Would you believe I still don’t have the loan settled for our van? I know God will provide and this van will be ours but it has been so very frustrating dealing with the loan company this week.
Here’s the issue:
The seller is asking about $7000 more than the blue book value for a 2005 Uplander. The loan company’s policy is that they will not loan more than 125% of the blue book value. Can you figure out why there’s a difference in price? Of course! It’s a wheelchair-converted van! Duh! It’s not a regular van that is equivalent to the basic 2005 Uplander blue book value. It’s a van that has had $20,000+ of work done to it so that someone in a wheelchair can use it. Therefore, an additional $7000 is extremely reasonable as an additional cost above the blue book value. However, the fact that this is a specialized van does not seem to figure into the equation. The loan officer is very sympathetic. She was once a nurse and understands the need for the van and the fact that they are very expensive but rules are rules–there has to be a way to determine a “reasonable” value for the van and that’s the blue book value. I’ve suggested that she contact companies that actually do conversion van work so hopefully, she will but today was Veteran’s Day and they were closed so I’m not sure what is going on with the loan. It’s just so frustrating that rules get in the way that does not take into consideration the needs of the disabled.
If dealing with the loan company was not enough this week, I’m also struggling with the insurance company regarding a patient lift I want to buy. When Lynn was in the hospital, I learned to use a device called a Maximova. It was so easy to manage. It has electronic controls and allows you to be at the patient’s side as you adjust him from lying to sitting and then slowly adjust his position as he’s placed into a chair or location. It’s easy to use, very stable, and much safer than the hydrolytic lifts the insurance companies want you to use. Hydrolytic, manual lifts require that you stand near the pump and/or release value as you use the device. Although that’s not that far from the patient, it doesn’t allow you to be right there with them. It’s also difficult to get the patient adjusted because you can’t change their position while they are in the sling. I’ve tried the one we have now that has been approved and I never can get Lynn comfortably settled into his wheelchair. Usually, he ends up on his spine or twisted. It looks like the insurance company would realize that if it’s not as easy and as safe to use, the caregiver is not going to use it, and eventually, the wear and tear on their body will cause the insurance company to have two people submitting claims instead of one. Go figure…
I wonder if the people making the rules for insurance and loans would implement as many barriers to caregivers if they became one themselves. Maybe it would help if they “walked a mile in my shoes.”
4 thoughts on “The world still doesn't understand disabilities”
My father died of Lou Gehrig’s Disease–people don’t usually understand disabilities until they experience them or have someone close to them experience them. I’m praying for you.
We faced this exact problem with our wheelchair accessible van. Fortunately in Pennsylvania there is the Pennsylvania Assistive Technology Foundation (PATF) which helps broker loans for families living with chronic illnesses or disabilities for everything from wheelchair accessible vans through durable medical equipment through assistive technology. Instead of me head butting banks they already have banks ‘understanding’, committed and willing to not only loan but at below market interest. I think if you google them they used to have links to related organizations in other states.
Caregivingly Yours, Patrick
Thanks for your suggestion. I’ll check them out.
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