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Re: Word from Iraq

Oooooooooooh...24 inches of snow???????  Ugh!!!!  Okay, so I'll quit complaining about our 4 inches...you win!

Melody, IA (Z 5/4)

"The most beautiful thing we can experience is the mysterious."    
--Albert Einstein

 --- On Wed 02/04, Richard T. Apking < richa@midlands.net > wrote:
From: Richard T. Apking [mailto: richa@midlands.net]
To: gardenchat@hort.net
Date: Wed, 4 Feb 2004 10:59:34 -0800
Subject: Re: [CHAT] Word from Iraq

Hi all,<br><br>Tried to keep my big mouth shut, but couldn't.<br><br>I'm
retired Army, Cavalry(no horse jokes please).<br><br>I had the
misfortune to be stationed near an Air Force hospital facility,<br>thus
started out as a second class citizen. My personal care, whether
or<br>not I had an appointment, was after the Air Force officers,
dependents of<br>officers, enlisted, dependents of enlisted, retired Air
Force, Air Force<br>civilian employees, then me. I have spent many hours
in waiting rooms,<br>often to be told to come back tomorrow, as the work
day was over. If you<br>haven't noticed, those experiences have left a
somewhat bitter taste in my<br>mouth. After marriage and the birth of a
daughter(at a civlian facility,<br>thank God) we enrolled in family care
at the Air Force fcility. What a<br>joke. Fortunately we were healthy
for the most part. My former wife had<br>some very bad experiences with
the health care personnel, especially when I<br>was assigned "hard ship
tours", those tours where you couldn't take your<br>dependents.<br>The
picture has brightened, now that I'm retired and can access the
VA<br>Hospital in Omaha NE. I was very pleasently suprised at the
care,<br>attention, and friendliness of the personnell there. I have
made<br>appointments, and have actually seen the appropriate doctors at
the time<br>they said. So-oo, all's well that ends well. Rich in Z-5
where there is<br>24" of snow on the ground and another 6-8" expected in
the next couple of<br>days.<br>----- Original Message ----- <br>From:
"cathy carpenter" <cathyc@rnet.com><br>To:
<gardenchat@hort.net><br>Sent: Tuesday, February 03, 2004 3:25
PM<br>Subject: Re: [CHAT] Word from Iraq<br><br><br>> Well, I guess I
ought to begin with a disclaimer: I am retired from the<br>> Army Nurse
Corps, and spent my childhood as a military dependent. Had<br>> my
wisdom teeth out at Ft Devens, MA (now closed) - not fun, but then,<br>>
those years ago, I'm willing to bet dentistry was no fun anywhere.
The<br>> quality of care in any facilit

y, military or civilian, is directly<br>> related to the people employed
there and the quality of their<br>> leadership. (My parents, in the 50s,
thought I would get better care<br>> from a civilian pediatrician...what
I got was neck irradiation for my<br>> tonsils, and so a lifetime of
monitoring my thyroid for cancer).<br>> Quality can be a problem
everywhere.<br>> Caregivers in the military do/did have the joy of being
able to do what<br>> they felt was best for their patients without
having to agonize over<br>> whether the insurance would pay for it. The
downside is that a system<br>> you don't have to pay out of pocket for
can be abused. Our ERs were<br>> overrun with "unnecessary visits",
despite extended primary care clinic<br>> hours, which could probably
have been reduced by charging $5.00 to be<br>> seen, but that would have
been illegal<br>> My daughter is married to an Air Force person, but
before that spent<br>> time in the "civilian world" after she lost
eligibility for care. She<br>> loves the peace of mind that comes with
not having to worry about<br>> paying out of pocket medical expenses (of
course she lives near a<br>> military hospital).<br>> I do not live near
such, and have been blessed with good health so far.<br>> I know that
when I do require it, I cannot expect the freedom from cost<br>> I
experienced on active duty - military hospitals are missioned to<br>>
provide health care for the troops - all else is "space A".<br>> As you
say, when you join the military, there are no guarantees, mainly<br>>
because what the government gives, the government can take away.<br>>
Cathy<br>> On Tuesday, February 3, 2004, at 02:35 AM, Marge Talt
wrote:<br>><br>> > Well, I think things must have changed a bit in the
military since<br>> > WWII and my childhood as an army brat.<br>> ><br>>
> During WWII, field soldiers were lucky to get K-rations (pretty
gross<br>> > stuff). I think they might have had coffee sometimes, but
no<br>> > guarantee and as far as toiletries in the field, showers or
even beds<b

> > don't think they were offered to the front line who were lucky to
get<br>> > a tent or a foxhole.<br>> ><br>> > I spent my first 18+ years
using military medical facilities.<br>> > Thought they rather stank in
spades. You could sit in the waiting<br>> > room in high fever for
hours, medical personnel were brusque and of<br>> > extremely varying
quality; you had absolutely no options but took<br>> > what you were
given or nothing at all. Had my wisdom teeth out at<br>> > Fort Hood, TX
as a young adult...not an experience I'd ever recommend<br>> > to
anybody unless they like 6 hour sessions with only Novocain and<br>> >
dental technicians who obviously were in learning mode.<br>> ><br>> > My
parents used the hospital at the post where they retired until it<br>> >
was closed (the base) a few years ago but when they really needed<br>> >
care, they went to the private sector. My father is a retired<br>> >
regular army Col., so rank didn't really do much for them. Since
the<br>> > base closed, all the retired personnel in the area (a great
number)<br>> > are on their own. Of course, one of the major reasons
they all<br>> > retired there was because of having a base close by.
Tough beans as<br>> > far as the government is concerned.<br>> ><br>> >
I am sure that care varies with location, like anything else, and
it<br>> > also varies with whether you're army, navy, air force or what.
We<br>> > always figured the navy went top cabin and the army on it's
belly:-)<br>> > Now, my personal contact with the military ended 40
years ago, so I<br>> > am sure things have changed - at least I sure
hope so. But, I<br>> > seriously doubt that they have managed to
eliminate the tendency for<br>> > Catch 22 situations.<br>> ><br>> > I
also think that people either forget or don't realize that when you<br>>
> sign on with the military you agree to do it their way, which is<br>>
> quite different in very many respects from civilian life.<br>> ><br>>
> Marge Talt, zone 7 Maryland<br>> > mtalt@hort.net<br>> > Editor:

ng in Shade<br>> >
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