As any healthy person in his twenties are wont to do, I've been neglecting to perform my yearly health checkups, even though my work covers all three major facets of health, vision, and dental. Why waste precious time to visit the clinic only for them to tell me exactly what I already know: I'm completely healthy.
Well, one of the numerous side-effects of turning 30 is that it has you reevaluate many things, one of which is I probably should go see the doctors to get everything checked out - you know, just to be sure. One likes to think that this side of 30 as another fresh starting point, and I wanted to know my baseline - and to fix any problems - before I embark on the next great life journey (corny isn't it).
So the past couple of weeks I've been to the eye doctor and my primary care physician - both for the very first time in my adult life (in two weeks time it's the dreaded dentist!). One of the big discoveries in doing so wasn't related to my health at all, but rather I realized how incredible my health coverage is. Not only does my work cover all three major items, but the quality of the coverage is in a word, superb.
I've now seen with my very eyes the quality hierarchy in healthcare.
During my impoverish childhood I was relegated to free/low-income clinics, and to contrast that experience with the level of care I got these past weeks, they are quite literally opposite ends of the spectrum. For example I thought blood test results would take a few weeks - because when I was young they did - but just two days ago Kaiser turned it around the same day, with a message from my doctor discussing the results from the very next. I was pleasantly stunned.
How lucky am I to have health benefits that cover me so completely?
People say all the time "The rich always get richer" and I think it doesn't only apply to money: proper healthcare also have compounding benefits to a person's life. Those who don't have or can't afford quality health insurance to deal with long lines, less attentive doctors, and subpar facilities. I know, because I've lived through it. Whether the system is "fair" or not is not for me to debate, but I think it's definitely an additional disadvantage to have to overcome.
I guess I'm glad and grateful to have done so.