A single payer system could mean more coordinated care

I do not want to have to switch my health care coverage.

For the past 15 years, I have had multiple spinal epidural injections to relieve my sciatic nerve pain.  The injection lasts for 4-6 months and I am pain free during that interval.  All of my records and images are at a major hospital in Delaware where I worked for 8 years.  When I left that position I went on Medicare.  My injections continued without a copay.  I now work at a major health system in Philadelphia and receive health coverage through that health care system.

Recently, I went down to Delaware for my epidural injection before a major out of town trip.  The injection worked and I was pain free.  Imagine my surprise when I received a bill for a copay for the hospital facility fee for over $1200.  I did not realize that the hospital in Delaware was a tier 3 provider.  I was never told this before the procedure or the amount of my copay.  In fact, I received the bill almost 3 months after the procedure. I appealed this case to Blue Cross and am waiting their decision.  I told them that I was never told about the co pay before the procedure and it was bad medicine for me to change providers.  I am awaiting their decision.

I should be able to go to whatever health care system I choose and to stay with the hospital that has all of my records and has past experience with my problem.  I do not want to switch.  For years, I have been very satisfied with the care that I received in Delaware.  I have been essentially pain free and able to travel, exercise and enjoy life.  Just because my insurance coverage has changed, I should not have to switch my providers. This is bad medicine.

A single payer plan could solve this problem, and Bernie Sanders’ proposal would be a good first step. No one should have their care disrupted because they were forced to change insurance.