Occasionally, when I hear people talking about how great “universal health care” would be and I talk about how inefficient the government is at everything they do, someone mentions the Military and Veterans medical systems and how efficiently medical care is provided for a great many people.
Well, let me tell you about that.
As a retiree, I don’t get free medical care (as was promised me when I enlisted, by the way). I have to pay for the use of the Tricare military medical system. Granted, it is enough less expensive than my company insurance plan to justify sticking with it, but it is most definitely not free.
But even so, the system is hardly “efficient”.
I’ve been having pain in my abdomen for a week or so. Not bad pain, not worthy of a trip to the emergency room, but bad enough to concern me. I tend to have a very high tolerance for pain. I suppose some of that comes from the fact that I’m in pain pretty much 24/7 as a result of my service connected disabilities and I’ve just gotten used to tolerating a certain level of discomfort. Regardless of the reason, the downside is that, when some new and improved pain pops up, I tend to just ignore it and keep on going. Usually, I heal, it goes away in a few days and I’m fine.
This one is not going away. It is tolerable and I could continue to ignore it, but I’m worried that it may be something that won’t just “heal” without intervention.
So…I tried to make an appointment with my Doctor today.
The earliest they can get me in is the 18th of November.
Yup…you got it…a 21 day wait for a routine medical appointment with my primary care physician.
Which, of course, explains why the emergency rooms are always so full. If you have anything that can’t wait 21 days, the only option is to go to the ER.
What’s really neat about it? If the problem requires meds, the ER will, in my experience, only give you a prescription for a 2 day supply and instructions to follow up with your primary care physician within 2 days for a full scrip.
On what planet is one able to get an appointment with a Tricare PCM within 2 days? It sure doesn’t happen here on Earth where I live. If it’s something serious, you end up having to go back to the ER every two days to get the scrip renewed until you can get in to your PCM.
Don’t even ask me about the hassles my Wife’s gone through with her medical problems. I could write a book about that subject.
Welcome to the world of government run health care…coming soon to an ever increasingly socialist country near you.