Jason has sleep apnea. When he sleeps, if it can be called that, he stops breathing up to twelve times per hour. His body’s reflexive response is that his jaw shoots around wildly, chipping and grinding his teeth, and then he wakes up for a second. A dozen times every hour, every night, he wakes up to his teeth clanging around his mouth. As if that wasn’t fun enough, of the $2,400 the mouth guard his doctor prescribed prescribed him, his insurance plan is only going to cover a max of $94.
That’s giving him something else to grind his teeth about.
I don’t remember ever feeling rested after sleeping.
My company’s health plan is self-funded and administered by Blue Cross Blue Shield of Texas. The device my doctor prescribed falls under BCBS’s category “Durable Medical Devices”, which includes everything from canes and crutches to wheelchairs to home medical machines. Their maximum payout in this category is $94. My device will cost $2400. I’m sure that’s not even near the highest cost some people incur in that category.
That’s really the same as not being insured at all…except if I wasn’t insured I could maybe save the money I’m paying for insurance and be able to afford the device eventually.
So on top of the sleep apnea preventing a restful night’s sleep, he’s also kept awake at night worrying about how he’s going to pay for his mouth guard. Sweet dreams, insured Americans.