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Old 01-07-2009, 04:22 PM
2 posts, read 4,614 times
Reputation: 11


I recently became unemployed. I am 54 and my wife is 60. We both have health issues, hers prevent her from working. We must keep insurance for medical and prescriptions. Not only for doctor visits and meds, but if it ever lapses we will have all of our pre-exsisting conditions excluded for 12 months.

It didn't take long to run out of money. Bankruptcy took care of the current med bills and credit cards. Unemployment pays $350 a week. I have applied for food stamps but have not been approved yet.

Cobra Ins. is $820 a month Texas Health Risk Pool is $1700 a month. We chose Cobra. That leaves $580 for rent, utilities, food, gas, etc... It doesn't work.

I would appreciate any information or ideas about any State funded programs to help the unemployed.

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Old 01-07-2009, 04:51 PM
32,479 posts, read 50,954,572 times
Reputation: 18375
if her health issues keep her from working she needs to apply for social security disability insurance

TX has no health insurance for normal adults--you are a normal adult--even if you are not working--
you have access to county hospital health care (JPS in Tarrant county) where you are billed by your ability to pay

welcome to the world of less government--where people are expected to take care of themselves--
I would venture to guess that if you voted in the past you voted for Republicans...
Republicans don't believe in a "social welfare" net to save people--they belive in Darwin's theory--the survival of the fittest...
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Old 01-07-2009, 07:38 PM
Location: Austin, TX
288 posts, read 736,839 times
Reputation: 148
I think it's safe to assume that the lack of a social safety net is also why you see so many panhandlers on the corner in Austin too. While I find it annoying and would personally never do it no matter how bad my situation, I can see where some might feel as though they have no other choice to survive due to unemployment/medical/mental issues, etc.. Really sad...
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Old 01-07-2009, 11:27 PM
Location: Texas
8,062 posts, read 16,756,002 times
Reputation: 3709
You can't afford COBRA and you're going to have to start looking for inexpensive or less expensive health care options until you find a job with benefits. I had to leave work due to major health problems and was approved for Social Security Disability very quickly. However, even with SSD, the feds make you wait two years before Medicare coverage starts. It stinks.

So, take it from someone who's been there -- you need to cobble together health care. There are free or low-cost health clinics in most areas -- find out where they are and sign up. I went to a church-run medical clinic that only charged $20 for a doctor's visit and the doctor was a great person. He looked over all of my meds and wrote me prescriptions for cheaper drugs that would hold my issues at bay. Most pharmacies now are offering the generics for $4/month or less. That's what you need.

If you can't find a low-cost medical clinic, ask around and get recommendations for docs who give a discount to patients who pay cash for appointments. Some do that, or they keep the cost of their office visits low. Ask the doc for free samples of the meds you're on. The pharmaceutical companies give out a lot of free sample packs and the docs can give a bunch to those in need. Talk to your specialists and tell them the situation. One of mine was willing to advise me by phone for free and call in prescriptions. I saved up to pay cash when I needed to see him.

Also, for the "must have" expensive meds, have your doctor refer you to the pharmaceutical companies' patient assistance programs. They're quite generous about providing meds to those who don't have insurance. (That didn't work for me because my major med. is a powerful immuno-suppressant that requires careful monitoring and lab work, which I couldn't afford without insurance. But many people DO get cancer drugs and such for free.)

Take advantage of health fairs and county health department clinics. We have them here a LOT and you can get all sorts of screenings done for very low costs or free. Call your city or county health department to find out when and where they are.

Hope this helps. And I'm really sorry you're facing a rough time.
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Old 01-08-2009, 07:10 AM
Location: Grapevine, Texas
10,505 posts, read 22,346,689 times
Reputation: 8323
Find a part-time job while you search for other employment. You CAN work part-time while on unemployment to help supplement your income and extend your unemployment benefits. Call TWC and find out exactly how many hours/$ you can work/earn without affecting your benefits.

I agree that your wife needs to appy for SSI Disability.
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