You can’t get your healthcare provider to talk to itself.
Some background to explain. Upon moving to Florida, I took a job at the University of Tampa with Ryan, where I had good health insurance. A large chunk of that insurance was covered by the University and we didn’t really worry about the insurance that much. Our insurer: BlueCross BlueShield of Florida. But upon the termination of my contract at the University of Tampa, we had to decide what we were going to do about insurance.
Turns out, the insurance at the University of Tampa is far from perfect. Ryan is covered under a minimal insurance option, at no cost to himself – he literally pays nothing to cover himself. To add Toren with the minimal coverage plan costs about $60.00 per month. To add me to his plan (and not Toren) would cost $80.00 per month. One would think, then, that to add both of us to his plan would be something like $140.00 per month. And thinking that would be wrong! Nope, it’s closer to $340.00 per month for a family plan. Now, if we had 5 or 10 kids, that would be a steal. But couples with 1 kid are charged the same as couples with 10 kids, or 20. So, what did we do? I ended up getting insurance as a student at the University of South Florida for… $80.00 per month!
Here’s where it gets fun. The plan Ryan is on is kind of a minimalist plan – there are high deductibles and you pay a percentage of every visit or prescription, but the premium is low. But here’s how BlueCross BlueShield of Florida describes their student plan that I am on:
You know a plan can’t be very good when the best the insurer can do when describing it is to call it a “limited benefits” plan.
Of course, the transition from BlueCross BlueShield of Florida to BlueCross BlueShield of Florida couldn’t go smoothly – this is a health insurance company after all. To begin with, I was denied coverage for a pre-existing condition because I did not have evidence of prior coverage. Yes, you read that right, BlueCross BlueShield of Florida denied me coverage for a pre-existing condition because they had no evidence that I was covered prior to switching to the student plan by… BlueCross BlueShield of Florida. After getting the correct form from the University of Tampa HR department and sending it to BlueCross BlueShield of Florida, BlueCross BlueShield of Florida denied my claim that I had pre-existing coverage, again. So, what does this say about health insurance providers? BlueCross BlueShield of Florida can’t communicate with BlueCross BlueShield of Florida. It’s the same fracking company!!!
Do we need healthcare reform in the U.S.? Duh!
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