First of all, let me say that this is NOT some type of plea for money. NOT AT ALL. Let's get that straight and out of the way.
I'm on some medication that is quite expensive, and because Tom is self-employed, we don't have drug coverage (on the plus side, we do claim the medical expenses on our tax returns so we do get some of it back in the form of a healthy refund). The anti-emetic pills I'm on when I have chemo are quite expensive and then I'm on some pain medication that also gets a bit pricey. Add a few other medications here and there (other anti-emetics, gastro pills etc) and, let's just say I'm helping to buy my pharmacist a new Mercedes Benz.
I had a meeting with my Community Care Access Centre (CCAC) co-ordinator today. CCAC is the organization through which I get my home care nurse. The nurse disconnects my chemotherapy pump. Anyways, after she left, she called back and said, it popped in her head that we might not have drug coverage because Tom is self-employed. When I replied that no, we don't have coverage, she said that, because I'm being seen by a home care nurse, and we don't have drug coverage, we are eligible for a special card that will cover the cost of drugs - IF the drugs relate to the reason I have a home care nurse come in (which, of course, they do). So, she is processing the card today, and effective immediately, we have drug coverage for me.
For that, I'm very very happy.
I'm also very very angry.
I have been seeing a home care nurse now for 7.5 months. Why has NO ONE mentioned this before? I don't blame the nurse, that's not something they would think to ask. But why did my co-ordinator who first come in not mention it? You think that would be something on a checklist to ask.... quite basic in my opinion. It's not something I would ever think to ask..... why would the government offer us free drugs???
So that's 7 months of drugs that are not covered.
And, no, they will not cover retroactively. And for that, I'm really ticked.
One other piece of good news...
Ryan is eligible for funding from another social services department. This funding helps us hire someone to work with Ryan approximately 2 hours a week. We can also use those funds for respite (instead of using them for Ryan's contract worker). Respite allows me to pay for a babysitter for Ryan OR Kurtis and have that covered. I have fought for more than 2 hours a week for a few years now - it really isn't enough for respite AND Ryan's contract worker. I have asked for 6 hours a week hoping that I'd get 4. But no, they always keep it at 2.
Well, I received my letter today for 2007/2008 funding....drum roll please....
4 HOURS PER WEEK! Yahoo! Still not enough, but it's an improvement! I guess playing the cancer card helped this time. ;) That will allow us, when Ryan starts school full-time in September, to have someone come in 2-4 times a week to help him with school work.