Diaspora, help me understand our healthcare problems

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It's a terrible problem. I don't know what the answer is - and I totally get what you're saying, Crimson. We don't want to go from a crummy system to another crummy system that isn't good either. I just know that it makes my heart ache, for want of a better way to put it, knowing that people are ill and suffering and we supposedly live in the richest country that has ever existed.

We put a man on the moon - surely if there were sufficient will we could come up with a better health care system than we have now. It is so urgent. {{{Juanab}}} {{{ Diaspora}}}
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JuanaB and Diaspora, I am so deeply, deeply saddened by your situations. Personally, I believe universal healthcare should be as much of a right as universal education. A parent can choose to homeschool, but in cases like yours, there is no option.

Maybe I am mixing apples and oranges, but it just makes me so sad and angry to read your situations. What kind of country do we live in that permits this. For shame!!!
Originally Posted by curlypearl
I agree with both. Thanks CP. it saddens me that anyone has to go through any of this.
Originally Posted by juanab
I have chronic health issues and insurance. Still have a large amount of medical bills. My premiums are outrageous and my husband works for the state of CA.
I've talked to many many people in Canada, UK and Australia and they don't sing the praises of national health care. In fact, the ones that have lived here in the states and had private health care, prefer it to national health care of Canada.
Seems it's great for the acute problems but when there's any type of long term, difficult health issue, it's really limited. Appointment times to see a specialist take months to a year. They say they don't have options- with doctors, with prescriptions, with testing, etc.
Don't get me wrong, I realize that few options are better than no healthcare... but I also know the huge difference in health care from when I had a HMO to my current PPO.
I'm blessed in that my husband has a good job that offers benefits. Until last year, we were paying over 600$ just for our portion of the premium. The system is a disaster but national health care causes concern too.
Originally Posted by crimsonshedemon

Aren't state workers able to have such great insurance because their insurance comes from state funds (i.e., collective, tax payer dollars)? Your points are already weak, but even further weakened when you explain the great healthcare you have via your husband's state employment. How are you going to complain about how horrible the anecdotes from Canada are? Really? Hundreds of thousands of people pay for you (i.e., state or federal workers and their spouses and dependents) to have benefits (as Canadians do for their neighbors)....while the majority of the public rely on smaller pools from private organizations or worse, no pool at all. That is where I think yes, we should work to give EVERYONE the best healthcare possible instead of this every man for himself mess. Because the truth is when catastrophic illness happens to you, you're going to be looking around with your hand out....and for good reason. Your neighbors should want to give you a hand up in a situation like that. Not ignore you or shake their heads as they walk by and comment on how your own laziness put you in that situation.

I do think PPACA is a step in the right direction. Sure, I want universal healthcare, too. I agree that it's a shame that we are the last ones to get with the program on this issue. But it's just not going to happen here right now. People in the US care more about individuals than everyone. We're selfish.

I'd rather (as Ginsburg said during the PPACA arguments) deal with a salvage job rather than a wrecking job with nothing to replace what's been demolished.
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Reminder:
We live in a country where people LITERALLY CLAP AND CHEER when they hear about people dying from lack of insurance.
Living in Europe really changed my perspective on a bunch of things in this country. Things such as how expensive higher education is and the lack of universal healthcare, which the public doesn't want for some strange reason.

It's sad I was shocked I didn't have to pay a fee to get my eyes looked at when I lived over there. I just had to pay for the frames. It really bothered me how much this country likes to rob its citizens. I feel like I get charged up the ass for small things.

I saw citizens in that country helping each other out--it was a strange kind of unity. I feel like here in the States, it's every man for himself and that shouldn't be OK. If we want to succeed as a country, everyone needs to succeed. Not just that 1% that can afford it.

The city streets there looked cleaner too, everyone was educated, and I never saw a homeless person. Very sad country we live in.

"A bandaid at the hospital? That will be $250."

I'm thankful I was on insurance when my gallbladder flared up.
Originally Posted by sleepymeko
Actually most people do want a single-payer universal healthcare system in the US! 59% of doctors want it and the % of regular people who want it varies from 60-80% in polls. We just never hear about it because there is a media blackout on single-payer. It is threatening to the insurance and pharmaceutical industries, who fund our politicians. The health insurance industry actually spends millions of dollars each year to propagandize how "bad" national healthcare is. Wendell Potter is great on this, a former insurance company big-whig who exposes their PR campaigns. http://wendellpotter.com/

And I know what you mean about the shock of living in another country-- I lived in London for 6 months and when I got sick, no wait and no bills. It was amazing. You like, get teary-eyed when you realize how much easier and less stressful things could be.
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Last edited by diaspora; 04-27-2012 at 11:42 PM. Reason: forgot to add link
Reminder:
We live in a country where people LITERALLY CLAP AND CHEER when they hear about people dying from lack of insurance.
Originally Posted by Eilonwy
Oh gawd, that was so disturbing.
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Physicians for a National Health Program on the new healthcare legislation: Pro-single-payer doctors: Health bill leaves 23 million uninsured | Physicians for a National Health Program

And on the same subject on the website of my favorite national single-payer healthcare org (ok, self-promotion, I used to be the director before, ironically, I got sick): Healthcare-NOW! - Against the health care mandate
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I agree with both. Thanks CP. it saddens me that anyone has to go through any of this.
Originally Posted by juanab
I have chronic health issues and insurance. Still have a large amount of medical bills. My premiums are outrageous and my husband works for the state of CA.
I've talked to many many people in Canada, UK and Australia and they don't sing the praises of national health care. In fact, the ones that have lived here in the states and had private health care, prefer it to national health care of Canada.
Seems it's great for the acute problems but when there's any type of long term, difficult health issue, it's really limited. Appointment times to see a specialist take months to a year. They say they don't have options- with doctors, with prescriptions, with testing, etc.
Don't get me wrong, I realize that few options are better than no healthcare... but I also know the huge difference in health care from when I had a HMO to my current PPO.
I'm blessed in that my husband has a good job that offers benefits. Until last year, we were paying over 600$ just for our portion of the premium. The system is a disaster but national health care causes concern too.
Originally Posted by crimsonshedemon

Aren't state workers able to have such great insurance because their insurance comes from state funds (i.e., collective, tax payer dollars)? Your points are already weak, but even further weakened when you explain the great healthcare you have via your husband's state employment. How are you going to complain about how horrible the anecdotes from Canada are? Really? Hundreds of thousands of people pay for you (i.e., state or federal workers and their spouses and dependents) to have benefits (as Canadians do for their neighbors)....while the majority of the public rely on smaller pools from private organizations or worse, no pool at all. That is where I think yes, we should work to give EVERYONE the best healthcare possible instead of this every man for himself mess. Because the truth is when catastrophic illness happens to you, you're going to be looking around with your hand out....and for good reason. Your neighbors should want to give you a hand up in a situation like that. Not ignore you or shake their heads as they walk by and comment on how your own laziness put you in that situation.

I do think PPACA is a step in the right direction. Sure, I want universal healthcare, too. I agree that it's a shame that we are the last ones to get with the program on this issue. But it's just not going to happen here right now. People in the US care more about individuals than everyone. We're selfish.

I'd rather (as Ginsburg said during the PPACA arguments) deal with a salvage job rather than a wrecking job with nothing to replace what's been demolished.
Originally Posted by curlyarca
There's no reason to get upset. I can feel the hostility. It's sad that when someone tries to explain their perspective there's always someone else there to say you are wrong. I'm not bashing Canada's healthcare simply expressing concerns from what I've been told by many.
It's a terrible problem. I don't know what the answer is - and I totally get what you're saying, Crimson. We don't want to go from a crummy system to another crummy system that isn't good either. I just know that it makes my heart ache, for want of a better way to put it, knowing that people are ill and suffering and we supposedly live in the richest country that has ever existed.

We put a man on the moon - surely if there were sufficient will we could come up with a better health care system than we have now. It is so urgent. {{{Juanab}}} {{{ Diaspora}}}
Originally Posted by curlypearl
Exactly!! Thank you!
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A couple curlies in this thread expressed concern that a national healthcare system might be bad too. Some people will, understandably, be wary of any major change to the healthcare system. However, if the myth that we have the best healthcare system in the world wasn't so prevalent, I think people would be more open to change. There is no perfect system, but there are things that are measured that tell us what systems work better than others. The US is at the bottom compared to other wealthy countries (all with national healthcare) on almost all measures. Not providing access to healthcare for all its residents is just 1 of the things the hc system gets wrong The profit-motive has no place in healthcare.
Mirror, Mirror on the Wall: How the Performance of the U.S. Health Care System Compares Internationally, 2010 Update - The Commonwealth Fund
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However, if the myth that we have the best healthcare system in the world wasn't so prevalent, I think people would be more open to change.
Originally Posted by diaspora
But we are the best... if by "best" you mean "worse than most of the first world."
A couple curlies in this thread expressed concern that a national healthcare system might be bad too. Some people will, understandably, be wary of any major change to the healthcare system. However, if the myth that we have the best healthcare system in the world wasn't so prevalent, I think people would be more open to change.
Originally Posted by diaspora
That's most certainly a myth. Our health care system is a disaster. Things need to be changed all over and I have no idea what those changes should be.
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I have chronic health issues and insurance. Still have a large amount of medical bills. My premiums are outrageous and my husband works for the state of CA.
I've talked to many many people in Canada, UK and Australia and they don't sing the praises of national health care. In fact, the ones that have lived here in the states and had private health care, prefer it to national health care of Canada.
Seems it's great for the acute problems but when there's any type of long term, difficult health issue, it's really limited. Appointment times to see a specialist take months to a year. They say they don't have options- with doctors, with prescriptions, with testing, etc.
Don't get me wrong, I realize that few options are better than no healthcare... but I also know the huge difference in health care from when I had a HMO to my current PPO.
I'm blessed in that my husband has a good job that offers benefits. Until last year, we were paying over 600$ just for our portion of the premium. The system is a disaster but national health care causes concern too.
Originally Posted by crimsonshedemon

Aren't state workers able to have such great insurance because their insurance comes from state funds (i.e., collective, tax payer dollars)? Your points are already weak, but even further weakened when you explain the great healthcare you have via your husband's state employment. How are you going to complain about how horrible the anecdotes from Canada are? Really? Hundreds of thousands of people pay for you (i.e., state or federal workers and their spouses and dependents) to have benefits (as Canadians do for their neighbors)....while the majority of the public rely on smaller pools from private organizations or worse, no pool at all. That is where I think yes, we should work to give EVERYONE the best healthcare possible instead of this every man for himself mess. Because the truth is when catastrophic illness happens to you, you're going to be looking around with your hand out....and for good reason. Your neighbors should want to give you a hand up in a situation like that. Not ignore you or shake their heads as they walk by and comment on how your own laziness put you in that situation.

I do think PPACA is a step in the right direction. Sure, I want universal healthcare, too. I agree that it's a shame that we are the last ones to get with the program on this issue. But it's just not going to happen here right now. People in the US care more about individuals than everyone. We're selfish.

I'd rather (as Ginsburg said during the PPACA arguments) deal with a salvage job rather than a wrecking job with nothing to replace what's been demolished.
Originally Posted by curlyarca
There's no reason to get upset. I can feel the hostility. It's sad that when someone tries to explain their perspective there's always someone else there to say you are wrong. I'm not bashing Canada's healthcare simply expressing concerns from what I've been told by many.
Originally Posted by crimsonshedemon
LOL it's not hostile, it's true. Perhaps you have never considered how those benefits state workers receive came to be. It's sad that someone can't admit that their comfortable situation may have more in common with a "socialist" healthcare system than a capitalist one.

I personally am on the community rating, not-tied-to-work-status healthcare bandwagon. Healthcare should not be something you have to earn like a paycheck.
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Last edited by curlyarca; 05-01-2012 at 07:07 PM.

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