Saturday, February 23, 2008

Hi There!

Ooh what an exciting week I've been having. My friend Jean once asked me if there was any such thing as normal in our house and I am almost at the point where I have to say yes.

It seems to me that health wise we are all normally abnormal. DG is abnormally healthy. PP is indeed a physical wreck with numerous complaints and multiple medications; this IS normal for me, BB has abdominal pain and seems to be spending more and more time clutching his tummy moaning than ever this week and LB came out with sympathetically swollen tonsils and a temperature. Status normal; for the family Peirce it would seem!

As a result of all this excitement I finally gave in and on Thursday decided to make a trip to my local doctor; en famille. I suppose really I should have take my Mom along too, as she's still pretty miserable; the thought of losing one of her prized possessions to a particularly unpleasant dental abcess!

In Ireland health care is not cheap. I dare say that it is less expensive than in the States, but compared to the National Health Service in the UK it is expensive, and getting more so each year. The average trip to the GP (family doctor/practitioner) costs around €50.00, which goes up to €60.00 when I have the two boys in tow. Consequently it pays to be healthy and it is not something to be undertaken lightly.

As I have a long term condition and am under the care of a hospital consultant my GP is happy
to see me every six or so months and issues a private certificate for my employer every three. This is a perfectly reasonable arrangement except that my employer refuses to accept the legally valid certificate which I submit monthly basis to the governments' Department of Social Welfare. So, it costs ME the grand total of €5.00 per month to maintain a contract of employment with an employer who is no longer contributing to my household income! It's a bloody cheek, if you ask me, but then you didn't and neither did they!

Don't even think about engaging me in a conversation about prescription fees either! In the UK there's a small fee paid in receipt of prescribed medication and that is pretty much all that there is to it! Our system is so different;
I have a Drug Repayment Scheme card which allows me to pay for the first €90.00 of my monthly prescription drugs and
then, thankfully, the rest is then made up by my local health board. This is a Godsend as some of these drugs cost in excess of €120.00 per course; and that is just the beginning...

Look-it; (a local expression), if you didn't laugh about it all you would almost certainly cry. And so; to add insult to injury my final tale of woe has its basis in tradition, referring to a post I did recently on Vinca's-A-Thinka! last week [...]
In an effort to cheer myself up I deserted the sick and took myself off to the local haberdashiery shop (which is very much a dying breed); in search of a metre or so of red flannel in order to make myself a red petticoat for Leap Day. There has been a run on this commodity recently, the cold weather causing many of our elderly population to buy it up; to
bring great comfort to their arthritic joints! Apparently this particular remedy is to be highly recommended...

That's all for now folks,

Polly Peirce


Jean said...

Thanks for your comments and for your link. My chooks are currently in trouble as the cockeral has escaped our fencing - he would choose to do it when I'm on my own for the week!

I sympathise with you re medical care. My son is at uni in the UK and we send him his asthma treatment as it is cheaper here than in the England. He also has a stomach problem and sees a French specialist - but that is only partly because of cost: he can actually get an appointment here...!

Polly Peirce said...

I know this is stating the obvious, but is he coming home to roost with the gals at night time?

Chooks tend to be creatures of habit and you might just get lucky if you sneak up on him at bedtime! Mind you, that's assuming that you have slightly free-range ones like I did.

Half the time I was 30 miles away at the hospital; so they didn't have much choice in the matter! Locked up all day & night or take your chances?

I know which I'd have chosen...