In a day which it is absolutely clear just nothing was going right, I should have crawled back into my covers, hid away from the world and told my surgical consult appointment to go take a long walk on a short pier. Feeling like crap this morning, tired, headache, not a good morning, and baseline pain in my ankle was not the start I had envisioned. Jax didn’t get his lunch made, we were running 5 mins late leaving the house, and this all looked bad for my quick turnaround to drop Jax off and then get to my appointment check in time, 30 mins before my appointment. First off why 30 mins before, and why do I try to make it. Well because I am one of those individuals that detests being late; as to why 30 mins early, I have no earthly idea. So I make it to check in at 8:24, stand in line for 10 mins get checked in, and sent to fill out a medical questionnaire, I stand in line for another 8 mins, before I am informed, “oh you did all this online please go have a seat in the waiting area, and listen for your name.” So wait a min, all of the rest of these people ignored the 6 emails and messages I received about filling out this information? And then the waiting begins. It is not until 9:15 that I look up and see that there is a very small dry erase board at the end of the room, and it lists the Dr. I am supposed to see and says “1 hr behind”. Well that’s just flipping wonderful. At 9:45 I get called back to the clinic, am immediately handed a card to take to X-Ray and I get to go sit in a different waiting room. After a set of 12 X-rays, I am sent back to the clinic who still isn’t ready for me and then moved back to the original waiting room. So far this morning I have walked about a mile, for an Orthopedic surgical consult, the logic of this movement and this procedure is absolutely absurd to me, I am like the only person in the waiting room without a cast, a boot, or a wheelchair, and if they got yo-yoed anywhere close to what I did that seems to be barbaric. Was the purpose of this exercise to induce pain so it was easier to diagnose, or is the red taped jostling a symptom of illogical bureaucracy. At 10:45 I get called back to my clinic to take my vitals, after changing the cuff to a larger size 3 times, when I tried to warn her, that they always have to use the maroon cuff on me, we finally get my blood pressure, which guess what, it was a little high today. And then moved to another room, where I get to go over absolutely every detail of my most recent accident, as well as answer questions about the previous accidents with residents. Why do I have medical records if I am expected to remember the dates and accidents that were all treated at the exact same hospital. It was very easy for them to see that I have an outstanding balance on a previous brace, but they cant see what the injuries and treatments were? The the doctor comes in spends 5 mins torquing twisting manipulating and tweaking my ankle, and tells me, it appears that you have some nerve damage, and that this isn’t all that uncommon but could take up to 6 more months to heal. So after 3.5 hours of my life, a pound of carrion flesh, what might have been left of my sanity, and frustration on my part, I leave with a night splint (a walking boot you sleep in but don’t walk in because it isn’t very strong and has a slick bottom), and a diagnosis of nerve damage… oh and take some vitamins to speed the recovery. In a world of connectivity, why is it that the only thing the Medical Field seems to do expeditiously is bill us. While dealing with the current fact that my “in case shit happens” insurance doesnt cover near enough of the expenses of daily medical care, thank you Wellmark, let alone accounting for injuries; it takes an entire morning to spend 5 mins with a doctor to get a nerve damage diagnosis that really we aren’t going to do anything for. Something in this system is highly flawed. I wanted to write so many things that would have sounded like they came from my Dad, but most of them tended towards the graphic or inappropriate side of things, so I had to go with Thank you Sir may I have another, and it was not a spanking I enjoyed in the least. I feel as if I was just prescribed, “Does it hurt when you do this? what about this? and that? Ok….. Dont do those things.” type of medical care. I know that there are so many people in the world with so many more serious medical issues than I have, and if they go through anything close to what I experienced this morning I am amazed we haven’t seen more change. As for me, I am simply going back to leeches and blood letting, it seems to make about as much sense as the current methods, and is a hell of a lot cheaper.
Today we are going to go back on the frustration roll, and I am going to pick specifically on the idea of insurance. We all have insurance, health insurance, car insurance, life insurance, home insurance, cell phone insurance, hell I am pretty sure I could go find insurance insurance if I really went in search of it. But we can all call insurance what Chris Rock described it as….. In Case Shit….. because isn’t that really what we are doing? We pay our insurance company in the event that in case shit happens we will have some sort of protection.
This idea is all well in good in itself. I pay lord knows how much in health insurance (ok my wife does) and no one in my family goes to the doctor frequently. I pay for an Aflac accident policy, that is used more than you can imagine, read any of my blogs about soccer or softball. We can just call it the old man policy. And I pay for cell phone insurance on 3 of the phones on our plan, in case Max goes swimming with his phone in his pocket, in case Max pisses Trixie off and she pees on his phone, in case Alex decides to drop her phone repeatedly in one week, or in case any other catastrophes were to befall our communication devices. But those aren’t even the ones I am going to take issue with today, oh no the problem I have today is far more aggravating and dare I say pernicious.
We have 2 vehicles, and carry FULL coverage on both of them, because living in Iowa with our fun filled weather conditions, you never know when you are going to be involved in an accident. But lets discuss just what that coverage means. You see I am going to be nice and not name the company I have my insurance with, but if I ever see that small little gecko, or that obnoxious talking pig, I am going to punt both of them so far they will need a passport when they land. We are very lucky in that we have been in very few instances when I have had to call and deal with our car insurance, but at no point would I ever say that I was happy or satisfied. Attempting to file a claim, and see it through requires such a gauntlet of bureaucratic red tape that Max Weber would be brought to tears.
The instance that took up more than 2 hours of my life yesterday was just absurd. On Monday night our car was sitting parked in our driveway; not out driving, not parked in the street, parked in our driveway, and the wonderful people who clear our neighbors driveway of snow, decided to hit the rear of our car with the plow blade. Now first off it was not as if he stopped immediately to come tell us this happened, and had my daughter not seen it happen I am not sure he would have, but I put down my dinner and went to collect his insurance information. April gets on the wonderful little insurance app and starts our claim. The damage is minimal, but this is at least the 2nd time if not more that our vehicle has been hit, dinged, bashed, or scratched by something going on in our neighbors driveway.
Yesterday morning I receive the first phone call that consists of 10 mins of getting a run around because I am not April (who put in the claim) although as I pointed out I am listed on the policy, and am listed as the primary driver on the vehicle in question. After this has been dispensed with, I am asked a few questions, and am told I will be called back once the claim progresses. 1 hour later I get a call, asking the same information as before, and still having to go through the fun of getting past the fact that my name is not April, I am about at the point now of just answering the phone, “Hi this is April,” just to avoid this massive time suck. But the full reason for the call was that somehow they had the wrong vehicle listed on the claim, when I am certain April designated the appropriate vehicle when placing it.
An hour after this, and I get another phone call, still have to go through the whole I am not April thing, but her husband, and yes I can deal with this absolute farce, and for the 3rd time today have to answer questions as to where was the vehicle parked, was anyone in it, how did the accident occur. At this point I am biting my tongue wanting to question whether or not anyone at this company has a flipping computer and is capable of taking down notes. You know that message you get that says that this phone call may be recorded for quality assurance, well if you are recording my call, why the hell can you not go to the recording, I have already answered these questions time and time again. But for some reason I remained calm cool, and mildly collected and answered the questions, and was told thank you they would get my claim processed as soon as possible.
It was the 4th phone call that sent me over the edge, I was informed that since the collision happened in my driveway that it was considered a no fault accident, and that I could get it repaired, and them submit my claim and anything above my deductible would be refunded to me, or they could attempt after it was repaired to seek reimbursement for my deductible from the other persons insurance company. This is where I flip out, and ask to be explained how my car getting hit in my driveway is no fault. If I am not in it, I am parked legally on my property, and the car isnt moving……… HOW IN HADES IS THIS NO FAULT. I was given some insurance double speak that made about as much sense as someone pissing down my back and telling me it is raining. But at the end of this I am informed that I could attempt to file a claim directly with the other persons insurance if I had that information. Well I said I did, and had sent that to you, because I guess I was under the mistaken perception that I start my claim with you, provide you the relevant information and then you handle things from there. At which point I was informed that they normally don’t do that.
This leads to at least a 3 or 4 minute tirade as to what is it your company actually does for the check I pay you every month. I have never caused an accident, and whether termed no fault or not, the other persons insurance has been liable for the 3 accidents my vehicles have been part of. The way I see it, I am sending you money every month, so that when something happens you can waste my time, attempt to screw me without even buying me dinner, and laugh at me once the phone is hung up, because I am paying you for absolutely nothing. So after I turn into my own little personal anger ball, and go off at this side talking insurance lackey, I am informed that if I would like them to they could contact the other persons insurance company and get a claim started directly with them, although that is not their normal policy. Very calmly now, I ask and why wasn’t that option given to me in the beginning, I was told I had 2 options and since that point I have been given 2 more. So yes I would love it if you would contact the other insurance company and start a claim directly with them.
After 3 more phone calls, one from my insurance telling me the claim had been started and 2 from the other insurance company, I have a field adjuster coming out to look at the car on Thursday, I am not near as frustrated with the other insurance company, and am left here wondering just why it is I have to get to the point of being a complete ass in order to get these cooperate pigs to stop trying to take advantage of us. The insurance racket seems to be nothing more in most cases than legalized theft. They take your money every month, or 6 months, or year, or whatever in case shit happens, and when shit doesn’t happen, that money just goes into their wallets, and when shit does happen, they try every means available to make sure that they pay you little or if possible nothing. I know this isn’t all insurance, I like my Life insurance agent, he went to school with my wife, but right now the rest of the industry has me frustrated to no end. I currently cant wait for the end of my day so I can have a shit happened drink, and prepare for the shit that is going to happen tomorrow, at least that isn’t throwing money away. Have a good day everyone and I hope you don’t need to call your insurance company anytime in the near future.