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Moving to Seattle from Australia - advice


My husband is being interviewed for a position with one of the big tech companies so there is a possibility we are moving to Seattle from Sydney, Australia.

I have a 6 year old son with quite severe ADHD who currently takes 27mg of Concerta, a 3.5 year old son who I suspect also has ADHD but not quite as severe as his brother and a husband with severe ADHD who also takes Concerta.

We would be getting health care through the company but I’m unsure of how it all works so any advice is welcome especially some ideas of how much healthcare and medications might cost and things I need to know about school.

TIA

Replies

Seeing that you’re not from the states, typically you just get your monthly premium deducted from your paycheck. It’s completely dependent on the company of what insurance you will have, what it will cover and how much it will cost. He should get a packet that explains all of this when he’s hired. Good luck. I’m south of Seattle. It’s beautiful here.

Posted by adhdmom2000 on Oct 30, 2013 at 2:40am

Hi TIA, another Aussie over here living in WV. It will take you some time to get your head wrapped around the healthcare system here, and what you get is very much dependent on what is offered through your husbands employer. Very different to how it works in Aus. I will say though, that being over on the West Coast you will encounter many Aussies who should be able to offer you a better insight about the services over there. Generally speaking I would say that the services and what is offered for kids with ADHD will be pretty good in Seattle. They are good here where I live just not as much support as I would like. My brother worked over in Seattle for 9 months and loved it. It sure is a beautiful place. Good Luck

Posted by mgtnaussie on Oct 30, 2013 at 12:46pm

I live in Seattle and my 8 year-old son was diagnosed with ADHD about 1.5 years ago.  Any tech company here will have stellar healthcare because they compete for the best workers in Seattle (my step-son works at Google in Seattle).  I work in biotech, which is somewhat similar. Basically, you get a healthcare ID card that you show when you visit the doctor and pay a deductible (should be pretty low at a tech company—$20-25) for each visit. You’ll get statements in the mail after each doctor’s visit, but it’s pretty seamless.  There will likely be a small amount deducted from your husband’s paycheck each month to offset the cost of insuring your whole family.  In addition, there will most likely be a few healthcare plans to choose from. You’ll likely want to go for the best healthcare plan you can get since you’ll want coverage for anything your kids will need.

My son is on 18mg Concerta and I think I pay $5 per month for the generic version (so, super cheap!).  Doctor’s visits cost $25. Occupational therapy visits cost $25.  Your costs should be similar to these.

I live directly in Seattle and the Seattle schools are in a shambles when it comes to caring for kids with any sort of special needs.  They’ve actually received government warnings that they aren’t meeting the needs of kids who have IEPs/504 plans.  There may be pockets of goodness, but I have yet to see them (please, anyone else in Seattle who has good things to say about the public schools meeting the needs of kids with ADHD, feel free to disagree with me—I’d love to hear it).  My son attends a private school for kids with ADHD (Morningside Academy) that is *terrific* for meeting his educational needs. 

The best school districts near Seattle include Mercer Island (best in the state), Shoreline, Edmonds, Bellevue, and Northshore (Bothell area, I think).  Shoreline is immediately to the north of Seattle and still has somewhat reasonable house prices.

Hope this helps, and best of luck to your husband on his interview!

Posted by MendelZ on Oct 30, 2013 at 4:35pm

Once he is re-diagnosed here in the states, with ADD/ADHD, getting the proper treatment should not be too difficult.  However, I find that a lot of these insurance companies give you a hard time about paying or they wind up wanting to up the cost. 

My husband works for a hospital called HealthFirst and as young people, our insurance plan is pretty good.  I only have to pay $10.00 as long as I get my prescription at one of the hospitals.  If I go to my local pharmacy, it is $20.00.  However, it is way better then what my parents were paying before I got married.  Through their insurance, they were paying $50.00.  What’s worse is that I was not even receiving Concerta for that price.  With the United States having a shortage of stimulants like Concerta, Vyvanse, so on and so on, they were giving me methylphenidate ER 36 mg!!  I could not believe that I was being charged that much for a generic brand!  Anyway, if they did not meet the deductible, they were paying almost full price (138 something dollars out of pocket) for the generic brand!  Lucky for me, my father is a radiologist and they could afford that.  But, it all had to do with the fact that it’s an insurance that is part of him and his partner’s corporation.  Honestly, I am getting a way better deal on a lot of things now then I did then.  To me it’s lame, but it is what it is.

Posted by tinalunior83 on Nov 01, 2013 at 3:23am

Medical insurance companies here in the US aggrevate me and after learning more about them in the medical assistant program, it made me dislike them even more!  They are just out to get your money, nothing more nothing less :/

Posted by tinalunior83 on Nov 01, 2013 at 3:30am

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