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rue-madame's Diaryland Diary

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If the shoe fits... bargain

Iím wearing TWO SHOES! One on each foot! Yay!

Dr K told me I was a miracle healer (should I take credit for something involuntary? Yes, ok, I should) and that the soreness I feel on the bottom of my foot is a) totally normal, and 2) could take as long as one year to disappear but it will probably dissipate sooner than. Phew.

The neuroma in the right foot is still problematic but the pain is not so excrutiating that I need to do anything about it immediately. Iíd rather wait, make sure one foot is healed, ensure my RA is under control before I submit to more surgery. Call me crazy, but I think my body needs a break.

The doctor told me to put the big black boot aside for now but ďdonít get rid of it.Ē So I said, ďIím not throwing that boot out! I paid for it. It was expensive and it wasnít even Prada.Ē

At least with Prada, you get TWO shoes for the price.

Seriously, the doctorís office billed my insurance $350 for one bootóa boot that I found online and retails for $300 less than that. Thatís like a 600% markup or something! Furthermore the doctor pays less than $50 per boot! So the markup is even higher! Thatís insanity!

(I understand that my insurance gets billed $350 but that I donít, in the end, have to actually pay $350. But what the fuck kind of system is that? Pftt.)

I have a friend in LA who believes that everything is negotiable, right on down to your dental appointment costs. He never just pays. He says, ďthey charge what they can! They charge what they want. Their prices are arbitrary. Why shouldnít I question their numbers?Ē Iím beginning to see his logic. From here on out, if a physician asks me to wear a special shoe, or use a special brace or orthodotic, or prescribes crutches or whatever, Iím going pretend Iím in a (funky cold) medina and start haggling. Caveat emptor!

The funny thing is, the $350 boot was manufactured by a company that TA interviewed with when we were in LA. If heíd taken the job, I probably could have gotten a boot for free. But would it have been worth it? I donít think TA would have enjoyed commuting to Camarillo every day just so that my insurance company wouldnít be billed $350 for a stupid orthopaedic accessory.

Iím still better off this way.

12:36 p.m. - 2005-07-13

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