Tuesday, January 10, 2017
While it lasts
I had been playing healthcare roulette since, oh, 1999 when I went freelance. I lucked out for the most part. My health was sufficiently good, no major injuries, and my occasional out of pocket expenses were a fraction of the cost of paying insurance for eighteen years. (Funny how when you cancel a policy they don't give you back all that money you paid in but never used.) I would have been totally screwed if something major had happened, but it didn't. "I just need to hang in there until I can get Medicare."
Well, I slid safely into home, only to have Congress itching to blow up Medicare, ACA, Medicaid and everything else.
So I'm going to play a less risky version of healthcare roulette again. Sure, let Part A (while it lasts) cover the poverty-creating hospital costs. But I'm going to opt out of Part B (while it lasts) rather than have them deduct a hundred-twenty-something dollars a month from my Social Security check (while it lasts) for doctor visits, lab work and such that I probably wouldn't be using in the foreseeable future. I'll also opt out of Part D (while it lasts), because I have Part M. M for Mexico. Perfectly good medications at a fraction of the US prices.
In a few months—or even days—a lot of Americans are going to wake up to find themselves totally screwed by the people who promised to make the country great again. They might grandfather in people who already have Medicare, in which case I and millions of others could relax a little. If not, then for me it will be a return to the old no-coverage status quo. I've been there, I've done that. I can do it again. While I last.