I have bad joints, and previous joint surgeries. To help control pain and inflammation, I get monthly acupuncture treatments. They work marvelously, and allow me to maintain a good quality of life with minimal discomfort and without prescription pain medication.
Yesterday I had my acupuncture appointment, and was told that my insurance has not allowed any further treatments right now — despite having 12 treatments per calendar year in the benefit, they are doled out as the insurance company sees fit.
I have decent insurance, but they do not like maintenance procedures, so they have only been approving one or two at a time – after which, my doctor has to write in and beg for a few more. Apparently my day-to-day pain is not severe enough to warrant more treatments, as judged by some non-medical administrator. But without the treatments, I will be in a lot more pain.
These acupuncture treatments run $120 per month, which includes treatment for four major joints. I take no prescription medications, I get no other procedures for my joints. And, I pay for most of these appointments out of pocket each year, because I have a deductible.
Here’s the crazy thing. My insurance will cover two total knee replacement surgeries and two hip surgeries, at tens of thousands of dollars, plus the associated rehab, physical therapy, drugs, MRI’s, X-rays, and mobility appliances (splints, braces, crutches, scooter, etc.) —- but they won’t cover $120 per month in acupuncture (which I’m paying anyway) to keep me from needing these surgeries.
I can’t help but wonder, WTF??