Wednesday, January 8, 2014

You could never make me pick up the phone

France! :D Yeah, I've been pretty doctor-shy since I went in for my annual physical exam in the US last year.  It was supposed to be fully covered by my insurance, but I made the mistake of asking the doctor a "problem-related question" ("Can I ask for your advice about ___?").  I got slapped with a $300 bill for that.
My friends in London were SHOCKED when I told them about the shiny new options for freelancers in Oregon to self-insure for around $200/month.  That won't fully cover you, by the'll still pay a percentage whenever you have a medical bill.  And yeah, that's still loads better than it was.  I just turned 26, and though Obama saved my butt by extending my coverage on my parents' health insurance for 3 years, I'm currently uninsured. (-_-)

Woof, I'm still a little tender today after that surprise stomach flu attack.  I was lucky it happened while I was at Nico's; he kept me alive while I was useless on the couch for 24 hours.  He says it was inevitable to get sick eventually in a new country, and I have to build up my immunity to France. :P

We had a nice surprise today -- Periscope Studio sent a holiday care package!!!  Chocolate, tea, coffee, Mexican food ingredients, peanut butter, mac & cheese mix, drawings, cards, homemade jam, photos, should have seen us shrieking like little kids over each new item. :) Of course we ripped that mac & cheese open and cooked it immediately.


  1. Hey !
    Just a little something I'd like to share.
    I discovered your blog thanks to a tweet from Boulet a few month ago I found it funny but forgot about it.
    Then this afternoon I found (again thanks to a tweet of Boulet) your latest post 'Don't let fear stop you from traveling! '. I read it and found it really good and ... 'cheerful' (can't find the proper term in english)
    So I decided to read your blog from the start and here I am.
    I was reading this post and thinking
    'Funny this drawing of Nico remind me of someone... Yeah looks like Nicolas Hitori De... And didn't he lived in Portland for a while ? ... Funny coincidences...'
    And then I saw the picture 'OMG but it IS him !'
    Amiens is my hometown that's why I was really surprised and know of Nicolas Hitori De, looks like 'It's small world after all' ^^

    So now I will resume my reading and I think I'll come often see what's new here, I find it very interesting to see what people experience when discovering France :)

    PS: I see that you're even going to the Rendez-Vous de la Bande Dessinée in Amiens this summer, I may see you there, I'll be among the many volunteers of the staff.

  2. A friend of mine sent a link to your blog and I really like it. ;-)

    Indeed, the "normal" price for a general practitioner in France is €23. At least, this is the price according to which social security refunds 70% to the insured. Some physicians may be more expensive if they choose to apply "free pricing", but this is uncommon for general practitioners (however, specialists often apply "free pricing" or supplements).

    Note to Americans: the €23 is NOT a co-payment and is NOT government-subsidized. This is the price that is paid to the physician. Most French general practitioners are self-employed; perhaps part of the reason for the cheap price is that they do not have the huge clerical staffing that US clinics have.

    Now a little word of caution. If you are paying the full €23 in France, this suggests that you are uninsured. This is not a good idea in case you have a serious problem. At work, we had a visitor from the US who had a stroke right in his office and had to be rushed to emergencies and get expensive treatment. He was not covered by French medical insurance, so the French hospital sent him a bill, I don't remember if it was for €30000 or €40000. It was then difficult to get the bill accepted by his US insurance.

    The "public" French health insurance system only covers people who pay social security dues (workers, pensioners, students..) but not foreign visitors.

    But yeah, don't let fear stop you from traveling.