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COLUMNS

JUST PLAIN TALK: When McClanahan speaks, I listen, you should, too

Buz Livingston
Walton Sun
If you are the smartest person in the room, you are in the wrong room. When Carolyn McClanahan makes a presentation, I know I am in the right place. If she’s not the best in her class, it won’t take long to call the roll. Intelligent, opinionated, strong-willed women intimidate some men, but I was carried for nine months by one; I got the antibodies.
Carolyn was scheduled to speak at the National Association of Personal Financial Advisor’s (NAPFA) Spring Conference in Denver. I wanted to attend and also check out spring on the Front Range, but the Rona squashed those plans. Part of the financial planning process is making adjustments, so NAPFA had two days of Zoom presentations, and she stole the show.
Her topic was healthcare planning and she discussed coronavirus right out of the gate. Some believe, especially if they listen to Fox News, coronavirus sprang on us out of the blue. Dr. McClanahan, oh yeah, in addition to being a CFP, she also was an emergency room physician, pulled a string of her tweets from 2013 warning coronavirus would be “our next black swan.” Like the mythical Cassandra, she warned us.
McClanahan, who did a two-year residency in clinical pathology, pointed out testing positive for antibodies doesn’t give you immunity. We need to focus on testing for active infections, have good contact tracing, and check all contacts. It is ironic, doncha think, to see Facebook warriors get up in arms about contact tracing but don’t realize cellphones are an ideal tracking device.
If we get a vaccine, she thinks it will require revaccinations like annual flu shots. Cue the anti-vaxxers. But she warns while vaccines eliminated diseases like Diptheria and tetanus, no vaccines exist for HIV, herpes, or tuberculosis. As far as travel plans, the elderly and immunocompromised should not travel at least until the dust settles. Even if healthy people decide to hit the road, make sure your affairs are in order; this disease is far more lethal than influenza. Wash your hands frequently, wear a mask in enclosed spaces, and clean surfaces copiously.
Some insurance companies, McClanahan noted, have removed copay requirements for coronavirus problems. She stressed it is essential to document at the time of treatment any procedure is in-network. Out of network coverage costs more and has a higher deductible. When admitted to a hospital, have written on the whiteboard “Provide In-Network Care Only.”
Some physicians misuse their credentials. Earlier this year, Dr. Drew (Drew Pinsky) beat the CV-19 media hoax drum telling Fox News’ Laura Ingraham the problem “will not be the virus.” Pinsky later issued a mea culpa apologizing and admitting he now wears a mask in public. It’s never too late to do the right thing. When my friend Carolyn McClanahan speaks, I listen, but Dr. Drew not so much.
You can’t always get what you want, but Buz Livingston, CFP, can help you figure out what you need. For specific advice, visit livingstonfinancial.net or drop by 2050 West County Highway 30A, M1 Suite 230.