Disabled. Washington. Statement 10131.
Categories: Patient Statements
DISABLED, BUT CANNOT AFFORD MEDICARE AND NOT ELIGIBLE FOR MEDICAID. BUT IT GETS WORSE…
I have worked for over 22 years. I went to college. I am single, with no kids. I had jobs that paid me a comfortable middle class income.
• But now I am on SSDI and unable to work due to mental health and other medical issues. It completely devastated my finances and my savings.
• I cannot afford Medicare. I only have $250/month for groceries and incidentals after rent and utilities are paid. Buying Medicare would mean that I would be unable to eat
• I make too much money ($24,000/yr) to qualify for Medicaid. Mostly due in part to the fact that I have no dependents.
• That $24,000/yr means that I am not elible for ANY food, housing, monetary, or utility programs to help cut my bills. Again, because I have no children.
I have called every state agency, the Ombudsmen, local clinics (that tried to charge me $200/visit), NAMI, 211, churches, and every agency I could think of to try and get to a doctor to see me.
They all told me there was nothing they could do.
But the worst part was yet to come!
For me, there is no point to buying Medicare anyway. Why?
• Even if I had the money to pay for Medicare, psychiatrists and physicians are no longer accepting any new Medicare (or Medicaid) patients.
• I have called over 90 mental health and primary care physicians in The Puget Sound area, and not one of them took new Medicare patients.
And since I qualify for Medicare, I cannot get insurance anywhere on the open market…(even if I could afford it) since Medicare is supposed to be my primary insurance.
To add insult to injury, my “luxurious” $24,000/year without dependents means I do not qualify for Medicaid.
In short, the government said that I was too sick to work. However, now I cannot get any doctor to see me because I no longer have access to any private employer paid insurance.
Along with mental health issues, I am now a diabetic and having chest pains. But I have no access other than the emergency room. And even emergency rooms won’t see me unless I am critical or some acute injury. Unfortunately I need comprehensive medical care from several different specialists.
So, is there really no help for me?
• I don’t have any friends or family to go live with.
• Is the message from the Medicare/Medicaid that I don’t matter and crawl away and die quietly? I cannot be the only person in this position.
• If the government said that I am too sick to work. And with such a severely limited income (particularly where I live…and I can’t afford to move), why do the disabled have to pay for insurance at all?
Why are we denied access from doctors to healthcare under the “no new Medicare patients” guideline most physicians offices adopt?
Why are we banned from getting healthcare elsewhere if Medicare is too expensive and not taken by some medical professionals anyway… particularly mental health professionals.
How many of us have to die or become life threateningly ill before someone changes the policy so that all Americans have access to healthcare?
…Particularly the disabled ones.
I need a psychiatrist, a psychologist, and a primary care physician. Where can someone like me get an doctors appointment?
Or does country no longer believe that all lives matter?
Any help would be appreciated.
Sick and exhausted in Olympia, WA