Cheaper Prosthetics for Missourians
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Cheaper Prosthetics for Missourians

Date: March 3, 2009
By: Lauren Mickler
State Capitol Bureau
Links: SB 320

Intro: Lawmakers heard from Missourians with limb loss about a bill that could help with the cost of their prosthetics.

Lauren Mickler (MIKE-ler) has more from the Jefferson City.

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OutCue: SOC

Losing a limb in an accident, or at anytime, can be painful in many ways, including your wallet.

The Senate Health Committee heard a bill Tuesday that could help with those costs.

Currently insurance companies have caps on what they will put towards prosthetics, but Dr. John Rush of Bethesda says the amount doesn't even begin to cover it.

 
 
Actuality:  AMPUTEE2.WAV
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Description: The average prosthetic device based on 2005 cost eight-thousand three hundred 60 dollars. So why are they capping it at a thousand dollars? It's just ridiculous.
 
Insurance providers say they're afraid if they add more prosthetic coverage, private insurance could get too expensive and employers could stop providing coverage for their employees altogether.
 
Reporting from the State Capitol, I'm Lauren Mickler.

 
Intro: Missourians with prosthetic limbs are going to the senate health committee for help.

Lauren Mickler (MIKE-ler) has more from Jefferson City.

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OutCue: SOC

Susan Schumaker of the St. Louis area has a prosthetic leg, and since her insurance company will only pay so much, she is forced to pay thousands out of pocket to continue walking.

The Senate Health Committee heard a bill that could help Schumaker by increasing prosthetic coverage from insurance providers, something she says she needs.

 

Actuality:  AMPUTEE1.WAV
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Description: Eleven other states have already passed similar bills on prosthetic parody, because an arm or leg is not a luxury.
 
Schumaker pays over 14 thousand for her prosthetic, and the average cost is around 8 thousand dollars according to one Bethesda doctor.
 
Most current insurance policies won't cover more than one thousand of patients' total cost.
 
Reporting from the State Capitol, I'm Lauren Mickler.