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Premature Preexisting Rant

on November 7, 2012

One of my main core principles is to keep my rants to a minimum.  Really. I know that sounds strange coming from a person who has a blog but it is the truth.  I’m all for having an all out tizzy from time to time when the circumstances warrant but for the most part I try not to do that too often.  I most certainly try not to rant without a really good reason. That’s what I thought anyway until recently. Now I’m a bit concerned that I’m turning into one of “those” old ladies.  You know the ones. The ones who complain loudly and without reason about everything.  The ones who make life miserable for everyone within earshot.  Yeah….one of “THOSE” old ladies.  The reason for my new-found concern? My premature preexisting rant last week.

I have been very blessed to have had very few medical issues thus far. If you don’t count giving birth I’ve only been in the hospital twice.  For anything. Ever. One of those visits happened twenty years ago when I was having chest pains and my husband dragged me to the Emergency Room. (He’s such a nervous nelly!) It turned out that I had  Graves Disease which had my pulse up to 180 when we finally hit the ER. (That explains the chest pains.)  Obviously I’d had it a while because that doesn’t happen overnight.  The treatment was to have my thyroid “shrunk” or as I like to say “blown up” by radio-active iodine. (That explains my glowing personality. Yes….that was bad…but I had to.) Cool: Graves Disease gone and heart back to normal rhythm. Problem: you must have some sort of thyroid hormone in your body and if your thyroid is gone it’s pretty hard to produce it.  Solution: a tiny pill taken daily.  That was twenty years ago.  By law the doctors have to draw blood once a year to make sure that my thyroid level is within “range” once a year so that they can renew my prescription for the tiny pill.  The tiny pill that keeps me from turning into a giant weight-gaining slug with no energy and dry skin who is freezing all the time if I don’t take it.  So once a year I go in, they draw my blood and then renew my prescription.  No changes in twenty years.  No big deal. Until last week.

The letter from the insurance company arrived looking quite innocent. I assumed it was just a form telling me that they had paid the claim for my recent yearly blood test.  They’d already paid for all my other yearly tests.  I opened it and gave it a cursory glance until “Patient Responsible” caught my eye.  Huh?  Upon further examination and following the “codes” listed it appeared that the insurance company had determined that this was a preexisting condition and therefore not covered. WHAT? I began to feel a rant coming on.

  • SIDE NOTE:  For those of you thinking “I thought the health care reform bill said they can’t do that anymore” you are half correct.  They can’t if you are under the age of 19.  If you are slightly older they can still deny your claims until 2014. That was your free health care reform trivia for today.  Don’t ask me to explain any of the rest of  the health care reform because quite frankly I don’t think anyone understands the whole thing but that is a different rant and blog all together.

I have never in twenty years seen the words “preexisting condition” on an insurance form.  Where they kidding?  At this point in my life it isn’t even a “condition” it’s more like a yearly maintenance thing. I was working myself up into a true tizzy.  “Being a woman is preexisting too are you going to quit paying for those yearly tests next?” I thought. How about “You were born therefore being susceptible to disease is preexisting?!” Yes….I was working myself into a true dandy of a rant.

I should insert here that I would rather chew on a large wad of tinfoil than have to deal with any insurance company. I don’t like them – any of them – at all. While I don’t like to deal with them I’ll be hanged if I let them get away with not paying for things they should so I’ve been known to take them on from time to time.  I was especially dreading this call because, honestly, I don’t like our new insurance company.  I feel like I have to argue with them over everything. I don’t really, because we very seldom file a claim, but I feel like I do.  I rather miss the insurance from my husband’s prior place of employment but that is probably because I am just not used to the new one.

As I was stewing and working into a dither my husband, who was getting the text version of my oncoming rant, texted me: “Just leave it. I’ll call them on Monday when I’m home.”  Some days super heroes don’t wear capes. While I didn’t forget about my agitation until my husband returned home I was able to suppress it. Until Monday afternoon when the second claim sheet came denying the rest of the claim. (Why doctors office have to bill everything separate is beyond me but, again, different blog and rant.)  As my eyes began spinning counterclockwise my ever patient husband picked up the phone and dialed the claim question hotline. I think he was afraid I would get us blackballed by the insurance company if I talked to them.  As I was hissing whispering to him all the reasons they should pay it he calmly asked why they denied the claim.  Then I heard: “Oh.” Pause. Chuckle. “Oh I was sure we’d sent that.” Another pause. “So do I need to send that still or will you take care of it?”  Huh?  He was supposed to be chewing some insurance person booty!  What was wrong with him??  He hung up the phone and told me it was taken care of it.    “He accomplished that without yelling? How did he do that?” I thought.  Then he calmly explained to me the two issues:

  1. The insurance company didn’t have documentation of our previous insurance showing that I’d been covered.  I thought I’d sent that in but evidently I didn’t.
  2. I went in one day (yes – ONE) prior to the 12 month preexisting condition waiting period expiring.

The nice lady on the phone just waived it through and told him not to worry about it. Problem solved without any ranting.  Or scaring insurance ladies.  Or making an idiot of yourself on the phone.  It’s a good thing my husband volunteered to make that call because I was all geared up to yell at someone for my own screw-ups.  Yeah…..I feel sheepish.  And scared.  If I’m  prone to rant over stuff that is no one’s fault but my own now I should be a real HOOT at age 80!




2 responses to “Premature Preexisting Rant

  1. Oh, you were making my blood boil just reading this!! I’ve had so many problems with insurance companies!! If it hadn’t all turned out okay, I would have gladly made that phone call for you!!! LOL!!

    • wedelmom says:

      I know what you mean. They certainly don’t like to pay for anything they don’t have to do they? I thought I was going to have to kill someone when our daughter messed up her shoulder. I won that one too. You just have to stay so on top of things…I hate it!
      I’ll keep you in mind the next time I need an insurance advocate! 😉

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