Dicky's Doodles &Scribbles

Cartoons,editorials and comment about current events and more.

Thursday, December 06, 2007

Medicare Miasma

Here is a story told to me by my buddy Al K. Traz.
I went down to Old Joe’s Bar Room the other day. You know, on the corner by the square.
The regulars were all lined up as usual. I saw my buddy Chuck McGinty. He looked bad.
“What’s up Chuck?“ I asked.
“Just had my first experience trying to use the Medicare account which I was put into early in the year. It was not a good experience,” he said, his head low and his eyes all blood shot and red.
He continued, “I needed to replace the face mask for my CPAP machine. I called the company which had provided me with my machine and was told they had to have an order from my doctor. They also wanted my insurance information. I replied that I had Medicare, parts A&B.”
He went on to relate the drawn out run around that ensued over the following several days.
“So they finally told me I could come get the mask. When I got to the clinic I was told that my co-pay for the mask would be $142.00! I was stunned! Prices for the same part online ranged from $42.00 to $69.00 or so. I was not told I would need a co-payment and I expected to just come there and pick it up. No such luck! I did not have that amount to pay.”
Now he still needs a new mask and will get it online. He just hopes it will fit and it will take at least a few days to arrive. Chuck gets by on Social Security. They withdraw $93.50 per month from his check to pay his Medicare premium.
Chuck says he thinks the medical supply company is overcharging for their services and products.
“They get away with this because they charge it to insurance companies or Social Security or agencies such as Nueces County Indigent Care. I am pissed off. I have been dealing with these folks since last week and wasted a lot of time and a trip into the most busy shopping area in town, at Christmas shopping frenzy time, and still do not have this piece of molded plastic which probably cost a couple of bucks to produce.”
“Yeah,” I said. “Thank God we don’t have socialized medicine.”


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