Yorktown girl can eat only one thing: costly formula that insurance won't coverThat's pretty disgusting, eh? I mean, even if you are covered, well, you're not.
(Original publication: December 28, 2007)
YORKTOWN â Three-year-old Hannah Devane is allergic to food. Not the kind that makes kids spit out their broccoli; the kind that can kill.
The Yorktown preschooler has a condition called eosinophilic esophagitis, a severe food allergy that causes a type of white blood cell to congregate in the esophagus, the tube that carries food from the mouth to the stomach, damaging the tissue when she eats.
A doctor-prescribed formula has allowed Hannah to grow to a robust 40 pounds, a normal weight for a child her age. Without it, Hannah could wind up with a feeding tube.
But the insurance program that covers her family through her father's job as a New York City police lieutenant has stopped paying for the formula, which costs $1,200 a month. Food supplements and other over-the-counter items are not covered under the family's insurance, the prescription plan administrator said.
Arriving home hungry from day care, the blond, curly haired Hannah stretches out on the sofa with a bottle of formula.
"Our daughter has a disorder where she needs the formula to live," said Jessie Devane, 37, a registered nurse. "There is tissue damage if it is not treated. The treatment is no food. The insurance company won't even listen to Hannah's doctor."
This is not health care. This isn't insurance coverage. This is flat-out, cold-hearted extortion by both the drug company who makes the formula this girl needs to live and the insurance provider who is refusing coverage, and no American should fall victim to this sort of bullshit. And what's the Insurance provider's excuse?
Food... They call it food.
The family had been getting coverage for Elecare because of an error, said Helen Sweeny, the administrator of the self-insured medical benefits fund run by the Superior Officers Council.
"The program would be broke if we tried to cover food," said Sweeny, who has run the program for 32 years.
They act as if she's asking for gum drops and potato chips.
It's okay for them to cover a medication that someone takes five or six times a day, but, by labeling this medication as "food," suddenly they can deny this dying girl access so as to skip out on paying for it.
Forgive me Helen Sweeny, but I truly hope an out of control dump truck finds its way onto your empty head, you insufferable, unconscionable twit. Or, better yet, I hope you find yourself in a situation where you need something to save your life, and if you have the gall to shed a tear when someone denies you access, please remember those things you've told people to justify your company's insatiable greed.
Seriously. They call it food.
I suppose that makes Insulin nothing more than sugar-water.
It's fucking astounding how horribly inhuman some human beings truly are.
Don't worry Helen Sweeny. Soon this little girl will be dead, and you won't have to explain how you pretty much murdered her by denying her access to medication which would have saved her life. Don't let that trouble that under-used puddle of sludge between your ears. Just, you know, try not to eat too much over the course of the holidays.
Posted By Dan to The Wisdom of a Distracted Mind at 12/28/2007 06:18:00 PM