As of the first of the Month, I am now "old". That is old as I used to view it.
I received my Medicare Card. Hoorah!
My spouse and I didn't believe we would see this day. We figured Social Security would be gone by the time we hit this age. OK. We didn't really care we were helping to pay for our parents and for a short time for a grandparent or two.
But here we are.
The feeling is of freedom.
The painful forms I was expecting at the Doctor's office didn't appear. But this time I could talk to him about drug choices without worrying about the employee drug plan telling us I could not get the drug that is better unless I paid for it myself as well as their premiums. This time I could pay my part of the visit right then instead of waiting for the insurance company to drag it out and negotiate "for me". (and by the way my part is cheaper under Medicare) I feel better about that I hated for him to give me and the insurance company interest free loans every time I saw him. Yes I still have a deductible but it is not $2500 per person. Yes we are having premiums withheld from SS but nothing like what we were paying even through the company plans. The drug plan, that could tell me I had to use a step program as the drug I had taken for 2 or 3 years was not on this company's formulary; the drug plan, that got a better deal a little later so informed the spouse that they recommended that he go on the drug I was on in the first place, is gone.
Sometimes they made me feel as though I just wasn't trying hard enough to take care of myself. Well, of course, I can do better but most of the time I work hard at it.
Now as I pick my own Part D plan, not that hard. I can hunt and find one that will allow my Dr. to have more say so at the same time hunt for the best cost plan. A plan that will not just decide to turn him down really before he submits their paperwork with his reasons for giving me the non-generic form. He is the MD after all. He has lots of education and experience. I looked long and hard for good physician and paid extra high insurance premiums to see him. We can discuss cost vs. "return". I can take the one that he believes is better for me with my family background and my already somewhat blocked carotid artery
Premiums will definitely go up but the ability for my Doctor and I to work to find the best drug for my brain's sake is worth it. And since he is very familiar with Medicare he will know how to work with them too.
Now if I had my way for everyone in this U.S. of A. I would love to see somebody go back after the Drug Manufacturers. You remember those discussions about how they pay so much in R&D, NOT! (It is advertising. I wish they couldn't advertise on TV. Oops free speech?) And if I had my way, everyone would have health care as provided by good physicians and hospitals. And drugs would be reasonable. But I don't get my way and maybe this latest version of health care, "insurance", is it for now. It is better than no regulation. It will, I hope, keep the insurance companies from kicking us out for some piece of childhood information we forgot to put down on some form. Or some other so-called "pre-existing" condition. It will, I hope, keep the companies from raising our premiums by any amount they like anytime the like.
And Don't kid yourself that wonderful caring-about-us-old-folks-and-our-Medicare, which was in the main passed by Democrats, Republican party will do away with Medicare when it can. Or maybe the plan is just let it run out of money and it will be gone.
At least for now I am on that terrible government run, socialist, insurance and glad of it. So now I guess I am a cannibal eating my children and my grandchildren.