Seniors take notice

As a care-giver, I want to warn seniors concerning insurance that promises to cover their care. My patient would've died if her physical therapist hadn't come unexpectedly and found her white as a ghost, lips turning blue and with an extremely erratic pulse. The reason: doctors' mistake in prescribing too strong medication. When she came home from the hospital that time, her insurance was supposed to pay 80 percent of in-home care. I charge $75/day for 24-hour care, but they paid only 80 percent of half of that. She was so sick that I called the medical profession for advice and my preacher for prayer. She's better after two months, so now they won't pay anything at all. She still can't change her bed, clean house, cook (after burning up two pots), wash her hair, feet and back, and with a polluted well she can't carry heated bottled water to the sink to wash dishes. She's afraid to be alone at night, and since her insurance dropped paying, she's fallen at night (unable to get up), and her oxygen machine broke at night. She's in constant pain with a herniated disc; her bad heart won't let them operate. I charge even less now, but her money's running out faster than it's coming in. She wishes she'd put the $2,000/year in the bank these past nine years so she could use it now that she needs it. The insurance would pay for assisted living or a nursing home costing between $4,000 and $5,000/month, but the $85,000 allowed won't last long. A salesman might tell you what he thinks you want to hear, so it's important for you to see the rest of the picture. Mildred G. Hall

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