July 2, 2009, 5:53 pm

Welcome to the World of the Entitled

109842-main_FullThis. Is. Pitiful.

This came from a site describing how to make a nursing costume.

Have I ever tried to make one?

Oh, hell yeah!

I’ve made a ton of them!
capAnd they look better than that one!

I have proof!

Is that cool, or what?

(This is what happens when I don’t have any classes to study for!)

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Next Thursday will mark the 3rd anniversary of Change of Shift, which will be hosted right here at Emergiblog.  I’m out and about looking for submissions from the nursing blogs I have come to know over these many years, and would love to have as many nurses submit as possible! After all, Change of Shift doesn’t exist without YOU, be you doctor, nurse, administrator or patient!

I’ve been wasting time working hard on a permanent new logo to start off the new year, so join in the celebration! Click the “contact” button on the top bar and send in your nurse-related stories.  This has the makings of a great edition!

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Why shouldn’t we have to pay for our health care?

Why….we don’t have that sort of money!!!  How dare you even suggest that we should pay!!!!

We manage to buy cigarettes. We manage to buy fast food.  Often. We manage to get all the channels we want via cable or satellite television. Some of us even have satellite radio in our cars. And GPS.  Our cell phones are really nice, but all that texting costs a pretty penny.   We drop a few bucks at Starbucks every week without thinking twice.

And then we roll our eyes when we have to pay for….god forbid…..health care!

*****

Think I’m heartless?  Think I’m an elitist?

Think I’m talking about the Medicare patients in my ER who bring in a super-sized number 8 from McDonalds for the entire family and hold out their right arm for a BP while they text rapidly with their left hand?

I could be.

But I’m not.

The patient rolling their eyes at having to pay was me.

*****

Yeah.

Me.

Showed up for a colonoscopy yesterday and the receptionist went over what would and would not be covered by my insurance.

My out-of-pocket payment would be $216.

And my first thought was “why the hell am I paying anything out of pocket for this? I have insurance!”

I was ticked.

*****

But why was I ticked?

Why shouldn’t I have to incur out-of-pocket expenses?

I have insurance.  Good insurance. Insurance I don’t pay a single penny for. It’s a benefit I get from my employer for working 24 hours a week.

Did I think I was entitled to full coverage because I was insured?

Entitled?

Me?

*****

Isn’t that term used to describe some patients who get their health care for “free” through a public plan?

Well, I get my coverage for “free”, too, and god help me, the emotion I felt in that office yesterday was “entitlement”.

Now I understand.

And I won’t use that term again.

Ever.

14 Comments

  • Reality Rounds
    Reality Rounds

    July 2, 2009 at 8:11 pm

    Very timely post. My family eats McDonalds twice a year, on vacation. I confess to eating a quarter pounder with cheese. We are talking 500 calories and 1200gms of sodium. Yikes. But only twice a year. Yes, we should all pay a portion of our health care. We all need to take ownership, if we can. There should be discounts on insurance for healthy living. If you want to smoke, eat like crap, not use birth control, then you should pay more. I guess I sound harsh, but this is reality.


  • Candy
    Candy

    July 2, 2009 at 8:48 pm

    Very thought provoking — unfortunately, in order to erase this thought, everyone will have to read and buy into what you said. I know that won’t happen, and you’ll have to deal with those who BELIEVE healthcare is a right, like breathing. when it’s not available at all, people will take notice, but, unfortunately, I don’t think many will until it gets to that point. Keep writing.


  • Rachel
    Rachel

    July 3, 2009 at 5:42 am

    I’m going through some of the same feelings right now with fighting over test strips and another prescription through my prescription coverage. I can see why people give up on blood sugar testing if they can’t get coverage for more than one strip a day.


  • Sean
    Sean

    July 3, 2009 at 6:28 am

    I think this ‘attitude’ rolls over into just about everything going on in our world today, not just healthcare.
    Somehow we created a horrible aura of ‘entitled’ instead of ‘earning’.
    Hmm.
    Thanks for the reminder.


  • Flo
    Flo

    July 3, 2009 at 7:36 am

    I’ve definitely had moments when I’ve wondered why I’m paying for insurance at all. For example when I found out that my $500+/month insurance plan didn’t cover check-ups. WTF?


  • WWWebb
    WWWebb

    July 3, 2009 at 11:23 am

    I acquired an open fracture of my right tibia on May 22nd, and am maybe 75 percent done with treatment of same if you ignore the physical therapy that has not yet commenced.

    The best cure for “entitlement” is to go through a drawn-out series of operations, weekly visits to two specialists (ortho and plastics) and home care nurses (vacuum dressing changes).

    I am, and continue to be amazed at just how much of all this my insurance *IS* covering, and without my having to fight with them about any of it, as has been the case with some things that have happened to my kids when I was covered by another insurance company.

    Thank you, Aetna.


  • Mother Jones, RN
    Mother Jones, RN

    July 3, 2009 at 2:27 pm

    I get upset because I’m paying more for my insurance while getting less. Everyone is getting less. The docs are getting less for reimbursement, patients are getting less time with their docs while paying more money for copays, and hospitals are struggling to keep their doors open. And don’t get me started on the price of medications even if you have insurance. Holy cow! It seems like the only ones not struggling on their insurance companies. Personally, I’m for some form of public option plan that requires EVERYONE to pay their fair share. Thank you for your timely post.


  • AlisonH
    AlisonH

    July 4, 2009 at 7:47 am

    There is nobody who has a sense of entitlement like the private-insurance executives, who are not bound by the same pre-existing coverage laws as HMOs: did you read this? http://www.latimes.com/features/health/la-fi-rescind17-2009jun17,0,5975386.story?page=1&track=rss
    They openly admitted to a congressional committee to dumping patients with high medical bills over any possible thing they can, including for things the doctor noted on their records but didn’t tell the patients. You defrauded us! You had acne 20 years ago and didn’t tell us! Out you go, and take your medical bills with you!


  • Pattie, RN
    Pattie, RN

    July 7, 2009 at 11:00 am

    WWWebb..right there with you, my friend. In one horrid year Blue Cross paid for my TAH/BSO, the repair of same after a whopping case of post-op pneumonia caused the wound to dehis, an ORIF of a comminuted tib-fib fx and associated therapies, as well as all the meds that went with these problems. Out of pocket cost-$500. Glad to not pay the other $47,000 ish. Two weeks ago I took my severe facial cellulitis to the ER on a weekend, knowing that I was going to pay $200 for an IV antibiotic…it still beat all hell outta surgery for an untreated brain or sinus abcess. Don’t EVER tell me you can’t afford health care needs if you have acrylic nails, a hair weave, a high end cell phone and ciggies in your purse or pocket. The money is there, it is a matter of misplaced priorities about 96% of the time!!


  • Kayla
    Kayla

    July 8, 2009 at 5:25 pm

    Many of the attitudes on this blog make me sad. The above comment was so blatantly racist I don’t know where to begin (hair weave~ REALLY?)

    I work for a company that’s one of the largest employers in our community. Most staff are worked 36 hours a week and not granted health care benefits. The average hourly wage here is $8.00/hr. My co-workers don’t have satellite radio or a GPS~ most of them are driving older cars and praying that they hold up long enough for them to afford another and fighting to keep their family in a home.

    Capitalism itself implies that there’s a ranking of socio-economic status~ there will always be those who are poor. Many of those are working poor I might add, who don’t all smoke and eat McDonald’s!!!

    Whether or not you agree with health care reform, some of you are making judgements about the uninsured that are stereotypical and mean-spirited.


  • Pattie, RN
    Pattie, RN

    July 9, 2009 at 5:41 am

    Kayla, I would love to know how you “discover” racism where it does not exist.

    First off, you have NO idea what my ethnic background is, (Although I will add that my screen name and legal name are VERY different) and secondly I have no clue how hair weaves are “racist”. My experience with such is limited, but the last time a friend got some “help” before a big date, hair for sale ranged in color from platinum blond to black.

    The point you are missing or ignoring is simple–don’t buy crud you can’t afford and then say you have no money for health care and/or health care insurance….and people who beleive in fiscal responsibility ALSO come in many colors!!


  • mercutio
    mercutio

    July 15, 2009 at 6:19 am

    $216?!?! thats NOTHING. we have to pay $9000 before the insurance company will start covering anything. that means a colonoscopy costs about $5000.


  • mercutio
    mercutio

    July 15, 2009 at 6:20 am

    oh, and we pay $1000 a month as well.


  • Kiku
    Kiku

    December 11, 2009 at 8:50 pm

    Man, I feel so entitled. I just want my family to be able to eat a square meal, and have healthcare. It is soley entitlement that we poor Americans want to live. Thanks for your contribution. We really do need to rally together and show America who feels entitled to have the healthcare that we all need, the rich and the impoverished. It has little to do with our intendended eating habits….fatty meats cost less than healthy meats. It has nothing to do with excersise, and everything to do with the quality of care we recieve. I don’t know about you, but I haven’t seen a doctor in nearly a decade and a half. Not because I don’t want or need to see a doctor, but because I can’t afford to. Why can’t I afford to? Because I was ejected from college for the simple fact that I literally couldn’t afford it. I had grants, scholarships, and student loans, and still ended up owing the university nearly 5k for 2 semesters, and couldn’t return until I paid it.


About Me

My name is Kim, and I'm a nurse in the San Francisco Bay area. I've been a nurse for 33 years; I graduated in 1978 with my ADN. My experience is predominately Emergency and Critical Care, and I have also worked in Psychiatry and Pediatrics. I made the decision to be a nurse back in 1966 at the age of nine...

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