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On The Soapbox - Health Insurance

Tuesday, June 02, 2009

I don't like to be controversial on Sparkpeople, but my conscience dictates that I must speak out on an issue that can, if things go the wrong way, cause many of us to be doomed to a life of poor health.

The United States of America, unlike most industrialized countries in the world doesn't have a national health plan. There are people who say that when governments get involved with paying for health care, it gets rationed. Some special interest groups are now running scare ads on TV pointing to other countries that have national health care and inferring that treatment is delayed by government bureaucracy.

As we all know, in our present system, health care is doled out by private, for profit insurance companies. How many of us have had an insurance claim rejected by a private HMO? One of the scare tactics being used is to tell people that the government will not insure people in the 50 to 65 year old age group, because they are statistically in the poorest health. Under our current system of privately insured health care, in states that allow a practice called medically underwritten health insurance, the insurers can deny insurance, based on your general health and age is a big factor.

Some people say that health insurance is a luxury, not an entitlement.
I am a firm believer in WWJD and believe that The Lord wouldn't want anyone to be denied health care based on the ability to pay.

We need a government run, single payer health insurance option now.
There is a bill known as The Conyers/Kucinich US National Health Insurance Act (HR 676) currently under consideration. Please contact your elected officials and voice your support.

Here is a helpful link:

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Member Comments About This Blog Post
    While I agree it is preferable to keep politics out of Sparks...this is one area that directly affects the health of everyone here. Notice that many times a coach or expert will state clearly as the disclaimer to contact your medical care provider.

    As more and more adults and children fall off insurance rolls...these same people are beginning to learn the hard way that medicine in the US has changed drastically. An easy for instance, you know something is wrong, very wrong, no insurance and not stable financially...what do you do...go to a doctor with an empty pocket book? Nope...you simply don't go.

    It's all fine and wonderful for the awareness ads to get annual checkups, mammograms, PSA testing, colonoscopies but for those without insurance for the most part, that's not happening.

    So what did we do before...well you could walk into a family practitioner and pay for an office visit which you generally knew how much it was going to be and much of the lab work and often times even regular x rays were performed in their office or clinic...No more.

    Say you are in a state where they suspect swine flu...are you willing to pay for an office visit, the lab tests and the follow up visit plus the tamiflu...probably a good 300 in all when you A. don't have insurance and B. need that money for food, electric, etc....probably not.

    Remember the TB days, the Polio days...we had a Public Health system in place...in fact we still do but it is largely ineffective at this point.

    I have no idea what the answer is but I do know this much...no access to a doctor is a very scary place to be and until you are there...it's hard to understand that. Further, most without any access to care would be very happy with at least some vehicle of care, high end or not.

    Few touch on the fact that the cash strapped, cash paying patient never has a discount but is actually paying for the office staff that has a full time job taking care of the insurance..everything from Medicare to SSI, Workman's Comp, to HBO's etc.....don't look now but that is a large part of your bill that you have no part of at all.

    Now the Primary Care Provider is basically the clearing house for all specialties....and yet tests are duplicated, lab work is duplicated, everything is done in muliples...very little common sense. This is not good common sense, good health care, nor true capitalism at work....you cannot just call up and ask for prices, services do not have amounts...you get surprised at the end of the visit....and most can't afford the surprise absent insurance anymore.

    So, if most want to see medicine at work in the supply and demand sector then lets have it just that way....no hiding of prices, certifications, references, etc....I think most receiving care through SS or private insurance will come away reeling at the costs...if only they really knew. Lets also make sure the general public knows that including the deductible and what the insurer pays..put that in a chart against what the cash paying person has an "invoice" for that is payable on the spot.....again...a big surprise.

    If people don't like the word entitlement that's fine..let's insert the words smart medicine...it's an art AND a science.
    4280 days ago
    Hear, hear! I have several friends who are doctors -- they all believe this can only IMPROVE health care for citizens, and leave them free to treat patients, rather than wrestle insurance companies.
    4283 days ago

    Comment edited on: 6/5/2009 12:37:24 AM
    Thanks for the link...I am off to read it in a minute. I am glad you took the time to blog about this!!! emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon
    Blessings and hugs,
    4285 days ago
    Way To Go Babe!!!! 143 emoticon emoticon
    4285 days ago
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