Monday, 26 March 2012
When you become sick in Ireland and are unable to work as a result of it; as a law of the land you are entitled to a medical card. This medical card gives you free health care, GP is payed for, medication is payed for, all in all, this medical card looks after your health. I have been sick since June. I spent 8 weeks in an adult mental health unit. While in hospital I filled out all my forms. It was explained that I would have my entitlements looked after, my sick pay from the government and that I would receive a medical card. Over the last 9 frustrating months I have been back and forth filling out applications when they told me they hadn't received them, applying online when I was advised to do so by a local health officer, making endless phone calls to follow up my applications, to going to a local T.D. for help to generally worrying and stressing myself out for no good reason. Now while in the middle of all this mess who do I have to help me ??? no one !
So four applications later, lets pause this story and recap:
1. I was in an adult mental health unit
2. I have filled out the paperwork FOUR times
3.The said four different applications have been lost
What I have just said alone should be enough for a case against the state for mishandling of a citizens own mental health.
So lets fast forward I have been given the run around for 9 months ( a child could have been born ). How in Gods name is this good for a person who 1) needs weekly doctor attention 2) needs to get regular bloods done 3) needs to get certs every week written for the government to say I am still in ill health? I don't know about you but this really makes me sick. I am Irish but writing this piece to share with you really makes me wish I lived some where else in the world.
I have come to think that maybe the health system needs a programme in place that when a patient comes out of an adult mental health unit, that they have an advocate or a peer support worker that can work alongside them and help the person get all their benefits sorted for them, or all in all just a helping hand. It is unfortunate but a reality, that people who leave a mental health unit need help and support because they are delicate and vulnerable.
Lets just hope that this medical card nightmare will end soon!
Hope you enjoyed and thanks for reading.