I had developed some allergies after moving to an area that had lots more trees and grass than I was use to. I kept getting sinus infections and all the fun symptoms such as headaches, post nasal drip, pressure, and congestion. After seeing my primary care doctor twice and two ENT’s they both concluded I had allergies and needed to begin allergy testing so that they can determine how much medicine to give me to help me manage the allergies. At this point I had already been through three rounds of antibiotics that didn’t clear me up completely. My sinus CT scan came out fine, a cyst was present, which was typical of allergies I was told. One day on TV I saw a commercial for a talk show that was upcoming and a guest physician talking about netti pots – one women exclaimed in the commercial that it was the only thing that every helped her manage her sinus issues. So I was intrigued and did research online. I purchased a cheap plastic nettipot from Walgreens and began using it. From that point on I started to feel better. I was doing netti pot twice a day. It was the only thing that really gave me relief that lasted. How come not one of the three doctors I saw recommend that I use the netti pot? It became clear to me that they are taught prescription drugs and surgery instead.
Our 1 year old son needed to have some diagnostic tests to determine the cause of his non-typical asthma symptoms. These included an endoscopy to look at his upper airway for obstructions, and imaging of his brain and chest. The imaging was to be done while he was still under anesthesia and originally the physician requested a CT scan. At this point our son had several CT scans already and we were concerned about another one. Upon doing research we realized that an MRI is another option with much less radiation exposure. We brought this to the attention our sons physician and he told us that he originally chose CT scan over MRI because it's faster and will require our son to be under anesthesia, which has risks of its own, for less time. We were upset because the physician did not give us the option to choose what we felt was best for our son (being under anesthesia for longer with less radiation, or, more radiation exposure but less time spent under anesthesia) and instead made the choice for us with his original CT scan order. If it wasn't for our own gut feeling and time spent doing research, we would not have been active and informed participants in our son's care.
I took my daughter to the OB Gyne to get birth control and the entire time the doctor was selling birth control, not once did she even mention condoms as a part of our “birth control visit.” There has got to be more than pharmaceuticals that these doctors are taught in medical school.
My 3 year old daughter is ineligible to be added to my Marketplace health plan because they said if she qualifies for Medicaid she must get it from there. She however, has not had insurance for over a year because Medicaid is currently behind processing applications and my current health plan refuses to add her. I am literally requesting to throw money to my insurance plan to pay for her and they still refuse to add her. What are children suppose to do in the mean time? This is unacceptable.
I am unhappy with the lack of choice I have with my health insurance. As an international student studying business in the United States, the health insurance I purchased through my university provides me with a plan that is very different from a close friend of mine who gets her insurance through her job. For example, my insurance gives me 10 visits of therapy care a year with a psychologist, whereas my friend gets unlimited therapy with her plan. This is because my friend’s insurance plan gives the therapist the ability to make the decision of how long a patient needs to be seeing him/her, whereas my plan already made that decision for me ahead of time. I didn’t have a choice in being able to review different plans to obtain more therapy (since mental health coverage is necessary for me) and as a consumer of American healthcare I expected to have been given more choice in options for health insurance, especially since it’s a product that is purchased and sold. This makes it even more important since access to healthcare in the U.S. is through insurance.
I needed surgery due to endometriosis. I have subsidies to help my pay for insurance premiums but still had over $1500 in medical bills after. What makes anyone think I can afford this? If I have subsidies it's apparent I needs help financially as a single Mom with 3 kids. I couldn't afford my premiums so what makes anyone think I have $1500 laying around? As a result of this, even though I have insurance, I often do not go to the doctors because I'm worried about bills I cannot pay.
It was the first time I got my physical post Obamacare. I was still charged my $25 copay as I was checking out and leaving. Apparently its no longer free because it was an extended visit. We talked about other things (personal health issues, outside of the realm of the physical questionnaire) which made it no longer a “physical” appointment. I always was under the impression that the point of a physical was to discuss personal health issues. Thanks ACA, but no thanks. The incentive has now been diminished.
I went to the emergency room for a very bad headache which turned out to be related to a really bad tooth infection I got that traveled to my brain. I was told to follow-up with a neurologist and was given one as a referral within my Medicaid network. A few weeks later I attend my appointment and they tell me I am no longer on Medicaid and after making several phone calls I was told it was can called because I started to get child support. My public health insurance was taken away from me without notice.
Took my daughter for a physical at 18 years old. We didn't need it for school anymore but decided to go anyways because it was free and good practice as everyone says. It was a complete waste of my time from my perspective. She was first already 40 minutes late to the appointment. I was getting kind of aggravated for having to wait after all I did have an appointment. Since she was behind she rushed through everything. She asked questions such as what's your diet like and how often do you exercise. However, they were just screeners and didn't add have a response at all to any of my answers. 10 minutes into the appointment she gets a knock on the door and leaves for 15 minutes. I never had a doctor ever leave for that long during the appointment. She came back in and apologized and rushed through the rest. I don't know how she could have caught anything in my daughter's throat or in her ears with how fast she went through the physical exam. Totally no attention to detail or thoroughness. Straight up autopilot.
I called our pediatrician because I had received a bill for $15 for my daughter’s last well visit which included a physical that was needed for school. It was my understanding that well-visits were without co-payment because of the ACA. Her pediatrician office said that some doctor’s offices are allowed by the ACA law to still take a smaller copay after a certain time or on specific days such as: after 5 during the week, weekend or holidays. I called insurance to find out what this was about because I was not happy with the pediatrician’s office practice of charging extra. The agent on the phone said they that the claim was submitted with a code they added for after hours. So apparently, the time of day that I work penalizes me for when I can take my kids to the doctor? Where is a law to help us with that?
I received a bill in the mail for $97 for ambulance services. The balance was associated for use of a pulse oximeter. I recalled that the one on-board couldn’t be used because they didn't have one available for a baby - yet it was on the bill. When calling insurance, they said it was coded as life support, so things get lumped into one code, whether they used it or not. personally, I do not like that I am paying for something I didn’t get and then be forced to pay higher premiums every year for wasted expenses like this AND be forced to pay this bill. Insurance companies get double the money.
I have no choice when it comes to choosing my health insurance. My employer only provides me one health plan plan and I am forced to use that one - even though I am not a fan of that option - because I am not allowed by law to purchase on my state exchange since I am offered a health plan through my job and I do not qualify for Medicaid. I feel as if my choices and options as a healthcare consumer have been stripped away from me. I was basically given a health plan I needed to buy or be forced to pay a tax.
I'm on Florida Medicaid and just had a baby. After giving birth, Medicaid gave my daughter a United Healthcare Medicaid plan by default because that is what I have, even though I specifically asked them to, and filled out the paper for, to add her to StayWell because her current pediatrician that I like doesn't take United. Medicaid told me that I cannot simply just change her to Wellcare immediately, but instead I must wait a month. My newborn daughter must see the doctor sooner for her first after coming home visit because she had jaundice as slow weight gain in the hospital. Unfortunately, I have to wait a month till her WellCare insurance kicks in unless I find a new pediatrician temporarily, or not take my daughter to her 1 week followup doctor appointment as a newborn. When I call Medicaid to insist this is ludicrous, they agree with me but say it's a system problem due to the way their process is set up and no manager can fix it. She must wait 30 days."
I got my elderly mom signed up for a Medicare advantage plan. She had a monthly fee of a few dollars because of late enrollment period penalty. She was dropped at the end of the year and was not automatically enrolled because she had a $33.30 balance. An elderly woman with Parkinson Disease and diabetes, dropped over $33. Yes, I should have been watching her mail better, lessons learned for me, but this showed me how much insurance companies are after profits, and not the person. Why couldn't they have called me, her emergency contact, telling me she is about to be dropped, when apparently mail was not working? No extra effort, just dropped. That means the 8 medications she is on daily are no longer covered, as well as her regular appointments to the doctor to ensure she is thriving the best she could as an elderly woman with chronic disease.
Real life stories
about the type of every day impact healthcare in the U.S. is making with families, individuals, and businesses. They were collected as a part of our research. Submit your story here.