Posts Tagged ‘prescription’
I am a SUNY Cortland student in my fourth year. I am a dual major in Spanish and Sociology with a concentration in Criminology. I was born in the Dominican Republic where I lived until I was 12 when my mother decided it would be better for us in the United States. I currently live in the Bronx when I am not away at school. I have been at SUNY Cortland for my entire college career. I chose to go here because my high school volleyball coach attended SUNY Cortland and they promoted this college all throughout high school. Along with that, I wanted to go away to school, and Cortland provided the best EOP program for myself and my family.
In my family, insurance is through my mother through the government. There have been many times when a member of my family needed a prescription, but insurance wouldn’t cover it, so we simply just went without it. When I was in high school, there was a point when I didn’t have insurance, and we weren’t able to get our annual physicals; the school almost kicked us out. At this time, I didn’t have insurance because my mother was switching to a different insurance company due to my sister going upstate for school at it being too far for the insurance to cover.
Recently, I went through a tough situation with medication from my insurance company. An uncommonly known fact of birth control prescriptions within the United States is that to refill a prescription of birth control pills a patient needs to attend an annual appointment with their OBGYN. When it was time for me to attend my appointment, I was in the Dominican Republic, and instead, I made an appointment with a doctor there. I was not aware that the United States doctor would not accept this visit and still wouldn’t prescribe my pills. If I were to go off these pills, since they’re hormonal, it would affect my body in multiple ways even if it were only for a few days. So, prior to running out of pills, I decided to go to the closest planned parenthood to me. Because of the type of insurance that I had, I was worried that I would have to pay completely out of pocket. Before insurance, the visit, tests, and my prescription would cost over $100 on top of the $105 I had already spent on transportation to and from the facility but luckily it was covered. If my doctor and insurance could have made an exception one time, I would have been able to avoid all of this.
I feel that we need to make a universal, single-payer form of health care for so many reasons. With a universal form of healthcare, my mom wouldn’t have had to change my insurance because my sister went away to school, my family could have always gotten the prescriptions they needed at a decent cost, and I would have never had to go to planned parenthood which some insurance companies do not cover. If I am working and paying taxes in this country, I believe insurance shouldn’t be something I need to be concerned with.
I attended college out of state (primary residence was California, but went to college in New York), thanks largely to the scholarships I received from a private college. While in college, I was on my mother’s health insurance plan she had through her job. Despite her working for a municipal government and in a unionized role, we still could not afford more than the lowest cost plan. And while I was in high school, it was great for local care especially because I do not have major health concerns.
But when I went to New York for college, I quickly learned that the health insurance plan I thought worked for me, only worked because of where I was located. While in college, I did not have access to a primary care doctor or preventative healthcare. During the fall semester of my junior year, I woke up one morning and my shoulder was stiff and sore: it even hurt to put on my jacket or backpack. Several days went by and one night I suddenly got very dizzy and my whole arm went numb. With both sides of my family having heart conditions, I knew this wasn’t the time to worry about coverage: I needed to go to the emergency room. We called our campus’ Public Safety and they drove us to the emergency room that was only a few blocks away from campus.
When I checked in, they of course asked for insurance. So I handed them my one and only insurance card. In California this was all I had ever needed. But the staff working asked where my second card was, she was only familiar with New York health insurances.
Shortly after I was seen, I explained to the ER nurse what I had been experiencing the last few days and the reason I came in today–family history. I was hooked up to a heart monitor, a nurse pricked my finger to check my blood sugar levels and I was taken in for an x-ray. Thankfully I was not seriously ill: only a pinched nerve. I was asked if I wanted a prescription for a higher dosage of ibuprofen than what I could get over the counter. I declined, I was back to worrying about the cost. I went home and did my best to rest, well the best that a full time college student could rest.
Two weeks later my mother called me. She asked why I hadn’t given the hospital my insurance– She had just received a bill for the full cost of my hospital visit. After calling our insurance company, they informed us it was not “medically necessary” for me to go to the emergency room. Of course they didn’t take into account that at midnight the only health care open was the emergency rooms, and I would not have known it wasn’t medically necessary unless I went to the emergency room. After months of fighting both our insurance provider and the local hospital, we managed to get our bill down to the $500 maximum for emergency visits.
My first job after college was environmental justice based community organizing in the San Francisco Bay Area. My first question was not how much I would make, room for growth, or company policy–It was healthcare coverage. The cheapest plan available to me was $300 a month. I was expected to spend ¼ of my monthly income on health insurance “just in case”. With rent, high cost of living, and my six month grace period on my student loans coming up, I knew I wouldn’t be able to afford health insurance through my employer. And the Department of Education would not take “sorry I need health insurance” as a valid reason to not pay back my loans. I have never in my life felt so fortunate to be a healthy adult with no chronic health conditions.
I have personally seen how flawed both the healthcare provided is and the health insurance industry. We need a healthcare system that is easy to understand and works for all people. When individuals are seeking healthcare whether that be preventative, treatment for long or short term conditions, or emergency care they should be able to focus on their health and wellbeing not just what they are able to afford before going broke.
It is my second year at BMCC and my major is business management. My goal is to finish my associates degree and pursue a career in real estate. I am doing business because I find the classes interesting. My plan is to eventually start my own real estate business.
I am thankful that my parents have quality health insurance and I am able to be covered under their insurance plan. However, my cousin is not so lucky and I would like to talk about his experience with the healthcare system in New York.
My cousin is 19 and has health insurance under his parents plan but his parent’s plan does not cover many health care costs. While playing football my cousin dislocated his shoulder and his health insurance didn’t cover the costs of medical exams so he had to pay $2,000 out of pocket. His insurance also does not cover the full cost of medicines that he needs. For example, when a medicine costs $180, he has to pay $100 and his insurance only covers $80, less than half of the cost.
He often cannot count on his health insurance when accidents happen. One time at work my cousin got in an accident and got a piece of metal in his eye, and his insurance does not cover eye doctors, so he had to pay $200 out of pocket for the exam.
Next year, after I graduate from BMCC I will move out of my parents house and get a job. I will look for my own health insurance coverage then. I believe that universal health care is a good idea because it will help out a lot of low-income people who don’t get paid well at their jobs. It will help people pay for other expenses such as rent, groceries, and paying for their children’s school supplies instead of worrying about the high costs of healthcare. The current price of some medicines is ridiculous. For example, eye drops can cost $300 if insurance doesn’t cover them and this makes basic healthcare needs inaccessible to all. This needs to be changed by passing universal healthcare in NYS.
I’m a junior at Hunter College majoring in Political Science with a minor in Women and Gender Studies and a minoring in Legal Studies. After graduating college, I plan to attend law school to get my J.D. and become a licensed legal attorney.
There have been a couple of times where my loved ones needed better health care but weren’t able to get it. During my senior year of high school, my father got very sick and was diagnosed with a disease that affected his kidneys, and his body broke down proteins. It was a sporadic disease that not much of the population dealt with, so it took a while to figure out what was happening to him and why. He grew weak, lost and gained extreme weight, and had to fight through unemployment for medical reasons. He mostly got his healthcare through his job. He needed to get more help medically, and it was scary that at this time, in the early phases of his illness, he couldn’t go to the doctor and get the help he needed earlier when his life was at risk. He also had trouble getting the medicine he needed to treat and maintain his illness after being diagnosed. The insurance he got at his new job didn’t completely cover the medicine or his treatments, so he’d have to cover the rest out of pocket. It has always been an issue for my father to get full healthcare coverage and find good health insurance that would help him.
I do have health insurance, and I’m covered mostly through my mom from Medicare. I have HealthFirst, as do my sisters. Aging out of my mom’s health insurance plan is scary, and I’m not looking forward to making that huge transition. I am not struggling with the high cost of medical bills or medical debt, but I know my father is dealing with medical debt from the previous situation. Not having a job or not working while incapable of doing so due to medical reasons was very difficult, and my father had to take out loans to pay for rent and cover medical bills. It was a tough time, but my father is significantly better now and has the medicine to treat his illness.
I’m a first year student studying film at Pratt Institute. After school, I’m going to become a director and open my own production company. I have needed healthcare and haven’t been able to get it. Very recently, the plan I was on changed from covering my prescriptions and pharmaceuticals to a different setup. The new plan covers me and my parents, but not my prescriptions, and I need my prescriptions to be able to function. Going into the pharmacy, standing in line, and getting told that I couldn’t get my prescription- not even getting a call from my insurance plan to tell me what’s happening with my plan, not even a heads up- was a lot. I was told that it changed because my dad had retired, but I don’t stay in touch with my dad, so I wouldn’t have known.
I have government insurance, and it used to allow me to go anywhere in the country and get covered when my dad was on active duty. Now, because he’s retired, I can only go to certain military bases or hospitals to get covered. I’m very concerned about losing benefits due to aging out of my parent’s plan. With my current insurance, I have it as long as I’m in school until I’m 25, but if one day my dad decides to take me off his plan, he could. So every time I go into the pharmacy, I have to wonder “Am I going to have healthcare today?” Or I have to call my main practitioner and ask, “Am I still enrolled with you?” It’s really intense.
I believe that it’s important to have a more equitable healthcare system in New York because healthcare is a right. People deserve to have access to hospitals and to other things that they need, and they shouldn’t have to be struggling to pay bills or worrying about if they can eat or get their medication. That’s not fair. People deserve to be treated, even if they’re just scared they might be sick and want to go in for a checkup. There’s no price you can put on somebody’s health. That’s why universal healthcare is important- because at the end of the day, when it’s profit versus health, there shouldn’t even be a competition. It should be health every time, a public good every time.