As the title states I am once again uninsured which is sad when you have a pre-existing medical condition(s), in my case Epilepsy and Migraines the are major ones. On Thursday this past week went by my local pharmacy to pick up my seizure medication, they asked to see my card as Care Source was not accepting it. While sitting in the car, my alarm started going higher and I knew instinctively this was bad. Since I have no insurance (unaware at the moment why but will explain so please hold on) my medication for a one month supply was going to cost $207 out of pocket. Now being that I am a single parent working 2 part-time jobs, along with the monthly child support allows my son and I to both live very simply, no luxuries.
So I went home very distressed, my son was driving fortunately as this medicine that I take for Epilepsy is what allows me to drive a car, if I don’t take the medicine then I am unable to drive and the gran mal seizures return relatively quickly and I really do not want to go through those any more, they are disabling and can take up to a week to recover and then no driving for 3 months per doctors’ orders.
Got in the door, went to my den and looked for the paperwork from Ohio Job and Family Services. My son and I do get assistance from the state (embarrassing) but because my total income combined classifies me as being poor.
Reading through the 9 pages we were approved for food stamps and health insurance or so I thought. The way the documents read one section says we were both ineligible for health insurance, reason income more than the 90% federal poverty guidelines.
Next section states that medical benefits will start on June 10, 2013. Ok so good and then I read further and down at the very bottom it lists both me and my son. I am ineligible and my son is eligible. This did not make sense and of course it was after 7:00 PM and Ohio Job and Family Services were closed. I was in tears, they gave no reason at the bottom of why I was ineligible and my son was eligible. To make things a little more clear usually when we are approved for food stamps (which I still supplement out of pocket as it is only half what I spend a month on food with a teenager in the home) we are always approved for medical benefits. My mistake was when I received the letter in May of this year is not having read through all the 9 pages. Talk about feeling stupid and being angry at myself. It was just one of those things. I am sure we all have done that at some point in our lives and I just did.
What I did not know until I talked with my Mom, that there was something Ohio signed that changed how a family qualifies for assistance. It would have been nice to received documentation that this change was coming.
I so love being unaware of changes that directly affect me and my son. So I called and left a message with the caseworker, knowing I would be lucky to hear anything on Friday the next day as I only had 2 days of medicine left (not a good thing).
I cried my eyes out, did not sleep racking my brain all night and chiding myself for not having read all 9 pages of the letter from Ohio Job and Family Services.
In turn, Friday rolls around and went to work, called from work and spoke with the case manager and found out why I am now ineligible and one of the unfortunate “uninsured”.
This change affects how you qualify for benefits within the state. It is no longer based on family size and income as a family unit. They now have an income guideline for children and an income guideline for adults within the same family. So after I found out the guidelines I am over the guideline by $102.
Seriously ridiculous and here I am working, paying my bills, paying taxes and being responsible, fortunate to have my two part time jobs in today’s economy and all I need is insurance so I can be proactive and preventive with my health.
Do I get credit for doing the right thing?
So I am applying for assistance through the manufacturer and it will be submitted on Monday, July 1 and will take a week (5 days is what I was told) for the medication to be shipped to the doctor’s office where I will pick them up.
So for now I purchased (out of pocket) a week of medication and will have to work more hours to cover it as my regular bills are due this week such as rent, car payment, electric, and phone bill.
I am highly sad and disappointed that someone and others like me who do not abuse the system basically fall into the cracks. The abusers get all the benefits they want.
I am not lazy, I work hard, I pay taxes, I do not drink, I do not take drugs (expect the prescribed medication for Epilepsy), I am as what my grandpa (rest his soul) termed years ago, my classification in life is “The Working Poor”.
For those of you who do not know the only reason I had insurance is because of my son and he lives with me. Next year when he graduates high school, goes to college, child support ends and I will not qualify for health insurance at all. I still will be uninsured.
A few months ago I investigated to see if I could qualify for an insurance policy (individual) currently I am disqualified as the condition for Epilepsy is you have to be seizure free for 3 years.
The only way I can be covered presently is through a group policy either by employment or married to someone who has insurance through their employer.
So yes I am very sad, disappointed and frustrated with our healthcare system it needs improved so all of us can afford it and be covered. It is good to take care of ourselves, without healthcare not all of us can afford what a doctor charges an hour for a 15 minute visit.
Now comes the fact that the regular blood work and tests for Epilepsy I am unable to pay for, there is no extra money.
What does the government want me to do?
Work 3 or 4 jobs daily?
Should not the people who do work, pay taxes, etc. qualify for healthcare and the ones who abuse the system should not qualify?
I see a future where many families in similar circumstances adults will lose benefits and children will be covered. It is good to have children covered but the adults (parents of these children) or just adults (with no children) should also be covered. If they are not and they get sick and no healthcare, then how are they going to care for their children or themselves?
I hope by sharing my personal experience that anyone who reads this will be able to share with others who are in similar circumstances through no fault of their own. Often time’s life is life and we just have to pull ourselves up and keep on going.
And for the ones who do not need assistance who are blessed not to be in this type of situation please share with others and get the word out we need a healthcare system that does not take away but helps all without the high cost. I don’t know where the answer lies but there has to be a solution somewhere.