Wednesday, April 01, 2009

FRONTLINE episode this week on Healthcare in America: " Sick Around America"

It covers Healthcare or lack of it around the Country, and how it is effecting so many. It is a Crisis.Click the Title to watch Online Episodes. Our Health Care System is beyond Broken, and people are suffering across the Country, those with Insurance as well as the 58 Million UnInsured and the Millions that are Under-Insured.Preview Below.


Fran said...

Hi E ~ I caught this special...Wow!
They made the progression /link clear of people who lost jobs, then lost health care-- I think they said something like 80% of people unemployed are not able to afford COBRA insurance costs.
You pay 102% of the cost ( your share plus the cost of what the employer used to pay, plus an additional 2% as a kind of service charge). For most people that was a cost they could not have afforded while they were working, let alone when on a reduced unemployment amount.

I was amazed to hear of the reasons private ins or "single payer insurance" gave to deny coverage.
A kid having an ear infection, or a skin rash, simple common things.

If you have an actual chronic disease.... forget it.

It was sad to hear in the end, 20,000 americans die each year due to lack of peopler health insurance.

There was a story of a yong girl with Lupus. Her Doctor said her "cause of death" was lack of health insurance.... because if she had proper meds & care, she would be alive.
The Doctor also pointed out, in the end she wound up going to the emergency room & needing multiple surgeries and critical care-- to the tune of well over $100,000-- so when they thought they were saving money by cutting her off, wound up costing them a lot more, and cost her life.
I'm glad she pointed that out because they did cut her off care to save money (she was on a State medical coverage for low income plan.
She appealed multiple times, and was rejected.

After she died, she got a letter from the state medical program, saying she had been removed from eligibility in error. Turned out to be a fatal error.

People with major medical items- heart surgery, cancer have no choice but to file for bankruptcy.

But others with "routine" medical procedures.....
an appendix surgery or the need for a cataract removal have to do self triage & pick & choose what things have to wait, so old medical bills can be paid down.

Health care in America: Critical Condition

enigma4ever said...

Great Summary Fran..
our PBS here only sporadically runs Frontline I will watch online....As an un-insured nurse with health problems I know that this situation is Dire and needs repair- and yes, that thousands are dying.

Insurance picks and chooses who lives and dies- and plays god with our Health and Wellbeing.

I have some ideas about Healthcare.

I am sure that atleast 20,000 die a year- Healthcare and Health Insurance is NOW a Luxory that only the rich have access to- for lower middle class or working poor it Unattainable.

Healthcare should be a Constitutional Right....for ALL....

thanks again...
(1) There should be Govt sponsered Cobra- should be an Arm of Medicare. ( NO ONE can afford it- it is made to make sure that no one is cared for if they lost a job- it is a punitive system).

(2) The Govt needs to Offer Insurance to ALL of those that have been turned down due to Health History and Pre-Existing Conditions. ( I was cancelled After the Company they judged my cancer history in my family....that is wrong- if anything I need Stronger Prevention and as it is right now I am the ONLY medical entity caring for me...and there is NO screening going on....and all because I have Breast and Lung cancer in my family history- that is wrong). BUT here in Ohio I have met hundreds like me turned down for all kinds of reasons- I actually know very few people that have Actual Insurance or Healthcare- litterally a handful).

D.K. Raed said...

This was an excellent follow-up to a previous Frontline, "Sick Around the World". When you compare how other countries are handling healthcare, it's enough to make you sick(er). Remembering how easily the Germans and Swiss were able to convert to their national health programs in the 90's, I just can't believe that what we have would be so difficult to change. The sooner, the better.

Beyond giving us a healthier population, a national healthcare program would lower employee benefit costs for businesses. Yes it would raise our taxes, but so did social security and medicare and many other social programs. I'd rather my taxes go for health than endless war.

About those pre-exisiting conditions: I am VERY concerned about that issue! I do NOT support the big push to computerize all medical info UNLESS the ability to deny healthcare based on pre-existing conditions is outlawed.

As the Frontline program pointed out, many people who think their insurance covers something find out otherwise as the insurer goes to great lengths to prove whatever is wrong with them is a pre-existing condition. We have to do better than this for everyone's health!

enigma4ever said...

Here Here DK....yeah...I am not one that wants computerized system- I am very worried about privacy issues- and ALL Universal healthcare should be resolved....people need care more than a Computerized card....we need to pull the rug out from the's time....

Fran said...

I came across this web site

Here is a post from that site:

Whizbang computer systems are not the panacea for fixing healthcare
Posted by Chuck Idelson on March 13, 2009 - 10:19am
It's time to lay to rest the myth that spending billions on more high tech is the salvation for rising healthcare costs. Some people will peddle any notion to avoid addressing the best way to rein in costs, pushing the insurance companies out of the way with a single payer system.

It's become an article of faith that a national system of electronic medical records would produce huge savings. President Obama made it a centerpiece of his healthcare plan during the campaign (as did Sen. John McCain), and has emphasized it repeatedly in legislation and speeches.

As a first step, the stimulus bill allotted $17 billion in incentives to prod doctors and hospitals to get on board during a five year period beginning in 2011, along with financial penalties if they don't.

If we don;t actually get health care coverage & access to actual care, half the computerized files will read *NOT COVERED*

landsker said...

Living in Europe, I couldn`t even begin to think what life would have been without state-run health care.
No-one, but no-one ever gets turned away from a hospital or doctor, no matter how rich or poor, whatever ailment, although there are priorities and waiting lists.
Some hospitals treat non-smoking cancer patients ahead of smokers, but generally, the amount of money in a persons bank account makes no difference to their treatment, even for organ transplants, all are equal.
Doctors, nurses, dentists, therapists, even psychiatrists ...most, like schoolteachers, are employed by the state, on a comfortable fixed wage, the clinics and hospitals are merely seen as a public service, just like highways, schools and libraries....

The costs are paid from our taxes, and yes, we spend more on health care than on our militaries, and in many ways, the system is slow and prone to mistakes, but it evolves and improves.
There is "privatised medicine", but generally used only by the wealthy and the priviledged, and probably runs to less than 5% of the people.
Universal health care will come to the US, of that I`m sure, how and when is what remains to be seen.

enigma4ever said...

thanks Lanskr.....that was so amazing to hear...WOW....