A slightly medicated post from post-surgery land…
A little over a year ago I was diagnosed with Grave’s disease, which involves an unfortunately over-active thyroid messing up all kinds of metabolic function. I didn’t have insurance at the time I was diagnosed, having let it lapse due to my near-impoverished status at the time. Once diagnosed, I was able to reinstate my insurance, but with the policy’s insanely high deductible, it did little to curb the cost of necessary tests and specialists visits.
At the time, doctors recommended I get the thyroid removed, but I couldn’t even imagine doing so because I’d have to cover the first $8,000 of any operation out of my own (empty) pocket due to my $5,000 deductible/$3,000 co-insurance policy.
So I went on anti-thyroid meds and set my sites on the ACA rollout date as a bastion of insured hope.
Last week I finally got my thyroid removed. I received excellent medical care. My deductible was only $500.
I’m an artist, and an adjunct faculty member at a community college. I am also a substitute teacher who writes for an online magazine. I produce a female playwright festival and I teach youth workshops. None of these pays very well, and not a one offers me insurance like I’m able to get through the ACA website. I work hard at all these under-paying gigs because I enjoy the work and because I believe I will one day find a full-time teaching position at a university (the power of positive thought!). In the meantime, the Affordable Care Act really changed my life in a huge way.
I’m still a little groggy as I recover from the operation, but I’m also really grateful for all the fight that went into making it possible for artists like myself to get the medical help they need.
I just wanted to share some of that gratitude here. I know I’m not the only one.