2/10/09

When your insides are coming out

FIRST OFF-I am a big believer in universal health care. I think it's a big part of life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. I know that I certainly couldn't begin to pursue happiness if I was ill- and well, life is self explanatory.

Why am I on this little tangent? Last week I was in the ER to check out some heart pains. I am lucky enough that we have excellent health care. It's not all that cheap, but it's not that expensive either. I couldn't have imagined NOT going to the ER last week- yet, I know that many people don't- or can't- because they simply cannot afford what I am sure was a 900 dollar (or more) 7 hour stay before insurance(cat scan, chest film, blood work x2 and 7 hours).

This weekend we all got the stomach flu. The boy first on Saturday night, then I got sick Sunday afternoon, and the Mr. got ill Sunday night. I know that my husband and I were the sickest we have EVER been as adults. Topping this all off, my boy also has a wicked head cold with a pretty high fever.

I didn't need to go to the Dr. and neither did my husband. I am feeling good enough to thoroughly disinfect the house today, and my husband went back to work. But the boy was still feeling poorly. He was burning up last night and was rather lethargic ( for him) . Today I took the kid to his Dr. just to make sure he just has a cold. I can't imagine NOT feeling able to call his Dr. and just schedule an appointment to have the little kid checked out. Yet, if I didn't have insurance, it would have been 92.00 for a 20 minute visit. (I paid 10 bucks. The lady in line after me paid 40.00. Same Dr. Different insurance) 92 bucks is a lot of money, money that a lot of people in my neck of the woods just don't have.

That's why I think that we all need at least basic insurance. The ability to go to the Dr. and catch things before they become life threatening and expensive. The ability to actually have a "family doctor"that knows you and your families history- and not have to use the ER as a form of primary care. Preventative care. Because what if it wasn't just a cold?

4 comments:

scb said...

I agree wholeheartedly. I shudder when I imagine what the care for Mum & Dad would have been in the last few months if we had been elsewhere than in Canada, with our universal health care system, flawed though it is.

Glad you and husband are feeling better, hope little guy is soon on the mend.

lorijo said...

thanks.
I actually keep thinking of my car accident, cancer surgery and c section when Max was born. I totalled the bills and it was over 200,000 for a 7 month period. I didn't even pay enough out of pocket to claim it on my taxes, so I paid less than 3000 bucks. Without insurance I don't even know what we would have done- bankruptcy for sure, but what else? I don't know anyone who could afford that kind of medical bill....

Mella DP said...

I had the same sorts of thoughts a few years back when I was first dealing with chronic illness issues - considering I was never all *that* sick (even thought the condition is potentially serious, I've never been out of work or anything), I received a *lot* of care, even just in the diagnosis stage. And this for symptoms that I know an uninsured person wouldn't have persisted in following up on - they were vague, transient, not debilitating, though ultimately indicators of something being quite wrong, with the potential of becoming far more serious.

Sorry you've all been so miserable! Hope things are better now.

lorijo said...

thanks- we are. I think the boy will even go to school tomorrow. He is DRIVING ME CRAZY now- so I know that he feels better!