16 March 2009

A Question of Health...

An article in my local paper this morning discussed how Americans are cutting corners with their health care in these tough economic times. Skipping appointments, cutting pills in half, skipping recommended tests...all in an effort to balance the costs of their health with the costs of their lives. Some (Rep. Zach Wamp, R-TN, in particular) feel that this is exactly what “good” Americans should be doing.

My question is how did we get to this point? Was it Bill Frist voting on issues that would effect the family business (HCA)? Was it numerous Congresspeople voting in the interest of insurance and pharmaceutical conglomerates in order to keep the well of political donations full? Was it greed only previously seen in the oil sector by those same insurance and pharmaceutical companies? Was it the callousness of the “I'm not paying for you” crowd? It's hard to tell, but it's killing us.

Now everyone seems to be scared of the “socialized” medicine boogeyman. “I don't want to have to wait six months to get a surgery!!” They cry...but here's the thing, at least you can have it done! Try getting a hospital/doctor to schedule a surgery with out insurance...”that'll be $20,000 ma'am, at least half upfront”.

I think as human beings we deserve a certain level of security in our health. I find it interesting that Doctors take an oath to do no harm, but see no conflict in sending a patient away because of their inability to pay. Only until patients are at the point of acute distress do the doctors/hospitals spring into action, by then it could be too late or at the very least much more expensive to treat. Why would anyone wish that on their fellow Americans? Why is it that most Americans seem to have no qualms about expending trillions of dollars for the sole purpose of killing people, but hesitate at the cost of caring for their fellow man?

Are we a nation of sociopaths?


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