Thursday, January 07, 2010


I have just spent the past half hour stuck in a morass that illustrates beautifully just why the U.S. healthcare system is, frankly, a load of old boswellox. The insurance company sent a payment to the diagnostic company; the diagnostic company claims it has received nothing. The insurance company tells me that I - not the people to whom I pay a large amount, monthly - am to phone the diagnostic company to get them to phone the insurance people to stop the cheque and start again. The diagnostic company "cannot make outgoing calls" - it's "just a call centre." I have to get the insurance company to fax them the statement of benefits. But the insurance company won't do that - vague worries under HIPAA, the patient privacy act, apparently. So now the insurance company will mail me the statement, and then yours truly has to fax the diagnostic company.

So let's get this straight: I am covered. The payment for the treatment has been sent, and approved. And yet I am running round like an idiot trying to sort this out for the people who I am paying so highly to run this stuff. So even when it works - i.e. covered healthcare - it doesn't work administratively or bureaucratically.

Frankly, it's ludicrous. It's times like this that I long for home.

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