Health Care Reform: A Big Money Glitch within American Society
It Only Takes One Emergency
~POOF~ Your Money is Gone...
I am not going to pretend that I have read the 500 page health care reform proposal or the numerous changes; and I have not followed all the media hype, therefore I will not give youmy opinions on either one. However, I’m choosing to point out some of the positive and or negative money glitches that exist within our heath care system. The term“money glitch” first showed up in computer games when players were locating glitches or hiccups of energy that when hit repeatedly these tasks rendered the hidden treasure by providing the player large amounts of money. This recession generated the term being used to refer to the huge amount of money and jobs that simple disappeared during the near financial crash (a negative money glitch). In my personal opinion money glitches have always existed in the health care arena. One emergency surgery can make all your life savings and investments disappear with a wave of a scalpel, one cut,a few stitches and ~POOF~ your money is gone.
It amazes me how passionately angry individuals pro or con health care reform can become when this subject matter is bought up. Everyone is so passionate about “what will or will not work” that those differences of opinion began to be resolved through name calling, spreading vicious rumors, and even physical violence. All of which is a shame because this is a debate that has continued for decades and the only winners so far have been the doctors (some, not all) that have gotten rich and the insurance and drug companies that are insanely rich. Simply because we have opted not to do anything to settle the wide range of views that circulate though out America. I also find it interesting that each time the insurance companies, doctors, and or drug industries are usually against whatever health care reform is being presented; it does not matter if it is being offered by a Democrat or a Republican President.
Ideas of Health Care Reform Began in the 1900s
Timelines in History
PBS Health Care Crisis Timeline provided by PBS.org offers a synopsis of the history of the U.S. and its health care transitions since the early 1900s. "The health of American children, like their education, should be recognized as a definite public responsibility," stated President Harry S. Truman in 1945 as he argued that the federal government should play a role in health care. Ten years later President Dwight D. Eisenhower recommended the establishment of a Federal health reinsurance service to encourage private health insurance organizations in offering broader benefits to individuals and coverage to more people. To find out what other presidential views were on health care you can perform a search via The American Presidency Project that is provided by the University of California at Santa Barbara.
Harry and Louise on Clinton’s health plan of 1993
Harry and Louise Returns 15 years later
Socialized Medicine - Just How Close Are We?
The term socialized medicine first started to be used in the U.S. when advocates of the American Medical Association opposed President Truman’s 1947 health-care initiative. Within recent years the term broaden to reference any publicly funded system in which the private business delivers the health care with a partial or total government funding. Similar to Canada’s Medicare system, most of Western Europe, and in the U.S. in which Medicare, Medicaid, and U.S. Military’s TRICARE all fall under this definition according to Wikipedia and MedicineNet.
Many look upon this term "socialized medicine" like they are saying dirty words, but I’d like to challenge your thinking for a minute. We might want to raise our noses at “socialized medicine,” however; we are already involved in it in one shape or fashion. Employees working for small companies do not have a choice but to take the one plan of insurance that has been negotiated by the company. Because of the high cost of insurance those individuals cannot go out and purchase a plan on their own so there is no choice but to take the plan that is offered. While others working for large corporations have a choice of 2 or 3 plans, those choices most likely will be an EPO, PPO, and or HMO. Whichever plan you join you will be told what doctors you can go to see within your network, which hospital to go to, and what office visits will be paid for within your network otherwise you will be fined by having to pay ungodly amounts for out of network fees.
In addition your choices have decreased while rules and regulations have gotten stricter from insurance providers and cost has doubled,tripled, and quadrupled over the last decade. If you are lucky enough to have gotten a company plan stating you can go to any doctor; there is no guarantee your doctor of choice will accept that insurance plan. The only true difference in purchasing your health care from your company and the dirty word, “socialized medicine” is that your company negotiates the plans for you, and the insurance company tells you what you can and cannot do instead of the government providing the guidelines to ensure fairness.
Health Care is an Important Part of Our Lives
Facts, Fallacies, or Myths:
Fallacies are usually generated from preconceived notions, historical stories, and or fictions that have little known facts. Therefore, I challenge you to research, read, and read more prior to agreeing to a decision that was good for your forefathers, made by your insurance company, your doctor or anyone else besides your own conscious self. According to the latest statistics 1 out of every 3 Americans are without some kind of health care insurance in our country; 24 % of Texans do not have insurance; and 15% nationwide are without insurance.
If you’ve never experienced a love one being turned down by an insurance company then chances are you are not for health reform. If you’ve never felt that you’ve paid too much for health insurance then you probably don’t like the idea of health reform. If you’ve always been able to afford insurance and feel like everyone else should be able to as well; then chances are you may not desire health reform.
However, if you’ve been a survivor of high health costs, or lost someone because the insurance company would not pay for procedure then chances are you are among the 66% of Americans that are willing to support some kind of health care reform. This percentage was revealed from a poll taken in July by CBS and can be found in an article titled, 10 Health Care Myths that was published by CBS News in August. Throughout this article I am purposely providing links to other websites that have even more history, and opinions of others; for example check out the NY Times author David LeonHardt’s article titled Changing Heath Care by Steps that has a lot of information just in hopes that everyone will get the facts prior to making any final decisions on health care reform.
Personal Experiences with Health Care
My experience with health care has been mostly good for myself in that I have not endured any serious illnesses. However, being an accountant that loves to crunch numbers, I can see there are numerous negative money glitches within our present health care system. For example, I fail to comprehend how an insurance plan mandates that you purchase medicine from a certain pharmacy chain. Especially when that pharmacy chain charges you more for a drug than what Wal-mart charges even if you didn’t have insurance. It’s also hard for me to comprehend why people have to travel to other countries to have cheaper surgery or purchase affordable medicine when we live in America, one of the richest countries in the world.
Another example, happened to several members of my family that had insurance plans that would not pay for the surgeries required and or would not pay for drugs that were still in the experimental stages. Ten years later, I still recall the helplessness I felt when my sister died from breast cancer that I felt could have been prevented had she been able to afford better health care.
President Obama’s Plan in 4 Minutes Revealed to Congress
V.P. Joe Biden Speaks to Seniors in Maryland on 9/24/09
Dr. Oz Helps Uninsured
Some of the Latest Controversy
Read here, the Huffington Post got a copy of a Humana Insurance's mailing to its Medicare participants. Here is the Center for Medicare & Medicaid Services’ (CMS) Office of Public Affairs news release advising Humana and other CMS’ Medicare-contracted health insurance and drug plan carriers to cease sending out their mailings.
Further Reading Resources
Based on the timelines health care reform has created fallacy and instilled fears; been debated and defeated for over 100 years by both Democrat and Republican Presidents. The results have been only minuscule steps being accomplished towards some kind of health care plan for some people. Millions of American citizens cannot get health insurance — and 14,000 are losing their insurance every day during this recessional money glitch. If we do nothing for the next ten years, millions more people will be without insurance and those that do have it will still be under the sometimes merciless instructions of the insurance carriers who continue to offer less coverage for more and more premiums.
We live in a country that is richly blessed and full of numerous resources; we have great leaders, awesome philanthropists, some of the best Ivy League schools, brilliant doctors, lawyers, scientists, mathematicians, economists, and so much more. However, we still are dealing with an l00 year-old debate of how to provide adequate health care and or insurance for all our fellow Americans. While numerous other countries have dealt with this issue years ago and moved forward. If only we could stop the madness, agree to disagree, step up to the plate, put our own personal feelings aside, put our heads together, and resolve this matter now.
Thoughts of First Lady Michelle Obama and Other Women - 10/23/09
Random Updated Links
- Committee of Finance - Health Care Reform
President Obama on March 23, 2010, signed into law the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, which will control health care costs, provide access to quality, affordable health care for Americans, and reduce the deficit...