Y is for not so young: Medicare

I’ve been wearing long-sleeved shirts, even in the summer, for the past 15 years.

In the year before I turned 65, I realized that I had to apply for Medicare. If I had not known this, the wealth of solicitations, including multiples from the same few companies, that I received made it abundantly clear.

Technically, I had to apply within the 7-month Initial Enrollment Period, which:
Begins 3 months before the month you turn 65
Includes the month you turn 65
Ends 3 months after the month you turn 65

I waited until May and applied online. In short order, I received my Medicare card dated March 1. “Most people should enroll in Part A when they turn 65, even if they have health insurance from an employer. This is because most people paid Medicare taxes while they worked so they don’t pay a monthly premium for Part A.” Part A covers inpatient hospital stays, care in a skilled nursing facility, hospice care, and some home health care.

“Certain people may choose to delay Part B. In most cases, it depends on the type of health coverage you may have.” Some coverage might cover for Pulse Vascular (for vascular specialist in New Jersey). Since I’m still working at a job with decent health benefits, I am presuming I can postpone signing on to that section, which covers certain doctors’ services, outpatient care, medical supplies, and preventive services.

I HOPE that’s correct because “you may have to pay a Part B late enrollment penalty, and you may have a gap in coverage if you decide you want Part B later.” And the penalty is 10% per year.

I know a friend of mine who signed to Part B when she did not have to. And once you’ve signed on, you can’t UNsign.

In anticipation of this, I’ve been going to every doctor I’ve thought I should have seen years ago. My podiatrist has provided me with a pair of shoe inserts that compensate for my pigeon-toedness that I’ve experienced at least since I was in 7th grade.

My dermatologist checked my skin for irregularities and discovered actinic keratosis, a pre-cancerous condition, on the tip of my ear, which she sprayed with liquid nitrogen. So I’m redoubling my effort to use sunscreen ALL of the time, SPF 70 or better; and wearing a floppy hat, not just a cap that covers my pate. This is why I’ve been wearing long-sleeved shirts, even in the summer, for the past 15 years.

For ABC Wednesday

October #1 rambling: recovery mode

The Oregon Shakespeare Festival will commission 36 playwrights to translate all of Shakespeare’s plays into modern English.

wrong reenactment
Still on the mend, wearing this band around my waist, until at least November 9. I will write about this eventually.

I’ve managed to watch more baseball in the past week and a half than I saw the entire regular season. Great to see former Met Rusty Staub after his heart attack. Rooting for the Mets, or if they get eliminated, the Cubs. Just realized that the World Series Game 5 would be November. If it’s the Dodgers in the Series, I’m rooting for the American League team.

ALSO, my office is moving this week. Note to self: do NOT pick up anything over 20 pounds.

Understanding Mass Incarceration and Bringing It Down: An Interview With James Kilgore.

John Oliver: rips GOP candidates for blaming gun violence on mental illness in absence of a plan, and Migrants and Refugees.

Color film was made for white people.

The War on Science, even in Canada.

Seth Meyers explains that ridiculous Congressional hearing over Planned Parenthood and Planned Parenthood’s “Government Funding”: The Same Kind Your Doctor Receives.
Continue reading “October #1 rambling: recovery mode”

The Lydster, Part 104: The Medical Episodes

“Osgood-Schlatter disease typically occurs in boys ages 13 to 14 and girls ages 11 to 12. The condition usually resolves on its own, once the child’s bones stop growing.” The Daughter’s eight and a half, ahead of the curve.

Thrice in the past month or so, the Daughter has awakened in pain.

First time, she had been experiencing right knee pain for a week, building into something she could not bear any longer. Her mother took her to the doctor that afternoon. She has Osgood-Schlatter disease, which is less a disease as a syndrome. Continue reading “The Lydster, Part 104: The Medical Episodes”

Doctor: my eye…

Jackson Browne’s birthday is coming up.

Sometime last month, I suddenly experienced some real pain on the left side of my left eye. It was as though someone had poked me in the eye. It was still inflamed on the fourth day, so I went to my eye doctor on the fifth day.

She said that I was suffering from angular blespharitis. I said, “in English.” Angular I know, and I know that -itis is a suffix suggesting inflammation. Basically, I have a stye in the corner of my eye. I was to use warm compresses, massage, and use of prescription ointment two or three times a day.

From eMedicineHealth:

“A sty is an acute infection of the secretory glands of the eyelids. Continue reading “Doctor: my eye…”

An American doctor’s life

Not only will the form ask about religion – something the Census can’t ask because of separation of church and state – but whether they are practicing their religion.

I’m very fond of my general practitioner. I’ve been seeing her for only about a decade, though it seems longer. Inevitably, when I have a visit, especially my physical, we talk. Actually, she talks more than I do.

One of the things she’s had to get used to is the conversion of a bunch of medical records from paper form to electronic form. This happened on her own dime a few years back, when she had to acquire the expensive – and not always reliable – software, and hire med students to input the info. Ideally, this meant that all of my current medications would then pop up on the screen, but no Continue reading “An American doctor’s life”