jennywren: (tdbar)
( Tuesday, July 18th, 2006 09:34 pm)
The article I was interviewed for in The Chronicle of Higher Education is out now :) You can see the picture of me they chose to use here (this week only). The picture is me looking dismayed/distressed at my medical bills. If you have online access to The Chronicle, you can read the article there. Otherwise many libraries and academic institutions subscribe to it. If you have no way at all to access the article, let me know, and I'll see if I can hook you up!

The article is ok. It isn't as entirely accurate (at least about me) as I had hoped, but hopefully it will make the issue more widely known and maybe something can be done about it. I know health insurance and the health care system is a huge problem, not just for students. I'm not sure what the solution is, but I know the way it is now in the United States just isn't working. I am so fortunate to have been treated at a hospital which does indigent care and has a HCAP program to take care of many of the bills that my insurance would not cover. However, similarly to many uninsured people, I am reluctant to go to the doctor when I do have a problem, because I am not sure how I will pay for the care.
jennywren: (Default)
( Sunday, July 9th, 2006 01:07 am)
On Monday, I had my photo taken for the article for which I was interviewed for the The Chronicle of Higher Education. The photographer, Ken Frick, came to the library at school and took pictures of me there. He wanted a setting that looked like a home office area, so we used the reference office. He took a bazillion pictures of me sitting at the desk looking at my medical bills and insurance statements. Then he took another billion pictures of my insurance claims. The editors at the magazine will have lots to choose from. He was very friendly and easy to work with.

The author of the article, Elizabeth Farrell, called mid-week for a few clarifications and follow up questions. She says the article will be out next week. It will be in the online edition and the paper edition. She says she'll send me some paper copies! Most college libraries get The Chronicle of Higher Education, so we'll hopefully be able to track down copies, and far-flung friends and family will be able to see it, too.

Wednesday Molly and I also met with a very helpful person at school who was willing to look at my medical bills and insurance junk with me. She is even calling some of the providers to see if they would be willing to negotiate about total payments and payment plans. What a Godsend! Molly and I made a spreadsheet of the insurance and bills, so it seems easier to deal with. With the HCAP program, instead of owing something like $124,000, I probably will end up paying somewhere around $9,500. Much better, but still difficult on a student budget. I am much more confident now that things will work out!
jennywren: (Default)
( Tuesday, May 16th, 2006 06:17 pm)
Your Political Profile:
Overall: 10% Conservative, 90% Liberal
Social Issues: 0% Conservative, 100% Liberal
Personal Responsibility: 25% Conservative, 75% Liberal
Fiscal Issues: 0% Conservative, 100% Liberal
Ethics: 0% Conservative, 100% Liberal
Defense and Crime: 25% Conservative, 75% Liberal





Well, I found out yesterday that I didn't get a job I applied for on campus, primarily because one person in the administration didn't want me to have it. The staff people where I would be working all wanted me, but another candidate was chosen over their preference. To add insult to injury, the announcement about who was getting the position was emailed out before I had heard anything from anyone about not getting the position. I got a hasty form email after I made a little noise about that. GRRRR. . .

Plus then I got a bunch of crud from my insurance company (provided by the school). Now that they are finally looking at my claims instead of vaguely requesting information and looking like illiterate morons, they are paying minimally. Turns out instead of me paying my deductible and them paying the rest, they pay their maximum benefits of $25,000 and I am left with the rest, which is so far over $80,000, which I obviously don't have. Which is partially why I was applying for the full time job on campus -- so I could stay in school part time and get a semi-living wage in a job I KNOW I would do great in. Now I am not sure what to do. My medical bills are so huge. Fortunately the largest bills, the hospital bills, are covered under a program called HCAP, where the hospital will write off 100% of what my stupid insurance won't cover. That is some relief. But what kind of insurance is it that only covers up to $25,000???? Who has little catastrophic illnesses? Now I am having catastrophic medical bills! I don't know what to do. Maybe I'll have to drop out of school and work full time to try to pay the bills. Then student loans come due. They've already been rustling at my door because I wasn't enrolled this semester, so I had to do MORE paperwork to show I wasn't having any income while I was in the hospital and recovering and that I plan to re-enroll in the fall. GRRRR . . . The job on campus would have been great, because I could have still taken 1-2 courses a semester (one of which would have been free) as part of the benefits of the job. But someone got it in his head that I needed to concentrate on my degree and academics instead of survival or, golly gee, knowing my own mind and life, and decided despite all evidence to the contrary that I shouldn't have this job.

I am so tired of having to call the insurance, call the student loans, call the medical billers, etc. It is never ending and frustrating. Now I have to go back to work as a student employee and have my new supervisor be the one who got the job instead of me. Slap on a brave face.

Anyway, sorry for the rant . . . not much else I can do.

Blech! GRRRRR!!!!!
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