Readers and Tweeters Remain Vigilant on Masking and Billing

Letters to the Editor is a periodic function. We welcome all comments and can publish a range. We edit for size and readability and require full names.

Can’t Masks the Fear

I’m a nursing scholar writing in response to a current article by Colleen DeGuzman about new tips on masking from the Facilities for Illness Management and Prevention (“The CDC’s New Guidelines on Covid Risk and Masking Send Confounding Signals,” March 9). I’m involved concerning the complicated messages that the CDC’s new tips are sending. My concern is that we are going to turn out to be much less vigilant, resulting in a big inflow of hospital admissions associated to covid-19 within the coming 12 months.

Since vaccination standing varies all through the nation/world, I fear that we’re leaving the door open for brand spanking new variants of covid-19 to emerge. Although some teams comparable to youngsters under age 5 usually are not but eligible for the vaccine, these of us who’re eligible ought to maintain updated with vaccination and boosters towards covid-19. Vaccines are a technique we are able to sluggish the emergence of latest covid-19 variants like omicron. I hope that we are going to proceed to be vigilant whatever the confusion these consistently altering tips could trigger.

— Alejandra Avalos, Nice Hill, California

Regarding to learn this and listen to @PublicHealth Govt Director is totally on board with CDC’s problematic new masking tips. The rules have been criticized by plenty of public well being specialists.

— Myra Batchelder – Nonetheless masking! (@myrabatchelder) March 13, 2022

— Myra Batchelder, New York Metropolis

Excessive NICU Invoice Hits Dwelling

I simply heard the story a few household’s shock $80,000 medical invoice for his or her youngsters’s NICU keep (“An $80,000 Tab for Newborns Lays Out a Loophole in the New Law to Curb Surprise Bills,” Feb. 23).

I can relate to this story very effectively as my spouse and I are going by way of the same scenario. Our child was born seven weeks early at an in-network facility. She was rushed into the hospital’s neonatal intensive care unit as a result of her lungs weren’t inflated at beginning. She lived her first 41 days within the NICU.

Roughly 30 days into her hospital keep, we obtained a imprecise letter from Pediatrix Obstetrix (Mednax) letting us know that the physicians offering her care have been out of community. I referred to as the cellphone quantity that the letter offered for just a few days and obtained no response to my voicemails. I lastly obtained a response after I filed a grievance with the Higher Enterprise Bureau.

Our daughter was born over six months in the past, and we’re nonetheless coping with this weekly and don’t have any finish in sight. Nor do we’ve any thought what will be billed to us. Whereas we’ve made headway in decreasing expenses by repeatedly interesting claims, we’ve needed to advocate for ourselves and spend numerous hours making certain we don’t turn out to be higher victims of UnitedHealthcare and Mednax.

Thanks for shining mild on what must be thought of unlawful enterprise practices of the medical insurance coverage business.

— Anthony Mancini, Flagstaff, Arizona

Simply because this occurs does not make it proper. Lack of itemized billing between a hospital and insurance coverage firm should not be trigger for re-billing the affected person ?. Thx @lowninstitute @PatriciaKelmar @USPirg #nosuprises #medicalbills

— Lori Nerbonne (@lori_nerbonne) March 1, 2022

— Lori Nerbonne, Biddeford, Maine

No Surprises Act Is a Joke

As a senior on a hard and fast, low Social Safety retirement-only revenue, by no means having labored for any employer who provided retirement plans and by no means incomes greater than subsistence, I can let you know this: If I turned ailing or acquired injured, there is no such thing as a manner I might search medical assist. Even with zero-premium Medicare Benefit, the copays and out-of-pocket caps and partially lined/not lined points can be not possible for me to cowl. Legislators proceed to present hospitals a cross for unhealthy conduct with the intentional loopholes in laws. The No Surprises Act is a joke (“An $80,000 Tab for Newborns Lays Out a Loophole in the New Law to Curb Surprise Bills,” Feb. 23). As for me? I might merely select no medical therapy and let the chips fall the place they could. Not concerned with determined makes an attempt to feed the insatiably grasping maw that describes the American well being care system — a system totally designed and applied to create and keep excessive poverty as the one choice for many who shouldn’t have deep pockets.

— Alexis Madison, Halsey, Oregon

Consideration for immunocompromised must be a part of our plan of ending the #COVID #pandemic (which isn’t over but #CovidIsNotOver)

— Kasia Hein-Peters, M.D. (@Kasia_HP) February 22, 2022

— Dr. Kasia Hein-Peters, Las Vegas

Hooked on Income?

I learn your article on modifications to methadone distribution (“Calls to Overhaul Methadone Distribution Intensify, but Clinics Resist,” March 3). I’m the director of a buprenorphine MAT (medication-assisted therapy) program. I sympathize with methadone program administrators concerning the gyrations one should undergo earlier than Medicaid will reimburse them, no matter being for-profit or nonprofit. Medicaid should simplify, with out dropping the flexibility to detect fraud. Talking cynically, although, I don’t see something enhancing with out limiting the lobbyists’ affect over rules that perpetuate the established order, which is being pushed by revenue concerns. The place there’s revenue, there’s greed, corruption of the legislative course of, and distortion of rules, for the advantage of the for-profit organizations. Making use of the proof base sounds nice, however lobbyists can overcome it simply. In abstract, I appreciated the article, which identified the issues with the present system of offering methadone to these whose lives rely on entry to it, however fixing the issue could also be not possible given the affect that revenue should purchase.

— Dr. Neil Flynn, Sacramento, California

You may by no means guess why clinics are so resistant to alter and looser restrictions… MONEY ???Calls to Overhaul Methadone Distribution Intensify, however Clinics Resist #SmartNews

— Lizzi Cochrane (@lizzicochrane) March 3, 2022

— Lizzi Cochrane, Kathleen, Georgia

A Tech Innovation That Solutions the Name

Some improvements are higher than others … for individuals with some disabilities (“Pandemic Medical Innovations Leave Behind People With Disabilities,” March 11). As an 81-year-old with reasonably extreme listening to loss, I love Zoom conferences! I can’t perceive most masked audio system and, previously, assembly with a bunch of six or extra individuals I typically had issue even with out masks. On Zoom, individuals have a tendency to perk up, look instantly into the digicam, be certain that their face is effectively lighted, and are cautious about not talking over others. If the host is aware of learn how to allow it, closed captioning is out there. Sadly, my Kaiser Permanente supplier doesn’t use Zoom however relatively a way more restricted program, during which I can’t regulate the scale of the speaker window and CC will not be obtainable.

— Mary Herzog, Napa, California

For a lot of deaf ppl contact with medical suppliers IS ANOTHER RISK on prime of no matter ailment we’d have. (Additionally did this journalist actually use a FREE terp to conduct this interview? Do they know they’re CONTRIBUTING to the issue they’re writing about?)

— Dr. Martin (@a_joy_martin) March 13, 2022

— Amber J. Martin, New York Metropolis

A Reward From a Gifted Author

My first marriage was to a girl with cerebral palsy, however that was way back. This story reawakened what I had realized from that have, forcefully and profoundly (“A Disabled Activist Speaks Out About Feeling ‘Disposable,’” Feb. 3).

My deep and heartfelt gratitude to Alice Wong, however right here I want to reward primarily the writing of Rachel Scheier. Nonetheless proficient and skilled Ms. Scheier could also be, her fantastically crafted article was clearly a labor of affection. Presenting her interview with Ms. Wong within the type of an interview (relatively than merely reporting what she had realized) was a superb thought and was brilliantly executed — conversational, easy, direct, clear, and cogent altogether, a great mannequin for any journalism class. Like listening to Beethoven! A stunning and significant reward. Thanks.

— Richard A. Morgan, Berkeley, California

Implausible interview with AliceWong @SFdirewolf on dwelling by way of the #COVID19 pandemic.#CripTheVote #NoBodyIsDisposable #HighRiskCOVID19 #MyDisabledLifeIsWorthy

— Andrew Pulrang (@AndrewPulrang) February 5, 2022

— Andrew Pulrang, Plattsburgh, New York

Placing Injustices of Judicial System in Perspective

Glorious story by LJ Dawson about an inmate serving a 42-month federal sentence for failure to gather payroll taxes (“Inmates Who Died Asked for Release Before Falling Ill With Covid,” Feb. 18). It could have been useful to quote the worth of the payroll taxes and evaluate that to the precise taxes paid by President Donald Trump and Amazon founder Jeff Bezos so the reader may resolve on the justification of the girl’s sentence.

— Joe Morris, Philadelphia

We love that extra information shops are masking incarcerated people, however can y’all *please* work on these headlines?There are at all times higher phrases than inmates—for ex: Three ladies died avoidable deaths in a West Virginia jail in lower than a weekMore suggestions:

— Scalawag (@scalawagmag) February 18, 2022

— The Scalawag Journal crew, Durham, North Carolina

This story was produced by KHN (Kaiser Well being Information), a nationwide newsroom that produces in-depth journalism about well being points. Along with Coverage Evaluation and Polling, KHN is without doubt one of the three main working packages at KFF (Kaiser Household Basis). KFF is an endowed nonprofit group offering info on well being points to the nation.

KHN (Kaiser Well being Information) is a nationwide newsroom that produces in-depth journalism about well being points. Along with Coverage Evaluation and Polling, KHN is without doubt one of the three main working packages at KFF (Kaiser Household Basis). KFF is an endowed nonprofit group offering info on well being points to the nation.


This story will be republished without cost (details).

Leave a Comment