After my husband made an appointment to have his knee examined, we read the details about the doctor he was going to be seeing. Turns out that he’s a world class elbow and shoulder doctor, but knees seemed like more of a side thing for him. We decided that if my husband is going to be driving 4 hours round trip every time he has treatment, he might as well be seeing the top knee doctor rather than the top shoulder doctor.
So he called back and asked about this. The knee doctor is one of the best in the world, and is the founding doctor at the clinic. And appointments for him are currently booked out almost three months. Okey dokey. So we cancelled the appointment for today, and left a message with the knee doc’s office to set up a consultation. Once we started thinking about it, we decided that if he can’t get in before December anyway, he might as well request an appointment in early January. That way it’s a new calendar year for our deductible. It doesn’t make sense to book an appointment and possibly a surgery in the last month of the year, meet our deductible, and then start all over again in January.
So now the plan is to see the knee doctor in early January, meet our deductible early in the year, and if anything else happens to either of us for the rest of 2008, there would be no charge to us. We have an HSA, so the deductible is for both of us, and the policy covers 100% after we meet our deductible. Since it would only mean delaying the appointment by a few weeks, we decided that it makes good financial sense to do it this way.
I reduced my 457 contribution to 5% of my pay yesterday, so now we can start putting most of the money that would have gone to that account into our HSA instead. Having the appointment pushed out a few months will give us plenty of time to get money built up in our HSA to cover the deductible. The plan is to put $600/month into the HSA for the next several months. It feels a bit like a juggling test right now, but I feel like we’re making the best decisions we can and putting our money where we need it most. It will feel good to have a few years worth of deductibles built up in the HSA going forward, as a medical emergency fund – since we never know when we might need it.