Author Topic: Please call your congressmen  (Read 5381 times)

irish

  • Global Moderator
  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 13559
Please call your congressmen
« on: July 08, 2009, 08:32:07 PM »
I just wanted to let you know that when driving home from my infusion today I heard an orthopedic surgeon talk on the radio about the cost of health care, doing free or "pro bono" care for those who can't afford it. cost of upgrading to electronic records and socialized medicine coming down the pike in our country.

It was very interesting and he was very well spoken and easy to listen to. He was in a 4 doc practice out east some place. Said that it cost them $250,000 to get up and running on their electronic filing system. He said that it was much more cost effective to do it the old way plus it is much easier for people and organizations to access yours and my medical records. He also said that it made it much easier for people to access the medical records just to try and find some little thing they could sue the docs for. He said suing is fair when gross negligence is done but so many people are doing this as a money making scheme. He said that it cost each of the 4 partners in his practice $200,000 EACH for malpractice insurance and that is why a lot of the medical expenses are so high.

He said that many doctors do the free care for people that can't afford it because of the Hippocratic Oath they took when entering practice. Also said that if you don't have insurance you could talk with your docs and work out arrangements to pay bill off monthly at a reduced rate. This is better than having no medical care and better than making clinics have so many uncollectible billings. Obviously, not all docs will do this but I bet many of the older more established practices would be more likely to work with their patients.

He also said that with all the talk of changing the medical system in our country many of the doctors will give up practicing medicine because they want to be their own boss and provide timely and efficient care. Also, the wages will be so much less that they might as well give up medicine and work at some other job. There is also the chance that they will move out of the country and practice elsewhere, ie islands, cruise ships,etc.

He said that in some countries with socialized medicine the wait is extrememly long. In most places in USA we can go to the doc and if doc feels we need a cat scan ASAP we can have it done that day or the next. Many have to wait up to 4-5 months in the other countires. He made reference to colon cancer patients having to wait for up to 6-8 months before they are able to see oncologists. By the time they can see the oncologist the death rate becomes forty to 60 % for them which is well above the national average in our country. Our preventive health care is also very good in the USA.

I hope that I got the stats right on this. Also, please call your congressman and let them know how you feel about this. Our care can be crazy and unorganized that is for sure, but we have the freedom of choice and access to one of the best health care system in the world. Thanks Irish ;D

Patze

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 6705
Re: Please call your congressmen
« Reply #1 on: July 09, 2009, 04:35:28 AM »
Hi Irish,

Now ain't that somethin'?  Just when you think that something good could be coming down the pipe for the medical community.  I guess it's the usual, sue anything that moves to become instantly rich. 

Patze

Our home page  http://www.sjogrensworld.org/index.html
Live chats  http://sjogrensworld.org/chats.htm

Everything has beauty, but not everyone sees it - Confucius

The important thing is not to stop questioning ~ Albert Einstein ~

Sero Negative Queen

irish

  • Global Moderator
  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 13559
Re: Please call your congressmen
« Reply #2 on: July 09, 2009, 08:50:15 PM »
I'm sorry if I made it sound like the doctor (and me) were against any change in our medical system. I would welcome change in our medical system, but I do believe it needs to be researched extremely well because they need to get it right the first time around. As complicated as our health care system is the politicians of all parties need to really work hard and long to get it right the first time when they make the big change cause the cost is so astronomical. My humble opinion.

I talked to a gal at my infusion who is having trouble with her regular BCBS health insurance. She has an immune deficiency that is very dangerous and needs IVIG every 3 weeks to maintain her and keep her healthy. She said that BCBS was paying and all of a sudden they decided they were not going to cover her IVIG treatments. She had to get a lawyer and it took 650 pages of medical documentation, $32,000 out of her own pocket and many months to get her medication to be covered.

She was about 60 years old and looked healthy but would die without the infusions. Boy, are we ever at the mercy of all the big business in this country. I am going to start calling and checking my BCBS supplement and see if they are starting to send out vibes.  You fight your way to diagnosis and now we have to fight for insurance by hook and by crook. Irish

kimbo

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 827
  • Love never fails
Re: Please call your congressmen
« Reply #3 on: July 11, 2009, 01:48:13 PM »
Irish,

I get very frustrated thinking about all this.
I do believe our government needs to put some strick ethic laws on all our Ins Co. to protect us.
We live in a country that has unlimited resources of health technology, but we seem very slow and deficit on the speed it is carried out and the care of our human health welfare.
This may be off a subject some:

I am sitting at home today receiving information from my husband (pastor) who has been at the hospital all day with a family in crisis. I lady of great community involvement in our area, a mother of 4 sons, is in critical condition.
She has been in ICU for 12 days now with many medical oddities the Drs have missed.
Her husband in the beginning of all this had taken her to the Dr. several times asking them to put her in the hospital to figure out what was going on. They dismissed him and sent him home with her repeatidly. Till 12 days ago he took her to the hospital and demanded she be admitted and treated. While they were there they discovered she was in kidney failure. After a few more days they found her gal bladder was severely infected, they removed it, she then developed infection in her lungs. A few days ago with the help of specialist Dr of infection, after many test they believed she had tick bite fever. They did not know what kind specifically. Then yesterday they did an ultra sound to see if a stone was dropped from the bladder surgery, causing a an obstruction in the bial duct. Because her body was not responding to all the antibiotics they had been administrating. They found that to be true.

So today has become most critical as they are unable to proform the procedure of removing the stone. She has no register of blood pressure and her body is so tired of fighting. The family has all been called in. At this point I am waiting for my husband to call the progress. He text-ed me earlier and said he did not know how long before I heard from him.

Iris, So I feel very frustrated at the health care of this situation.

« Last Edit: July 11, 2009, 02:41:11 PM by kimbo »
Diagnosed March of 2007. SJS/ RA Positive at 80  International-SSA strongly positive at 811-SSB 273
ANA positive at 1:1280
Hashimoto's
Gabapentin, propanol, Celebrex, Synthroid, Cytomel, vitamin D, B complex, Omega 3 complex, and multi vitamins; At 62, I seem to be a low maintenance sjog

kimbo

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 827
  • Love never fails
Re: Please call your congressmen
« Reply #4 on: July 11, 2009, 02:44:21 PM »
My husband just informed me she has passed on.

I am so disappointed. The family will feel such a loss.
And it was all so preventable in the begining.

kimbo
Diagnosed March of 2007. SJS/ RA Positive at 80  International-SSA strongly positive at 811-SSB 273
ANA positive at 1:1280
Hashimoto's
Gabapentin, propanol, Celebrex, Synthroid, Cytomel, vitamin D, B complex, Omega 3 complex, and multi vitamins; At 62, I seem to be a low maintenance sjog

Poochie

  • Guest
Re: Please call your congressmen
« Reply #5 on: July 11, 2009, 04:06:53 PM »
Irish, I did call my Senator and Congressman, not that I think it will do any good, but this way I can still complain when things are not to my liking.  I also sent them an e-mail, so now I'll probably get my taxes audited.   :-\  But you know what..............................I don't care.  I'm tired of sitting back doing nothing while those ................. in Washington sell this country down the river.

Kimbo, this is so sad, but it is not unheard of.  I have heard more stories like this than I care to remember.  It's a crying shame that people have to suffer so, because 9 out of 10 times, the doctor's are either to overwhelmed or just plain can't be bothered.  This should never have happened and I feel deeply for this man and his children.  God Bless them all and may she receive the Lord's Grace.

Hugs, Pooh

Bucky

  • Global Moderator
  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 3679
Re: Please call your congressmen
« Reply #6 on: July 11, 2009, 04:54:00 PM »
Kimbo . . . how tragic for this man and his sons to lose their wife and mother when they tried and tried to get help earlier.  :(  All the suffering this poor lady had to go thru.  :(

You don't mention if this lady is from your congregation, but since your husband was at the hospital with the family, I'm guessing she was.  ?? 

My sympathy to the family/friends of this lady. 

Hugs,
Bucky
Come sit a spell and join in live chat - we serve non-fattening, zero calorie goodies while discussing all kinds of things.  ;D

http://www.sjogrensworld.org/chats.htm   (find our chat times here!)

kimbo

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 827
  • Love never fails
Re: Please call your congressmen
« Reply #7 on: July 11, 2009, 07:21:57 PM »
Yes Bucky she was a member although, not ones that were present.

The husband told my husband on one of his attempts to get her admitted to the hospital, they documented her pulse-oxc at  69, normal is 100, should be around 90 all the time. He had tried from a Thurs to a Sun , before they would admit her and that was when he took her and demanded they do something.

I believe we live in a country with great medical resources and the best of educated Dr. with many who come to America for medical educations and stay, because of our excellence.

Our research, advancements and technology is excellent.  :-\

kimbo

 
Diagnosed March of 2007. SJS/ RA Positive at 80  International-SSA strongly positive at 811-SSB 273
ANA positive at 1:1280
Hashimoto's
Gabapentin, propanol, Celebrex, Synthroid, Cytomel, vitamin D, B complex, Omega 3 complex, and multi vitamins; At 62, I seem to be a low maintenance sjog

Patze

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 6705
Re: Please call your congressmen
« Reply #8 on: July 12, 2009, 05:39:59 AM »
Hi Kimbo,

Wow, how sad!  And to think they tried so hard to get her help, and the medical community wasn't listening, were they?  I'll also keep them in my thoughts and prayers.

I too see a lot of doctors come here for the education and stay because of the excellence, but they don't deliver the "excellence" any better than the "native born" doctors.  I figure that they come here for the education and to become rich, the American dream, right?


Patze
Our home page  http://www.sjogrensworld.org/index.html
Live chats  http://sjogrensworld.org/chats.htm

Everything has beauty, but not everyone sees it - Confucius

The important thing is not to stop questioning ~ Albert Einstein ~

Sero Negative Queen

kimbo

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 827
  • Love never fails
Re: Please call your congressmen
« Reply #9 on: July 15, 2009, 07:16:35 PM »
Thank you patze,

No the medical community did not respond. Even after they were in the hospital and under care of ICU. It seemed each process moved so slowly.

The husband requested an autopsy.

The funeral will be Friday, there is no facility in our town that will be able to hold this one.
Our church will hold 400, not enough.
We have moved it to a big facility, in a town near ours.

Thank you so much for prayers, kimbo
Diagnosed March of 2007. SJS/ RA Positive at 80  International-SSA strongly positive at 811-SSB 273
ANA positive at 1:1280
Hashimoto's
Gabapentin, propanol, Celebrex, Synthroid, Cytomel, vitamin D, B complex, Omega 3 complex, and multi vitamins; At 62, I seem to be a low maintenance sjog

irish

  • Global Moderator
  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 13559
Re: Please call your congressmen
« Reply #10 on: July 16, 2009, 10:35:30 PM »
kimbo, This is such a loss for this family. Tick fever is something that is not seen that often and hard to diagnose. I did not look it up but am wondering if the gall bladder is affected in tick fever. It is hard to believe that the staff ignored her 02 saturation. I would expect that the husband will be filing a complaint with the state, etc. Somebody needs to investigate the actions of the hospital and staff.

I have to tell you that being a nurse I have seen the good, the bad, and the ugly. Our health care system is still the best in the world. We have access to so many tests and can frequently get them on short notice. The problem with our health system is the insurance and government rules and regulations. When I was working in Geriatric care the rules the government, both state and federal, made the nursing care industry more highly regulated than NASA. Doesn't seem possible but was true. I would expect that it is still true. The other thing that bothers me is that with a "new" medical plan in this country scenarios like this will still exist only who do we compain to. When something is government run there is a high possibility that things will not be investigated as well. Scary thought.

THe amount of paperwork that needs to be done is what prevents medicine/hospitals,clinics, etc. from running more smoothly and more efficiently. THe other thing that causes so many problems is peoples personalities, lawyers and lawsuits that force the docs to order more and more tests. Also, the speed at which technology has developed all that "stuff" that is spendy and high tech is just mind boggling. It has gotten so that a specialist in one field has no clue what is going on with another field. Nobody can keep up with it all.

When I was working as Charge nurse at the facility I could not believe the amount of time I spent on the phone with the nurses/doctors and the amount of time I spent faxing orders to be signed, meds to be ordered and all sorts of stuff. We would fax an order and then have to call to make sure that they had received the fax. Duhhhh!!!! Plus the amount of time I had to spend with families who needed to be updated, educated, etc. The amount of paper work and follow up in any field of medicine is just mind boggling. Nurses and doctors are just burnt out.

That doesn't excuse the medical personnel from screwing up. I know as an RN I expect more of people and when they don't deliver I have learned to just push til I find out what I need to know. Other times I just think "what the heck" and drop it. You just get tired of fighting the battle sometimes.

It is tragic when people die of things that it would seem could have been solved. Sometimes I think we should all have classes in being a patient so that we won't be put off by the doctors. It is really a tough call. The problem is that there are so many people out there that call "wolf" and are attention seeking patients that take up time  and the medical staff get kind of hard core. Shouldn't happen but it does. The only thing I can say about that is that medical personnel see so much that is tragic, gross, and that toally blows their mind. It makes sleeping at night tough sometimes. Our system needs some overhaul. Believe it or not, I think Medicare was what started us on the road to the government control and high priced toilet seats and financial impropriety and it siphoned over into all aspects of medicine.

Pardon my rambling, but it is so frustrating to hear of situations like this and it is hard to deal with it mentally not to mention emotionally. I will keep the family in my prayers and hope that the family can get to the bottom of it and get some answers. Much of this is my humble opinion. Lots of high stress in Washington DC these days. Irish

kimbo

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 827
  • Love never fails
Re: Please call your congressmen
« Reply #11 on: July 17, 2009, 07:28:39 PM »
Thank you so much Irish,

I so respect your humble opinions   :) , your medical experience and knowledge.

There is so much I do not understand about the works of our medical structures of insurance and governments involvements.

I would guess hospital nurses have most complicated task in the balance of our current systems. I am glad you clearly explained the frustrations from a nursing view.

I think this whole situation has reconfirmed how important it is to know how to be a medical advocate for family or yourself.

I want to understand better our current system. In all honesty, I feel I do not know enough about it, to call my congress.

Irish, I do hope we get it right when we begin to restructure. To have so much going well with technology, resources and excellent Drs.   Only to have the government and Insurance companies inhibit good health care.

Irish.... you never ramble. I always appreciate your humble opinions.

Hugs kimbo 

Diagnosed March of 2007. SJS/ RA Positive at 80  International-SSA strongly positive at 811-SSB 273
ANA positive at 1:1280
Hashimoto's
Gabapentin, propanol, Celebrex, Synthroid, Cytomel, vitamin D, B complex, Omega 3 complex, and multi vitamins; At 62, I seem to be a low maintenance sjog

irish

  • Global Moderator
  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 13559
Re: Please call your congressmen
« Reply #12 on: July 19, 2009, 08:54:44 PM »
kimbo, Thanks for your support. I have to add that it is frustrating to sit and watch the people in Washington(no matter what party) mess around with our hard earned money. They also don't seem to listen to us "Peons" very well and I am getting pretty sick of it.

I follow the politics and the stuff that is going on in Congress and I just can't imagine trying to vote in a new health care plan in such a short period of time. Can you imagine all the fine points that need to be covered. It will be interesting to see what happens. I know if the new plan passes I will most likely lose out and won't be able to get my infusions anymore. So many people will be affected and many of them will die without the care that they need.

When I graduated from nurses training and started working there was no Medicare. Once it started it seemed like it was a good thing. Pretty soon it was growing faster and faster and more people were getting their fingers into the pie. Ended up being a financial disaster and has cost the government tons of money due to greed. I think it is great because it pays a small amount toward my infusions and then my supplement picks up the rest. However, I often wonder how much the infusions would have cost if we just kept the old fashioned way of paying for our health care---either cash or hospital insurance. We will never know.

Hope the husband of the gal that died is able to file a complaint with the state so that there is an investigation. Irish ;D