It's that time of year again...the snow lies thick on the ground(or soon will,if it's anything like last winter), it's bitterly cold and nasty and doesn't lend well to functional toes,fingers, or glucometers. Starbucks & Swiss Miss are absolute must-have's.(yes,I drink Diet Coke year-round but in winter I need something to warm me up) And it seems that life gets even busier, as the "flurries" of day-to-day tasks cascades into a blizzard.(Look for me sometime in January,as I don't expect to be doing much blogging)
On the agenda this month:
*Aforementioned school paperwork, most of which is financial-aid/scholarship oriented. Also a CPR recertification course and yet another physical exam(does the one I JUST had in October (for my surgery) count? Of course not) which shall involve booster shots and blood titers(for every known communicable disease out there). Medical school can't involve any less paperwork.
*Changing health insurance plans.(this being that magical time of the year known as "Open Season," which, for my non-US readers is when one can switch(or get) health insurances without fault for pre-existing conditions.For an individual with a chronic disease,this is one of the few opportunities to get instant coverage. ) My husband leaves this to me, as he rarely gets sick,takes no meds,and has never had a cavity in his life.(in other words, the opposite of me) Our current plan has hit rock bottom-everything costs a ton, & injectables go completely off the formulary beginning next year. Although this is to be expected with all the recent insurance company/Obaminination changes,our particular plan has essentially doubled EVERYTHING-monster deductibles,no diabetes education coverage,etc. and the time has come to jump ship.(before we sink) I'm grateful for the choice of several options,but it will be a monumental choice as I consider what parts are vitally important to me & which parts are less so.
- diabetes supply coverage (for pump supplies,insulin,strips, and CGM) via mail order with acceptable copays.
- NO cap on the number of test strips.
- catestrophic coverage cap
-low pharmacy rx copay
-outpatient infusion services covered (this is a biggie,because if I need more magnesium infusions it is very expensive & not otherwise affordable)
-coverage of injectables (such as Symlin)
-good dental plan
-free Diabetes Education Visits
-complete lab & tests coverage
I'm very much looking at this from the diabetes point of view..I want the freedom to see my own endo and follow my own diabetes plan. Access to an educator is a must on my list,(and one that current insurance decided to stop covering completely) since few endo's have the time to work with you on the nitty-gritty, day to day stuff. I guess after all these years I should know how to get myself out of the holes I dig,but they have perspectives that I often times, don't. I live it..the questions and problems never go away,& have numbed my brain so that if the answer were right in front of me, I wouldn't be able to see it. I need the fresh perspective.
I've heard only horror stories about HMO's,and I'm not sure I'd be brave enough to go that route. Freedom in physician choosing is very important to me, and I'd rather concede on a less important point(like the amount of the copay). You have to choose the plan that makes the most sense financially. Life is about more then diabetes..surgeries,tests,random stuff comes up and those possibilities must be considered as well. Decisions, decisions.(and I can't make this one lightly)
* Getting every last RX filled before the deductable/max reset to $0 and everything costs an arm and a leg again in the New Year. (to be done, prior to switching insurances, obviously) We don't have an FSA(flexible spending) account...that's probably something I should seriously consider. Could really save money there.
*Regular Christmas-y stuff..presents to buy, foods to cook,etc. and a week long stint on the Left Coast(come December 22) to survive. I cannot say I'm looking forward to the body scanner/patdown choice.(at the airports)
*Endo appt., continued hand therapy. Things are much improved on the arm front, there's now only a small localized patch of elbow numbness,a slightly weak pinky,and pain only if I lift something heavy. The scar is even starting to fade.
So that's what on the agenda, this won't be my last post of the year,but I won't be doing very many of them. Stay warm and safe, everyone.