“When I would go to the dentist, my blood pressure would be high. I would discount it as due to stress of being at the dentist."

"Then, because I know the value of colonoscopies, I made sure I scheduled my appointment. Prepped, went to the appointment and my blood pressure was high. I begged them to please not send me home after all of the prep (plus I know how important testing is).

“They continued but once I was on the heart monitor, they concluded they could not proceed because the heartbeat was irregular. I had NO clue. But had I not done the challenge to do a colonos­copy for my well-being goal, none of the story would have ended as positive as it did.

“I was sent to the ER where I was diagnosed with AFIB. This started a regimen of doctor appoint­ments to confirm, treat and change habits. What a blessing in disguise! With the great help from the heart specialists, I am now on medication for high blood pressure and blood thinners. Can’t skip a day of taking the drugs so I’ve had to learn a new habit to take pills regularly (which I don’t like!).

“I had a cardioversion done, which was successful at getting my heart out of AFIB. Blood pressure is still high but not as bad. I’m trying to watch my diet and stress reduction.

“If I hadn’t had health insurance, SmartHealth, or sharing with others, I would still be struggling with health issues and not have a clue why.

“Once everything is settled in, I will go back for my colonoscopy. I am so grateful for my PEBB benefits. Wouldn’t have had the warnings, the treatment, or the healthy success without it.”

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We asked our community of members — public and school employees, retirees, and continuation coverage members — to share some of the ways their benefits have affected their lives, and we hope you enjoy the story we featured. Would you like to share your story and inspire others?

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