A little math for you:
A one month supply of my anti-MS drug, full price:
$1,600.00 (Or One THOUSAND six hundred dollars and 00 cents, to be exact.)
(Per shot, thats $106.666666666666666666666666666666666667, to be exact)
My insurance pays 75%! Woo hooo! Cutting the price down to a mere:
$400.00 a month.
Of course, I always listen to my Mom, so I am on Gary's insurance, which pays 60% of prescription co-insurance. That knocks it down to:
$240.00 a month! Awesome!
And since we'll be using Gary's FSA to reimburse us that $240.00, we effectively get 30% back at tax time, since the FSA is taken out before taxes! I don't understand this at all! But it sounds good, and it brings the total down to a paltry:
$168.00 a month! That's ninety percent off, people!
But wait! There's more! When I had to take the big upfront hit of a three month supply at $400.00 a month yesterday, I of course bitched to Gary. To be exact (because I'm all up in my own face with the exactitude today), I bitched to Gary after the three month supply was FedExed to the office today. I've haven't had the meds while I've been working out these new insurance details, so I promptly coaxed a roll of fat up over my pants and shot myself up right there in the cube. (And that'll teach the new guy to ask me what's in the FedEx box.)
Gary emailed me back:
$168/month is only $5.60 a day. I think that you are worth $5.60/day. We can make that up easy by tipping 15% instead of 20% at restaurants. Currently, I tip 20% because I am bad at math not because I am generous. From now on, I will use the calculator built into my Blackberry to calculate 15%. There, your drugs will now cost us nothing.
Because I know healthcare costs are always described as "spiraling," and because Spiraling Healthcare Cost is a hot topic, I just want to alleviate your concerns:
A) I paid for the FedEx myself.
B) Oh, just imagine what I would cost in wheelchairs and private nurse/companions.
C) Socialized medicine doesn't seem to be the answer. As I understand it, Canada and England have elected to wait to see if the drug is effective before it will be put on their program. (Because ten years worth of data is inconclusive?) Both countries have an even higher incidence of MS.
So, hey, fellow Anthem Blue Cross/Blue Shield members, thanks for the big cost savings! I'll pay you back when your kids get the croup.
I thought it was great you shot up right there in our cube. Except I didn't get to tap the syringe and I really wanted to.
Posted by: robin / koda / thumper | February 22, 2007 at 01:59 AM
I wish I'd been there for new guy's reaction!
You know I only cringe at reckless medical spending. Treating MS is hardly reckless. Showing up at the ER nightly to demand they do your shots? That would piss me off.
Posted by: Caroline | February 22, 2007 at 12:09 PM
Dear Queen, your prince (or King, not sure how to refer to him) is SO sweet to figure out how to make up the remaining 5.60/day by saving money on tips. You are worth it!
Posted by: Catherine (redheaded one) | February 22, 2007 at 05:09 PM
Put a Pay-Pal button on your blog. Seriously.
Posted by: Becs | February 22, 2007 at 06:09 PM
ok... I can only say, the tipping 15% instead of 20% might be one of the funniest things I have heard in a while...
I'd go a step further for Gary... A lot of times service sux. In fact, it's one of the most growing trends I think I have seen over the years. Largely I'd say because too many people have just gotten into the "Must Tip at least 15%" mentality.
Tips are by their very nature a gratuity... We should all understand the definition of that... In case there is any question (Merriam Webster on Gratuity - http://www.m-w.com/dictionary/gratuity ) So, Tipping should actually NOT start at 15%, it should start with 0% and work its way upward based on service above the minimum.
Now I will mention that now that I am on my soapbox, that I feel very strongly on this issue. Just because business owners have used this a chance to force all of us to pay part of the wage of their employees doesn't mean we have to buy into this. I mean think about it... when they did that, did they LOWER The cost of a meal? Hell, no. The cost of meals out have been rising steadily since the beginning of time. But somewhere they convinced enough people that 15% should be what you give for normal service... Excuse me, but didn't I already pay for that service with the price of the food when I got there in the first place? So why should I have to figure out how to lower from 15% when the service is sub par? Shouldn't Job blow business owner be acting to insure that I get good service and then I reward above the norm service with a Gratuity?
Gary, dude... Just think about how much you could save if you evaluate the service assuming that someone bringing it to your table and setting it down there for you is included in the price of the items you are buying? For those who instictively want to argue the point, I'd simply ask you to consider how much the material cost of your meal is? So the rest of what you are paying is for the place you are, the person who cooked it, and the service/atmosphere there. So, if you were designing a resturant what would be what you would consider the minimum level of service by a wait person? And how much would you have to pay them to insure that customers were getting that hopefully with a smile. I'd assert, that tips should start when service exceeds that and should only be based upon the servers performance, not the food quality or atmosphere. By the way, I normally tip decently because I know businesses don't pay wait people enough. But I still think the practice is flawed.
Posted by: HWNSNBR (The Artist Formerly...) | February 23, 2007 at 01:00 PM
Posted by: Catherine (redheaded one) | February 23, 2007 at 01:30 PM
You are so, so worth it.
Posted by: Vaguely Urban | February 26, 2007 at 01:04 AM
I gave mine up when my insurance company quit covering it at the beginning of the year.
I snorted water all over the place when I read about the insta-shot.
Posted by: Jammies | April 11, 2007 at 12:22 PM
I just re-read this since Jammies commented on it. How could I have not noticed the math error before?
If Gary's insurance covers 60% of your $400 co-insurance, that's only $160 you pay. Which means that your FSA makes it only $112. Which means Gary only has to stiff waitresses $3.73/day, so he can use his Blackberry to tip 17% or so.
Unless he needs the extra 1.87 for Raspberry Mocha.
Posted by: Caroline | April 11, 2007 at 01:17 PM
Jammies - Betaseron. I hate your insurance company, whoever they are.
Caroline - Oh, hush up. Math Geek.
Posted by: TheQueen | April 11, 2007 at 09:35 PM