During a recent hospitalization [at Mission/St. Joseph Hospital], I was disappointed that the focus of my care appeared to be centered around insurance requirements as opposed to my health status. For example, the transfer from observation status to in-patient status was determined by insurance guidelines instead of a complete assessment of my physical condition. My physician, as well as a hospital insurance representative, discussed insurance issues with me throughout my stay.
From a patient’s perspective, it is very difficult to intelligently discuss insurance issues while on mind-altering medications and struggling to breathe. I question why there was any need to discuss insurance. I have insurance, and the hospital has all of my insurance information documented in their records.
Another concerning issue was the physical condition of my room and the hospital. It was filthy! Considering the fact that hospital-acquired infections are a serious reality, environmental service should be a top priority.
I am urging all of us to encourage politicians to put health care on their agendas. These issues should be a top priority item for all legislators at the state and federal level. Please do not vote for any candidate who is not concerned with health care reform. Our health care system is only going to get worse.
— Anne Catherine Gibbons
Editor’s note: A response from Mission Health President and CEO Ronald A. Paulus appears in the letter, “Mission Health Offers Apology and Explanation” in this issue.