Friday, August 17, 2007

COBRA, Medical Insurance and the Poor House

Well, the time is drawing nigh…after September 30th my husband will no longer have medical insurance.

He lost his insurance in March of 2006 when he was laid off at his job and has been on COBRA since then, but in our state, you can only be on COBRA for 18 months. I’m not sure why since we’re paying every dime of the premium, but that is the rule.

We have called all the “big” insurance companies and probably most of the “little” ones. We’ve had an independent agent researching for us and he basically came back and said my husband in uninsurable because of all the pre-existing conditions he has.

He is 53. He has worked a full time job since he was 15 years old, including all throughout high school and college. He didn’t work his childhood years so he could buy a car or take his dates out to fancy restaurants, he did it so he could put groceries on the table for his parents and himself and so he could pay their mortgage payments. You see, his dad had his first major heart attack at 45 and was dead by 53.

So now here he is, same age as his daddy when he died, about to lose his insurance. Whose fault is it that he will soon have no insurance? He didn’t do anything wrong to lose his job, it was a financial decision on the employers part.

He has went back to work at another company since the lay off, but despite sending out better than 60 resumes and beating the streets non-stop, he has not found a job that offers any benefits that will help in his situation.

The insurance he has been offered at his current job has a “cap” of $1000 a year on prescriptions!?! He takes more than that in a month! The cap on medical is equally ridiculous but I cannot remember the rates right off hand. Is it his fault because he has several chronic illness’ that make him uninsurable? In addition to his dad having heart problems at a young age, his only sibling, a brother, had his first stroke in his 40’s. What about his family history? Does that play a part? Who is to blame for that?

I just can’t see any reason all this is through any fault of his and that is what a lot of people would have the public believe, that the uninsured are in the position they are in because they are lazy, fat uneducated slobs. That just ain’t always so.

Are we supposed to spend all our money on “medical” until we lose our small modest home? Then who will we be a burden on???

The only answer we can come up with, and I feel horrible even saying it out loud, but if we divorce, then my income would not be counted and he may qualify for some of the drug programs out there and possibly help for his medical care. I don’t see that we have any other choice and I loathe lying and dishonesty but at what point do you leave your morals behind and do whatever it takes to survive?

It is not quite as cut and dry, nor as black and white, as some bloggers would have us believe.

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