This morning I was listening to the news. I try not to watch the news too often because it seems like the same ol’ stuff regurgitated every day. It is like Ground Hogs Day, yet somehow I seem to get sucked back in every time I turn on the TV. Today’s big story that captivated me was on the topic of health care reform. Apparently people are whining about Harry Reid meeting behind closed doors with House leaders to reshape the current health care bill. (Watch Video). It did not really bother me at first.
Then, later this afternoon I was talking with my mother and I found out that my dad has been having some sleeping problems. This morning he went to the VA clinic in Grand Rapids, Mi to get a sleep study and his physician has postponed the sleep study test until February. Why? Because it is the closest available appointment from today. Apparently, somehow too many people were scheduled. This is a real tragedy since he has been waiting since before June to get this test done! I pray that nothing medical is wrong, but I fear that this is a sneak peak of the horrors of socialized healthcare.
Meanwhile, my mother also shared a story with me about her friend who needs surgery, but apparently Michigan has had some reimbursement changes and this surgery will no longer be covered. I am not sure of the details of that particular story, but I do know that a surge of emotions jolted through my body as I remembered this morning’s news. In lieu of my dad’s experience today and this story, the words Health Care Rationing flashed through my head.
What does health care rationing mean? Will Congress allow a bill to pass and be signed by the President that allows for rationing? I remember Barrack Obama’s pledge as a Senator. He promised to make this the most transparent Congress in history. Yet, this morning I was awakened to find out that a few elite Democrats are shaping a bill that will dramatically affect me and you in countless ways, all in the privacy behind closed doors. Shouldn’t something of this magnitude continue to be discussed publicly?
If this bill comes together and is eventually voted on, passed, and is signed into law, I will be one who helps pay for it. And likely, my family and I will eventually have to use it. So that means it will affect me personally. The same will happen to you. You will pay for it, and you may have to resort to using it. One report I learned about said that Blue Cross Blue Shield is planning on a 50% increase of their private insurance plans within 5 years if this bill passes. How will private insurers compete with the government plan?
There are a ton of questions that go through my mind. I am sure you have had them too. That is why, on such an overarching topic that will affect 1/6 of the national budget, we need transparency on this issue. What kind of plan is being schemed behind those closed doors today? I have to admit that I have been somewhat complacent on this topic. Even though I am conservative, I have compromised on my attitude towards this specific issue as of lately- all in the name of “what harm would it do if everyone can be insured for healthcare coverage?” Maybe I would have to pay into the system a little more, but it might work out well in the end.
I think that is a lie. I do want a system that is affordable, but after the distant stories of health care rationing hit closer to home, the current healthcare plans on the table make me frustrated and nervous. Oh the horror that I would have after paying into a system only to have it fail me when I needed it most! Yet, for the first time, I have realized that this is reality for a slew of military veterans and individuals who are dependent on Medicare and Medicaid. And by the way, since I do work as a health care professional, I have seen this horror of health care rationing played out in the lives of others. It has a more bitter taste when it touches your own family.
What are your thoughts? Drop me a line. Let me know what you think about the current proposals on Capitol Hill. What do you think would make the current bill better and why? What do you think is the best way to tackle the health care problem? Why?