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potter's council, ref:health insurance

updated fri 6 sep 02


Stephani Stephenson on wed 4 sep 02

RE: question about how do different people handle health insurance?

Right now I purchase an individual plan through an HMO, Kaiser
Permanente, which operates it's own clinics and hospital in my area. I
pay $200 per month. dr visits are $15 co-pay, specialist visits also
$15, emergency room is also only $15, so is also
very low cost.... many many lab tests are no charge, so you get a lot
for the monthly fee, and there is no deductible. they do offer many
preventative care tests at reasonable cost. i think you can save a lot
on the expense of lab costs.

I don't go to the Dr. very much so $200/ month isn't easy and usually
isn't even used, but I try to figure it is part of the cost of doing
business ( i.e. life)
I haven't used it much, but when I have it has been OK.. drawback is
that it isn't you small hometown doctor's kind of get
rushed in and rushed out in a hurry. also their facilities are spread
out and even though there is a clinic in my town you have to drive to
other locations in the larger metropolitan area for different areas of
specialization. In this area the Kaiser hospital has a much lower
mortality rate than most other hospitals.....4% vs 12%..
they cover vision and hearing but no dental, and no chiropractic.

(One thing I hate about modern US medicine is that you can get an
organ transplant but you can't get a dang mole removed until after it
is's cosmetic. I asked the assistant about it and she
said "if they let people get moles removed , next thing you know they
will all be wanting to get their boobs enhanced ". (with the $15 copay,
no less)
I said "well a mole is a far cry from a boob."....but that is another
story. My apologies for the use of the word 'boob'.....twice, oops three

Prior to Kaiser, i purchased an individual plan through Blue Cross, $70
per mo but very high deductible, hardly covered anything except for
major medical.

anyway that's what I do... I am self employed as a
potter/sculptor/tilemaker/smartypants, so haven't found a group plan
which is competitive w/ this plan so far...

Stephani Stephenson
Carlsbad Encinitas CA