Wednesday, August 12, 2009

The Health Care Debate Is Bad For Your Health

I find is very hard to write on the subject of health care reform at all because the realities of the current American health care system become more and more a part of my everyday life as I get older. This happened very quickly in fact. During the election, Obama's promise of universal health care was an abstract concept to me, but one that I felt the need to get behind in order to help people less fortunate than myself I thought. Now though, my job situation has cause this issue to hit home more than ever as I am faced with prospect of not being able to afford my necessary monthly blood pressure medication.

It is because of the personal implication of this issue (not that I am under any illusion that things will instantly change the moment a bill is passed) that I find myself extremely disillusioned and disappointed at a large chunk of the conservative Republican wing of this country. Look I understand politics, and eight years of Bush should have taught me to be shocked by nothing, but it seems to me that the out right lie is becoming an all too common accepted part of our national political discourse.

The mainstream media is only interested in the idea that every story has two sides, no matter how fantastical or flat out fabricated the other side of the issue is. It is now up to us as media consumers to filter out our own bullshit. This takes some discipline and a little more time than most people are willing or able to give during a normal day. That is the reason I am passing on some helpful facts to dispel a lot of the myths and lies that are out there about Health Care reform. My source is

Top Five Health Care Reform Lies—and How to Fight Back

Lie #1: President Obama wants to euthanize your grandma!!!

The truth: These accusations—of "death panels" and forced euthanasia—are, of course, flatly untrue. As an article from the Associated Press puts it: "No 'death panel' in health care bill."4 What's the real deal? Reform legislation includes a provision, supported by the AARP, to offer senior citizens access to a professional medical counselor who will provide them with information on preparing a living will and other issues facing older Americans.5

Lie #2: Democrats are going to outlaw private insurance and force you into a government plan!!!

The truth: With reform, choices will increase, not decrease. Obama's reform plans will create a health insurance exchange, a one-stop shopping marketplace for affordable, high-quality insurance options.6 Included in the exchange is the public health insurance option—a nationwide plan with a broad network of providers—that will operate alongside private insurance companies, injecting competition into the market to drive quality up and costs down.7

If you're happy with your coverage and doctors, you can keep them.8 But the new public plan will expand choices to millions of businesses or individuals who choose to opt into it, including many who simply can't afford health care now.

Lie #3: President Obama wants to implement Soviet-style rationing!!!

The truth: Health care reform will expand access to high-quality health insurance, and give individuals, families, and businesses more choices for coverage. Right now, big corporations decide whether to give you coverage, what doctors you get to see, and whether a particular procedure or medicine is covered—thatis rationed care. And a big part of reform is to stop that.

Health care reform will do away with some of the most nefarious aspects of this rationing: discrimination for pre-existing conditions, insurers that cancel coverage when you get sick, gender discrimination, and lifetime and yearly limits on coverage.9 And outside of that, as noted above, reform will increase insurance options, not force anyone into a rationed situation.

Lie #4: Obama is secretly plotting to cut senior citizens' Medicare benefits!!!

The truth: Health care reform plans will not reduce Medicare benefits.10 Reform includes savings from Medicare that are unrelated to patient care—in fact, the savings comes from cutting billions of dollars in overpayments to insurance companies and eliminating waste, fraud, and abuse.11

Lie #5: Obama's health care plan will bankrupt America!!!

The truth: We need health care reform now in order to prevent bankruptcy—to control spiraling costs that affect individuals, families, small businesses, and the American economy.

I hope these help dispel any crazy notions you have heard floating around. For a much more entertaining and hilarious look at health care reform and the efforts to stop it than I could ever produce, check out Tuesday's Daily Show.


MJ said...

The lies and crap coming out of the right wing nut fringe is sickening and so frustrating. If there are any people out there like me, who are so furious watching the coverage on tv, they will need some kind of healthcare to recover from it.

Ann said...

I don't understand why people are protesting this? We live around these people. Our country is not going to be come Russia, or canada or whatever.

I don't understand why a service that would benefits and progress us a people that people would be so afraid or it. Why wouldn't you want the people of your country to be healthy? Ohh scary did I just say something socialist?

For example I am not afraid of the US postal service, and I have a choice whether to use it or not, since there are corporate business that offer the same service out there and our country hasn't collapsed or gone strictly socialist because of it.

NiNa* said...

Totally good points! It makes me pretty mad that politicians and people in the public eye (Like oh Sarah Palin perhaps?) have to scare people to get them to agree with things that are against their best interest.

They're all owned by insurance companies.

Tamarinara said...

thank you.

well i know why some people are protesting it.. its because they dont fully understand the facts. also they dont want to support a health care system that supports abortion.

hahah and good point ann!

diana said...

Yeah my health care choices at my new job were either paying $200-300/month in premiums, or paying less but having a $2500 deductible. Ironically, the high deductible is "cheaper" even though I'll pay full price for everything unless a catastrophe happens because the other plan means paying like $3000/year in premiums. Blah :(