Obamacare and the Joy of Denial of Service

I can’t wait for Obamacare. Because I love Catch-22′s.

As those of you who read this blog know, I so enjoy irony. It’s worth sacrificing my health for, honestly.

And I relish wading through bureaucracy, and bravely facing death panels. Sarah Palin never had it more right.

I’m sorry, did I say death panels? I meant to say rationing of care. Sarah, please don’t be so honest.

I got a small taste of my future after I smashed my lower left shin two weeks ago against a lighting fixture that had been placed on the floor during a Saturday night party where wine was served in liberal abundance.

No, I’m not suing. I love the people who hosted the party.

As the pain subsided, I felt the blood fill the sock beneath my suit. I thought, well, the room is dark, so it will blend in with the sock’s blue color. I didn’t bother looking at the wound. As long as the blood didn’t start dripping onto the floor, I figured, I’d wait until after the party to treat it.

At home, I cleaned what turned out to be a large messy scrape and threw some hydrogen peroxide over it. Middle of the night I decided I better put some gauze on it too.


By Monday morning, my left foot was the size of a pineapple. I went to the doctor. She said, “Looks infected.” I said, “No duhh.” She said, “Here’s some antibiotics.”

Two week later, on Friday, the infection was somewhat better, though not at all gone, and the wound wasn’t healing every well. So the doctor said, “I want you to see a wound specialist. Here’s the number.”

And that was when – after two weeks of pain and itching (the latter worse than the former) and having to walk around in sandals in 40-degree weather because my foot won’t fit in a shoe – I began to enjoy myself. Because that’s when the Catch-22′s starting popping up.

The nice guy at the wound center apologetically explained that in order to maintain their status as a wound center they had to follow the Medicare guidelines, which say they can only see people with wounds that are four weeks old.

At this point, I resisted the urge to ask if they would make an exception for the wound that would occur after my foot is amputated.

“Would you like me to make an appointment for you now?”

“No,” I said, hanging up the phone, a little disappointed but gratified that these people were already getting in shape for Obamacare.

So I decided just to go refill my prescription for silver sulfadiazine, the cream I’d been applying to help fight the infection. Since it was a large scrape, I’d started running out of my small helping of the stuff pretty quickly.

The nice pharmacist told me my insurance wouldn’t cover the refill for another week.

I resisted the urge to ask if they would cover my foot amputation.

And BTW, if the doctors then had to take off the rest of my leg, would I HAVE TO WAIT ANOTHER WEEK BEFORE HAVING THE SURGERY?

Got any of your own Obamacare previews you’d like to share?

For further reading, one of our readers, Shofar, chronicles his health and health system struggles with great aplomb on the blog throughthenet.

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