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Forgive the writing but frankly im not scared of much. And im scared right now.

Every doctor i have ever talked to in any capacity has been an exceptionally compassionate person. Whether right wing (which the ones i tend to meet are) or left on a personal level they are concerned and compassionate.

But that doesnt solve our problems.. doctors cant pay our bills or work for free. And HIR doesnt solve it either.

Ive warned against the HIR mania herefor a while... people are playing team sports and simply never read or understood the law. But honestly it didnt directly affect me except for the upcoming required deduction from my paycheck.

Now it does.

You see in order to get out of OTR trucking i  eventually took a job as a driver at a moving company. That requires.. lots of heavy lifting (we dont just drive). That involves, as you may have guessed, lots of injuries. Injuries are so commonplace in my job that we regularly just cover for each other. We dont even bother mentioning pulled muscles or chronic injuries.

But i never worried about it til.. today.

The problem is I think ive seriously injured my wrist. Not through some catastrophic accident. Not through some employer irresponsibility. But simply through the day to day process of lifting extremely heavy objects in extremely odd positions.

Right now there is no solution. I can , and will, report it to my employer. But i cannot state to my employer that X happened causing the injury. So i can hope my employer sends me  to get it checked out, which im pretty sure they will. After a drug test (SOP in corporate america) which i'll pass. And then the doctor will , from what ive ascertained on the internet send me for an MRI if the employer is paying. If not the more likely (in my mind) prescription is a wrist brace and "dont use your wrist". As you can imagine.. that is a problem in my job. And if i cannot do my job the employer is required to hold my job.. for 12 weeks...

But the Presidents' HIR would have solved all that right? No prex! I'm required to take coverage.

Well, no.

You see my employer has what most employers across america have. Catastrophic coverate. Extremely high deductables. Etc etc. So i will pay 150 a month at this particular employer.. for insurance i cannot ever use. As of now i will likely go without treatment except that provided by an emergency room. That wouldnt change in 2014 under hir. I still couldnt afford the $400-$3500 mri this injury actually requires. Though, after i paid out the $5000 or so im responsible for the insurance company would begin to chip in (assuming they couldnt find a loophole). And the kicker? Because i may not be able to perform my job after 12 weeks i will likely be replaced (as someone in the cartage/trucking/moving industry i am not actually covered by most labor laws anyway).  With or without HIR the only certain method of treatment i have is an overworked ER doctor with no referrals, followups or other treatment. I'm likely to eventually face paying that bill regardless.

This is why some of us are so vehemently against "HIR". You see... those of us without healthcare will still be without healthcare. But a few politicians and political junkies can pat themselves on the back. And go on pretending we dont exist. Think about this the next time a politician of any party tries to convince you that you really wanted something else when you were clear on what you wanted.

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Comment Preferences

  •  Tip Jar (13+ / 0-)

    A man is born as many men but dies as a single one.--Martin Heidegger

    by cdreid on Tue Aug 16, 2011 at 04:03:30 PM PDT

  •  you should still be for it (0+ / 0-)

    while what you say is true, the health bill does establish the right to medical coverage, and it's a beginning, and there are many it would help, and you also care about them. For example anyone with a pre-existing condition who can't get any coverage at all will be immediately helped, and there are the children in for example Texas, where one third I think have no health coverage.

    So the question for you is are you willing to help someone else first with the hope and expectation that in time you'll be allowed to purchase medicare or a government non-profit health care plan?  Or do you only want yours?  

    Just say it: Medicare for All

    by anna shane on Tue Aug 16, 2011 at 04:16:40 PM PDT

    •  Ive helped others all my life (7+ / 0-)

      i dont see how requiring the poor and working class to tithe to the healthcare industry without the right to treatment helps.

      Here is the telling sentence in your comment:

      does establish the right to medical coverage

      Note .. right to "medical coverage"... not a right to medical Care..

      A man is born as many men but dies as a single one.--Martin Heidegger

      by cdreid on Tue Aug 16, 2011 at 04:29:49 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  hey, it's not enough for me either (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        cdreid

        but since it's the best they could do this time, I'm for it, for sure.  No one person can help so many others that it could make up kids going without medical care.  

        Just say it: Medicare for All

        by anna shane on Tue Aug 16, 2011 at 04:33:19 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  The problem (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          blueoasis

          the main problem is the mandate. You are literally required to carry coverage you will not ever be able to use.

          Imagine a family of 4 making just enough to pay the bills.. now they have to pay $x a month to a megacorporation causing the problems in the first place.. for something they cannot use. It is a direct tax by corporations on the working class backed up by federal guns. With few or no services provided in return. All while we have a phenomenally system running alongside it which would provide coverage and cost less at the same time...

          A man is born as many men but dies as a single one.--Martin Heidegger

          by cdreid on Tue Aug 16, 2011 at 04:54:48 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  yeah (0+ / 0-)

            i wanted medicare open to all, with the price set on ability to pay, but that's not what we have.  But I have to think it's a start and a mistake to kill is because it isn't there.  Surely this is the part I also dislike, I would not mind paying more than I use to my government, but I don't like having to pay to some heartless corporation.

            Just say it: Medicare for All

            by anna shane on Wed Aug 17, 2011 at 07:31:42 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  I agree (0+ / 0-)

              with you entirely. If the "apologists" would stop their spam and speak honestly about Obamas HIR we could start figuring out how to work together to make it actually workable and useable and move a s tep further towards UHC.

              A man is born as many men but dies as a single one.--Martin Heidegger

              by cdreid on Fri Aug 19, 2011 at 06:09:39 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

    •  Soory, but I think this is a callous comment (4+ / 0-)

      You don't offer a word of empathy to the diarist that he is going without healthcare, but you think it's okay to accuse him, essentially, of selfishness for not supporting the program.

      Many Americans are still going without healthcare, and will continue to go without healthcare after 2014.

      And being without healthcare is a very serious financial vulnerability, as well as a very serious health vulnerability, akin to what happens to people in third world countries.

      What's your health care status? Insured?

  •  If this is just a "catastrophic" policy, can you (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    ladybug53

    opt out?  There should be an open enrollment period with which you can choose to end your coverage.

    Plus, if you opt out, private policies will be subsidized. You can even find out what your subsidy is.

    Of course, that's in 2014.  That doesn't help for now.

    "Nothing in all the world is more dangerous than sincere ignorance and conscientious stupidity." --M. L. King "You can't fix stupid" --Ron White

    by zenbassoon on Tue Aug 16, 2011 at 04:20:26 PM PDT

    •  How does that help anything? (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Susan from 29, WisePiper, blueoasis

      So the only offered coverage is a catastrophic, unuseable policy. For which i am required to pay a corporation.. at the barrel of a gun.

      But i have the option of .. trying to buy an even more expensive policy (Hint individual policies are Extraordinarily expensive.. shockingly so as i found out handling peoples bills for BCBS) a pittance of which the .gov will reimburse me for .. out of the taxes i pay them. How is this strategy a good one exactly?

      A man is born as many men but dies as a single one.--Martin Heidegger

      by cdreid on Tue Aug 16, 2011 at 04:32:25 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  I don't know. I'm uninsured and uninsurable. (4+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        cdreid, jnhobbs, Wee Mama, cheerio2

        I'm waiting for the exchanges so I can actually BE insured.

        "Nothing in all the world is more dangerous than sincere ignorance and conscientious stupidity." --M. L. King "You can't fix stupid" --Ron White

        by zenbassoon on Tue Aug 16, 2011 at 04:40:54 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  I hope it helps you (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          blueoasis

          I hope they actuall yset up the exchanges (im pretty sure they wont). I hope you benefit from the Good parts of the law because the bad parts are horrific.

          A man is born as many men but dies as a single one.--Martin Heidegger

          by cdreid on Tue Aug 16, 2011 at 04:46:51 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

        •  I was uninsurable for 17 years. (3+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Land of Enchantment, Pluto, ladybug53

          I lost my union group plan when I moved to TN in 1994. Three months ago, I enrolled in the Pre-Existing Condition Insurance Program, part of the new healthcare law.

            My premium is $571.00 a month, which I am fortunate enough to be able to afford. The network providers are the very best surgeons and hospitals in this region.

            There is no deductible on preventative care, and a in-network deductible of 20%, which cannot exceed 5,700.00 in a year. There is no cap on coverage.

            I've paid three premiums, and in 48 hours, I'm having a right-hip replacement, followed by the left, six weeks after that. I've needed this for ten years and it's been a painful decade for me.

            I know the law is far from perfect, and hopefully, only a start, but in my case it is a miracle.

            All you need to apply is a letter of declination from an insurance company, a lack of coverage for at least six months, and the scratch to pay the premiums. My rate is the highest because I'm 61, but they're lower for younger folk.

           

          Don't tell me what you believe. Tell me what you do and I'll tell you what you believe.

          by jnhobbs on Tue Aug 16, 2011 at 05:09:03 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

  •  Yours is a workers comp injury (10+ / 0-)

    Repetitive stress injuries, such as what's wrong with your wrist, fall under WC. Good luck.

    •  I was just wondering what state the diarist is in. (6+ / 0-)

      I used to underwrite workers' comp and this seems clearly to be a work related injury that should be covered, both for medical costs and income for recovery time.

      It is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle, than for a rich man to enter into the kingdom of God. - Mark 10:25

      by Susan Grigsby on Tue Aug 16, 2011 at 04:44:11 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  The problem is (4+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      ladybug53, blueoasis, KelleyRN2, cheerio2

      there is literally no way to prove this is a work related injury. Im fairly sure it is a tendon injury from what ive read and a serious one that probably involves bone chipping. But they are usually caused by things like people falling on their hands etc.. ie an acute violent incident. My job simply involves driving and a lot of extremely heavy lifting. I may be covered. I may not. Either way i or my employer are screwed and im afraid i will in time pay the price.

      A man is born as many men but dies as a single one.--Martin Heidegger

      by cdreid on Tue Aug 16, 2011 at 04:48:55 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Nurse Kelley Sez don't diagnose yourself :) (4+ / 0-)

        Repetitive stress injuries must be evaluated by an orthopedic surgeon for proper diagnosis.

        There are several grocery checkers and Walmart stockers in my tiny community whose repetitive stress injuries are being covered by WC as I type this. The thing is, you may have an injury that needs simple treatment ... or it could be something that requires surgery before you can work again.  You owe it to yourself to follow through and at least get an answer.

        •  The problem as you well know Nurse Kelly (0+ / 0-)

          is that we diagnose ourselves because we cannot afford healthcare.

          If i go to the doctor his first move is to order a  $500-$2500 mri.. which i cannot afford... that is the only way to tell if it is a simple injury other than what i'm doing... wearing a brace and hoping it gets better.. as people in my business.. and across america.. do every day.

          A man is born as many men but dies as a single one.--Martin Heidegger

          by cdreid on Fri Aug 19, 2011 at 06:11:55 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  Why are you mad at me? (0+ / 0-)

            First you file a claim against your employer's WC carrier, THEN you see a doctor. If necessary, you talk to a reputable WC attorney. It's all well and good to tell me what a great guy your employer is, but how does that help you if it turns out you're permanently disabled? Huh? WC insurance pays your medical bills AND a portion of your salary while you're off work.

            I probably know a hell of a lot more about poverty than you do, so don't get snarky with me. I've also been disabled for TEN YEARS. I know exactly what life looks like when your career comes to a screeching halt, and I'm giving you good advice.

            •  Wel lfirst (0+ / 0-)

              i wasnt being snarky.. i dont know where you got that from.

              A: i dont want to file a claim "against" my employer. I sure as hell dont want to go talk to a lawyer.

              And as far as poverty.. im doubting you lived on school lunch and beans, carried water from a well and used an outhouse..

              But honestly i dont know where you get i was mad at you especially considering i regularly rec your diaries.

              A man is born as many men but dies as a single one.--Martin Heidegger

              by cdreid on Mon Aug 22, 2011 at 02:37:18 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

      •  Might want to see a workers comp attorney (0+ / 0-)

        ...before you report anything.

        •  My boss is a good guy (0+ / 0-)

          im not sure about the company. And theyve treated me fairly the last thing i want to do is sick a blo... er attorney on them.

          A man is born as many men but dies as a single one.--Martin Heidegger

          by cdreid on Fri Aug 19, 2011 at 06:12:33 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

  •  I suggest you delete this diary (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    cdreid, Wee Mama

    immediately, file a report with your employer, and when they (probably) don't accept your claim, use the next week or two to find a great Workers' Comp lawyer in your area.

    I'm not a lawyer, so I'm not dispensing legal advice -- I just know enough people who have been injured while on the job, whether it's an immediate trauma or a long-term injury.

    Don't tell me what you believe. Tell me what you do and I'll tell you what you believe. Meteor Blades

    by gooderservice on Tue Aug 16, 2011 at 04:46:32 PM PDT

  •  I agree with KelleyRN2. Worker's comp & you (5+ / 0-)

    will not have to pay for any of the treatment for this injury.
    I know it is scary when getting injured affects your job performance.  I hope you take gentle care & heal uneventfully.

  •  Google HRSA Federal Health Care Centers (5+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Wee Mama, tobendaro, jnhobbs, fly, blueoasis

    There are a bunch in your state -- find the one nearest you and start going there for your regular health care needs.  That is, once you explore the Worker's Comp ideas above. The one near me is a primary care center, working with uninsured and underinsured (as well as insured!) people with small to no copay depending on need, and has put together a network of specialists who will treat those with no insurance and no money.
    The HIR bill you spoke of is right now adding new centers and improving those already in the system.

  •  I had an issue this week (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Susan from 29, blueoasis

    where current health care situation is causing us to purchase a useless medication which will result in many hundreds of thousands of dollars worth of surgery.  I called and wrote my reps to complain and place the blame squarely on them and the wealthy for using our labor for their gain and we get nada.  If you work, you deserve health care and we aren't getting adequate coverage.  I am going to be doing this weekly because it is unfair and they are not getting it.  Please consider adding your voice.

    And she's good at appearing sane, I just want you to know. Winwood/Capaldi

    by tobendaro on Tue Aug 16, 2011 at 05:09:15 PM PDT

  •  Catastrophic coverage is NOT a bad thing (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Pluto, erush1345

    Of course full coverage would be better, but I am confused about why people seem so down on catastrophic policies.  The OP is paying $1,800 per year to protect himself from serious medical costs.

    Example: My healthy, skinny, exercise-nut husband had a very serious heart attack 2 years ago. We have a policy that has a $4,500 deducticble before we see a dime's worth of coverage.  Most years we hardly ever approach the deductible.  But that day (and the ensuing two weeks in the CICU) cost the insurance company nearly $200,000.  Which they paid up (after haggling a little with the hospital to reduce it somewhat).  We paid $4k, they paid $190K. Then they continued to pay even more throughout the year for pricey meds; countless tests and multiple doctor visits some weeks.

    Last Spring they paid another $125K, and my husband is coming home from the Mayo Clinic tomorrow after even more tests. Each year we pay 100% up to the deductible and they pick up 100% of the rest.

    This is what catastrophic coverage is all about: protection from really, really expensive things, not the first dollar, or even first four and a half thousand dollars.

    Of course, we also pay the premiums on this single household policy (2 adults) of about $13,000 per year and that totally sucks, but it's the best we can get in our state without group coverage as we are self-employed.  (This doesn't reflect the cost of having had the heart attack: this is just what it costs anybody, no matter what health status, who are not covered by a group policy .)

    Keep in mind that its likely the OP's employer is carrying some of the cost on the catastrophic policy, so that's why $1,800/year even plus the deductible (5K?, I couldn't figure out from the diary) seems like a terrific bargain to me. Sure, it works out to about $18 bucks per day, but only in the years that he is unlucky enough to need care.  The policy, without deductible is less than $5/day.  And in return for the $5 bucks he gets 24/7 protection from the cost of really big bills.  (I am assuming here that he doesn't have fake or crappy insurance that's just there to weasel out when actually needed.)

    It's important not to confuse the issue of the high cost of medical treatment (and it is extremely expensive) with the cost of medical insurance (also expensive, and of variable utility depending on a person's circumstances).

    I do hope the OP's wrist improves. He may not need an MRI. Physical therapy, some ice and rest may help.  And if he does need one, I strongly suggest he call around and ask about the cost of MRIs; they can vary widely for the same procedure I've found.  Also his policy may make the cost still cheaper, even if they are not yet paying for it, because the provider may be contractually committed to a much lower cost than the "walk in off the street" rate. In our policy, for instance, we pay (during the deductible period) the usual and customary fee which is often only a fraction of the original billed amount.

    Before all this, I often thought we're paying so much and what do we get? But once I was actually faced with what a serious illness costs, I realized how lucky we were that we had opted for a high deductible, catatrophic policy rather than one which started paying early on but was capped at the other end.  You can do things to lower your costs of routine care, but you have no chance to "shop around" when you're in the ER with a heart attack.  That's when you really, really need good catastrophic coverage.

    Araguato

    •  Because (0+ / 0-)

      catastrophic coverage is almost useless and designed to be that way. High deductible. High copay. And routine rejection of claims.

      Most people who purchase that kind of coverage never go to the doctor. The policies are designed so that you do not. So we're forcing these very people to pay the very parasites who made the system unworkable...

      A man is born as many men but dies as a single one.--Martin Heidegger

      by cdreid on Mon Aug 22, 2011 at 02:53:33 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  See A Good W.C. Lawyer, No Cost To You. (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Pluto, ladybug53

    Do not hesitate to make an appointment with a lawyer who specializes in workers compensation law.  As Nurse Kelley says, this is likely a repetitive stress injury common to your type of job.  You do not have to "prove" you had a sudden accident.  These type of injuries develop over time from repeatedly doing the same type of motions, such as lifting heavy items.

    The company may immediately recognize your claim and begin paying for your medical treatment and time off from work.  They may try to get you to agree to a settlement of your injury claim.  

    Do not sign anything or agree to anything before talking to a good workers comp lawyer, it may mean thousands of dollars in additional payment from the company. The cost for the lawyer does not come out of your pocket, it is paid by the workers comp insurance company at a specified rate.  If the company doesn't immediately provide medical and wage loss, you will likely need a lawyer to make the company follow the law.

    You have nothing to lose -- except if you do nothing and forego the care and compensation to which, under the law, you are entitled.

    Convict Bush, Cheney and their torture cabal. Support single-payer health care,unions, and WikiLeaks.

    by Justina on Tue Aug 16, 2011 at 06:37:00 PM PDT

    •  I have no desire (0+ / 0-)

      to sick a lawyer on a company that treats me pretty well. The company isnt the problem. The medical system in the US is.

      A man is born as many men but dies as a single one.--Martin Heidegger

      by cdreid on Mon Aug 22, 2011 at 02:54:36 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

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