Thursday, November 4, 2010

Dear Insurance Company: Really?

avoid this!
Even the fancy aroma of freshly baked chocolate chip cookies doesn’t banish the persistent ode-de-stink; nothing like the imaginary smell of an old wet down jacket or stinky boot-liner to clog up the sinus.    

Battling an ongoing sinus war is certainly not a good way to enjoy the beautiful fall weather.  Oh wait.  At 85 degrees things are continuing to bloom long since past their prime; including mold and fungus which accounts for the spectacular Petri-dish fusion up inside my head.

For going on a decade I’ve lived with the persistent muse called sinus fungus that mimics a sinus infection.  In fact there is more research these days that points to fungus being the culprit of more sinus problems than infections as once thought.  Antibiotics, while effective for treating real infections, only provides a better playground for the other stuff once the good bacteria are wiped out in the grand slam from the pharmaceuticals.  

With some spot treatment over the years, most times I am adept at handling the August/September onslaught of allergies and can keep invasion of the clinical mud room in my sinus to a minimum.  But once it takes hold, the battle begins.  I bring out the McNeil rinses, the sprays, the OTC Claritin, and a huge pot of chicken soup.  In some cases it requires a battlefield of little soldiers called antifungal that attack the monsters hiding deep inside my breathing passages.  I take no prisoners and take the battle seriously because I want them gone.  Banished.

Only a few times during the decade, (ok, a few more than a few) have I had to succeed to intervention on the part of the torture machine inside my ENT’s office.  It is with mighty fortitude and the promise of a good fine red wine afterward that I even get near that contraption.  If you’ve seen one, you know what I am talking about.  Think Dyson, made especially for the sinus; only the wand is longer than one is tall.  Impossible it would seem that it would not go straight into one’s brain, but the Doctor is quite skilled in not poking a hole into the tiny bit of gray matter that remains intact at my age.

After one treatment, I once waited to faint until I was outside his office because I was too embarrassed to do it inside.  That required not only copious amounts of wine, but some very fine dark chocolate to rid me of that nightmare.  That is why, the actual incentive why I try valiantly to take care of it myself with all the tools at hand – at home.

I finally ran out of the antifungal meds and now with a new insurance plan find myself perplexed at how they are so stingy with the cheap ass drugs.  First they would not allow the doctor’s prescribed dosage saying it was too many.   I am supposed to take the stuff for a few weeks at a time – but the insurance company insists I cannot take more than two weeks.  Of course I don’t remember them conferencing in on my doctor’s visit, but apparently they were there in spirit.

Trying my best to not get too upset with their machinations, I relented and went for the copious refills allowed at the first moment possible.  And that was nixed as well with the slap that one treatment is plenty and the drug is not for chronic issues. 
Oh, really? 

So, now the Pharmacy has to submit a form from the doctor that double pinky swears that I really need this cheap ass medication that costs less to buy than the fax machine and man power it will take to give uber special permission to use.

Got that?

Good.  Welcome to our health care system, revised.  Let’s just say it needs some fine tuning.

And let’s just wish my visiting fungus a fond farewell, just as soon as I get my medication once again.  Meantime, I am parceling out the last doses like they are the very last pieces of dark chocolate on earth.

Thank you, health care company.  So glad to have you in my corner, all the time, 24/7 and making sure my treatment fits YOUR guidelines. 

I never knew you cared so much.

1 comment:

  1. Insurance companies are the 8th Circle of Hell. I recently learned the trick of being able to obtain a 90-day supply of a prescription: have no health insurance. Then there is no one to scold you. I wonder if you can choose to not use your insurance for this prescription since it's cheap anyway?

    I'm sorry for your struggles, but this was a hoot to read!