Gaps in the Net

If you read Dispatches from the Culture Wars with any regularity, you know that something has been up with Ed this week. What you may not know yet is that the reason Ed’s blog has been quiet is that he’s been busy worrying us here at FtB. We’ve been getting emails through the weeks with dribs and drabs of information like this:

The ambulance came Monday morning and they thought I was having a heart attack. I get to Greenville ER and the doctor there immediately decides to send me to Butterworth hospital in Grand Rapids, a world-class medical facility, especially for cardiac problems.

I get to Butterworth with my heart rate over 160. They did a heart catheter and found no blockages at all. They did a CAT scan and found the lining of my heart a bit thick and the right ventricle a bit stiff, but those things shouldn’t cause the problems I was having. All day Monday they did tests, also finding that my lymph nodes were swelled badly. Tuesday morning about 10 AM, my heart rate goes over 200 bpm and they decide they can’t wait any longer, they have to open me up.

Ed is okay, at least for now. The doctors ruled out a whole bunch of unpleasantness that could have kept this drama going for him far too long–or shortened it unthinkably. They took very good care of him.

Of course, they took very good care of him in the U.S., and you probably know what that means.

The good news is that I have health insurance, which I pay on a COBRA from my job with AINN (it runs out in six months and I’ll have to get my own insurance, which thankfully can’t be denied anymore because of the preexisting condition). But I’m still going to have some significant out-of-pocket expenses and loss of income during the recovery period (it’s going to be a couple months before I’m really back to normal). So you can certainly help out financially if you have the means to do so and it would be greatly appreciated.

You may not know that, since his newspaper job ended, Ed has been working on a book documenting the types of harassment faced by activists promoting the separation of church and state. It’s a worthwhile project, but it takes time, during which income isn’t coming in except through the blog. Ed planned for that, but…well, most people don’t really plan for open heart surgery.

If you want to help Ed out, either out of outrage at our ridiculous health care system or because you want the book to get here faster, you can do that on his blog.

Gaps in the Net
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One thought on “Gaps in the Net

  1. 1

    I’m sorry this happened, I’m glad Ed’s OK, I’m sadly out of donatable money at the moment*, and I’m fucking angry at this sorry excuse for a system.
    Unfortunately we had a very similar incident this afternoon. My dad in law complained about pain in chest and arm, we called the paramedics, they arrived within 10 minutes and he’s in good care at the university hosital now. Expected expenses: 150€, I’d say, depending on how long he has to stay in hospital with a copay of 13 bucks a day.
    So we can spend all our time worrying about him, not about how to pay the rent or the bills or the paramedics…
    I know I’m preaching to the choir here.

    *Well, it’s going to take a while for him, too, so I have him chalked up for when money comes in

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