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Tuesday, May 22, 2018

HEALTHCARE HORROR STORIES

Over the course of the last several years, I have had a rather sudden exposure to our Country's healthcare industry. I have met some great healthcare workers from nurses to doctors to technicians and everyone in between. I probably wouldn't be here without those people. After three strokes, a heart attack and a cancer scare  , I feel very fortunate every morning I wake up and put my feet on the floor. The people  I have met and the services I have received along the way for the most part have been exceptional, and I might even say amazing when you see life saving  technology in action,
but dealing with insurance issues have sometimes been a nightmare.

 The latest happened yesterday.

I have been under the care of an outstanding Opthamologist who in my opinion has been working miracles to save and restore my eyesight. Yesterday I had an appointment with him and he noticed my eyes were irritated and I told him I thought it was just allergies from all the spring pollen.

I guess it has been a tough spring for many with allergies and he offered to prescribe allergy drops for my eyes.

OK, so far so good. Relief , I thought, was in sight, No pun intended.

Before I reached the parking lot from the Doctors Office, I was already getting an automated text messge from the Doctor's Office, confirming that a prescription had been sent in to the Pharmacy I use and it included a link to a phone app, GOOD RX, to check pricing and other information on the prescribed drug.

Good Rx  is a great app and I look at it often to look up prescriptions as well as instructions and side effects. It is a great resource and the "GOOD RX" app is free.

So anyways, I was a little surprised when the Pharmacist called and said Insurance needed a "Prior Authorization" from the Doctor before they could fill the prescription.
I had already looked up pricing on GoodRx. so I said to the Pharmacist that I was a little surprised that they would require a "Prior Authorization " for a $63.00 prescription.

I was floored with her response. She said $63.00 was the price if I paid "out of pocket" , since it was going through Insurance, the price was actually $210.59. An almost 300% markup on eyedrops. ( And loansharking is illegal, this should be also) This should be criminal to gouge the Public like this and if it was any other business the Justice Department would be investigating and indictments would be forthcoming.

And this is just one of many examples I could give. I had one prescription that I had been paying out of pocket before my stroke, my cost was $28.00 and I gladly paid it After my stroke, my Insurance company refused to pay for the $28.00 drug because "It wasn't part of their protocols", whatever that means, I guess that might be Insurance speak for "we don't get kick backs from that company". But instead they were willing to pay for a comparable substitute at almost $1,000.00 a month. $28.00 or $1000.00. big Insurance opts for the $1000.00 alternative

And we wonder why the system is broke

Our Insurance system is broken and needs to be fixed






UNITY AFTER TRAGEDY

After last weeks vicious assault and stabbing of HPD Officer Jill Kidick, Hartford Firefighters are showing their support for HPD and all first responders.

Traditionally there has always been a rivalry of sorts between Police Officers and Firefighters. That is all put aside at times like this, and Hartford Firefighters came up with a special show of support this week.

The thin Blue Line flag , which is a sign of law enforcement, is now being flown on the back of Hartford Fire Department as a show of support for Law Enforcement. According to HFD Chief Reggie Freeman "We are all brothers and sisters in Public Safety"

The show of support from what I am told, started at Engine 2 on North Main Street and was quickly supported by the Hartford Firefighters Union , who purchased additional flags to outfit the apparatus.

The Thin Blue Line flag on the rear of HFD Engine 1

Wishing a speedy speedy recovery for Officer Jill Kidick

Thursday, May 17, 2018

THOUGHTS AND PRAYERS FOR HPD TONIGHT

FROM DEPUTY CHIEF FOLEY:



A veteran Hartford Police Officer was critically injured today responding to a disturbance that was related to property damage involving a landlord and tenant. Below are the details as they have been reported to HPD Major Crimes Detectives:


On Thursday, May 17, 2018 at 9:40am Hartford Police Department patrol officers responded to the apartment building at 5 Constitution Plaza on the report of a disturbance involving a female tenant of the building. On arrival, Hartford Police Department patrol unit #12, made contact with the suspect (Female- Chevoughn Augustin) on the 9th floor. At some point during the investigation a struggle ensued and the suspect knocked the officer to the ground, grabbed a large ceramic kitchen knife, placed her in a choke hold and began stabbing the officer in the neck. The officer managed to radio for assistance.

A 10-0 (Officer in distress/Emergency call) was initiated and all available HPD officers responded to the location. Building management and maintenance workers were in the immediate area, heard the struggle, and came to assist the officer. The maintenance workers were able to subdue and disarm the suspect. Back-up officers arrived and began immediate bleeding control and life-saving measures. Back-up officers carried the officer down to an awaiting ambulance. The officer was bleeding badly from the neck and unable to communicate. Back-up officers also secured the suspect and knife. The injured officer was taken to Hartford Hospital ED.


HPD Major Crimes Division and Crime Scene Division detectives responded to the scene and assumed the investigation.


The suspect was taken to St. Francis Hospital and treated for a minor laceration to her hand. Upon release she was taken to the Hartford Police Department Major Crimes Division. The suspect was interviewed and was cooperative with HPD detectives. Following the interview the suspect was taken to HPD booking and charged with Criminal Attempt Murder; Assault 1st, Assault on a Police Officer and Criminal Mischief 3rd. She is currently being held without bond.


Chevoughn Augustin 11/30/78 5 Constitution Plaza Apt. 903

(Note: the accused has aliases and detectives are working to confirm her identity)


The officer was immediately listed in critical condition with her jugular and trachea lacerated. Hartford Hospital doctors took the officer to surgery. The officer is out of surgery and in the ICU currently listed in critical/stable condition. The officer’s family is with her and has asked that her name not be released until arraignment, as they work to notify extended friends and family. 

Building management and the maintenance workers were interviewed by MCD detectives. Major Crimes detectives confirmed, if not for their immediate intervention, this scenario would have been fatal.


At the request of HPD and the Officer's family, I will not be posting her name at this time, but please keep her in your thoughts and prayers during this critical period in her recovery. And please keep the rest of our Police Officer's and first responders in your prayers during these difficult times.

Friday, April 27, 2018

HERE IS ONE FOR THE OVERSIGHT BOARD; THE BOTTOMLESS MONEY PIT AT THE BOE

I am not sure if the Hartford Board of Education has received the memo yet that the City of Hartford is broke.

I think the BOE, its members and the Superintendent might be under the impression that they are not accountable to the people of Hartford or its taxpayers. The reckless spending detailed in two of my previous posts are in the links below, but yet the reckless spending continues.
http://wethepeoplehartford.blogspot.com/2017/12/memo-to-hartford-board-of-education-you.html
http://wethepeoplehartford.blogspot.com/2017/12/memo-to-hartford-board-of-education-you.html

Another perfect example of the out of control spending is about to take place and the details and the origin are somewhat bizarre..

I was tipped off by a source to some crazy spending this week, and the spokesperson for the Hartford Schools confirmed the sources information. Several other sources with knowledge have also confirmed and provided more details for me.

Recently, Joseph Sikora , retired as the Director of Security  for the Hartford Schools. Sikora was a retired Lieutenant  from the Hartford Police Department before going over to HPS.I am not sure what the selection process was to replace Sikora. At least three sources familiar with the process told me that  BOE Chair Craig Stallings pushed for retired HPD Chief Daryl Roberts to  ascend to the position of Security Director for the Hartford Schools.

Apparently that choice was made without the approval of the Hartford Superintendent.

Some sort of rift has developed between Roberts and the Superintendent and the Hartford Schools have now created  a "cabinet position" under the Superintendent.

Although Roberts was apparently hired on Stallings urging as the "Director of Security", the new Cabinet position will be called the "Executive Director of Internal Investigations and Security".

Roberts salary will be  $107,458 per year plus benefits. The new "Executive Director" will be paid $135,000 per year plus benefits..

According to sources, the role of the Executive Director essentially will be to oversee Roberts and control his interactions with the Superintendent. This has been verified by the HPS spokesperson Zayas  who stated that Roberts will be reporting to the 'Executive Director"

The position of the Executive Director of Internal Investigations has already been filled by a retired Connecticut State Police Major, Alexander Rios.

Now by all accounts I have received from sources familiar with the BOE and Law Enforcement officials, Rios is more than competent to fill the position.





































Alaexander Rios was last promoted from Lieutenant to Major with the Connecticut State Police after serving as a Trooper for over 20 years. Rios served as the commander of Troop C, Troop A and the Bureau of Professional Standards. Rios has also served in Troop H andf Troop K  and the Central District major Crimes Squad. Rios holds a B.S. degree and resides in Manchester.

Again, Rios appears to be competent for the position, but can we really be talking about closing schools over budget issues and then be creating "Executive Director" positions due to perceived personality conflicts?









Monday, April 23, 2018

HARTFORD POLICE CHIEF DAVID ROSADO AND ASSISTANT CHIEF RAPHAEL MEDINA ON "WE THE PEOPLE"

Below is our program from today where  Hyacinth and I spoke with Hartford's Police Chief David Rosado  and his newly appointed Assistant Chief Raphael (Ralph) Medina.

We talked about a variety of subjects including body cameras, staffing, recruitment. quality of life enforcement and more.

Chief Rosado has shown to be very approachable. if you have any questions, feel free to reach out to him or Chief Medina.

There  was a small glitch at the very beginning with still photos of a couple blighted properties, but the conversation starts immediately after that.

Sunday, April 22, 2018

GREAT JOB BY HPD FOR QUALITY OF LIFE ENFORCEMENT IN HARTFORD

 On Sunday, April 22, 2018, a city wide Multi-Jurisdictional A.T.V. (All-Terrain Vehicle) operation was conducted and led by the Hartford Police Traffic Division. The operation included Traffic Division personnel, Community Service Officers, Auto Theft Detectives, C-4 Division, and the V.I.N. Division.

Surrounding agencies also assisted, including members of the Wethersfield Police Department, Newington Police Department and the Connecticut State Police.  The collaborative effort led to the arrest of the listed (10) ten individuals for various charges. Officers seized (14) fourteen all-terrain vehicles, which included a mix of both Dirt Bikes and Quads.

Officers also seized a U-Haul van and Dodge pick-up truck that were used to transport the A.T.V's, and Marijuana.  Nine out of the Ten arrested individuals are non Hartford residents.

Seized items are listed below:

(14) Fourteen all-terrain vehicles, including a mix of dirt bikes and Quads. Seized: One UHAUL Dodge van, (Arizona AH51782) containing three dirt bikes and one scooter. Seized: One 2005 Dodge Ram Pickup truck (Rhode Island 123303) containing two dirt bikes. Recovered: Several bags of Marijuana recovered from arrested individuals.

Arrested were:


1. Devin De La Cruz  (D.O.B. 4/22/98) 49 Star Street Pawtucket RI - Operation Prohibited City Ordnance     22-120, Disorderly Conduct, and Interfering with Police.
2. Andy Flores (D.O.B. 6/21/97) 57 Salmon Street Providence RI - Operation Prohibited City Ordnance     22-120.
3. Ramon Pavel (D.O.B. 10/17/89) 51 Hyat Street Providence RI -  Operation Prohibited City Ordnance 22-120
4. Victor Felix (D.O.B. 1/24/93) 76 Dart Street Hartford CT -  Operation Prohibited City Ordnance 22-120, Disorderly Conduct and Interfering with Police.
5. Jeremy Crespo (D.O.B. 10/14/94) 659 High Street Holyoke MA - Operation Prohibited City Ordnance     22-120, Possession of Marijuana and Interfering with Police.
6. Joshua Guzman (D.O.B. 7/10/93) 1 Gresham Street Springfield MA -  Operation Prohibited City Ordnance 22-120 and Possession of Marijuana.
7. Alan Cerdena (D.O.B. 9/1/88) 18 Warrenton Street Springfield MA -  Operation Prohibited City Ordnance     22-120 and Possession of Marijuana.
8. Isiah Torres (D.O.B. 10/22/99) 174 Rosemary Drive Springfield MA - Operation Prohibited City Ordnance 22-120 and Possession of Marijuana.
9. Gian Irizarry (D.O.B. 5/5/98) N.C.A. New Britain CT - Operation Prohibited City Ordnance 22-120 and Possession of Marijuana.
10. Juvenile - Operation Prohibited City Ordnance 22-120  Arrested Juvenile:  Tyler Street Springfield MA - Operation Prohibited City Ordnance 22-120.

All of the offenders, except one, were from out of state.

A great job by HPD and all agencies involved. Hopefully this will be  a regular occurrence until the message gets out.