Letters to the Editor

Seniors? Don’t care too much, you might kill us

Dear Sir,

Thank you for the vent that is to follow on behalf of my 90-year-old father. He recently went for a checkup to his doctor and was charged copay of $200. Is it me or does this seem an outrageous fee?

Having left school at an early age to help his family, my father has worked continually until retirement. And, yes, he and my mother put away for a rainy day.

They werenít the couple that took excessive trips, but built their own house, without the help of a bank that wasnít on a level playing field for all. However, rainy-day savings were used for the hurricane days of senior living in this country.

Now he receives $750 from his pension, of which he pays back to FutureCare $540. Do you get this maths problem?

Of the $210 he has left, $200 will have to be paid to his doctor. And they ó insurance companies, the Government, the doctors ó care about seniors? Well, donít care too much; you might kill us in the process.

Here is what really irked me: the physicians of this country, even if they were paid only what the insurance companies allowed ó the subject of another letter ó they would still be at the very high echelons of the pay scale and sustain a really good living.

Yes, they do have fees to pay out, tongue depressors, paper to roll out on their table, malpractice insurance, staff, lights, etc, and I can understand somewhat a dentist because they have a huge stock of materials, plus all the other stuff a physician pays out. So why the greed? The answer is because they can.

Another issue to focus on is FutureCare. My father, whom I might add is in terrific physical shape, was visiting his foot specialist every one or two weeks for care. I decided that this was nonsense and wanted to find a definitive solution. We decided to have a relatively simple procedure to alleviate this problem. The procedure was done for $800, of which Future Care paid zero. Why? because it was done in his office. Who makes these rules? I was told that I could write to have my case considered. When no reply came, I called to be told this was the policy. FutureCare has not the sense to realise that had he continued with weekly and biweekly visits, he would have paid over and above the $800.

Instead, he saved them money, he is relieved of the weekly pain, and saved the time and cost of going to King Edward VII Memorial Hospital ó it seems like a win for all.

The easy and practical way of doing things isnít what they do there. Needless to say, I didnít get a portion refund. This is not right.

VICKY GRIMES