Saturday, June 27, 2009

Ron in Chicago

Ron in Chicago
Originally uploaded by walk4healthcare

I met Ron along Martin Luther King Drive. He was working at painting a fence. He waved his hand towards the south side streets beyond and said, “Yes, there’s many people here without health insurance.” With a serious look, he turned back towards me. “Yes, without healthcare.”

He shared a story of an old lady from the neighborhood. She had a change in coverage that now made it too expensive to get her insulin for her diabetes. “It was all very fishy business,” Ron told me. This lady, on Medicare, was in the hospital for some time. An insurance salesman came to her hospital bed and convinced her to change her coverage (Ron couldn’t recall the exact name but he told me it sounded, “Something like ‘Well Care’”). What happened was that this ‘new’ plan didn’t cover the old lady’s particular type of insulin so, with her ‘brand-new’ private supplemental insurance plan in place, she ended up now spending $129 a month, out-of-pocket, for her medication. The insurance salesman is gone and now she’s struggling, Ron tells me, on top of her fight to stay well, to piece together her wrecked insurance and financial situation.

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