May 04, 2004

Broken and wanting to cry...

My finger got broken this weekend, and I am uninsured so I am screwed. I have called the LA Free Clinic, and they made me want to cry. They yelled at me and...

...told me that they don’t do broken bones, which I understand, and they said that their doctors can give referrals. So I said how can I see a doctor, and they told me to make an appointment. They want me to wait about a week to see a doctor just for the freakin’ referral. So I explain to them that broken bones don’t wait till you have an appointment before they start healing improperly, being that it could be set wrong. And they told me that that was my only option. So I said fine, if you have no options for me then who could? She then got snippy with me and told me that she had given me options, I can try to call back tomorrow for a walk in (which I did this morning and was on hold until the appointments were filled) or I can wait over a week to see the doctor. So I said, fine I get it, you guys are incapable of treating people with urgent care, can you give me the number of urgent care that I could call? And she said I could try USC medical (a place I know way too well from when one of my friends was really ill and it is not a fun place) so I said, resigned, fine give me the number. So she gives me their number and it turns out not to me for usc but rather for a printing press (which could have been useful to me 3 weeks ago, oh well.) so I call back and get another person on the phone (at this point I have talked to about 7 different people there, and am feeling completely alone and broken and uncared for) and explain my situation again. He explains to me how there is nothing they can do for me and that if I have health insurance I should just go to the emergency room. (what part of uninsured do these people not get!) so I make the f*#king appointment for over a week from now and say that hopefully I will get help before then, and can he please just give me the direct number for urgent care at usc. So he does after telling me to calm down and that it isn’t their fault (to which I want to say fuck you to him and how dare you treat me like this when I am calling you for help, I wasn’t even acting angry or anything. I am so upset at this point and just say to give me the number.) so I wait a few minutes before calling usc to regain composure. So I call and go through the automated system about 9 times having to hang up each time, trying different avenues to try and get someone on the phone. It never happens. And the funniest part of it is that every time I press the buttons to get to urgent care it rings and rings for about 10 minutes and then cut me off. So what is happing for people who have much more urgent care issues then I do! I cannot belive the state of our health care systems. I understand that there are even issues in Canada, but at least you guys can eventually get healthcare. Cuba, a country which we are constantly baggin’ for being horrible and blah blah blah, has way better health care than this fucked up country does. I am so pissed right now, and don’t know what to do. Any suggestions? I think I will have to suck it up and spend some money at a clinic to get this taken care of, but the x-rays alone will make me broke. I feel so fucked over. Grrr… help.
Woefully yours,
-professoreric

Posted by professoreric at May 4, 2004 01:04 PM

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Uninsured in L.A.
Excerpt: Is your only option really County USC? ProfressorEric broke his finger and found out that the L.A. Free Clinic doesn't treat broken bones and that he has to wait a week just for a doctor's referral. What other options does...
Weblog: Joz @ Blogging.la
Tracked: May 4, 2004 03:57 PM
A little late, but...
Excerpt: We were boingboing-ed by the fabulous Xeni Jardin (who I met this past weekend at a blogging.la get together at Cybele's place, I also met some of the other blogging.la folks: 5000!, Caryn Coleman, Jay Bushman, Jeff Koga, Will Campbell,...
Weblog: jozjozjoz.com :: brain barf... yum!
Tracked: May 10, 2004 12:03 PM
A little late, but...
Excerpt: We were boingboing-ed by the fabulous Xeni Jardin (who I met last weekend at a blogging.la get together at Cybele's place, I also met some of the other blogging.la folks: 5000!, Caryn Coleman, Jay Bushman, Jeff Koga, Will Campbell, and...
Weblog: jozjozjoz.com :: brain barf... yum!
Tracked: May 10, 2004 12:33 PM

Comments

Prof Eric - just walk into the ER at County USC. They can not send you away. When you check in with the ER clerk - they won't be enthusiastic about no med. ins, but they may be able to tell you where to go to get some cheap ins.

Good luck my friend - by the way, which finger is it and how did you do it??

Posted by: sharky the kid at May 4, 2004 01:27 PM

it is the pinky on my right hand. i broke it harrasing my sister when i went to visit her up north, well technically she was the one that broke it, but it was in self defense. she doesnt want to admit it though. i am left handed, but still it would be nice to have a working pinking on my right hand.

Posted by: professoreric at May 4, 2004 01:55 PM

That stinks. I have no advice for you, but I'm still sorry.

Posted by: pie at May 4, 2004 02:05 PM

it was an accident, and besides, he basically did it to himself. but it SUCKS that they treated him so badly. I'd like to break all their fingers. Do you still have the catastrophic insurance? Or know any Med. Students? Feel better! go eat some snacks! Love missbrookline

Posted by: missbrookline at May 4, 2004 02:53 PM

I feel ya.
After nothing but catastrophic insurance for about 7 years, I finally got some when my partner's employer started offering it to same-sex couples.
But for about two of my unisured years, I dated a doctor.
If you can't move to Canada or Cuba, I recommend the date-a-doctor route. Those were the healthiest (well, physically, anyway) of my unisured times.

Posted by: Shannon at May 4, 2004 04:37 PM

I really feel for you. Whatever you do "DON'T" just walk into emergency. I did that before in the past with a hospital that "could not refuse me" and they did take very good care of me. Until the $50K bill hit a month after. It ended up going on my credit history because there was no way I could pay that amount of money, and would not have gone into that hospital if I had known the situation would leave me feeling worse off afterward. If it were me, I would go to whatever you feel is the best care facility for you...one with revolving door entrance that is automated....and scream real loud as your finger accidentally gets jammed in their revolving door. Say you could not walk fast enough and it "caught you", snapped at you like a shark or pitbull. As to talk to the head of the hospital while you are still screaming in agony...and I am sure they will tidy you up quite nicely. Thee only reason I say this, is because after dealing with the medical system for myself and others...and speaking with doctors...it does really come down to money. Even the meds they prescribe may be new, and you may be the"human test" to the doctor's kick back payment on dipersment of new meds. It is all a very messed up system, and if you need someone there to help sling you through the revolving doors, I'm "right thur."

Posted by: pervert girl at May 5, 2004 06:08 PM

pervert girl, that is so brillinat. wish i had thought of that earlier. thanks. -professoreric

Posted by: professoreric at May 5, 2004 11:40 PM

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