What seems like not too many years ago, my firm had health insurance that would allow us to see any doctor any time. Then we moved to a PPO, but that was fine, since my doctors were on "the list" and as I sought new doctors, I used "the list" to pick them. A few years ago we switched insurance companies, and with that switch came a new list, which did not include the first doctor to get really good results with my son. Since he only sees the doctor a few times a year now, we just decided to go out of network. Today I discovered that we are changing, again--and the new list doesn't include the doctor that the kids and I see. What's more, it is an HMO where to get the best benefits, you not only have to see a doctor on the list, you have to have that doctor refer you to specialists. I'm not happy. I like our doctor--I like the way she deals with my kids, I like the fact that she doesn't keep us waiting, its very convenient that she is within walking distance and while there are other doctors in the office to cover for her if she is out, generally speaking when I call and want to see her that day, I can. Its not like my old ped.'s office where you ended up seeing someone different everytime you stepped in the door.
I really wish we could get health insurance out of the workplace. Because of the employer subsidy, there is nowhere I could get the health coverage the firm gives me for the price I pay there, but why should the mananging partners get to decide what kind of health insurance I have? Unfortunately, given the pre-existing conditions in my family, an individual policy would be prohibitively expensive, if I could get someone to cover the condition at all. I'n not a fan of big government, but the system we have now has way too many holes in it, and gives too much control to people other than those using the system.