Either the world has changed or I’m losing my mind or both

I just hung up on a representative of my health insurance carrier who wanted to discuss certain follow-up care programs for my heart attack. I was okay with the first thirty seconds or so but then she said that the call was going to be monitored “for quality control purposes” and all I could think of was Miranda – anything you say can and will be used against you” etc., so I said no, I would not be recorded, and ended the conversation.

I have no problem with that same procedure when,say, discussing a problem with a retailer, but I really, truly don’t trust the medical insurance industry and consider them to be pretty much like the police – you just don’t answer their questions and certainly don’t let them record you. So now I’ve probably been flagged as a nut case,but there it is.


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16 responses to “Either the world has changed or I’m losing my mind or both

  1. Cos Cobber

    My friend, welcome to organized medicine for a world with finite resourses.

    With costs sky rocketing, either the insurance company or the government, pick one, will be ever increasing their involvement in your general health. Its only a matter of time before ice cream is illegal and the insurance company asks you to wear a pedometer with a radio collar to provide real time information to earn a reduced insurance premium. Again, another pickem between i) laws to stimulate corrective action vs ii) general intrusiveness and financial incentives.

    • CC, I am certainly grateful that i do have insurance – while my little adventure this past winter has left me with several thousand dollars of medical bills, I’d be eyeing bankruptcy without it. But yeah, it’s a brave new world, and I sure don’t like it.

  2. So Greenwich

    Dear CF, It is a CT requirement that they disclose to you that the call will be monitored and not all of them are . . . so that she can be measured on how fast she gets answers from you . . . etc.

  3. Walt

    Blocked Artery –
    You pose an interesting question, my friend. Let me ponder it.
    Hmmmm…..I VOTE BOTH!!! And I am pretty sure you have been flagged as a nut job many years ago. You can’t be going around the Post Road in Greenwich, scraping road kill off the road, and serving it for dinner, and not expecting SOME people to find that strange? You really can’t see that Stevie Wonder?
    And what are you getting frigging paranoid about? She wanted to tape the call? SO FRIGGING WHAT?? If they wanted to lie, they could just make one up. Are you checking for monsters under your bed recently? Do you find your cats are reading your mind, and posting on your blog to torment you? Is your tin foil hat too tight?
    Dude – they have space satellites that can count the hairs on your ass, and film you spanking your weasel on the porch, if they want to. You get filmed in every elevator you scratch your ass in. Every key stroke you make, and every web site you visit can be traced. That is right Dude. Your 4 million visits to Asian School Girl Nymphs has been logged and recorded. YES THAT’S RIGHT!! As has every trip you made to Beemers, CVS, and the Asian rub & Tug. So just relax. You are not that interesting for anyone to care.
    Anyways, if I go to town hall tomorrow for a beach pass, do I get it the same day, or do they have to mail it to me? I went to the Town web site, and it sucks, and I really couldn’t tell. If it is the same day, you want to go to Todd’s Point and check out the hotties tomorrow? I will buy lunch, and freak you out with all the cameras recording your every move!!
    Your Pal,

  4. Old Coot

    Not only have you been “flagged”, but your bad attitude was likely discussed by Barry and Michelle over dinner. I’d recommend installing a remote starter for your car and hiring a food taster.

  5. AFW

    Wow, that is a really good point. Thank you. Imagine if you did not answer a question confidently enough and then, God forbid, there is another coronary event, they could use it for a dos. Right up there with the black boxes in our cars.

  6. CF, I have done exactly the same as you when I wanted to know whether we had mental-health coverage and my carrier wouldn’t answer until I told her what member of my family I was inquiring about.

    All I wanted was an elucidation of our coverage, but she would not tell me unless she could attach my inquiry to a family member. In fact, she said she couldn’t find out unless she entered a family member’s name. It felt like Big Brother was watching me and I declined to give any name at all, sure that it might have some deleterious effect on that family member in the future.

    I’m still in the dark about our mental-health coverage, which, thankfully, we don’t require — yet.

  7. I did this once, in reverse. Having a battle with some company, I told THEIR representative that I was recording our conversation. She hung up on ME!!!

    Kudos to you for thinking to end the conversation. Big brother is indeed watching….and listening.

  8. edgewater

    re mental health coverage… many friends have told me not to use either insurance nor your regular medical provider to get mental health help. you don’t want that stuff in the records.

  9. A Reader

    Walt —
    That was one of your best.

  10. Bass Ket Case

    edgewater and CF: while your points are excellent, what’s a family to do who actually need mental health care?? You can’t get in the door at Silver Hill as a self-pay without about $25,000 in your back pocket. And a single round of any good therapist is about $250/hour. It’s a double edged sword and probably why so many people who truly need mental health services don’t get it – fear of it going on their records, or lack of ability to pay outside the system. You are screwed either way.

    • Pay for it out of pocket, if possible – besides, insurance usually pays so little that it’s usually not worth trying to get coverage. But if you’re talking institutional care, I suppose you just have to go with the carrier and take the hit on all the ramifications. No good news here, I’m afraid.

  11. Cos Cob & Proud

    CF – when I moved back to Cos Cob from out of state, as a self-employed individual, I could not find a carrier who would cover me due to “pre-existing” conditions – which about every middle-aged person has in one form or another… Do you – or anyone else – have an insurance company that I could try to get coverage through?

  12. Old School Grump

    CF, I take it you have an “individual” health insurance policy (and ditto for many commenters here), so you are quite right to be paranoid. When your coverage comes up for renewal, be prepared for either an unaffordable increase in premiums or a flat-out termination of your coverage. Because of the expenses of your heart attack, you have failed in your job as a profit center this year, and you’re not looking too promising for the future. In other words, you’ve committed the ultimate offense: you actually used your coverage, big time. Bad boy.

    In any case, you were wise to refuse to “chat” with the rep who called. Whatever info she culled would and could be used against you, and not just by your current (soon to be ex) carrier, but because it would end up in your records in the Medical Information Bureau, for the perusal of whatever health insurance company you might approach in the future. I know I sound like a nut-case, but spend 15 minutes reading about the MIB–no, not Men In Black, don’t be distracted–in a casual google search, and you will be enlightened.