So this week having had an annoying cough for 4 weeks I decided to see the Doc. She sent me for an x-ray (radio) of my lungs and a variety of blood tests which showed I have inflammation and an infection. A follow up visit to Dr for the prescription and review of results and I am now on a lovely selection of antibiotics, inhalers and cough syrups.
I was told to rest (not easy with 3 kids, an active renovation project and an impending move next Thurs.
So last night was my daughters ballet spectacle in Pezenas. At the interval I took my 2 year old to the loo and on the way back tripped over a chain at the edge of a pathway and ended up falling. I couldn't break my fall as I instinctively protected my babe in arms so my left knee and right elbow took the impact. Almost immediately the knee swelled up and changed colour to a delightful bluey green. It was annoyingly painful but not so painful that I thought it needed medical attention.
After a night of not sleeping very well friends told me to go to get it checked out. The Dr examined me and sent me straight to urgences. There I had another xray and after 3 hours was concluded I have probably fissured the knee cap. Not a massive fracture but enough to annoy me. I've now got my leg in a brace for 10 days and my hospital bill covered by the state and my mutuelle.
So far: 3 x 23 euro medecin visit, plus xrays plus medecines and A&E treatment...how much does that add up to? Well certainly far more than my monthly cotisation for the whole family.
My daughter has seen the Ophthalmologist for the second time following a school eye exam and has been given a prescription for glasses, 200 euros but mostly covered by the mutelle.
Last month I had a root canal filling - 960 euros. Of this about 40% was paid for by mutuelle.
It is bad enough when these sort of things arise when you have insurance but if you don't have insurance then the financial uncertainty about your exposure must make the situation extremely stressful as well as painful.
I previously posted about a friend whose insurance had run out as they'd stayed too long in France...they have just had the bill 2m later for the 8 day hospital stay...circa 2000 euros.
So I would recommend if you are new to France or are considering moving to France you organise yourself a Mutuelle. Yes it can appear like an expense you didn't budget for in your original plan but can you really afford to pay for the 20% or more when you need medical help?