A New York woman suffering from a neurological disease that has required four brain surgeries has been dropped by all of her doctors and denied medications due to her Obamacare plan.
“I’ve been vomiting. I lost 22 pounds. The pain is unbearable,” said Margaret Figueroa, 49, on Wednesday. “My medication helps me function during the day.”
Figueroa suffers from a disease known as Arnold Chiari Malformation and Syringomyelia. Even though the Obamacare plan she purchased assured her that she was covered, her insurance card was denied when she went to fill her prescriptions. Then she learned that none of her doctors accept her Obamacare plan. Figueroa says she cannot find a doctor who accepts her Obamacare plan; indeed, there are only six doctors in all of Staten Island who take her plan, none of whom she’s been able to get appointments with.
Figueroa’s congressman, Rep. Michael Grimm (R-NY), intervened to help her obtain some of her vital prescriptions. Grimm says he’s already received calls from at least a dozen Staten Island residents facing the same problem with Obamacare’s “narrow networks” – extreme restrictions to doctor and hospital access imposed by Obamacare.
“Even though the insurance company cashed your check, it doesn’t mean it (the policy) has been implemented,” said Grimm at a Wednesday press conference with Figueroa. “That’s the problem – that the back end of Obamacare hasn’t been fully built. You can go on the front end of an application and look at a list of plans, but what they don’t tell you is that many of those plans don’t have doctors yet.”
Figueroa is not alone.
As Breitbart News reported in January, the Washington Post warned that “Obamacare’s narrow networks are going to make people furious – but they might control costs.” Breitbart News contributor Scot Vorse learned the hard way about Obamacare’s narrow networks when the nearest dentist who accepted the mandatory dental plan he was required to purchase for his children was over 100 miles away.
Obamacare’s narrow networks have also shut out access to top cancer centers. The Associated Press says just 4 of 19 nationally recognized comprehensive cancer centers offer Obamacare access through all insurance plans in their state Obamacare exchanges, and a McKinsey and Co. study revealed 38% of all Obamacare plans only allow patients to pick from just 30% of the largest 20 hospitals in their areas.
Experts say the narrow network horror stories will only grow as more and more Obamacare customers attempt to use their Obamacare insurance only to realize its harsh realities.
Obamacare remains deeply unpopular nationally. The latest USA Today/Pew Research poll finds that just 37% of Americans now support Obamacare.
Photo of Margaret Figueroa courtesy of the Figueroa family.