The End of a (Three Week) Era

January 13th, 2009

And now it is time for me to go back to school. The second semester formally starts with a confirmation that it is easier to study on campus than at home with my wife watching the Golden Globes in the other room.

We’ve also had a lesson in how company health plan changes can totally screw people over. My wife’s company switched health plans, which meant that she had a hard time getting health care services. Now, you would think that if people were dispensing medications that have withdrawal symptoms, they would consider it below the belt to try to step out on the first month of the prescription, especially when they said it was covered. However, we could not acquire it without the insurance card. We ended up paying for it out of pocket, as the looming threat of withdrawal symptoms will tend to have a chilling effect on waiting for the HMO to get off its but and tell the pharmacy that you should be given the medication (despite their statements over the phone). This will doubtless take us into act two, in which the HMO says that because we paid for it, we clearly didn’t want the services that they promised over the phone but could not deliver in in a time frame that did not cause a lapse in care. This is twelve days after coverage began, and we could not get a covered medication at the promised rate.

Dear Obama administration: Can we get that national health care already? Can that be day one or two? My Canadian family members never seem to have to deal with this crap.

News You Can Use

July 19th, 2008

I know that most of our fellow citizens live inside the chamber of silence when it comes to international news, but fucking eh! When one of your closest allies in your largest war front is releasing studies about how you’re full of shit and can’t be trusted for anything… When other people have to start distancing themselves from you on torture, it’s time to start some serious self appraisal. Too bad this one isn’t getting reported on CNN or anything. Also too bad we don’t have ‘British Fries’ or something we can rename to show our defiance in the face of international law.

Also, as a dual citizen, with family in the US and Canada, the next time someone tells me about how the Canadian health care system sucks, I’m pulling out this little anecdote. That’s a gem, that one. I love how people who argue this with me are always people who have a third cousin who they’ve never talked to who had to wait for an elective surgery like a face lift. I’ve had relatives die in Canada, and they sure didn’t want for medical care. I loved them, I was devastated by the loss of them, but I never wondered if they had been tricked into not being given care by the medical equivalent of DSL tech support.

Seen in Minneapolis

July 21st, 2007

Seen at the Lyndale exit of 94: One woman in full jogging gear, jogging slowly across the intersection. In one hand, a 12 oz can of iced tea, it looked like Lipton Brisk, but I was at a distance. In the other hand, a cigarette. As she crossed the street, she took a long drag, not breaking stride. Upon getting to the other side, she exhaled. She then stopped to breath heavily.

Minnesota ranks number one among the fifty states for health and health care outcomes. This is largely due to the high number of people who have insurance. It’s 18th and 20th in smoking and obesity rates respectively. Scenes like today’s remind me that it’s more of a “least stupid” that a “smart” sort of thing.

Oh and One Other Thing

December 15th, 2006

It’s a bit old in blog years, but look into this. Healthcare is something we should all care about. Healthcare and the environment… I don’t really have much to say beyond that, as others are putting it better these days.

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