Staying on top of your health care…

Living On Oxygen for Life

I can’t stress to you enough the importance of staying on top of your health issues and insurance coverage.

If you haven’t already, read through your health insurance information. There are different kinds of insurance coverages out there. If you are on Social Security Disablity with Medicare, some states offer Medicare HMO plans instead of being on just straight Medicare. If you have extensive health problems, such as what I have, the Medicare HMO plan benefited me the most when it was the only thing available to me. (ie: my husband didn’t have his health insurance benefits yet)

Medical coverage changes yearly. So, it’s important to read your manual when you get it by mail. If you can’t understand what you read, either get a family member to help you or call the 1-800 number. It’s the Customer Service’s job to help you. No question is too silly to ask and ask them until you understand what you are needing to know.

In the U.S. there are other insurance plans out there, such as PPO’s, HMO, Pay-per-Visit (I think that’s what it’s called), Medi-gap and Medicaid. If you have a PPO and Medicare, it’s important to know which coverage is the Primary insurance policy. Read the fine print and call each company and find out before you go to the doctors. Believe me, screwing up the billing is a pain in the rear!

Staying on top of your health care is so important. It’s also important to make sure that all your doctors are communicating with each other to give you the best of care. If you go see, for example, your cardiologist and he recommends to see your pulmonologist, then he should be sending your PRIMARY CARE PHYSICIAN (ie: Family Doctor) a letter stating how the appointment went and what the test results were if you had any done. In the past, doctors use to do this automatically. But now, I’ve noticed, this doesn’t seem to happen. I’m always asking the doctor to send my primary care physician a letter concerning the appointment that I’m in at the time. My PH doctors actually ask ME to whom I want them to send a letter. I tell them, my cardiologist and my primary care physician so that one hand knows what the other is doing… so to speak. In my case, my lungs affect my heart and my heart affects my lungs and all of these problems can have an effect on my only kidney I was born with. Yes, I was only born with one kidney. So, I really have to be on top of things and so do my doctors.

Admittedly, it’s a lot of work. However, it’s worth it because I want to live as long as possible and have my life to be a quality one. The other thing I want to mention is that someone, a spouse or a close family member, needs to be aware of all your health issues. This is in case something drastic happens and they need to make decisions for your health care because you are unable to do so. A good thing to have is an Advance Directive, Living Will, or even a DNR document. Do a Google search for these documents based on the state/country you live in. Planning for the future can give you peace of mind.

In other news, I have been really excited about cooking Thanksgiving but now we have been invited to go to K’s aunt’s Thanksgiving dinner. I was thinking that we were going to be able to cook our own Thanksgiving dinner the following weekend but that Saturday, K has to work and then we leave for New Orleans! (unless the weather turns bad!) You heard me right! Another fun road trip with my pup, Rocco and Klondike–the road trip mascot!! So, maybe a Christmas dinner will have turkey instead. Tomorrow, I’m going on a date night. How exciting!!

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