The Healthcare System

X-ray
X-ray (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

You knew this was coming, right? I’ve had my fair share of encounters with health care, but most of them have been minor and relatively easy to take care of.  Having an injury this complex, though, is proving a bit challenging.  First, the injury took place in a foreign country, already creating a problematic situation. Second, it involved a car, so technically, could involve auto insurance. Third, it happened while I was working, thus involving worker’s compensation.  If it strikes you as odd that I haven’t mentioned the actual injury, it shouldn’t, because my experience so far isn’t a matter of how best to treat the injury, but who, exactly, is going to pay for said treatment. Now, let me just say that my treatment has been fine so far, but it’s not without its faults.

First, it took a couple of days to get into a doctor. Mr. Geeky tried to make some phone calls before I returned but my regular doctor was away, so dead end. Second, once I got in, I haven’t gotten a lot of information or instruction. I think I’m supposed to stay off my foot.  I wasn’t told anything about managing pain or what to look out for and maybe call about.  Third, my appointment with the surgeon is pretty far away, a week and a half.  I feel like the bones will settle, however problematically, by that point.  But you know, lack of information. I am supposed to have a cat scan to see some of the fractures a little more closely, but that has to be arranged separately.  Oh, and, my worker’s comp insurance doesn’t seem to cover the imaging facilities closest to me and if I want to use my own insurance, I have to get a pre-certification through the doctor that ordered it.  I’m a little annoyed that they didn’t do that ahead of time, but basically, I was sent away with the order for the cat scan and a “Good luck with that.”

I am a trusting soul, and I tend to be thorough in my own work, so I have expectations that other professionals will be equally thorough.  It’s a little disconcerting to feel like you’re lost in the system.  Now, I am a smart person and I am fully capable of making some intelligent phone calls to straighten everything out, but I can’t imagine what it must be like for many people who have no idea where to turn or how to get things done.

If I had stayed in Italy, I would have gone in the next day to see the orthopedic surgeon.  I wouldn’t have had an appointment, so could have waited for quite a while, but no one would be asking for insurance or pre-certifications or weird codes in order to take care of my situation. I am hopeful that the main issues will be worked out soon and I can just start recovering properly, whatever that looks like.

One Reply to “The Healthcare System”

  1. Oh dear, oh dear. So sorry to hear about all of these complications on top of the already painful injury. (And then I imagine what all of this would be like without adequate health insurance — even worse to contemplate.)

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