Today, I spent three hours on the phone with Scheck and Siress and Shriners. Three hours of my life that I'll never get back but I hope that they both (or at least one of them) see the light. At Camp No Limits, during one of the parent support groups, I learned typical process for prosthetics at Shriners. I also learned that our process was far from typical.
Here's what happened... when we picked up the prosthetic, we were told that we had to pay our 10% of the prosthetic BEFORE it was released to us. We paid over $530 for the prosthetic and were on our way. There is another $394 sitting in limbo to see if we met more of our deductible. The original bill for the prosthetic was around $9000. I swiped my credit card and was sent on my way with a sports arm for Bella.
Here's what SHOULD have happened according to what I learned at Camp No Limits. Scheck and Siress should have billed insurance, insurance should have covered "their" portion. The remainder should have been billed back to Shriners for them to cover the remainder. That did not happen. Hence why I spent so many hours on the phone trying to get this situation resolved.
Some of you may be saying "Well it's only $530"... you are SO right, it's only money. I can't take it with me when I die. However why should my daughter suffer because she was born without fingers on her left hand? Why should she have to make adaptations in a world that was built for two handed individuals? Why should she not be able to be a "normal" kid, playing, doing cartwheels, riding bikes, doing PE class?
Remember back when she had the fall in PE class due to her limb difference? Yeah so that happened. It could have had long term ramifications, I'm so thankful that it did not. However, let's play devil's advocate. She only suffered in pain for seven days because she didn't have the balance due to her lack of fingers, causing her to fall and severely sprain her neck. This left her out of gym and recess for an entire week. To a kid, those are some of the highlights of your day. It could have left her paralyzed, with a head injury, a brain injury, to be catherized for urine... it could have changed our lives in a much different way. Could've but it didn't. Yes, this is ONE reason she needs a sports arm.
I teach pediatric nursing and the JOB of children is play, just like you have a job. My job is teaching nursing, Bella's job is to play and learn through that. This is one small example of how she can't play due to her limb difference. I would not allow her to do another hand stand until she received her prosthetic and be balanced... however, her injury also has made her have a fear of head stands. She recalls the pain, the missing out on being a kid, missing out on recess and sitting out of gym class. She talks about it, she doesn't want it to happen again.
Camp No Limits once again made me think of things and how Bella is affected. This mama bear is always working to protect her cubs. Today, that meant advocating for her for many hours on the phone. They can come back and say no... and they just might do that. In the end, I stood up for my girl and I won't back down. Not today, not ever.
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