Happy Sunday! Sunday Salon is hosted by Deb at ReaderBuzz. Check out her post and the links to see what other bloggers have been up to in the last week.
How’s the weather?
We’re having some delightful fall days with autumn color beginning to show on the hillsides.
What are you reading?
I mentioned last week that I would start Payback in Death by J.D. Robb soon. I started it mid-day on Sunday and finished it Monday morning. It’s been ages since I’ve read a book that quickly. Apparently, it just hit the perfect spot for me. Also, I needed a break from real life. Reading a novel in a day is a great cheap vacation!
There are a couple of books that I want to read for projects, but I still wasn’t in the mood. When I got an email from a friend on Tuesday about her novel, I decided to read that next. Bridezilla by Kathy Bailey and Kurt Pankau proved to be another fun, quick read that I reviewed on Thursday. It’s perfect for those of us who prefer our Halloween reading to have monsters that are more quirky than scary.
My October exploration of the Year Without a Summer (1816) continued with a book that included that phrase in the title: Jane and the Year Without a Summer. The “Jane” in question is Jane Austen who spent time at Cheltenham Spa at a time of disappointing weather.
What are you watching?
The fourth and final season of Sex Education is now available on Netflix. This season had more drama and less comedy, reflecting the maturity of the characters who took their initial steps into adulthood. The conclusion satisfied me.
In case I converted anyone into Hannah Gadsby fans, she has a small but delightful role in this season of Sex Education.
What are you doing?
I got my COVID and flu shots. Unlike the last couple of years when government at various levels was helping us out, I had to pay quite a bit. I think it might help the situation, eventually, if we all share our stories, so here is mine.
I started at a pharmacy, since that seems to be the most obvious and convenient way to get both shots at the same time, following current CDC guidelines. They ran it through insurance and came up with $150 for the COVID shot and $67 for the flu shot. Yikes! That seemed like too much to the pharmacist, so they suggested that I talk to my insurance company.
When I called the insurance company, I encountered the same advice that I got for the Shingles vaccine earlier this year. That advice backfired on me.
My insurance has separate pharmacy coverage and medical coverage. Vaccines are covered under the medical part, but pharmacies can only access the pharmacy part.
So, the advice is to get the vaccines from a medical facility like my doctor’s office or a CVS Minute Clinic. I tried that with my Shingles vaccine. The vaccine from a medical office was covered, but the cost to me was higher than the uncovered vaccine from a pharmacy (which is a much more cost-efficient way to deliver vaccines).
Even worse, you can’t compare prices. The pharmacy can tell me exactly how much I will pay. The doctor’s office will send it off to insurance. I won’t know until I get a bill, a month from now, whether I would have been better off using the pharmacy.
My experience might have been different if I’d met my deductible.
I’m annoyed on so many levels. At the moment, I’m focused on badly implemented capitalism. If our society wants to convince us that capitalism works so great, the least we could do is implement transparent processes so that it works as advertised.
So, I went back to the pharmacy and paid for my shots. Fortunately, they hadn’t yet shredded the paperwork that I filled out in the morning, so that one aspect of my day went quickly. Never mind how much time I wasted on making two trips plus multiple attempts to get answers on websites plus a phone call to the insurance company.
I anticipate that Rick will have a better experience. We use the same insurance company, but he has a Medicare plan. He was able to get his Shingles shots at a reasonable price from a pharmacy. I think Medicare insists that their participants have convenient and affordable access to vaccines. It would be better for public health if we all had that.
What are you writing?
I went back to the drawing board last week with my novel-writing. The good news is that the skills that I developed for drawing-board work are still intact, so I’m making quick progress as I think through a plot with higher stakes and more conflict.
How are you this fine Sunday?