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Response to Trillo (Reply #1)

Fri Mar 13, 2015, 03:47 PM

2. I wanted very much to comment on budget allocation

Last edited Fri Mar 13, 2015, 08:21 PM - Edit history (1)

While the commission itself is diverse, and I was grateful to see their grasp on the importance of meals programs, their knowledge of programs beyond that level is hazy at best. The whole reason there is a "commission" beyond the City Council is that they are supposed to be the experts. They should do the legwork and investigate.

The really gentrified (with a Berkeley twist) aspect of the City budget is the emphasis on acupuncture in several programs. Now I understand why I'm always being pushed into acupuncture for pain management. But is this coming at the expense of other needs of the local medical programs? The last time I tried to call to remake an appointment that had been summarily canceled, the phone wait time was 68 minutes! There also aren't enough primary care doctors: that triple book for 15 minute appointments, and patients with complex conditions can only bring up one symptom after 2 months of waiting. Doctors can run 2-3 hours late under these impossible conditions.

The thing I wanted to point out to the commission was how their funding was narrowly defined. They were funding programs for people with diabetes, senior citizens, acupuncture clinic, etc. While extra attention to those patients was now funded, patients who did not fit those criteria were falling through the cracks.

The patients that are shafted in this situation are patients under age 65 with complex or multiple conditions. These patients suffer from profound medical neglect verging on malpractice. I have lost part of my eyesight, spent an unnecessary amount of time dragging myself around in pain, hung out out in the welfare system when I should have been on SSI, spent a lot of time in the ER that should have been handled at the clinic level, and almost died *at a City Council meeting* last month because I have a rare genetic disorder mixed with other medical problems - a complex condition. What I need is case management. But it's been hard for my clinic to offer that too me since its not in any budget. From time to time nurses and one community outreach coordinator has tried to knit my situation together on their own time.

I'm sure I'm not the only person in Berkeley under age 65 with a complex condition. There needs to be program funding to cover case management, though. I could answer a lot of questions about people in my situation if the Human Welfare Commission had wanted to know.

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daredtowork Mar 2015 OP
Trillo Mar 2015 #1
LineLineNew Reply I wanted very much to comment on budget allocation
daredtowork Mar 2015 #2
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