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Monday, October 22, 2012

The World is Smothered in Red Tape

Ever feel like you are bound up in a pile of red tape?

Today was a red tape day.

Last December...almost a year ago, I had a nasty bout of vertigo. I woke up to spinning rooms and nausea. I somehow managed to drive myself to the nearest Urgent Care.

In my state of sickness, I didn't have time to look for my insurance card. I was told by the billing clerk at Urgent Care that I could pay in cash. So, I was told to pay a certain amount and that would be suffiecent to cover the cost of my care.

So, I gave them the cash.
I also told them that when I found my insurance card I would send them a copy. I pay a lot of money for private insurance every month and thought that maybe, by sending my insurance company a copy of what I paid out of pocket, that they would apply that toward my huge dedctible..
or something like that..

Well, several months passed and I get a phone call from a collection agency, nonetheless.
They told me that I owed Urgent Care more money.. Keep in mind that I paid Urgent Care cash upon my visit..When I left Urgent Care, they told me that my bill was paid in FULL..

So, I spent a good part of the day sorting this out. I was on the phone with Urgent Care and their billing office in Baton Rouge.. I was told that it was their mistake. They apologized for the confusion and told me that they would correct the situation by letting the collection agency know that the matter was resolved..

End of story.

Or so, I thought.

Today, I got a call... Can you guess who it was from?
The same collection agency telling me that I still owed money to Urgent Care..from my visit from over a YEAR ago..

Of course, I was taken aback and slightly frustrated.

So, I called the Urgent Care office once again. They once again admitted their mistake, but told me that I would have to call the Baton Rouge office to get it all sorted out.
So, I called the Baton Rouge office.. No one answered..

All I can say, is that it sometimes seems the world is wrapped up in red tape.
We live in a corporate world where small town values have all but disappeared.
People are no longer treated like humans.
We are business transactions.
We have, as a nation, become so obsessed with the "almighty" dollar that we have lost compassion and forgotten human decency.

Huge business are run like machines. Everything is automated. I can't count the number of times I have called these mega corporations and longed to speak to a "real person" on the phone and been on hold for insane amounts of time while elevator music and advertisements are playing in my ears.
I have learned patience, but I am still frustrated at how impersonal the world and business has become.

About a year ago, I read a story that horrified me.
It was like something out of a science fiction novel it was so grotesque.

There was a man in somewhere USA. His house caught fire. Firefighters rushed to his house, but when they learned that he didn't pay a bill for firefighting services, they sat back and watched as his home burned to the ground. They watched as he wept.

True story.
They refused to fight the fire and save his home with his PET inside becasue he missed a few bills.
I will have to fact check the pet but I'm pretty sure that he had a furry creature inside his home..

I was mortified when I heard this story. I was amazed at the lack of humanity displayed by this man's community. And for what?
The "almighty" dollar. Once again judgment triumphs over mercy in a world of greed.

We have lost sense in a world where money is king.

Is this what money does to us?
Is that why Jesus warned the rich?
I'm not against the rich. I love all people, but even Jesus said that riches tempt us toward greed. I don't have a problem with the rich.. But I do cringe at greed.

I'm going to write more about this later..

But for now, I am cutting my way out of red tape..

Have you ever been caught up in red tape?

1 comment:

  1. I was told the same thing when i visited an emergency room one night. my blood pressure was too high and i really didnt feel right. they told me if i paid a $150 that night then it would be ok. since i have no medical insurance i paid the money. three months later i receive a bill from them for $800 . i was thrown for a loop and to top it off i wasnt credited with what i paid already. i called them and went from person to person to get it solved. eventually it was. i mean get competant help. why do they always put people in charge that have no people skills,ignorant, a terrible attitude and most of the time have no clue what you are talking about. Figure that one out.I thank God, He has kept me healthy. I don't intend to go back there and Lake Charles is just as bad. Imagine if you were one of the homeless and was brought to an emergency room ..........I feel for them........