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July 26, 2017


Flushing, NY

In addition to the chronic pain that I face on a daily basis I also have a syncopal or fainting disorder. This disorder is triggered by severe physical exertion as well as significant changes in barometric pressure.

My current job requires that I pull heavy loads at times. It requires my presence on site on random evenings when there would be nobody to find me if I fainted. More substantially, part of my job includes working via mass transit. Unfortunately, the subway goes underground where the air pressure is lower. When I then go back to ground level I then often wind up fainting as a result of the change in pressure.

I have insurance coverage. My main physician is now no longer in practice and my insurance is unable to provide me with the name of anyone who accepts my insurance and treats my disease. I am terrified as to what will happen in the near future. My insurance is unwilling and unable to pay for an out-of-network specialist.

My insurance is, however, willing to pay thousands of dollars in Emergency Room bills. Every time I faint, which is a few times a month, I wind up in the ER. You can imagine why I fear losing my job – realistically I am unreliable.

I would, however, be reliable if I could use a taxi or some other form of above ground transportation. I have calculated the costs of ER bills vs the costs of taxis and presented those to my insurance company. They do not care – this is simply something they do not do.

In order for me to have a job that provides me with medical insurance or to receive medical care from anyone familiar with my diagnosis, I must do something that that puts me at risk.

To put it simply, I am scared. I could get assistance if anyone I dealt with cared about me as a person. I could get assistance if anyone cared that providing me with help would actually cost them less than not providing me with help. And yet, I am left on my own to a fate I do not know.