us in our family rarely gets used (as in, the last time we went to a doctor for any reason was months ago and that only for one of the kids having a routine checkup) and it doesn't cover vision or dental.

Last year we lived in MA with it's 'free' health care...cost us $36 a month...2 of us were put on 'waiting lists' to see a doctor and never had our number come up before we moved out of state. So I called around to every doctor within 30 miles to find one that would take cash...not a single doctor was taking new patients...none were 'set up to accept cash'

good luck with your arm!!!

DamnCat said...

I had terrible back pain a few years ago. The physical therapists did me a lot more good than anything the doctors did.

Good luck!