Thursday, October 18, 2012

Cancer Costs $$$

Tuesday was kind of a frustrating day for me.

I have written probably 3 blog posts about this, but Phil never wanted me to publish any of them.  And I agreed with him.  They sounded whiny.  So I am going to try and do this without sounding like a whiner.  Even if I want to be.

Cancer (and other health problems) hit you on multiple fronts.  There's the obvious "Am I going to die?" angle.  I think I've hit on this plenty.  Then there's the whole "Is my cancer going to come back?".  I know I've talked about that one.  There's the strain going through a health crisis puts on your relationships with others.  I haven't really talked about that, partially because it still affects me.  Even today.

But the last angle it hits you on is the "WTF I have to pay how much?!?!"

Because cancer on its own doesn't suck enough... you end up having to pay A TON of money for it too.  (Ok not everyone.  Some people, like my Father-in-law, have kick-a$$ health insurance with super low deductibles and out of pocket maximums.  I do not have that type of insurance).

I won't go into the details.  Let's just say my neck scar is the most expensive accessory I own.  By far.  Like by a lot.

I think people forget about that one.  People kept telling me that Phil and I should take a nice vacation to go relax once my cancer stuff was done.  I would love that.  Except we have no money for that because cancer is SO EXPENSIVE.  It feels like I will never be done losing money for my cancer stuff.

One of the unexpected expenses we had very early on (right when I found out I might have cancer) came when we had to cancel our trip to Georgia last Thanksgiving.  We had bought travel insurance, but as it turns out... travel insurance blows.

I thought I had FINALLY gotten all of my paperwork together and then they told me I needed more information on my physician's form.  Which meant I had to go back to my old endo.  And even thinking about going back to her office and relying on them to do something correctly almost gave me an anxiety attack.

The guy from the insurance company tried to sound sympathetic when he asked me if my biopsy turned out alright.  I thought to myself, "Is that even a question he can ask me?"  And he did an okay job of faking feeling sorry for me when I replied that yes, I did have cancer.

Now I am waiting to see if I can recoup some money.  It depends on my old endo's office (who often couldn't schedule my appointments and didn't get back to me about test results).  So I wasn't feeling really great about it when I went to pick up the form I needed from them yesterday.

To my wonderment and surprise... everything was filled out and correctly.  It was as if hell had frozen over.  Pigs could fly.  The Earth was off its axis.  Of course the first time that office does something correctly, it was once I wasn't a patient there anymore.

So now it is back in the hands of the insurance company, who I am imagining will do everything they can to weasel their way out of paying me.  But it is worth a shot.  It's a drop in the bucket, but a drop none the less.

3 comments:

  1. god i take health care in canada for granted and even complain about it but we do pay for some things but not for most. i hope your insurance surprises you too and comes through for you guys.

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  2. Ugh, I hate insurance things. Right now we can only afford a high deductible insurance (as in $10,000 high) and even though I THOUGHT they said my hyperthyroid was covered because I didn't have a lapse of insurance when we went from city insurance (from my job) to private insurance (when I quit for school) it hasn't been covered and is considered a pre-existing condition. The really annoying thing is that I was still with the same insurance company I had been with for 3 years! So all the monthly bloodwork that was supposed to have been covered isn't, to the tune of $200 a month! So frustrated. I know it can't even compare to the cost of cancer, but it still sucks to have to pay so much to be healthy. I'm glad you're able to get at least some of your money back though!

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  3. Hi. Your post made me really think. Think twice. I am German and also live in Germany (again) and take health care for granted. Over here there is some sort of statutory health insurance which cost (basic) 150 Euros per months. With this, all basic treatments are included. Even my surgery, scans etc. I am so ashamed that I am whining about my student loan. Where there is much other stuff to worry on -- I think I have learnt my lesson.
    Oh, and I also can relate to your dealings with the insurance. I have lived in the Netherlands and I have never had so much fuzz about burocratic things.. If thiings get done immediately today, it really makes my day!
    Hope everything will turn out ok for you!
    Svenja
    xx

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