Monday, November 1, 2010

Gifts that I do NOT need

MS brings many gifts. All of them you need, but many you don't want (at least at the time that they're first delivered); some of them surprise you in their wonderfulness; many of them surprise you in very quiet ways.

One "gift" that I wish I could not have anything to do with... is dealing with the insurance company.

I have lost a lot, because of MS. My ability to play the organ. My ability to play the drumset. My ability to play the piano comfortably (inability to deal with the damper pedal, another leg/foot malfunction problem). My ability to drive. A few other abilities you would really prefer that I didn't share, and I won't; but merely let it be said that those abilities--I don't have them anymore.

And losing all of those is easier to deal with than the insurance company.

"We can't process this, you didn't supply the right alphabet-soup-acronym codes. But then again, you can't supply them, your doctor has to." But this thing I'm requesting reimbursement for, I didn't get from my doctor. He has nothing to do with it. "Oh. Well, you'll need your doctor to send us the codes." Repeat the previous two sentences for about a half an hour. Finally, "Oh! Then you'll want these other people to send us a form with the right codes." Great. Success. I call said other people, and ask them about said form. They know nothing about it. "We don't send those in," they say. "And that thing you bought? There's no code for it, so we can't submit it anyway."

And the insurers probably don't cover it anyway. And, since they don't feel like paying for it, they're also not going to apply it to my deductible. Why skip up a chance to screw you TWICE over the same claim?

So, anyway you look at it... I'm hosed, it would seem. You get nowhere if the forms aren't filled out (because, it would seem, they're incapable of reading English, only numbers), if the forms can't be filled out because the charge codes don't exist, you're completely out of luck. They don't know you, but they know that you shouldn't receive that treatment; or it's OK for you to receive that treatment but not from that person... whom they also don't know.

I am suddenly reminded of Matthew 25, 42-46:

“I was hungry and you gave me no food, I was thirsty and you gave me nothing to drink, I was a stranger and you did not welcome me, naked and you did not give me clothing, sick and in prison and you did not visit me.” Then they also will answer, “Lord, when was it that we saw you hungry or thirsty or a stranger or naked or sick or in prison, and did not take care of you?” Then he will answer them, “Truly I tell you, just as you did not do it to one of the least of these, you did not do it to me.” And these will go away into eternal punishment, but the righteous into eternal life.

The Good Book also says, "Vengeance is mine, saith the Lord." Well, as satisfying as it might be, watching them wracked with divine vengeance won't make me feel better; I would trade their stint in everlasting perdition, gladly and in less than a second, for some compassion and decent, intelligent service.

Which, y'know, in this day and age, really shouldn't be that hard to get.

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