Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Higher than an eagle

Rant time: When we moved here, I was distressed to learn that though we work for a hospital, our medical insurance left a little to be desired. Well, a lot, particularly after our fabulous insurance in Philadelphia (ahh, incredibly powerful unions!). Our insurance options were limited, and the only 100% option (a must for people like me with preexisting conditions) was expensive. Then it got more so. But we toughed it out because it was the lesser of many evils.

Then the hospital decided to discontinue this plan, leaving us to choose from the rest of the evils. So I've been investigating what we're left with and, can I just say, the results aren't pretty. First we have a 90%/10% HMO which costs the same as our original policy and has lower co-pays but higher deductibles and huge payments for both inpatient and outpatient procedures beyond the deductibles and you need referrals for everything beyond your PCP, which our last plan finally eliminated last year. Our second option has cheaper monthly payments but is a 80%/20% plan, much scarier, higher deductibles, and virtually no preventative medicine allowance, including, I kid you not, no coverage for annual OBGYN appointments, which is criminal, as far as I'm concerned. There is some sort of loophole, apparently, that may or may not mean that inpatient or outpatient procedures done at the hospital will waive the 20% we owe, but, surprise, surprise, it's not clear at all if this is actually the case, a gentleman's agreement not written down anywhere, or a myth.

And these are our two best options. I use the term best loosely. Why all these people here who work for a hospital have not rebelled against this shoddy coverage is beyond me, but SC has never been particularly progressive about, well, anything, so I guess it's easier to accept things as they are than agitate. But seriously, people, this is ridiculous! Rock, hard place, here I come.


Kenny and Linsey said...

Time to get a new job -- that is your only solution. You cannot mess around with health insurance coverage -- no sirree!!

Whatever you/Matt agreed to in terms of time commitment to this job is now defunct because they have reneged on their agreement of benefits -- contract laws are in your favor on that count. You owe them nothing -- get out, now -- there are still people out there, hospitals even, with good benefits. Go forth and find them. TODAY!

Kathryn Maughan said...

I think I have to agree with Linsey on this. Leaving yourself open to 10% or 20% of bills is frightening for someone with no preexisting conditions, and with high deductibles? No way. And no OB-GYN preventive coverage is RIDICULOUS. My two cents...

Kathryn Maughan said...

I meant to say a "high premium" rather than "high deductible." oops.