The Orange tape (aka Dutch red tape…)

13 Jan

Dutch people seem to enjoy doing things the hard way, only to get a reward that should have been a given thing to begin with. Either that, or I don’t know. I’m merely a South-African when it comes to these things. It’s a frustrating hassle for those of us who likes things to be simple and sensible so we can get on with the fun things, you know?

I am not sure what type of health care system and funding they are pretending to have here. I am obliged to have health insurance, and I can choose where I can get my basic insurance, which covers the same mandatory things. The basic insurance does not actaully cover the health care I am most likely to need, but it does cover most things for the elderly. This doesn’t make sense to me; why am I not entitled to health care which would enable me to better contribute to society? Contrary to apparent popular belief my mental health issues are not my choice. ADHD is a very expensive problem to have.

Alongside the mandatory insurance, I also have a mandatory 350 euro deductible. Says the law. This would make sense in an insurance where there’s actually the possibility that you won’t need to call on the insurance. I have ADHD, I use medication for it, and I am getting help for it because I really want to make the most of my life. So, basically, apart from the mandatory insurance which doesn’t cover my meds or the contraceptive I’m using for my debilitating periods.. I have to set aside 350 euros for whenever the company decides to cash in. No, I can’t simply pay it in advance. And what if I lose my job? Then I can’t afford any health care, despite being insured for it. The only option I have is to sit and wait for the bomb to drop on me. Last year it happened together with a massive bill for my utilities; leaving me with no money left for anything other than rent. You can’t complain to a Dutch person about this, they don’t understand that you simply need things to work without massive paperwork hassles everywhere, because the utilities thing could have been prevented if I was able to consider each and every possibility. ‘Own fault’ they say.

OK, so this year I got a more expensive insurance which does cover concerta, and it does work out cheaper than paying for it out of pocket, considering that I’m on a plus insurance which also covers the other type of health care I might need: physiotherapy. Like I said: I don’t know which moron decided to not cover a drug which has so many evidence based advantages for those who need it, but to cover accupuncture. I also don’t understand why melatonin is only covered for the elderly, when it’s proven less effective in the elderly. Anyway. So, I sorted it out, and got myself a more expensive insurance. That was a bit of a hassle, really.

In my world, it makes sense that it’s all sorted then.

In Holland, it doesn’t.

This, I learned at the pharmacy. In my world, it would simply be more efficient, less annoying and cheaper to simply send the bill for my meds to the pharmacy, and send my on my happy way to face the rest of the challenges related to day to day life with ADHD; without having to worry about budgeting for and paying for my meds. Because, in the end, it’s covered.

In Holland, it makes perfect sense to have several transactions and a lot of paperwork for the same little bottle of pills, every month. First off, my prescription for 2 months of concerta has been split in half because they don’t hand out concerta for longer than that. Same pharmacy who happily counted out 400 tablets of methylphenidate a few months earlier. So I have to go back once a month to get my pills.
Apparently the PLUS bit on my insurance is not the same as the basic insurance. Basic insurance covers the price of short-working methylphenidate. So that part of the bill for this one bottle gets sent straight to the insurance company. The remaining 40+ euros (+60 for contaceptives as mentioned somewhere above, which is not covered because I’m over 21 and of course perinatal care is cheaper than the oral contraceptives…) have to be paid out of my pocket to the pharmacy. The pharmacy lady looked at the 100 euro bill, said well that’s a lot in one go. I said I had no choice. Right. So now I have to manage to not lose the receipts from the pharmacy, then I have to manage to find and correctly fill out the declaration forms (Every month??) to get my money back from the insurance company, who will then send me a bill for the bit paid directly to the pharmacy because of the deductible. I think the bit I declare back from them doesn’t go off my deductible.
And I have no idea when this will happen.

I don’t know. Somehow, a bunch of smart Dutch people agreed to this after a very long discussion, but I think the rush of the discussion was too much for them to handle and they should have let a foreigner handle this.

Now, if you’ll excuse me, I have to go and use every single ADHD coping technique I’ve learned in order to handle getting the care I need to cope with ADHD.

I think the world would be a better place if there were more smart people with ADHD. Coming up with the complicated solutions is too much mental effort for us, so we’ll hand you over the smart and simple solutions and then the non-ADHD people can go and do the computer programming for it or whatnot.

1 Comment

Posted by on January 13, 2013 in ADHD, Rant, society


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