Turning Archive 2006

Subject:
[OT] health coverage

Ken Grunke from SW WI
>I've managed to stay out of hospitals for almost 20 years now, since a car accident gave me 18 stitches across my scalp in '87. I managed to pay the bills out of pocket although it took about 18 months--no health coverage then, nor do I have it now. :-[

Lately I've been feeling a bit crappy off and on, even after quitting the cig habit cold turkey on April 28 (37 days now ;D )

Saturday about noon after a couple hours tooling around with a tablesaw I was getting ready to sell, I felt kinda tired and achy, so I went in the house and sat at the 'puter. I started feeling weak and dry in the mouth, and after about 15 minutes felt totally awful--worse than I ever had in my life--so I asked a friend to drive me in to emergency. Took another half hour to get there, and I had no idea whether I was having a heart attack/stroke, a diabetic attack, or what. Both parents and one older sibling are diabetic and I've been a pack-a-day smoker of mostly non-filter cigs for about 34 years.

Well to make a long story short, they kept me overnight and after 2 EKGs, a chest x-ray, and other more routine checks, the diabetes and heart attack were ruled out and nothing was seen on the chest x-ray.
My own doctor came in Sunday morning. I wailed in frustration to him "I want out of this stinkin' place", and he told me what I have is basically a very bad cold (viral infection), and prescribed one baby aspirin a day with breakfast, and would be walking out within an hour.

Oh, joy!! I got dressed, did some light stretching exercises, and went through the discharge process before being led out the door by a nurse's aide. I still didn't feel all that great, but good enough to walk a couple blocks to another friend's house who offered to run me back home.

The hard lesson I'm now facing, especially when I see the upcoming bills, is I should have listened to my self a few days earlier and made a doctor's appointment. I wonder how much $$ I could have saved by doing so.

I'm curious of those who are self-employed, or for some other reason do not have some kind of job-provided health coverage, what kind of health plan do you have, if any?

I also just want to say how lucky I feel to be in fairly good health, and still have the chance to take charge of it at my age of 52. Those of you having been through a worse health crisis may get a chuckle at my experience--they say laughter is the best medicine, so I hope you do and feel better for it ;D ;)

BE WELL, EVERONE!

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