It’s easy to kvetch about insurance. Over my nearly 50 working years insurance has become a shadow of its former self. Deductibles are so high it’s hardly worth using. So much is excluded.
As a Medicare recipient things are different for me. Medicare is like insurance from 1970. It pretty much covers everything especially since I chose to add a Medicare Advantage plan which was FREE here in California.
My Blue Shield Medicare Advantage plan is an HMO offered in just a few zip codes. It’s set up to provide a dependable stream of patients to Hoag Hospital and its affiliate physicians. Hoag is in the midst of becoming our local health empire–aggressively. Think giant squid.
I always avoided HMOs. What I realized was, once I went beyond my primary care physician I knew no one anyway! I might as well allow my docs to pick other docs they often work with. It seems to have worked well, except for some early delays. Delays with cancer treatment are a big deal.
I’m mentioning this because if you’re on Medicare you should take a look at adding an Advantage plan. They’re not free everywhere, but they are subsidized, inexpensive and a great deal.
We still have bills to come, but so far my treatment and drugs have run us around $400. Insurance covered everything else. I haven’t seen a fully itemized bill but it’s got to be a few hundred thousand. I’ve seen some Whipple patient bills run over $1,000,000!