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  1. 1

    Michelle Roger

    It is not just the out of pocket costs from appointments, tests and procedures that are breaking patients. It is also the ancillary items, the hidden costs that aren’t found in the stats, especially when you have a complex chronic and rare condition. As part of my disorder I have absorption issues and must supplement with specific vitamins and minerals that have no financial cover, but I can’t function without. I am told to see a specialist physio and OT who’s costs can be prohibitive. We are bound by lack of choice either due to geography or rare illness where specialists are few and far between, so you have to suck up the fees. Various treatments are suggested which would in all likelihood prevent or slow further deterioration but they again are out of my financial reach. Patient’s don’t live in a vacuum, we have kids, food to buy and mortgages to pay. I must weigh up do I want to see my specialist or try a medication, or do I want a roof over my head. Meds are rationed or simply not filled. I am a motivated patient but the reality is prohibitive costs mean substandard care which in turn mean increased hospitalisations and ER admission and increased disability and increased costs for the country. Governments use statistics to cover the real impact, but I’m not a statistic, I am a person whose life and the life of whose family is significantly financially impacted by my ill health, and in turn my health impacted by that financial stress, and I am but one of 1,000s.

    I wrote about my own experience with costs as complex chronic patient here.
    http://bobisdysautonomia.blogspot.com.au/2013/08/the-price-of-health.html

    Reply

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