Avera Medical Minute: Connectivity of Care Benefits Aberdeen Man

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ABERDEEN, S.D. (KSFY) - Scott Ristau doesn't take the use of his hands for granted. Not that long ago, he was facing carpal tunnel surgery on both hands.

Scott Ristau plays the piano again after surgery

He thought of how that would change his world. Two things came to mind. "Playing catch with my son, who was one year old at the time, just anticipating that and playing the piano," said Ristau.

During his pre-operative physical with his doctor, another problem surfaced. "He found a nodule on my thyroid," said Ristau. He thought it would be a brief appointment. "Finding out I was about to lose the use of both of my hands and I might have cancer in my neck; it was a sobering day."

Multiple appointments followed, including an ultrasound the next day. Scott was just a phone call away from an Avera Health Plan representative to help if he had any questions.

"We're really just focused on coverage with connectivity and ensuring that we're helping members to maximize benefits and connect with different services, providers and so on that they're in need of," said Avera Health Plans Director of Customer Experience Katie Studer. "I think Scott's story was able to showcase how we were able to make sure he was seeing specialists in-network and really looking at the affordability of his care and ensuring that he was getting care at an affordable cost."

If you're looking to compare health insurance, open enrollment is November first through December 15th.

It may be tempting to just think about your monthly premium and your deductibles when it comes to choosing healthcare coverage, but it's also important to think about the quality too. Who will be there to answer the call when you have a question, and can they also find a doctor in-network?

"I never really thought of the healthcare plan as someone who has my back before. Seeing how they're taking steps to do that besides insurance is nice. It makes me excited to be able to work with Avera Health plans insurance," said Ristau.

Through this journey, the important things in life become more clear. "Trust God and trust the medical professionals who he put in my life and go on from there," said Ristau.