Thursday, February 21, 2008

LET'S TALK HEALTHCARE...SO IMPORTANT IN THIS ELECTION


*{originally posted 2.2.08 moved to top, 2.13.08 ,then reposted 2.21.08}*
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PART I : THE BROKEN FACTS: AMERICA'S HEALTHCARE SYSTEM IS VERY SICK AND DYING.
If it were a Big Old Lame Horse at a Racetrack, we would have already had to Put this One Down, that is HOW Bad it is.

There are Many Issues that need to be discussed regarding the Broken Healthcare System in this Country. It is broken on so many levels, but it can be repaired, but it will require Drastic Changes, and Admission by the Government that it is Broken. The Government Employees have some of the Finest HealthCare in the World, and the care that they have should be available to all of us.

47 Million People are without Insurance ( that is MORE than the Population of ALL of Canada). This Number has not been updated in almost 2 years, the estimates are that there are 2 Million more that NEED Healthcare and are NOT in that Original Number. ( The Un-Included are VETS and the Returned Guard that LOST Health Coverage after being home for 2 years, 90,000 Disabled VETS with PTSD that are getting NO healthcare or are on Waiting Lists for Care, and More than 200,000 Homeless VETS, and Atleat 1 Million that are Homeless). It is therefore possible that the More Realistic Number after we include the Populations I just named as well as Unemployed, College Students,VETS, and Homeless,Bancrupted that the Actual Number is Closer to 50 Million. It is also important to recognize that ONE in Seven have NO insurance at all, and that ONE in FIve are Under Insured or Facing Cancellation.So we are talking Millions in ALL neighborhoods of this Country are facing and living with this Crisis Everyday.

LET'S CHANGE THE DIALOGUE: ALL PEOPLE SHOULD HAVE AVAILABLE, AFFORDABE, ACCESSIBLE HEALTHCARE.PERIOD.
( REMEMBER THIS PHRASE AND ALWAYS ASK WHEN LISTENING TO THE CANDIDATE ARE ALL OF THESE ISSUES ADDRESSED)

It is Important to Understand that Healthcare and Health Insurance in this Country has been treated as Luxury and NOT a Right. One of the things that needs to Change is we Need to View it as a Fundamental Right. When Speaking to lawmakers ASK them, "DO you Have the BEST COVERAGE AND HEALTH CARE in the World?" AND then ask" Why shouldn't my family have the same Care and Coverage as You?" Those TWO Questions are Important. The Government Works For us, it makes no sense that Federal Employees have Better Care and Coverage, and that is WHY the Government has taken so long to recognize that OUR Care is not even Adequate.It Should be an Unalienable Right that ALL Americans have HEALTHCARE.

*[Always remember this is NOT just an Issue of Insurance it is about HEALTHCARE}*

All Doctors and Nurse have to take an Oath, "To First DO NO HARM". I think that we should make Our Lawmakers also take this Very Oath. So that Everytime they Make a Decision, they too will have to remember that they have Made A Promise.

PART II : HOW DO WE TALK ABOUT THIS BROKEN SICK SYSTEM, AND HOW DO WE LOOK FOR SOLUTIONS AND PLAN FOR WHAT WE NEED:

First we start Talking about it, Let's Start below:

IS HEALTHCARE AVAILABLE ???:
WHAT DOES THAT MEAN?
It means that ALL people, should have Care available to meet their needs and the needs of their family. It means that NO ONE should be getting turned DOWN for Coverage. People in this Country are being Denied Health Care and Coverage Everyday because the Insurance Companies are Refusing Care and Coverage for Millions of Citizens For "Pre-existing Conditions" and "Potential Conditions" Or " Problems with their Health History" and Also After Doing Credit Checks. In many States Women are beign refused care and Coverage if they have Cardiac Problems in their families, also Breast Cancer, Diabetes and other Conditions. The Insurance Companies are Descriminate in Determining WHO gets Care. Think about that, that Companies are Descriminating Against Citizens, Denying Care at ALL levels, some of it Preventive and Some if it is LifeSaving and Essential. Insurance Companies Should not be Deciding WHO gets Care and Who Doesn't . And Yes, this is a matter of Justice and Human Rights when it is causing People to die and Suffer before Death.

First Off let's Change the Discourse, PATIENTS ARE PEOPLE THAT NEED CARE, THEY ARE NOT LONBER ALLOWED TO BE CALLED CUSTOMERS.So please refer to yourself and your family in that way, because that is the truth.

Some of The Decisions of Care, are not even made by Medical Staff at the Insurance Companies, it is merely decided By Cost and Lists are written that determine Which Illnesses and Diseases are the Most COST EFFECTIVE AND CHEAPLY CARED FOR UNDER THE CIRCUMSTANCES. This also means that at any point in time People can still be cancelled or denied care. To say this Situation is Dangerous and Inhumane barely scratches the surface of this Problem.

When I say "Available" I also am referring to the VETs that have to travel 1000's of miles to get care or proper care or wair for many monthes to get care. Available Care should be near to the patient and take into account the Illness and situation of the Patient.No Patients should suffer Hardship of Wait or travel to get Good Care.

AFFORDABLE, IS HEALTHCARE AFFORDABLE ?
This means that there must be a system that is Designed so that ALL people can pay what they can afford and they should never ever have to lose their home or their cars or their jobs and belongings because of an illness or accident. There should be sliding Rates Created So that people can pay what they can. It should also be taken into account that a Patient that is Very ill ie with Cancer or even a Chronic Disease like MS, can not always pay, because they Might NOT be working. We have people in this country Missing Meals and Eating Catfood so that they an buy meds. That is NOT Right.

ACCESSIBLE, IS IT ACCESSIBLE FOR ALL ?
This means that ALL people can get care, NOT Some people Some of the time. That People Sick or Well can Qualify for care whereever they live or work, or if they have to move to another state for a job. Many People at this point are having to travel and move to other states, but their Insurance often is NOT travel or Relocation Friendly. And the Care must be available to ALL.

The Senators frequently talk about how their Healthcare is Wonderful, and that they have CHOICE, The Care that they have is through Numerous Health Care Providers and Insurance Companies and ironically technically they have Socialized Medicine at it's Finest and basically a Single Payer Plan. We as Citizens should be able to ask Questions about their Care, and the Plans, and be able to try to put together a Plan that would meet the needs for all.

Also Parts of the VA System and parts of the Medicare System and SCHIP Plans have sections that are effective and provide Excellent Care- and there should be a way to Collaboratively and Creatively Put ALL these Plans together that Provides care for the 47 Million without Care by Expanding Plans and Programs that Work. Example : MEdicare Expand it to 55 and up and ADD Chronic Illnesses. Schip Expand it to Families that make under 75,000 and also to College Students with Excessive Loans up to Age 25. These are just Some Ideas of HOW to make the Existing Programs Work Better and Work For MORE.

WHAT TO LOOK FOR IN YOUR CANDIDATE:
Read what I wrote above and DO Listen to your candidate speak to THESE issues. Both Obama and Hillary have been speaking on Healthcare on the Campaign Trail. And carefully watch the Speechs and Answers to Questions as well as READ their Websites.

OBAMA VS. HILLARY::::
He basically has a plan very similiar to Edwards, and embraces Much of what Edwards spoke to. He does Support HEALTHCARE FOR ALL. That there should be choice, that is why his plan would allow people to stay with existing Care and Providers. His Plan would be paid for with Tax Subsides from the Top 2%. ( This means that the Wealthiest would be helping to give Back, and frankly Exxon made 40 Billion In Profits- I think there is Some Money that could be given back to the People). He speaks that the Plan will be an Expansion of the Plan that is offered to Congress, and that would include Preventive Care and Care for ALL. So he Does Support Care FOR ALL, and that it should be Affordable,Accessible, and Avaialble.

He also has said that there would be NO MORE Closed Door Negogiations with Insurance Companies, and that there would be improved regulatory Measures taken so they no longer Dictate Care. ( *** that is very different than Hillary she says that her Plan will offer Similiar Care to ALL FULLTIME WORKERS and be like what the Congress and Senate has. She also has said that there will be reduced rates, and that CURRENT RATES WOULD BE CAPPED. BUT that is NOT good enough, not when Americans are maxed out Already, that is TOO Little TOO late. )

His Plan is about setting up A System that will make the Whole Affair Public and show the brainstorming and Solutions on Cspan. This idea would put all Players at the Table to Problem Solve With the People, For the People and In FRONT of the People. The Last 7 years have taught us that Cspan can Empower the People and let them be part of the Process. Basically His Plan is to find Ways to Creatively Provide Care for all, and that would be called Universal Health Care. The Details of HOW it would be paid for he admits will have to have Creative Soltutions and the People must be involved in the Process.

Her plan she has repeatedly said in speechs and on the trail that she would Relook at ALL existing Plans and Measure the first 60 days up to 6 Monthes. And that she would Make It Mandatory. So the Problem is this, She is acting like it is Car Insurance. That People just need to buy Insurance, that is NOT the Issue. People NEED Care. They need to be able to be Provided Affordable Care, NO ONE has Refused Insurance, Millions of People have been Denied Care because of Conditions or Financial Problems BY THE INSURANCE COMPANIES. The People should not be held Responsible For WHAT the Insurance Companies and Government have allowed. There must be Change, with Regulatory measures in place Protecting People from the Neglectful Practices of the Insurance Companies.There needs to be Regulation and Oversight. She NEVER offers this or dialogues on this Issue- she wants to cut Deals "negogiate" with the Insurance Companies. This will Solve Nothing is Very Much WHat when wrong during the 1990s'- because Closed Door Deals caused Strife and Anger....and Division.

Hillary's Plan is basically she is saying that Under her Government her administration would make Health Insurance Mandatory ( that is NOT the same as saying that ALL INSURANCE COMPANIES MUST PROVIDE CARE !!!and that It must be affordable- she has said that the Existing Costs would be capped, and that rates would be negogiated by the Government- which means ONCE AGAIN the people are NOT part of the Solution or even consulted WHAT Problems they are facing. The Insurance Companies and Drug Companies Would be Running the SHow with Her Blessing and Helpful Negogiation Skills. People Would be given "tax credits". That is not going to help lower middle class, and the working poor- that means they still will having to struggle to pay and wait to see at the end of the year if there is any money coming back ? She also has spoken about Medical Savings Acccounts - which is what Bush Instituted are totally ineffective- now to be fair, I have not seen it On her website recently, but I have heard her speak about the Accounts. The Bottem line is she is still treating it like an Insurance Issuee, not an Issue of Millions Not getting Care. She also never addresses that the Government will regulate Care or Cost, or that it will subsideize ANY of the care, so the Costs is still on us the Citizens, the taxpapers.These are some of the Critical Differences.

Of Both Candidates I encourage you to Read, Watch and Ask Questions. But I have to say Obama's Plan is Better, and is more open to Correction and Adapting to What the People NEED for Affordable Accessible Care.

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About the Repugs They are not offering ANY Debates on Healthcare or discussing as Even a Problem. So the DEMS atleast have Brought the Issue to the Table, and it is Critical, So if you have any Repug or Independent Friends Share that Fact with them.
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Dr.Sanje Gupta is Doing a BROKEN GOVERNMENT SPECIAL: HEALTHCARE CRISIS on Sunday Night at 10PM CNN.

13 comments:

enigma4ever said...

Are you still confused ? have a headache ? that is okay....If you have questions do email me at enigma4ever@earthlink.net, and we can delve into it and figure it out......I have spent years studying this...Living this ...and as a nurse I am willing to help Everyone Get the Care they deserve and need.

We Can do this.....really.

Namaste.

enigma4ever said...

(BTW just for the record I am one of the 47 Million, and I even had Health Insurance and was cancelled and denied due to health history.....and was paying HUGE fees and premiums due to being a single mom /RN working PT/per diem)

So I do KNOW how worrisome and painful this issue is for millions....I too have lived it...

Gryphen said...

Well done Enigma,
It is a lot to read and it is still a little muddled but that is not your fault it is the fault of the system.

I really appreciate that you encourage people to listen to the candidates for themselves and make their choices. Any time somebody supports keeping an open mind while gathering the facts you know they are being straight with you.

You have really done a huge public service to everybody who is trying to make sense of this issue, and you are to be commended.

You deserve a break. Maybe there is some sporting event that you can watch in the next couple of days to take you away from the health care and political realm and allow your mental batteries to recharge.

I will look into that for you.

enigma4ever said...

Gryphen:
Thanks...I think it was too long winded...sorry..I wish it were not so complicated.....I am watching Michelle Obama on cspan...WILD Crowd in Delaware ( I Know Delaware !!!!???) Tomorrow is SuperBowl...Yahoooooo......( and there is always the CAVS.....and Lebron...) But I have calls to make for Obama the next two days...and Signs to make for my 3rd Floor Windows with Christmas Lights....

I am not Tired ...I am Fired Up ;-)

Larry said...

I'm not a fan of either of their healthcare plans.

Making healthcare more affordable won't help those in poverty, or making low wages.

We should all receive the same healthcare that congress receives.

After all our tax dollars pay for theirs, why can't it buy ours as well.

enigma4ever said...

Larry-
I agree with you...and I hope and pray that we can teach these Candidate about that....( I can only write soooo many letters..) But I will keep working on it..

You are Right- 100%

BadTux said...

My only problem here is that I carefully parsed each candidate's health care proposals and... Hillary and Edwards' proposals both covered *all* Americans (though in a totally corrupt and inefficient manner and not as cheaply as Kucinich's Medicare For All plan), while Obama's proposals, despite all his protestations to the contrary, only cover *some* Americans. If he has a plan to cover *all* Americans, he needs to put it on his web site, because the one he has there doesn't.

I'm pretty much a single-issue voter in this upcoming election -- health care -- and that's why I didn't vote for Obama in the California primary. Note that Hillary's current proposal is Edwards's proposal with the serial numbers filed off and more pork added to it to hopefully make it more attractive to Congress, and Edwards's proposal in turn was basically RomneyCare with the serial numbers filed off and a single payer plan grafted on as an option. So I find it hilarious that Mitt Romney took time out to criticize what is basically *HIS OWN PLAN* as being "socialized medicine", LOL!

- Badtux the Health Care Penguin

enigma4ever said...

Hey there Badtux,
She was on talk shows this am...and actually she was saying that wages would be garnished " We will go after their wages" AChhhhhh...That is not the issue- NO ONE sits around trying to avoid getting healthcare- it is about cost...Insurance Companies run amok..Hill's plan is actually close to Mitt's- she also wants to computerize the system- with a Rand Corporation Card ( I would love to know if they have given to the Campaign..) BUT that has many problems- fraud, privacy issues galore ( which MEdical people have fought for years) AND THE INSURANCE COMPANIES AND CREDIT COMPANIES WOULD BE ABLE TO LOOK AT PEOPLE....TALK ABOUT BIG BROTHER RUNAMOK..

She keeps saying her plan is LIKE Edwards- he wanted Healthcare for ALL , she wants HEALTH INSURANCE FOR ALL...there is a HUGE difference.

He also wanted to regulate Costs and So does Obama- she wants to CAP costs- so if you are already paying SKY HIGH premiums- they would just stay high.....

Obama does have a Plan to pay- she does not- that is becuase we would still be paying- US the People...

It is to bad that more people can not HEAR his plan- it is the one that is actually closer to Edwards- she is not being truthful about it.

BadTux said...

Like I said, I'm going by what's actually *PUBLISHED ON THE CANDIDATES' WEB SITES*. If Obama really does have a plan to cover all Americans, he needs to put it on his web site. The one on his web site *DOES NOT* cover all Americans, despite whatever waffling Obama does in debates to imply that it does.

And if you read *WHAT IS ON THE WEBSITES*, Hillary's plan does have funding mechanisms in it. As you correctly point out, it's an expensive plan and far, far, far from the plan I would personally prefer, but it *does* cover all Americans.

Once again, I am going by what is actually on the candidates' web sites, not by what they say in speeches or debates. Hillary's plan *IS* Edwards's plan, for the most part. Again, I am going by what is actually on the candidates' sites, not by what political activists *say* is on their sites or what the candidates *claim* is on their sites. If their plans are different from what is on their web sites, they need to update their web sites.

- Badtux the Health Care Penguin

enigma4ever said...

Badtux....
sadly you have to listen to the Speechs too...
and listen to what he says...
But I will go back..Because he says Universal healthcare....I thought his site said that...and I will write and call his people again..sorry...

( I think they really need to be clearer on this issue- it is HUGE,..)
Please know we are not sqaubbling- I too am trying to decipher this issue...

as a Nurse of over 20 years- I am the first to admit that this Problem MUST be Fixed FOR ALL....

Dizzy Dezzi said...

You made a great point that I missed in regards to people being refused care via fiat of the Insurance companies.

It's a crying shame that we can no longer rely on our doctor's advice to make sound choices on our own health care issues, we must first get the "permission" of the insurance company to pursue care or be willing to pay out of pocket (sometimes deeply).

You are right, we don't need "mandatory" health insurance so much as we need to reopen access to affordable health care to EVERYONE not just those folks that the insurance companies deem "worthy".

Mauigirl said...

Enigma, I'll be back to read this wonderfully detailed post. I'm in the midst of a lot of craziness in the non-blog world so have limited blog reading time!

enigma4ever said...

I hope this gets fixed next year...