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Wednesday, November 5, 2014

The truth shall set you free

Honesty has always been #1 with me and this time simply stating the truth paid off. Facing a huge emergency room bill the first thing I did was call the hospital finance office and ask for guidance. Explaining that I had no insurance or Medicare B and my only income is Social Security, I was told to bring proof/receipts of monthly bills etc. that I pay and fill out a brief form and they would see what they could do. Learning from a previous experience I knew the first step was to make this call. We learn as we go.

Cibola General Hospital has a wonderful staff and that includes those working in the business office. I am grateful to live in a small town with a smaller facility because in addition to being less expensive I feel the care is more compassionate. It feels like home. My personal experience is that in a larger hospital a patient is just a number on a chart.

Following instructions, my visit to the financial office yesterday turned out much better than I ever expected. They are going to wipe out the hospital portion of the bill. Of course, I still have to deal with the doctor and x-ray portion. I am going to take the same approach with them and see what they can do. I'm keeping a positive attitude.

For those people who are quick to judge and are wondering why I don't have Medicare B let me explain. When I first became eligible in 2002 my income was so little I simply could not afford it and being basically healthy I put it off. Now Medicare wants to charge me a penalty of $125.88 per month on top of the $104.90 that everyone else is paying to add B. That would be forever and would reduce my Social Security benefit to an amount impossible to live on. I have checked other insurance options and haven't found anything not connected to Medicare. I was given some new information by the hospital that I will check on.

I'm sure I can't be the only person in America facing this kind of problem. When those in authority issue an order they seldom have the vision/wisdom to see how it could affect people in my situation. Oh well, all I can do is tell the truth!

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