Some stories hit you hard because you were in that exact situation at some point.

s-GEORGEANNE-large“In 2003, William Koehler of Pittsburgh, Pa. lost his job as an electronics technician. He lost his health insurance, too, but he’d been lucky enough to have the defibrillator battery in his heart changed just the previous year. No insurer would cover him except for one company which refused to cover anything related to his arrhythmia, says his sister.

He survived as long as his battery did, dying on March 7, 2009 at 57. His sister, Georgeanne Koehler, has become an activist, telling the story about how her brother died to anyone who will listen. On Thursday, she traveled to Washington, D.C. from Pittsburgh to join a protest outside a conference for America’s Health Insurance Plans, a lobbying group for the insurance industry.”

My ICD battery ran out after three years even though it was suppose to last five years.  I found out the battery in my ICD came from a “bad batch”.  I have no insurance but I have a doctor who is human and an awesome wife who pushed to get me a replacement ICD because they do not just replace the battery. The doctors donated their time, the medical device company donated the device, my wife even got the hospital to write off their costs. The whole procedure with the device costed about $40,000 and I use it as an example of how the us uninsured people cost everyone.  I was lucky and this poor man was not and it just makes me feel so sorry for him and his family.

I am in pure outrage over some of the comments from so called “progressives” on HuffPo who have no sympathy because he and his family were lifelong Republic until they voted for President Obama last year. I am convinced some “progressives” are part of the problem these days and this is one example.

I can’t stop shaking thinking this could have been me.

Now all I can think about is will real healthcare reform come about before my ICD battery runs out again.

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KevenSeven
Member

This was at Huff? I missed it. I certainly would like to flay the “progressives” who dumped on this guy for being stupid enough to be a Rethug.

Lots of people are that stupid.

AdLib
Admin

KQuark, that is a shattering, truly frightening and yet reaffirming experience you’ve gone through (and are going through).

A side note first, I have a genuine and great respect for your strength and character. You have only mentioned your condition to campaign and energize people to support changing our failing healthcare system. Otherwise, by seeing how prolific you are, no one, including me would ever have assumed what you have been dealing with. You are a remarkable person, truly.

As to the experience you detail, that could be me or anyone reading your article too. To think in this 21st Century America, that our lives and financial survival could be so tenuous, at the whim of manufacturers of faulty batteries, the greedy health care industry, self-serving politicians who put reelection over the lives of their constituents…it’s frightening and infuriating.

At the same the, in the face of what Modern Capitalism has done to destroy the fabric of our society, the compassion and help offered to you by your doctor and the hospital offers a small, fragile light of compassion and empathy in a world that grows increasingly dim.

We are human beings, our existence has value far beyond such despicable priorities as quarterly profits. How has our society degenerated to the point of arguing for profits of the wealthy as equal or greater than individual human lives?

VegasBabe
Member

Jeepers Kquark, I knew you were not entirely a well man, but had no idea of the extent of your illness. This would indeed hit home for you, that’s easy to see. This is a very sad story and from my home town which makes me wonder, why didn’t he go perhaps to Mercy Hospital (run by the Sisters of Mercy) who turn away no one, and work hard to find the money to treat all. Very sad. I will keep you in my prayers that you and your family never, ever have to be in similar circumstances my friend!

missfrenchyUSA
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missfrenchyUSA

Sorry guys, I step out to go the gym. Thanks for the welcome.

missfrenchyUSA
Member
missfrenchyUSA

what a nifty website you guys have there! Can a liberalterian like me fit in?

KevenSeven
Member

At the risk of speaking for my fellow fellows, we are delighted to see you of all people here.

AdLib
Admin

MissFrenchyUSA!!! Welcome!!! Wonderful to see you here! You are warmly welcomed at The Planet!!!