Friday, January 04, 2013

My Money and My Mouth

I’m not giving details here, because they are not relevant, but I have been having some issues which led the doctor to decide that a colonoscopy was needed on a more than routine basis. Unfortunately, I have several infirmities which make that procedure unsafe for me, so he decided to order a sigmoidoscopy and a “virtual colonoscopy” instead. Most of you know what the former is, I had it done yesterday, enjoyed it about as much as you might expect I would, and everything was fine.

A problem has arisen with the latter, however, in that the insurance company will not approve payment for the procedure. It is a new process, and in fact only one center in San Diego currently does it. It’s the same as a colonoscopy, preparation is the same, only instead of a scope, they do the exam by means of a CAT scan.

I’ve been saying that we need to exercise some degree of sanity in controlling health care cost; it’s time to put my money where my mouth is, and I’m not really having much difficulty doing that. I find myself in sympathy with the insurance company, here, even though it’s me and my health which is at stake. This is a process that is so new that it’s really still experimental, is of unproven efficacy, and I can see why the cost of it should not be amortized into the overall cost of health insurance.

If this test is not approved I don’t think I’m going to be upset about it. It will then boil down to a decision on my part that if I want badly enough for it to be performed then the cost will be taken out of my own pocket rather than having it paid by everyone else who buys health insurance. I’m inclined to think that a few more medical test decisions should be made that way.

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