JFL Hospital - It's...
 
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JFL Hospital - It's Worse Than You Can Imagine

 
Gator's Mom
(@gators_mom)
Trusted Member

If you are considering moving to STX, know that you'll need to go off island for your medical care. Factor that into your annual budget.

JFL is worse than anyone can imagine - wrought with political intrigue and crushing financial woes.  

The VI gov and hospital administrators are not investing at all in current patients needs - only concentrating on building a new facility 5+ years down the road.  

My opinion only - I also think there's discrimination against we colonizers who try to use local health care. Laughable since most of the $$ JFL gets is from the US government and ALL of the MDs receive their training elsewhere, mostly in the US.

This Op Ed by Dr. Abate only confirms what my island doctors have said.  

The Numerous Problems Plaguing Healthcare at JFL, as Told by Dr. Gerard Abate (viconsortium.com)

Air Evac insurance only works if JFL can't treat you as an admitted patient AND you have health insurance that pays for the air ambulance - for the most part Evac Insurance is a waste of $$. Your health insurance will pay with or without the intervention of an Evac service such as AeroMD, MASA and others. Bank your bucks for trips to FLL, SJU or Miami (or to your home port).

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Topic starter Posted : August 26, 2022 2:18 pm
vicanuck
(@vicanuck)
Expert

JFL is worse than anyone can imagine - wrought with political intrigue and crushing financial woes.  

 

This post is so true. And, even local GP's will tell you straight up to seek specialized medical care on the mainland and not use their local colleagues. For example, I recently had a urology issue. While handing me a referral to a local Urologist, my GP looked me straight in the eye and strongly suggested I instead seek care in Florida, definitely NOT from the local guy. I followed his advise and received excellent care in FLL. Spirit Airlines is a great asset to STX as I could fly back and forth for $50 or $60 bucks a pop. The FLL doctor said he sees VI patients frequently and his staff scheduled my diagnostics and procedures conveniently to minimize travel. I was very impressed and delighted with the good service and care.

The amount of money leaving the territory for even routine medical procedures must be staggering. And, that could be said for so many things in the VI. Oh well.

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Posted : August 29, 2022 8:37 am
jaldeborgh
(@jaldeborgh)
Advanced Member

No doubt about this being one of the top issues in the territory and STX in particular.  As seasonal residents we make sure to do all our regular healthcare in the Boston area plus we do have the medivac insurance, if for some reason that gets hung up in an emergency, I won’t hesitate to charter the plane without insurance.

The good news is it’s fairly easy to get to PR or the Mainland quickly so it’s the sudden and traumatic situations that are the real concern.

My wife and I are both over 65, in excellent health and have long relationships with our doctors in the Boston area.  We now have Medicare plus we are currently using the AARP UnitedHealthCare supplemental insurance.  It’s fairly comparable to the Blue Cross Blue Shield we had when I was working.  We have access to the supplemental insurance because we use our MA address when registering for Medicare. 

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Posted : August 29, 2022 10:36 am
vicanuck liked
STTsailor
(@STTsailor)
Trusted Member

Just don’t sign up for Medicare Advantage plans. It is not adequate for high mobility people. 

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Posted : August 29, 2022 3:13 pm
Gator's Mom
(@gators_mom)
Trusted Member

With the departure of Dr. Abate, there is one full-time cardiologist and one part-time cardiologist on STX plus the temp at Plessen.  They have to tend to JFL patients, be on-call, read tests results, manage their practices and see practice patients. 

This is unsustainable. This will cause harm to patients because necessary medical care is delayed or unavailable.

Sadly, all are competent, caring physicians but they have been hamstrung by political expediency superceding today's patient care.

Further, the patient charting software at JFL is becoming obsolete, and if not replaced, will stop working within the coming months.

Yes, lucky for us who have the resources to fly to first-world care. But in an emergency, you need JFL physicans to get you on that air-ambulance.

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Topic starter Posted : August 31, 2022 10:56 am
vicanuck liked
stcmike
(@stcmike)
Advanced Member

Very informative and very scary. Makes you want to pack up and move to the mainland

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Posted : September 2, 2022 8:36 pm
CruzanIron
(@cruzaniron)
Expert

@stcmike Some people have,solely due to the lack of normal care available elsewhere. And lack of insurance oprions. 

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Posted : September 6, 2022 7:01 am
vicanuck
(@vicanuck)
Expert
Posted by: @cruzaniron

Some people have, solely due to the lack of normal care available elsewhere. And lack of insurance options. 

Healthcare is definitely one of the reasons we'll eventually leave the VI.

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Posted : September 6, 2022 9:59 am
Ca. Dreamers
(@ca-dreamers)
Advanced Member

Don't make the same mistake we made. My better half won the argument and we sold our house we had for 8 years on STX and moved to Florida in 2019. Long story short finally found a doctor that diagnosed my problem and repaired it. Got well enough to miss the island life in December of '21, sold our house in Florida in April of this year and bought another one here. Our mistake was selling here. Don't make the same mistake until you are sure you are DONE with the Island. 

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Posted : September 8, 2022 8:36 am
vicanuck
(@vicanuck)
Expert

Don't make the same mistake until you are sure you are DONE with the Island. 

That's good advice! We own another home on the mainland so living there is an option. 

The reality is that after 20 years on island, we're bored with it.

Also, having the kids living in two different countries other than the US offers interesting options.

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Posted : September 8, 2022 10:46 am
stcmike
(@stcmike)
Advanced Member

@vicanuck  I hear that same story from people who leave the Northeast (NY/Ct/NJ) and move to Florida and then realize they can't take the summer heat and large bugs and end up moving back north or just sulk in the bad decision they've made.  However if you are leaving for medical reasons that is something different, you have to take care of your health first and being a long distance landlord can be stressful so I can understand you may need to sell your property.

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Posted : September 8, 2022 12:54 pm
vicanuck
(@vicanuck)
Expert

@stcmike Yeah, I've heard the same from a few others too. We have no firm plans yet, nor a destination in mind, but we'll most definitely leave within the next few years.

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Posted : September 8, 2022 1:43 pm
AandA2VI
(@AandA2VI)
Trusted Member

Good docs and healthcare was one of the reasons we needed to leave. been going to Cleveland here in SOFLO and it is amazing. 

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Posted : September 9, 2022 10:55 pm
vicanuck liked
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