Health Care System Needs To Be Torn Down And Rebuilt

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Editor:

This is a reply to Terry L. Putnam from an “incompetent.” My wife and I are healthy people who are being held hostage by insurance companies. To establish insurance after retirement, I went to AARP and my wife stayed with the coverage offered by her employer. Premiums continue to go up in multiples (not percentages). We are now paying 21 percent of our gross annual income to insurance premiums. My insurance has quit paying anything to the doctor or lab work until my deductible is paid. These blood tests are only needed every six months. This deductible is so high that I will not have it paid during the remainder of the calendar year at which time we start over with a new deductible.

When my wife’s premium tripled, she went looking for a new carrier.

Because of her bout with cancer 10 years ago, they all denied coverage.

She has been cancer free for that period and has regular screening to be sure. This screening is preventive care and costs insurance much less than waiting for symptoms to develop. We are both out of the parameters for BMI, an unattainable arbitrary number established by the insurance companies to get higher premiums from people that are not skinny. We both have slightly higher blood pressure compared to standards recently reduced by the pharmaceutical companies to sell more pills.

It seems that we are being kept financially strapped by insurance (without benefit) rather than having more money to afford a more healthy lifestyle. For those who have to choose between insurance and food, they will probably opt for county coverage and food.

The cost of medical insurance for the uninsured is another expense I can’t afford, but am forced to pay because I am stupid enough to own a home.

Costs for service are another part of the insanity. Before my insurance coverage started, I had a minor accident requiring five stitches in my hand. The bill for that simple emergency room visit was just under $1,800.

Part of the bill included an injection administered by the nurse, the shot was $158 and the 30 seconds to inject it was $160. If I had coverage at the time, the insurance company would have paid less automatically which sounds like a kick back to me.

Now can you honestly say this health care system doesn’t need to be torn down and completely rebuilt?

Chuck Burns

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