Bumblebee on lavender

Here’s a post that’ll probably get my remaining Facebook friends to unfollow (reminder: I don’t do FB anymore, though I recently realized I not only still had dlvr.it connected, but when we upgraded the server to SSL it decided to repost all the links over again, sorry).

Didja vote for That Man, or perhaps for one of the representatives that voted for AHCA yesterday? Let me tell you a story.

Suppose there was a kid who had a growth hormone deficiency, and whose doctor said he’d be lucky to hit five feet tall without intervention. Further suppose that kid’s parents decided to treat that. It costs anywhere from $3K-$10K a month to do that, so needless to say insurance companies don’t like to cover it. Doubly so if the insurance plan is a company that self-insures. One might even find one’s employer trying to nudge one out the door, if one had a kid costing them that much. And a new employer, new insurance plan, would probably deny coverage for what is now a pre-existing condition.

But if this hypothetical kid went through this during the ACA, a new insurance company would still cover it. Even if that employer decided to unexpectedly change insurance companies without considering that sort of impact - still covered. Whew. Don’t have to sell the house, drain the retirement accounts and college funds, and run up debt to pay for time-sensitive medical treatment.

But here’s a funny thing: there are side effects to hormone treatment, even just replacements of the hormones a body normally produces. Not enough of a concern to avoid treatment (indeed, endocrine docs won’t even mention them), but they’re juuuuust statistically significant enough for an insurance company to latch on to and blame on the treatment:



Kidney disease.

Immune system issues.

Spinal issues.

So this hypothetical kid will, under the law the House just passed, never ever be covered if he develops any of those things later in life - because of a decision made for him by his parents. He also will never be able to start his own business, because as an individual he can be denied all coverage because of that. Tough luck, imaginary kid!

But hey, if you’re healthier than he is, he won’t be making your premiums go up, and that’s what’s important, right?

There’s a bright spot, though: if one or both of the kid’s parents are highly skilled workers, there’s a country next door that has fast-tracked its visa process for things like tech workers.

Also, regarding the picture: we have a huge variety of bee types that visit the flowers in our yard. All in containers, so we can pack it up and take it with us when/if we move this summer.

(Also also: if you read this from Facebook, don’t bother commenting there. Literally I have it blocked at the hosts table so it can’t even track me in the background of other websites. I’ll let it post this, I guess, and then turn off dlvr.it and unblock FB long enough to delete my account. Email me or find me on Twitter if you need to get in touch.)