I generally like the new year. What I don't like is when it's an occasion for my insurance companies to hose me.
Before you think this is a "I hate insurance companies, I want socialized medicine!" rant, it's not. I'm a conservative, generally. I do think that health care needed reformed, because I think it's silly that people like me could only get insurance if we were working. That's really silly, guys, because sometimes we can't work and we need insurance.
This year, my insurance company has decided that they aren't going to cover one of my immunosuppression drugs anymore. Yeah. You read that correctly. One of the two main drugs that keeps me alive on a general basis--we're not going to pay for that anymore. A nice, bright red "we're sorry" is all I see on the insurance company page when I go to check on this. They don't tell me this is going to be a problem ahead of time--not until I try to get a new prescription.
"yeah, they don't cover that anymore, so $1,000, please. Per month."
Each pill is basically $33. $1,000 a month is more than I make all month.
I'm not complaining about the cost, so much. I know why these drugs are so expensive. A small percentage of the population uses them, and these drugs are hard to produce. I am grateful they exist. But that's something the company should have maybe warned me about well ahead of time, so I would've have time to talk to my doctors, try another med, and then do what I needed to do to keep my immunosuppression regimen at optimal levels.
So now, I'm going to switch to a generic brand, that may or may not work. The generic version of Prograf (the other immunosuppression med I take) doesn't work for me. How do we find out if these drugs are at a therapeutic level? Blood tests.
So, I'm going to be getting more blood tests--oh joy, oh rapture, me of the crappy veins--and I'm also going to be at the hospital more often to get this done. All of which the insurance company will be billed for.
If it works, great--we pay $100 a month, instead of $1000. If it doesn't, then I have to switch back to the "real" med, and apply for financial aid from the drug company, which I'll get, because my paycheck is "a disgrace to paychecks", to quote from The Family Man.
Thanks, dear insurance company, for giving me so much advance notice that one of the drugs I take to stay alive isn't covered anymore. I'm so glad that you care about your subscribers and their health.