On the way back to ABQ, I'm going through a mountain pass situation (winding, two lanes in my direction, two lanes in the other direction but separated by several hundred yards of mountain, heavy traffic at a high rate of speed 65-75 mph) when the car in front of me runs over a folding banquet table and it gets kicked up and hits my minivan on the right front.(http://www.lowes.com/lowes/lkn?action=productDetail&productId=124784-74313-UT07S3U54D&lpage=none if you're really curious what hit me)
The table top broke my headlight and turn signal, and one of the legs hit my windshield hard enough to powder the glass at the impact sight, but not thank goodness to penetrate the inner glass.
I got home Sunday night and logged onto GEICO (my car insurance) and filed a claim. "Thanks and someone will call you on the next business day to set up an appointment" Happy with that expectation I went about my unpacking and was very pleasantly surprised when 90 minutes after I filed the claim I got a call to see how I was doing and go over the details. Ok, I know she was working off a script, but still it's a thoughtful touch. About 30 minutes after that I got a call to actually set up the appointment. Minor confusion because the car is in ABQ instead of PHX, but it was quickly handled and I ended up with a Tuesday morning appt to have the car appraised and give me an estimate on how long it would take to fix.
Would you believe One Day? Ok how about two :) But in all fairness it was less then 24 hours. Headlight w/ turn, fender (it was bent and I'd missed it), paint fender and blend paint over hood and rest of car, replace windshield. I'm very impressed.
But one thing that strikes me most is the comparison between this insurance related experience and the previous one (ER visit to patch up my mangled foot see http://ferragus.livejournal.com/124480.html for details).
In both Money isn't discussed, but with the car I Know it won't be more then my deductible (ok and the charge for the rental car). With the ER it will be my deductible, plus some percentage of the total costs, plus full payment for anything that my insurance says isn't needed for my injury. (Pain killers? heck just tough it out, walking cast shoe? if you're in that much pain why are you walking? Cast? for a toe? I don't think so -- ok all of that is made up, but if you've dealt with the US health care system it will sound very familiar)
When I pick up my car after work today, the bill will be paid in full and I won't get a second bill from the Car Anesthesiolgist or the Admitting Department or the Staff Mechanic (Dr) that signed for the repair but never actually saw the work.
With the ER visit I know from the last visit that those kinds of bills will be rolling in for the next 6-18!! months.
So what I really want to know is, why can't we get the same level of care our cars do?