A Mixed Bag Life Update XV

Life Update

There have been some developments since my last life update, some good, some not so good. Let’s start with some positives; as mentioned previously, I received my green card renewal and got my driver’s license renewed for the full six-year term. But not before, more drama, that was me being suspended from driving due to failing to send a required vision form to the DMV. Of course, I never received the letter requesting that I send this form; the net result was that my license was temporarily revoked for about a month, making me reliant on my wife for transport, which was frustrating, to say the least.

My regular optometrist had checked the box on the last vision form I submitted, saying I require annual recertification to keep driving. My ophthalmologist, who gave me my eye injections, disagreed and completed the form for me sans the annual vision form checkmark, allowing me to renew for six years. If I feel I am unsafe to drive, I will surrender my license; I have no interest in injuring myself or others.

The second piece of good news is that the Social Security Administration has accepted our offer to pay $244 monthly for the overpayment, which, to be clear, we still do not agree with; they moved to target post-award, claiming that a person has to be disabled for twelve months, and not six months, before receiving any benefit payments. Erin will still get $1,348 monthly, and the overpayment will be settled by January 2027. This is a much more equitable resolution than losing $1,543 for six months.

Now, sadly, we move to negative things. I previously alluded to potential coverage issues with Erin now having Medicaid medical insurance via Working Healthy, administered by KanCare. The plus side is that we now pay nothing for the premium, which seems to cover Erin’s drug costs. However, she has lost all her doctors, except for one, as they do not take Medicaid; this has had a knock-on effect of losing some of her medications, as her former doctors prescribed these for her.

We have been searching for two months for various doctors in the Wichita area to replace those she lost. And most do not take state insurance, leaving Erin in the cold. The biggest issue is the lack of pain management; not a single pain management doctor in the city takes Medicaid. We think we have finally found a pain management specialist, but that is in Hutchinson, a 2-hour round trip by car, so we are really hoping that this pans out, as we are out of options, leaving us with the ER for pain management.

Of course, in the run-up to Christmas, my wife Erin, my son Conner, and I have all been sick for a couple of weeks. It seems that we are all better now; but as is par for the course, there was some drama.

Again, I could not get a doctor’s appointment; I guess this is what happens when you have Aetna (shite) insurance; your doctor options are limited, and the doctors that take it are often really busy, so getting a prompt appointment is difficult. For Erin, her establishing visit to a new primary doctor’s office, caused by the switch to Medicaid, was cut short, as they were so concerned with her breathing that they sent us to the ER to get checked out. Ultimately, after several hours in the ER, they said it was just an infection, and her breathing was labored due to her pre-existing diagnosis and her body being immunocompromised.

My mother-in-law gave us some generic antibiotics that she had, which helped clear up the infection; we were feeling better after just a few days and mostly back to normal, just in time for Christmas, thankfully.

Anyway, Merry Christmas, Happy New Year, and here’s hoping 2024 will be a better year!

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