Posted by Dave Emond (184.108.40.206) on August 30, 2001 at 05:35:24:
In Reply to: Another point for the chronics sufferers posted by Riccardo on August 30, 2001 at 02:51:50:
Sadly, for most Americans the answer would be no.
US health insurance is a major problem. I'm writing this off the top of my head during another restless night, so if I miss something, please feel free to correct me.
In the US, health insurance is divided into different categories:
1. The uninsured (no job, work for nonprofit, independent business, or small company)
2. Medicaid (Those on disability determined by individual States, usually very tough process to go through for even the simplest medical needs and much waiting time)
3. Medicare (People over the age of 65, coverage is very limited, extra insurance would need to be carried for serious health conditions)
4. HMO-Health Maintenance Organization (This is probably where most of us find ourselves. It is basically run like a machine. It is built up of several of the major insurance companies and is very limited. Every condition must pass through a Primary Care Physician, then through the insurance company who then decides whether or not medications or referrals to specialsts are allowed. Serious problems with quality of treatment, and constant battles for proper treatments.)
5. Personal Coverage (Extremely expensive for basic plans, and higher for each additional coverage)
It is hard enough with any of these coverages to get proper testing, medications or referrals for anything above a simple physical! In this case I'm sure at least 90% of us would have no chance.
The most likely reason would be this procedure would be considered "experimental", and they have many ... many more excuses not to cover people for as many conditions as possible.
A CH sufferer could not change to private insurance to try to beat this, because they would be determined to have "Pre-existing conditions".
The Mayo Clinic, is for most, out of reach. The contact between the Mayo clinic and this procedure would most likely be limited to their own private research, and only a select few would have the opportunity to be a part of this research.
US health insurance has gotten out of hand. The battle continues between private doctors, HMO's and politicians. Meanwhile, the public is left trying to find ways to cover their families for even the most basic types of health insurance.
I could go into more depth on this topic, but will for now leave it as this simple overview.
An individual wanting this procedure will pay all or most of the costs involved, depending on their current insurance coverage.
It's a sad situtation and as far as I'm concerned is a crime against the American public.
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