Archive for the ‘ Health ’ Category

Obamacare

Seems as if Obamacare is a hot topic around these parts. So many people are worried about what it is going to do, and have been convinced by some people that Obamacare is going to ruin America. Well, that is a discussion that I really don’t want to get into deeply because it is obvious that everyone I have had contact with has already made up their minds one way or the other and there is nothing that I will be able to say or do to change their minds. And I really am not interested in preaching to the choir. I do know that there is a lot of misinformation out there that has a lot of people upset, and that is really unfortunate.

In my email inbox today there was a message about a neat tool created by Consumer Reports that helps the everyday consumer (like you and me) to understand exactly what we are going to need to do in order to comply with the law. I think that they named it a “health law helper” tool or wizard. Anyway, they created a webpage called healthlawhelper dot org and if you go to their website you will see a page that has a red banner on it that says “Find out what you need to do.” If you actually click on that banner, it takes you to a different webpage that is a wizard. It asks you specific questions, such as what state you live in, how many people are in your family, what is your income (it does NOT ask for your name or address or any personal identifying information, so don’t get all worked up over the questions.) Eventually it actually tells you what you need to do, and offers tips. At no point does it ask for any contact information, so you can just relax and not worry about your email inbox filling up or your telephone ringing off the hook.

I think that is an awesome tool, and I encourage everyone who is worried about what they need to do to be in compliance with the law to calm down and use the tool. You just might be pleasantly surprised!

An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure

When someone in my family, or my circle of friends tells me that they have a cold, the first thing I encourage them to do is to suck on zinc lozenges, drink plenty of ginger ale or tea, and take Mucinex.

In my opinion, if the medical practitioners were truly interested in keeping their patients healthy they would be giving out sample bags of zinc lozenges and Mucinex, and then encouraging their patients to use the zinc every day as preventative measures, and the Mucinex if and when they start to develop thick mucus. And to drink lots and lots of fluids if they feel as if they are coming down with a cold. There has been a lot of research to show that using zinc lozenges is very effective in combating many viruses, including the ones that cause the common cold. The active ingredient in Mucinex is guaifenesin, and that has been proven to thin mucus. This is important because when someone has the common cold, the mucus tends to thicken. When the mucus is thick, it does not drain out of the sinuses and the chest. The longer the mucus stays in the sinuses and chest, the longer the natural bacteria present in the mucus has to multiply. At some point this bacteria can multiply to the point where the doctor will proclaim that now the patient has an infection which now needs to be treated with antibiotics and steroids. Guaifenesin thins the mucus in the sinuses and in the chest, and that will help prevent the bacteria from multiplying. Drinking lots of fluids also helps to keep the mucus thin, and helps to prevent dehydration, which has its own set of problems.

I have found that if I start to use zinc lozenges on the very first day that I start to have a runny or congested nose, or a hint of a sore throat, and continue to use them for several days the cold never progresses to the point where I actually feel miserable – I only feel like I’m “fighting” a cold for about three or four days, and then I’m fine.

Microwave winter squash

winter squash free clip art

Winter squash (free clip art image)

One of the foods I really enjoy to eat is winter squash. Acorn squash, butternut squash, buttercup squash… all are similar in taste. One thing that I have never LIKED about the squash, however, was how difficult it can be to cook. So I was really glad when a cousin of mine told me that she microwaves them, and that it makes it really easy to do! So I decided to try it for myself, and really liked it. So that is how I do it now.

Wash the outside of the squash. Stab it with a big chef’s fork several times. Put it in the microwave for a couple of minutes on high. Turn it over and nuke it again for a couple of minutes. When it starts to feel soft, use oven mitts to take it out of the microwave and put it on a heat-resistant cutting board. Cut it in half lengthwise with a big sharp knife. Use a big spoon to scoop out the seeds and throw the seeds away. Scoop out the cooked “flesh” of the squash and put that in a big bowl. Add some butter and some brown sugar and mash it up with a potato masher or use a blender. I do this with butternut, buttercup, and acorn squash. All yummy to the max!

I think I need a legal malpractice attorney

This is a true story about my frustrating experience with Fauquier County Schools, Worker’s Compensation, and the law office of Wesley Marshall in Fredericksburg VA.

Several years ago I was involved in a traffic accident that was not my fault. At the time I was a substitute school bus driver for Fauquier County in Virginia. On October 2, 2009 I was driving a school bus, loaded with middle school age children to their school. I stopped at a red traffic light, and when it turned green, after verifying that oncoming traffic had stopped, I proceeded into the intersection. Suddenly a vehicle pulled out of a nearby gas station and ran the red light, broadsiding my school bus.

I was injured in the accident and had to seek medical attention. I have been battling with Worker’s Compensation ever since, but that is another post.

Even though all investigations showed that it was the fault of the driver of the car, and there was absolutely no evidence of any wrong doing, or any wrong actions by be before, during, or after the accident, Fauquier County chose to fire me. I truly believe that firing was a result of my telling Fauquier County that I needed medical attention and had to claim Worker’s Compensation.

I hired a lawyer, Wesley Marshall, to represent me in the Worker’s Compensation case. Although I have “won” my case, I have had to pay out-of-pocket for doctor’s visits, medications, surgery, and physical therapy. I still need another surgery, and I will have disability my entire life as a result of this accident.

Although I “won” the Worker’s Compensation case, when the doctors and the hospitals and the pharmacies tried to bill Worker’s Compensation, all of those claims were denied. When I tried to call the case worker for Worker’s Compensation, the case worker refused to talk to me, telling me that he would only talk to my lawyer.

Although I have submitted copies of those bills to Wesley Marshall’s office, asking them to submit them to Worker’s Compensation so I can be refunded, they have not done so and I have received no refund at all. I have told them that the Worker’s Compensation case worker will not talk to me.

Their response has been to send me a bill for $2,000 for their services, although I have yet to receive one penny of reimbursement for any of my expenses that I have had to pay even though Worker’s Compensation was ordered to pay them!

My phone calls to Mr. Marshall’s office have only resulted in my leaving messages for Mr. Marshall, and Mr. Marshall has not replied by calling me back. In fact, I recently received a letter from his associate Mr. Joel Young (who was assigned my case without my permission) advising me that the law office has closed my case and that they no longer represent me! So now what?

At a bare minimum, I believe that I will send a letter of complaint to the Bar, and I believe that I need to hire a legal malpractice attorney. Do you know of any?

So many different ways to make money

Ever since the doctor told me that I have a diagnosis of narcolepsy I have been exploring ways to generate an income without having to drive anywhere. Even though the doctor says that he cannot tell the DMV to pull my driver’s license, he has strongly encouraged me to avoid driving as much as possible – just in case a sleep attack should hit. So now I am going to be looking at ways to make money from home. Perhaps I will be sharing some of those ways with my readers.

First off, there still is an opportunity for me to help other people earn a good income through selling life insurance, and I can earn a small fee by helping them to do so. Hopefully that will help in some small way. So far, however, that has not panned out. But that is because I have suddenly been needed to deal with some family health issues and it has been difficult to get everything done that needs to be done!

In addition, I’ve been advised that I can file for SSDI, as narcolepsy is an accepted and approved disability. And since I also have those injuries from the school bus accident that make it difficult for me to do things that require using my hands (I use Dragon Naturally Speaking software, which is huge lifesaver!) So I have filed for disability and am now in the “wait for an answer mode.” I’ve been told that I will be given an answer by August 8.

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