Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Battening down the hatches!

It's been a rough month for the Dada's. It all started in late July or early August when we learned of the CDC's priority list of who should receive H1N1 vaccine inoculations. Being a senior citizen, I was in that group, along with very young children and pregnant women who were the highest priorities on our cruise aboard the Titanic. It was determined I would be sailing First Class!

Mrs. Dada, being younger than I, received no mention. She was in the lowest priority group to be protected. Instead, because of limited supplies, Mrs. Dada was triaged to the "least of our worries" group. She would be somewhere below the upper decks in steerage.

"Well, with my immunity, maybe I'll be able to play nursemaid to you when you catch the swing flu!" was my consolation to her. I'm sure there were other couples around our age who were in that "same boat."

Now we've learned with the revised CDC list, Mrs. Dada has to cede her steerage Titanic cruise ticket. She's received a free upgrade! She is now a member of the priority group! However, we've also learned I've lost my place among the privileged. That's because anyone over 64 is now off the list - *Presto, bingo -- Vanished* - no longer even mentioned! I'm still mentally transitioning in the idea of going from "defendable" to "expendable."

Not even making the list, I'm not sure that I won't end up somewhere 'neath steerage, shoveling coal into the guts of a boiler from hell.

With apologies to all those town hall tea baggers. I guess maybe we do ration health care, huh?


D.K. Raed said...

I'm kind of scared about the flu shot. I've never had one before, ever, but am seriously thinking of getting one soon (assuming I "qualify").

Still, I can't help but worry about the small percentage of people who have reactions to flu shots every year, and this year will be unusual in the cocktail required for H1N1. Plus I also note that the shot can only protect against HlN1 as it existed before they mass-produced the shot. Since flu constantly mutates, it is always a crap-shoot whether the shot will be effective.

I'm thinking of waiting (in steerage! thanks for that image) until we see/hear of any reactions. I feel like I'm playing chicken with the flu. oh wait, I guess chicken flu was last year.

BTW, you can get a regular flu shot, right? And the pneumonia vaccine, if you haven't had it in the last few years. Good luck getting out of steerage, Mr Dada, and let us know how Mrs Dada handles the shot!

Fran said...

Well, for the first time in his life, my kid (now 21) has no health care insurance. He attends a large university, full of germs & students w marginal hygiene practices.

He is considered to be one of the highest risk groups.

Since he just quit his job to go to school full time, I can put him on my health insurance plan, however he is researching if by me providing health insurance, that would effect his ability to get financial aid.

Choose one: Education OR health care?

The policy they offer students to purchase through the University is one of those high price, low coverage deals with no dental or vision coverage.

I'm hoping this is not the case. But I would not be surprised if they came up with this circular loophole.

Can't get coverage unless you are a full time student.
More difficulty getting funding if your parents provide insurance coverage?

Do we need to add coal, shovel & bucket to the list of school supplies???

I think DK is on to something.... the pneumonia vaccine is probably a good one to get.... because the
CDC page lists "Influenza and Pneumonia Syndrome*" as the item w the most hospitalizations & deaths.

Dada said...

D.K. - Mrs. Dada has had her first flu shot (the regular annual thing). She's heard, ideally, you should have it about a month before the Swine-o virus one.

And you're absolutely right re the pneumonia shot. I was offered it last December at one of those Part D damn do-nut hole crap meetings. (I left, still haven't signed on to it and am being penalized 1% increased premium for every month I delay (It's just sooo damn good, I guess.)

But, foolishly, along with the *FREE* flu shot they offered while at the meeting (and I took -- it was my first Medicare bennie!), I declined the *FREE* pneumonia shot. "I'll have to check with my wife first" knowing she knows so much more about such things than I. (OK, I already said "foolish" above - I now want it.)

Fran: Thanks for citing another wonderful benefit of being an American with the 37th best health care system. That video you sent around? Well, if it turns out as you suspect it might, i.e., financial aid vs. health insurance, maybe you can get your case mentioned in the next edition of that video.

I sense your frustration and feel a little connected in your quandary by the frustration of not knowing which Medicare Part D prescription would best suit me of the 749 (?, 1749?) choices offered. Mostly because I can't foresee which ailments I'll get that require meds a particular plan MAY or MAY NOT cover. And if only you or your son could foresee his future, the school's health insurance may be more than sufficient, but, BUT....
you can't know that, can you?

I guess what we need for people like me, you, your son, etc. are some good crystal balls (unlike Max Baucus and his gang who have big brass balls).