I Was Thankful for My Health Insurance When…

August 29, 2013

There are times in life when all that can be done is to prepare for the unthinkable so that when the unplanned happens you can be ready. Oftentimes in each of our lives things do not go as smoothly as we would like, and – potentially – even drastically wrong. For parents there is no truer sentiment.  Meet four moms from California, how they learned the value of having a good health insurance plan in this turbulent world.

An Early Scare – Jenn’s Story

Our first story relates a soon-to-be-mommy’s experience of being diagnosed with a potentially dangerous medical condition late in her pregnancy, and then how her insurance kept her family out of serious financial peril following the treatment.

Jenn Willey and son

Jenn and her son, Blake

It is so exciting to find out you are pregnant! However, at my 28 week checkup, my doctor found out I had the condition, Pre-Eclampsia. I was immediately put on bed rest, but swam daily. My doctor also put me on a “no salt” diet. The problem was that my doctor at the time didn’t tell me how serious the condition was, so I continued to do things around the house, preparing for baby.

At my 33 week checkup, my blood pressure would not go down, so I was immediately admitted to the hospital. At 35 weeks, the tests that were taken showed signs that my blood pressure was getting even worse so they decided to induce labor. Let me tell you, my body was nowhere near ready to deliver and I never got past 4cm. After 12 hours of being at 4cm, (labor was over 24 hours at this point), my baby boy was in distress and they decided on emergency c-section.

‘He, being a preemie at 35 weeks, had issues with his lungs so he had an extended stay in the NICU for about a week. Amazingly, he was discharged before I was, but my loving husband convinced the doctors we needed to go home together. So, for three weeks of hospital stay, my bill was $91,352. And that was just for me. My son’s bill was around $20,000. Had we not had insurance, we never would have been able to financially recover from this.

Jenn Willey is a blogger at ToddlerTrails.com and a stay at home mom in Anaheim, California. Jenn enjoys the craziness of raising two toddlers while her Hubby is a high school teacher.

Finally, Good Coverage – Lee’s Experience

Our second story relates to the advancement of insurance policy and how it helped a couple not only become parents, but how it protected and cared for the child they chose to love despite complications.

Mom and girl

20 years ago, the insurance industry was a little different. Adoption was not as common and getting your child covered was a bit trickier than it is today. It was obvious our daughter would need medical attention when we adopted her and in less than a month, even with some coverage, we racked up thousands of dollars’ worth of medical bills. She was seen by all sorts of specialists and was subjected to a myriad of tests. The prognosis was bleak and the bills were crushing us.

After a couple of months, we sorted out our insurance and since then, she has always been covered by the best. Luckily, her issues are manageable and the prognosis given 20 years ago was wrong. Today, despite her disabilities, she is a very healthy young woman in college and looking at her future. Whatever she ends up doing, she knows that she must always have three things; a clear intention to be happy, a life goal that motivates her and good insurance to make sure that she is healthy enough for both.

Lee writes about relationships, parenting and everything that falls within the umbrella over at CoupleDumb.com.

A Long-Awaited Triumph – Jennifer’s Tale

In our third story we see that it is not always as easy as the nursery rhyme suggest. For some the process of becoming parents is not as simple as first love then marriage than a baby in a baby carriage it can be a little more challenging. Sometimes the baby part needs a little help and even overcoming undiagnosed problems this couple still got the end to their nursery rhyme with some help from their insurance.

Mommy Hiker Jen

Jennifer Fontaine

Like most mommys, I wear my title proudly. I try to remind myself to enjoy every precious fleeting moment, because becoming “mommy” wasn’t easy. We tried for three years to conceive and finally after 36 months of tears, we decided it was time to get some professional guidance.

I’ll save you all the gory details, but after months of tests & exploratory surgery with a fertility specialist we finally got a diagnosis: I was born with only half of a uterus. For us, getting pregnant was pills, syringes and insemination. Not really my idea of romantic, but it worked on the first try!

Two and a half years later, we are ready to add another slice of heaven to our family and I feel so incredibly fortunate for our health insurance coverage which made dealing with my birth defect and subsequent fertility treatment financially feasible.

Jennifer started her blog MommyHiker.com in the hopes of inspiring parents to get outdoors with their kids and discover the wonder of Mother Nature.

Discovered Knowledge – Lana’s Story

In our final story we learn that things can change completely in the midst of a few days. However if you protect yourself  with the proper coverage and surround yourself with a great team of people those changes no matter how large do not have to define your life.

Zoe Watkins

Lana’s daughter, Zoe, just after being diagnosed.

A few days before Halloween and only two weeks before her seventh birthday, my youngest daughter was diagnosed with Type 1 Diabetes. A few days prior to this moment that would change our lives forever, her pediatrician urged me to fatten her up with brownies, cookies, and ice cream. When the lab results arrived, he called, incredulous and apologizing, and sent us to the hospital.

Zoe and I spent five days in the children’s pediatric endocrinology ward, learning about the basics of coping with diabetes. I cried at night after she fell asleep and plastered an encouraging smile across my face as soon as she would wake up. I could not find the right words of comfort when she would look at me with those hurt, confused, big blue eyes, looking for explanation. I wished that I could wave a magic wand and make diabetes disappear.

We had a really good health insurance that allowed us to be admitted at Cleveland’s University Hospital affiliated with Cass Western University. I was afraid and uninformed. But from the moment we stepped into the emergency unit of the hospital, we were surrounded by caring, kind, and knowledgeable nurses and doctors, who guided, taught, coached, and encouraged us until we left, apprehensive, but determined to do the best for our brave little red-head.

Lana is a lover of food, spice and the color red! You can read more about Lana and her family at Bibberche.com.

The stories shared above are just a few of the many that help us to realize that no matter what the circumstances happen to be whether it an unexpected illness during pregnancy, a child receiving the proper care or trying to become a parent in the first place these bloggers help to put a face and value on how important having good insurance can be.

In most situations your health insurance is not for right now, but for what could happen tomorrow. No one can predict the future, and until we can the only thing we can do is make preparations just in case so that when we need that help it is already in place.

Post author Loren Pleet