Sick pay: 9 stories of health costs

From $10,000 deductibles to no coverage at all, CNNMoney.com readers and viewers reveal their battle with the rising costs of health insurance.

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Diane Dreyfus: $0 (not insured)
Age: 62
Occupation: Retired
Hometown: New York, NY

My assets, including social security, are finite but sufficient to keep me off whatever welfare is called these days. And because my finances are so finite, I am utterly unwilling to pay hundreds of dollars a year for insurance.

Many years ago, all of us took to marathon running and there was a guy in the marathon world who said, "I have two doctors -- my right leg and my left leg." I basically walk, and I take very good care of myself. It is a bit of hubris, if you want to call it that, but I just don't think I will be a broken old bag of bones until I am 72, so I am taking my chances. My mother lived to 83 and never saw a doctor.

I use the Judson Clinic on a pay-as-I-go basis. So, for $20, I can see a doctor. For an additional $10 to $20 every 30 days, I can pick up a generic prescription at the clinic. If it is catastrophic event, which it has been a few times (appendicitis, broken elbow, etc), I have gone to Bellevue Emergency for care.

All I have to do is go two more years from this July and I will be entitled to whatever medical care goes to seniors.

If you have an asset, an apartment, a car, anything more than the cash you have in the market, then of course you are going to get insurance to cover that. But I have lost so much in this market that I am about to take off for South East Asia to take a look if I can live there. I am having all my shots done in South East Asia, where they are 20% of the price.

In an emergency, it is possible that I will lose it all. I am willing to bet that I won't. I have an ex-husband and no kids.

My thoughts on universal health care: I can see universal health care as an option and a goal, but we already have it with Medicare/Medicaid. And public healthcare is sloppy.


NEXT: John Pierpont: $313
Last updated May 01 2009: 12:50 PM ET
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