Yesterday, I got a letter in the mail. Apparently, my evil medical insurance company raised my insurance rate by $240/month back in July. It’s news to me. I just got a bill for $480 because they “forgot” to bill me the increase for two months. This raises my monthly insurance bill to just under $1,000/month.
Two things that ain’t going to happen. I’m not going to send them the $480 dollars, even though they provided an envelope “for my convenience.” The second thing is no way I am going to send them $1000/month.
I know what you are thinking: what if I have a major illness. Well, then I go bankrupt. However, even with insurance, medical bankruptcy is common. My dad had the same insurance I have, but when my mom suffered from medical issues, it bankrupted them anyway. Too many co-pays, travel expenses and uncovered medications did them in. I’m going to be one of those freeloaders who gets his medical attention at the ER.
The main reason I kept medical insurance is for my wife. However, just this month another insurance option became open to her. She’s covered.
What am I going to do? Get serious about taking better care of my own health. Sure, I’m a big fat guy in 50s, so on paper I’m not a great risk. However, my blood pressure is pretty normal. I’m not on any medications. Currently, I do use a CPAP on a low setting. Occasionally, I have to get new supplies for that. My usual order costs the insurance company about $460. A quick search on-line found the same gear for $59. Maybe when I take off a few pounds I won’t need the machine at all.
Looks like diet and exercise for me. I can take some of that $1000/month and buy new hiking boots, some cross country skies, a bit of exercise equipment and a bigger medical kit. Just to be on the safe side, I’d better start drinking a glass of red wine every night.
This is the line in the sand for me. If you aren’t rich, we have the worse of all medical systems. If we had universal health care, no one would have to suffer the fear of not being able to afford insurance. In a truly open market, medical costs would be reasonable.
By 2014 insurance is supposed to be mandatory. I’ll burn that bridge when I get to it.
In the mean time, I’m just angry.
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