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Saturday, April 03, 2010
Part 2: Me in The Medical City (and why I'm changing hospitals)
The other source of stress was HPPI. I've had comprehensive medical insurance before courtesy of my Mama's employ at Merlaco, but when I got married and especially when she died, obviously I can't be her beneficiary anymore. HPPI is the healthcare partner of the company I work for, and really, you do get what you pay for.
First, let me tell you about me and money. I've not made it a secret that I grew up in a home that was far from rich. I worked hard to get where I am and now that I have some money, I don't feel guilty spending it. I don't like it when people fight over money, haggle to the point of embarrassment, or even whip out their phones when the restaurant bill arrives and everyone's busy calculating what their share is--down to the last centavo. That's just undignified for me. It's just money, folks. It's nice to have but there's no need to fuss over it like it's the most important thing in the world. Sure, I like it that I have more of it now than when I was growing up but if there's anything being poor taught me, it's that money can be earned so don't be scared to use it.
So when I give my hard-earned money to an insurance company, I expect it to work just as hard for me. Last weekend at The Medical City, HPPI was adamant to not work for me. I kid you not when I say that the HPPI representative regularly came in to say, "We're not paying for this, we'll only pay up to this amount, this isn't included in your coverage, etc." Now, TMC is not a cheap hospital. It's quite expensive there actually especially if you consider how several blue bills will only get you a teeny-tiny room with a creaky bed like this:
For the money we paid, we should at least have gotten WiFi in the room! But I guess in a land where prepaid cell phones is king, to ask for free Internet access in each private deluxe room is completely alien. Or is it?
Anyway, I don't really mind the limits of my health plan; what really bugged me was the regularity of the HPPI person's visits! After the nth "We can't do this," Vince and I just wanted to tell her, "If you just leave us alone, we'll gladly pay the whole damn thing!" Seriously, how could I ever get some rest when every 30 minutes or so, some person knocks on the door to tell you bad news? It's just money, for heaven's sake!
So I wrote in my mommy blog that I'm already planning to give birth at St. Luke's Global City. I know that it's a lot more expensive there. When I went there a few weeks ago for my prenatal lab tests, for example, the urinalysis cost me P350 while the one in TMC costs P240. Clearly way more expensive. But when the bill was handed to me, it was in a sleek leather folder and the cashier was polite and unblinking. The total cost of all my lab tests took me aback but since the service was impeccable, I gave my credit card--just as unblinkingly as the cashier--and signed away. It was discreet, courteous, professional and hassle-free. On top of the world-class medical care! That's what my money is paying for.
We have four more months before the Jelly Bean arrives and we're saving up, saving up! I just really want to give birth in a nice place, in a big room, surrounded by professional people. It's going to cost us but my son is worth it.