Sunday, August 16, 2009

Health Care Reform and the Chamber of Secrets



Seriously...



Death Panels. Pulling-The-Plug-On-Grandma Clauses. An enemies list. Home health care nurses coming to take away poor families' babies.


Seriously? Is there ANYONE out there who really believes this?






Ding-Dong...









You know, back in the day, decisions whether or not to place a patient on dialysis went through a committee. And, more recently, decisions whether or not a patient met the criteria to receive a heart transplant went through a committee. The decision of whether or not a brain dead patient meets criteria to be an organ donor goes though a stringent algorithm and a committee. And for that matter, the brain death exam itself must be carried out by two different physicians from two separate services. A committee of two, although there are many, many others in the room. Committees are all over the damn place, and they make life and death decisions day and night. In a teaching hospital doctors travel in packs.

For those of us actually doing the work of health care Sarah Palin's allegations and those of her friends are laughable. Unless there are people who actually believe it.

This new found concern for the possible rationing of healthcare is an insult to the now 47 million people who do without any health care at all. I consider that to be very effective rationing. That means no high blood pressure medications, no treatment and monitoring of diabetes, no cardiac assessments. People simply manage until they can't. Then care takes place in the ER or, when critically ill, in the ICU, two of the most expensive places in the system.

These are not the indigent, nor any illegal aliens. Those two populations receive medical care due to federal law. The 47 million uninsured are the "working poor." Those who can find only parttime employment without the benefit of health insurance, generally because of the costs involved for the employer. It's not a new problem. We've known and spoken about it for DECADES.

But someone is making a buttload of money off the bones of the sick and will not give it up without a fight. Social conservatives may be assigned to spread the message, but the vitriolic and fearmongering scenerios are being created by others. I don't know who all stands to lose the most in a healthcare reformed society. My guess would be the insurance companies, but I'm also guessing there are lobbyists and politicians among others on that gravy train.

I think there might be names for them. Jackals, buzzards, vultures come to mind, but those handsome creatures provide a benefit to the natural order. The powers choreographing this barrage of misinformation do so without possessing any positive qualities. Shame on them.


Seriously.

And words of wisdom from yet another committee...

17 comments:

  1. Most of the most vocal people seem to be a little older. They voice their fear of socialized medicine while simultaneously waving their medicare cards.

    How about those golden paychecks for the CEOs of insurance companies? Damn. Who wouldn't want a check like this?

    * Aetna, Ronald A. Williams: $24,300,112
    * Cigna, H. Edward Hanway: $12,236,740
    * Coventry, Dale Wolf: $9,047,469
    * Health Net, Jay Gellert: $4,425,355
    * Humana, Michael McCallister: $4,764,309
    * U. Health Group, Stephen J. Hemsley: $3,241,042
    * Wellpoint, Angela Braly: $9,844,212

    Apparently, these folks stand to lose quite a bit if we finally get some reform.

    A well written post Distracted.

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  2. Well said, thank you so much for this perspective. My blood boils when I hear the ultra-conservative poop on this subject. Something has to be done about our health care system. I'm with you; the insurance companies, lobbyists, & some politicians are getting their wallets cushioned.

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  3. Thanks for letting me see the other side. There is so much baloney out there that we don't know what to believe.

    I love the song!!!!

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  4. That's what is so scary; so many people DO believe what she's saying! She absolutely makes shit up and people eat it up. So, so scary. And isn't this the same debate that the AMA fought back in the 70's when there was a big "socialist medicine" scare? And look what happened; HMO's took it all over. How has that been better?

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  5. At one time all the big Blue Cross Blue Sheilds were NON PROFIT! Now we have Anthem/Wellpoint and other for profits with directors making millions in stock options. The situation now is where greed took us.

    Any one who is concerned about healthcare decisions made when they are unable to should have Advance Directives AND someone they trust with medical power of attorney.

    I worked at a facility where long term vegatative state patients were cared for. Any one that believes that because of cost the switch gets turned off, should observe the level of care it takes for these very fragile patients and the compassion of those who care for them. It is extremely costly, and some of these patients had been there for 10 to 15 years. (It also made me make sure I had an Advance Directive on file and a medical power of attorney!)

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  6. Here's another perspective, from a hospital CEO. I don't agree with everything he says, especially about President Obama's credibility, but I think he's got the bottom line about what will be allowed to happen, and when I say allowed, I mean accepted by the Fat Cat$ making their wealth by controlling healthcare.

    http://runningahospital.blogspot.com/2009/08/backdoor-single-payer-will-not-happen.html

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  7. great stuff......no i don't believe even the pinheads who throw those scare stories out there think they're telling the truth.........the right and the self rightous are just borrowing from the nazis [if the lie is big enough then they will believe] and then the other way....just throw enough stuff out there and something will stick. they ought to be ashamed but they're not......jack c

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  8. and a write-up of the president's speech in Billings:
    http://blogs.tnr.com/tnr/blogs/the_treatment/archive/2009/08/15/hitting-his-stride-in-montana.aspx

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  9. There are a lot of people who seem to think that just because they say something out loud it must be true. Palin is leader of that pack. Very scary. Vote every chance you get.

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  10. If your fear wanes, Google "Other things birthers believe" like prisoner trains for 15million "I seen 'em!" WITH pictures! (of course they're actually unused car transports)
    Sigh

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  11. Just out of curiosity, as I haven't had much time to read it myself, do you think that President Obama's specific plans are doable? I understand the need for reform, but that doesn't mean I think this first proposal is without flaws. I really wish that's what we could be discussing, in a civilized manner, rather than these blanket yes or no's.

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  12. Hospitals receive disportionate share funding in return for seeing poor and indigent patients if they are in a federal "poverty" region. That is one payment they are willing to give up in order to help fund healthcare reform.

    Insurance companies make money by getting revenue from subscribers and spending as little as they can out to the providers. In the 1990's big insurance got into Medicare by HMO thinking they would make buckets of money, and found that by insuring a pool of elderly and often ill patients they did not make the expected level of profit.

    This last go-round with Medicare by HMO, big insurance was reimbursed 125% of cost by the federal goverment, so they were guaranteed their profit. I think the extra 25% has been cut or contemplated to be cut by Congress, so expect to see big insurance drop out of that market again.

    A lot of businesses would like to have 25% profit guaranteed. Maybe that's what the private sector lobbyists are vying for!

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  13. An excellent post Distracted and I love the line in the song "if I wake up, I might sue" which relates to a very real problem as we all know. Reform must take place and as a holder of one of those Medicare cards, I say the sooner the better!

    Of course you can't believe everything you see on TV and it's awfully time consuming reading every newspaper published, but research is the only way anyone is going to find the truth.

    In a lighter vein... today am announcing a FUN giveaway thingie on my post which will begin next Monday... come visit and see what I'm talking about!

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  14. When I go to see the Cleveland Cavaliers play basketball, on my way to my cheap seats, I walk past the private loge of the Blue Cross/Blue Shield health insurance company. Um...huh? Pisses me off royally.

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  16. Nice article. very interesting, thanks for sharing.

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Hey, thanks for your thoughts and your time:>)