Thursday, April 15, 2010
When your heart attack$ you
Lack of insurance, or worry about cost even if you have it, can make you delay an average of six hours after heart attack symptoms appear.
This is a study that appeared in the J of the Am Med Assn.
The researchers seemed surprised that even those with insurance worried about costs. Hello—are you new on this planet?
Forty-nine percent of uninsured patients and 45% of insured people with financial concerns delayed getting help for bad heart symptoms. Over a third of patients with no financial concerns and insurance also delayed.
Many’s the time—including this last for my adult kid with MRSA--we put off everything as long as possible because of cost. What about you?
Waiting this long, the docs pointed out, results in longer hospital stays when one does get there—or worse, mortuary visits.
Maybe these patients have heard about the barrage of separate bills you get from radiologists, the ER doc, everyone and his uncle if you cross the threshold of an ER. Some take your insurance, if you have it, some don’t, it’s horrible.
And worst of all, it’s all unknown—the bills start coming.
Will the Health Scary law make this better? It may make more people head for the ER, but it won’t make the system work better once they get there.