Thursday, July 23, 2009

My Current Pet Peeve

My current pet peeve is the phrase, "Health care in America is broken."

Health CARE in this country is not broken. If you are sick and need to see a doctor, you can. If you are in a car accident and are on the verge of dying, you will be taken to an emergency room where you will be treated. Even if you can't afford to pay for the care, you will be cared for.

What's broken in America is our health insurance system.

I have a friend whom I'll call Susie. Susie was diagnosed with colon and liver cancer six years ago. She underwent treatment and was declared cancer-free. Then about a year ago, a scan showed that her cancer was back with a vengeance. She went to M.D. Anderson hospital, where they recommended what I'll call "Treatment X" (because I really don't know anything about chemo and don't know what else to call it! ) Treatment X is very aggressive, and is very expensive.

Susie's insurance company told her that they would not pay for Treatment X. Their reasoning? According to statistics, people who have her type of cancer and then have a recurrence of the cancer most likely won't survive. So why pay for Treatment X, in their opinion? She should just get Treatment Y which is much less expensive, even though it is less likely to be successful.

I am happy to report that Susie fought her insurance company tooth and nail and was able to get Treatment X. A recent scan came back CLEAN except for a couple of small spots on her lungs, which the doctors aren't particularly concerned about.

The moral of the story is this: Our health care system in America is just fine. We have the technology and the treatments and the doctors willing and able to practice their art. The problem is that the health insurance companies are getting in the way.

I don't know what the solution is, but let's quit bashing health CARE in America! If anything deserves bashing, it's health INSURERS.


Winklepots said...

AMEN!!! Insurance companies are messed up. It always baffled me when I couldn't get them to pay for my birth control but yet, they'll cover my pregnancy expenses. I think that's changed since I was first on the pill, but seriously, they wouldn't cover contraception and HELLO, a pregnancy is way more expensive.
Thank goodness your friend was able to get the treatment she needed!

Lexa Levine said...

I'm glad she got the treatment she wanted.

And in reply to your question on thread, I haven't tried beaded crochet yet, but my next project (meaning as soon as my supplies get here) is going to be knit wire and beaded napkin holders.

Jen said...


I'm so glad she is in recovery. Thanks for sharing that story!

Linda said...

I totally agree with you Christie. Our health care system is great. People come here from other countries to get quality health care. Our health insurance companies are another story. They should never be allowed to dictate the type of treatment a patient receives. Thank goodness your friend stood up for her rights and is doing much better.