Primetime: Americans Question Obama on Health Care

PJ Hamel Health Guide
  • Yesterday, Americans had a chance to stand up and ask President Obama, face to face, about proposed changes to America’s health care system. And stand up they did—both at the White House, where the special edition of ABC’s “Primetime” was filmed; and virtually via Digg.com, which ABCNews.co...

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Published On: June 25, 2009
72 Comments
  • Phyllis Johnson
    Health Guide
    Jun. 25, 2009

    Thanks for a summary of the town hall meeting.  I didn't see that show, but as I've been listening to various people discuss the health care options, I've been concerned about how much focus there has been on the cost of the program.  The ten-year trillion dollar price tag gets thrown around frequently without putting it into perspective as a percentage...

    RHMLucky777

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    Thanks for a summary of the town hall meeting.  I didn't see that show, but as I've been listening to various people discuss the health care options, I've been concerned about how much focus there has been on the cost of the program.  The ten-year trillion dollar price tag gets thrown around frequently without putting it into perspective as a percentage of our Gross National Product or comparing it to the costs of our current programs.  I don't have a good understanding of how many of my tax dollars over the last ten years have gone to pay for expensive emergency room visits for people without insurance.  I don't know how high my insurance premiums have been driven over the last ten years because people who didn't see a doctor promptly because they were uninsured developed a more serious disease that cost even more to treat.  How much productivity has our economy lost because of untreated medical issues?  What is the total cost of the jobs shipped overseas in the last ten years because employers didn't have to pay health care costs in countries with a national system (or no system)?  However, I suspect when all of those costs are subtracted from the trillion dollars, the price tag will seem very reasonable.  There is a huge financial price tag associated with doing nothing.

     

    There is also a huge emotional price tag.  I was recently at a lunch with seven other inflammatory breast cancer survivors.  Dealing with health insurance issues has been a concern for most of us, and in a couple of cases delayed care.  I'm not smart enough to come up with a system that will be fair to everyone and inexpensive while making sure that no one has to sacrifice some of what they have now.  But I am quite sure that we need a better system, and I'm willing to sacrifice in higher taxes or reduced services to be sure that everyone in our country is covered for basic health care.

    • Anonymous
      Contrary Mary
      Jun. 26, 2009

      That we all not only deserve okay healthcare (which is what we are going to get or worse I suspect), but we each deserve the most important thing the medical field offers us, the chance to live!  Pure and simple, and Dr. to you whom says fiscally and culturally, I wonder how you will feel when it's you or your loved ones?  So we are going to go out...

      RHMLucky777

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      That we all not only deserve okay healthcare (which is what we are going to get or worse I suspect), but we each deserve the most important thing the medical field offers us, the chance to live!  Pure and simple, and Dr. to you whom says fiscally and culturally, I wonder how you will feel when it's you or your loved ones?  So we are going to go out on a limb out of our own incompetance, to find out how worse life can be.  I'll tell you what, I'll revolt when they start demanding that our sick and elderly euthanises themselves!!!  There will be underground care to fall back on, that I guarantee you.  You cannot "make" people embrace insanity.  America will remain home of the free, no matter what.

    • Anonymous
      Anonymous
      Jun. 26, 2009

      Who is to say how much care a person needs. Some people may respond to 1 or 2 visits or Chemo treatments and others may need more. Who is going to play God and say you are not going to make it so you can not have any more treatments. I have heard of many miracles where just 1 more visit or whatever made all the difference between life and death.

       

      I believe...

      RHMLucky777

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      Who is to say how much care a person needs. Some people may respond to 1 or 2 visits or Chemo treatments and others may need more. Who is going to play God and say you are not going to make it so you can not have any more treatments. I have heard of many miracles where just 1 more visit or whatever made all the difference between life and death.

       

      I believe that illegal aliens should have to be responsible their care and not place the burden on the rest of us. Just how to do that is the big question.

    • Phyllis Johnson
      Health Guide
      Jun. 26, 2009

      I agree with you, Mary.  When I talk about making sacrifices, I'm not talking about services essential to life.  Over the last several years I've seen my copays and deductables go higher, but I've managed to maintain coverage even when I've had to shell out for high COBRA payments between jobs.  However, I've also watched people I know from my...

      RHMLucky777

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      I agree with you, Mary.  When I talk about making sacrifices, I'm not talking about services essential to life.  Over the last several years I've seen my copays and deductables go higher, but I've managed to maintain coverage even when I've had to shell out for high COBRA payments between jobs.  However, I've also watched people I know from my work in the cancer community die because of no insurance or insurance company decisions to exclude specific procedures or medicines.  We currently have a system that is letting people die.  

    • Anonymous
      Carl Haggard
      Jun. 26, 2009

      You are promoting a system which can only evolve into the death care system of Nazi Germany. They will decide who lives and dies based on the current needs of the system.

  • Anonymous
    OneVoice
    Jul. 20, 2009

    So I guess I fall into that category of GenX and my children are the Millenials...I was, however raised by baby boomers. I was taught that you pay what you owe, you take care of your business, and you only take help temporarily- it is never a way of life. I don't mind paying for health care. I pay my co-pays and deductibles without complaint. My issue in this...

    RHMLucky777

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    So I guess I fall into that category of GenX and my children are the Millenials...I was, however raised by baby boomers. I was taught that you pay what you owe, you take care of your business, and you only take help temporarily- it is never a way of life. I don't mind paying for health care. I pay my co-pays and deductibles without complaint. My issue in this is the fear that the government will now regulate what care I can receive based on their criteria. Insurance companies already limit our choices by provider networks and "covered services". I worry, too, that employers will begin to scale back the health care benefit because of costs to them. What do we do if companies have to get employees to help shoulder the cost and then the employee drops coverage because it digs into their own bottom line? This is a major issue for our country and one I think this administration is running, head down, full speed into a wall. This is not a problem that will be fixed by fall. There are too many variables to address and I don't think the system will collapse if we take time to create a good solution. It boggles my mind how Congress and the Administration have EVIDENCE of government-run health care systems that don't work, but they are determined that we can do it better. I don't agree if this is their answer. I think everyone should have access to care, but there is a threshold of what that care should be if you are not willing to bear some of the financial load. I realize that one program will not solve the needs of everyone, but there is bound to be a solution that will fit the masses. I really feel like my voice as a voter is being ignored because no matter what is said by the people, the government players keep forging ahead. I hate to see our country become less than what it is and what it stands for.

    • Anonymous
      Estelle Dykstra
      Sep. 09, 2009

      If we  are paying  for health care some of us 10 to 12 thousand dollars a year and work has become scarce and pay has decreased and probably won"t come back and employers can not afford to pay for our insurance and new business can not start because of the expense and people go bankrupt because of the bills would'nt  "ALL"  people be willing...

      RHMLucky777

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      If we  are paying  for health care some of us 10 to 12 thousand dollars a year and work has become scarce and pay has decreased and probably won"t come back and employers can not afford to pay for our insurance and new business can not start because of the expense and people go bankrupt because of the bills would'nt  "ALL"  people be willing to pay more in taxes to be assured of medical insurance?  on a scale according to what they make

    • PJ Hamel
      Health Guide
      Sep. 09, 2009

      Sounds fair to me, Estelle - wish more people thought this way. Thanks for your input - PJH

  • Anonymous
    Sis
    Jul. 20, 2009

    Today Obama said there has been enough talk about healthcare and now is the time for action. You see he doesn't want people talking about it, he doesn't want people to know what is really in this bill, he doesn't want people to know the costs, and most importantly he doesn't want people asking him any hard questions about his government controlled health plan....

    RHMLucky777

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    Today Obama said there has been enough talk about healthcare and now is the time for action. You see he doesn't want people talking about it, he doesn't want people to know what is really in this bill, he doesn't want people to know the costs, and most importantly he doesn't want people asking him any hard questions about his government controlled health plan.

     

    This bill should complete the bankruptcy of America!

  • Anonymous
    Javier
    Jul. 20, 2009

    Health care reform as currently formulated by Obama and the Democrats is really just socialized health care.  Instead of decrying the use of correct terminology as a "bogeyman" and a "scare tactic," Americans should own up to what' being proposed, which was foreseeable from everything we knew about Obama.

    Ms Hamel certainly understands it, though she doesn't...

    RHMLucky777

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    Health care reform as currently formulated by Obama and the Democrats is really just socialized health care.  Instead of decrying the use of correct terminology as a "bogeyman" and a "scare tactic," Americans should own up to what' being proposed, which was foreseeable from everything we knew about Obama.

    Ms Hamel certainly understands it, though she doesn't put a name to it.  And she is apparently willing to accept the age-based care and access limits that would surely come with an Obama-style nationalized health plan in an altruistic gesture of "letting go." 

    That is her prerogative.  But no one should imagine that her personal altruism and willingness to "make way" for a younger generation represents a fair health insurance scheme for an entire nation--particularly the 80% that are currently very pleased with their care and coverage.  Such an instrumentalist, utilitarian approach to issues of health represents a radical departure from the priciples that have always guided us, which are rooted in respect for life at all stages.

    Should such brave new world concepts prevail, they will be implemented (enforced) through government mandates, not personal choice, which Ms. Hamel has the luxury of exercising today.

    Is this not where the choice advocates in other areas--arguably murkier in ethical terms in that they involve an unborn life or a personal end-of-life decision--would say: "Government hands off our bodies!"?

    Is Soylent Green around the corner?

     

  • Anonymous
    Susan
    Jul. 20, 2009

    Do you know that cats and dogs in Canada receive better healthcare that the high tax paying citizens of that country. That is change we can believe in, that is change I am not willing to accept.

     

    If adopted this bill will make it illegal for private insurance companys to write any new policies the day after adoptions nor will they be able to rewrite any...

    RHMLucky777

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    Do you know that cats and dogs in Canada receive better healthcare that the high tax paying citizens of that country. That is change we can believe in, that is change I am not willing to accept.

     

    If adopted this bill will make it illegal for private insurance companys to write any new policies the day after adoptions nor will they be able to rewrite any existing policies. Obama said that we will not loose our freedom to choose but this sure doesn't sound like that.

     

    This plan (Section 1233) will also compel the elderly to submit to conseling once every five years or more depending on health conditions regarding alternatives for end of life care. Drs. will have mandatory training on how to councel the elderly and perhaps lead them in directions to an early death rather than costly procedures or medication. Nice - the government will have massive control over who lives and who dies. Is that what you want. Is that freedom.

  • Anonymous
    Sindarla
    Jul. 20, 2009

    I don't understand why President Obama's rushing this "healthcare reform" to be signed into law before August, when I and many Americans don't understand the plan at all.  What happens to Senior citizens & poor people...Why is he forcing ALL U.S. citizens to get health insurance and then making them pay for it...What if they can't afford it? ...

    RHMLucky777

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    I don't understand why President Obama's rushing this "healthcare reform" to be signed into law before August, when I and many Americans don't understand the plan at all.  What happens to Senior citizens & poor people...Why is he forcing ALL U.S. citizens to get health insurance and then making them pay for it...What if they can't afford it?  What happens to those on Medicare and Medicaid, will they have to now sign up for this healthcare and pay for it too when they don't have the money to pay for it?  Will there be a sliding fee scale?  I feel that this legislation needs to slow down, develop it and then present the details to the American public, let Americans ask questions about the plan and understand it and then vote on it...After all, it IS OUR healthcare plan!!!  And I believe in UNIVERSAL healthcare for ALL U.S. citizens - it's a basic human right.  I'm not so sure this "healthcare reform" lives up to my idea of UNIVERSAL healthcare...I'm a Democrat & support most of President Obama's policies, but this one I'm not so sure of, because we have NO SPECIFIC details of this healthcare plan.

     

    • Anonymous
      Susan
      Jul. 20, 2009

      Because if the American public actually learns what they are going to loose and what it is going to cost them they will rise up against this destructive bill. You know the saying, "Ignorance is Bliss" and Obama wants to take full advantage of it. He is a used car salesman and Americans are in the process of buying a LEMON and there are no lemon laws to fall...

      RHMLucky777

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      Because if the American public actually learns what they are going to loose and what it is going to cost them they will rise up against this destructive bill. You know the saying, "Ignorance is Bliss" and Obama wants to take full advantage of it. He is a used car salesman and Americans are in the process of buying a LEMON and there are no lemon laws to fall back on once this thing is passed. The government will have almost total control of our lives.

       

      I e-mail my congressman and senators daily regarding this treasonous piece of crap that they want to hastily ram down our throats. If this plan is so good why isn't Obama willing to be the first to sign on for himself and his family. He isn't and said so himself. Neither are our congressmen and senators. That should be a telling clue right there.

  • Jo-Ann
    Jul. 12, 2009

       It all comes down to the lifeboat question.  Imagine that you are the oldest person on a lifeboat and that the group can't survive unless one person leaves.  Do you jump?...

       Here in Canada we have medical coverage for everyone, but the system is bursting at the seams and at some point we will have to take a hard look at who...

    RHMLucky777

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       It all comes down to the lifeboat question.  Imagine that you are the oldest person on a lifeboat and that the group can't survive unless one person leaves.  Do you jump?...

       Here in Canada we have medical coverage for everyone, but the system is bursting at the seams and at some point we will have to take a hard look at who we let live and who we let die.  Do we, for example, save all premature babies?  How many treatments, expensive drugs and surgeries do we give to people over fifty...sixty...?  Is there a cut-off age...an expiry date?  Does it matter if they play the violin?  Who decides?  For me these are haunting questions...

       As I said it all comes down to the lifeboat question.  In this age, when medical science can do so much to save lives, I believe it's better that sometimes we let people die, with dignity and compassion.  This is a hard position to embrace when the person who is dying is you or a loved one....

    (you can read a fuller version of my position on my blog: www.ooops.typepad.com)

    Jo-Ann

  • Anonymous
    michmom
    Jul. 01, 2009

    At what age are they talking about older americans, stepping aside for the younger americans and children?  That sounds rather scary to me.  Should my 86 year old mother be denied treatments because of her age?  That really scares me.  Would we start out our reform with euthanasia?  My good friends had their father die, because he was...

    RHMLucky777

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    At what age are they talking about older americans, stepping aside for the younger americans and children?  That sounds rather scary to me.  Should my 86 year old mother be denied treatments because of her age?  That really scares me.  Would we start out our reform with euthanasia?  My good friends had their father die, because he was denied a timely appointment with an oncologist after a cancer diagnosis in Canada.  They made him wait something like 4-6 months and by then it had matastisized all over his body.  He was in his late 60's.

     

    If we can not come up with a plan that will give decent needed care to all and every american than I think the reformers need to take a hard look at what they are saying by these reforms.

     

    I am 100% for health care reform, but not if it denies health care to americans at a certain age.  Maybe I am misinterpreting what I read, but it seems to me that what I have been talking about is what they mean. 

     

    I feel Sick americans with pre-existing conditions should be able to be covered just the same as healthy americans.  I have more but I will stop here with my thoughts.

    • Anonymous
      miaa
      Jul. 05, 2009

      I agree wholeheartedly with you...! This ending the lives of the elderly and handicapped through neglect is just a way to lower the opolation..as the Billionaires Club insists is the true thing to do....Well, P.J. Kamel..you and the likes of you....GO FOR IT..but for yourselves...you are probably damn near old enough for Soylent Green...! GREED GREED GREED..MONEY...MONEY..MONEY...Grab...

      RHMLucky777

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      I agree wholeheartedly with you...! This ending the lives of the elderly and handicapped through neglect is just a way to lower the opolation..as the Billionaires Club insists is the true thing to do....Well, P.J. Kamel..you and the likes of you....GO FOR IT..but for yourselves...you are probably damn near old enough for Soylent Green...! GREED GREED GREED..MONEY...MONEY..MONEY...Grab away...! In fact..COMPROMISE with ME......YOU get going over the edge. I plan to stay here...!

    • Anonymous
      Cassandra
      Aug. 20, 2009

      Re: Compromise & make way for our children:

      I agree with miaa & michmom. To calm people's worries: the economy is not like a pie; it's not something of a fixed and rigid size.  Neither is medical care. When there's more demand for medical care in the real world prices rise until people are therefore drawn to the field due to the large rewards &...

      RHMLucky777

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      Re: Compromise & make way for our children:

      I agree with miaa & michmom. To calm people's worries: the economy is not like a pie; it's not something of a fixed and rigid size.  Neither is medical care. When there's more demand for medical care in the real world prices rise until people are therefore drawn to the field due to the large rewards & when the needs are met demand and prices go back down.  Right now, & for the past 80 years, the government unfortunately has been meddling and interfering in the economy & preventing the natural laws of economics from meeting the needs. Because these needs cannot be filled prices have risen dramatically in medical care.

       

      To provide assurance to anyone who thinks there IS a FIXED amount of medical care available, a couple examples of what happens in a free market when new innovations came about: 1) The Calculator: when it first hit the market, a bare bones arithmetic-only calculator was wildly expensive in 1974-1977, but the prices fell quickly. 2)same with personal computers.  However, because the U.S. government controls 51% of every medical dollar spent in the U.S. the government has caused cost-shifting in the medical field. The prices you & I pay as private individuals are not at all representative of the lower prices that'd actually be charged if the government wasn't interfering. Take the field of laser vision correction; prices for these surgeries have dropped radically. This is because government isn't meddling up to our eyeballs in that field. Same with cosmetic surgeries; prices have fallen there too. And no one is telling you to hurry up and die to make way for the children in those fields & there's plenty to go around because government isn't distorting costs. In the truly FREE economic system where government doesn't meddle nor distort things, the pie GROWS in diameter; it's never a fixed size. There's no need to "compromise and make way for our children."  We only need to get government out; to stop meddling & distorting the economy of free exchanges made by individuals. Get the government out of the way NOW while we still have a chance before they totally destroy the economy.

       

      There truly is absolutely NOT a fixed amount of medical care to go around in the world if people are allowed to freely purchase what they want & the market is not distorted by government. Governments, when they gain control of a nation's medical system, artificially create shortages and raise prices.  Government, when it gets involved, so distorts TRUE economics that all sorts of crazy abortions of rational thought and activity occur.  For example the school of economic thought that most people in the world are taught today is "Keynesian."  Keynesian Economic hypotheses & its ideas were never accepted in the world until a man named John Maynard Keynes happened to come along and coincidentally push these ideas just as the Great Depression (incidentally created by faulty economic policies embraced by the government) was about to be overlaid with the complications of World War II with its massive demand for arms, massive arms sales, and unprecedented demand for items not consumed in a normal economy.  Due to the faulty belief that it was Keynes ideas "cured" the Depression (when the arms demand was really unsustainable), Americans especially, have fallen victim to being taught only Keynesian economic ideas; Americans mostly have never heard of the Austrian school and the Theory of the Business Cycle.  In Keynesian economics there is an economy of a fixed and rigid size.  This is where the idea that the "pie" is rigid & fixed in size has come from.  Please don't fall victim to it; its not true.  The other cruel idea of the world being like a lifeboat about to sink (that has been put forward in this thread) is also totally false.  The economy & the real world do NOT work like that.

       

      Also, my cousin in her 20s just died of cancer in Canada; it could've been stopped early if Canada had a free market and government did not control access to an Oncologist.

  • Anonymous
    Casandra
    Jun. 30, 2009

    30 to 40% of current Health Care Expenditures are from a need to CYA because of the possibility of Lawsuits. Tort reform will make a tremendous difference, but our Politician in Chief Refuses to enact it! Even though Physicians beg! Our Career Politician in Chief cares more about the big money he gets from Lawyers than he cares about your health. 

     ...

    RHMLucky777

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    30 to 40% of current Health Care Expenditures are from a need to CYA because of the possibility of Lawsuits. Tort reform will make a tremendous difference, but our Politician in Chief Refuses to enact it! Even though Physicians beg! Our Career Politician in Chief cares more about the big money he gets from Lawyers than he cares about your health. 

     

    People you should never trust a Politician who rises to power from the Chicago political machine!

     

    The politicians created a mess of our Health Care and now they tell us they'll "fix it."  Politicians always create problems.  LISTEN TO THE DOCTORS!  Let the Doctors reform Health Care not the Politicians. People who work in an Industry should be the ones who make the Reforms so you'll have a real Long-Lasting Solution! 

     

    DON'T GIVE A POLITICIAN Power to make Decisions on our Medical Care!  They'll make sure they have a way out of the mess for themselves, but will force us to live under it.  They don't know what to do; only Physicians do. Politicians always keep themselves in a job; how to fool the public next.

    • Anonymous
      SBS
      Jul. 01, 2009

      I agree with this stand!  I would like to have more information and time to review this proposed system but having worked in the medical field for 25 years, I feel that the medical professionals should have the most say in how this reform should work.  Also, I am a part of the elder population and certainly would not want to be told that I am too...

      RHMLucky777

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      I agree with this stand!  I would like to have more information and time to review this proposed system but having worked in the medical field for 25 years, I feel that the medical professionals should have the most say in how this reform should work.  Also, I am a part of the elder population and certainly would not want to be told that I am too old to have a certain life-sustaining procedure and/or type of care.  I am also a federal retiree with access to wonderful health benefits that my retirement allows me to purchase.  I would not want this benefit to go away and my disabled adult daughter also has the same type of coverage and to lose these benefits would be a horror story for her too.

    • Anonymous
      Steve
      Jul. 20, 2009

      I have heard that 25% of our health care cost gets eaten up in paperwork and administrative costs. I also know several doctors who decided to either retire, or refuse to take insurance / Medicare payments due to the headaches involved. What if a common paperless system was implemented that presented a common physician / patient interface regardless of the plan,...

      RHMLucky777

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      I have heard that 25% of our health care cost gets eaten up in paperwork and administrative costs. I also know several doctors who decided to either retire, or refuse to take insurance / Medicare payments due to the headaches involved. What if a common paperless system was implemented that presented a common physician / patient interface regardless of the plan, (maybe like the systems used for check clearing and credit card processing) - could the 25% be reduced to 5%? Could cover a lot of folks with the $$ we just saved.


      The cost of medical malpractice insurance and the defensive medical procedures that  are a direct result of our current adversarial system represent a major drain of precious resources. What if there were very narrow limits on what constituted medical malpractice and the financial recovery that could be obtained? Develop national standards for physician conduct, with the objective being to remove substandard physicians from the US health care system. Right now this is managed by state medical boards, resulting in a very fragmented system that tends to protect the physician, or if a physician is disciplined they can simply move to another state and start over.


      Fraud and abuse are another area that needs attention, and it touches all aspects of the health care delivery system. Maybe we need to recognize that these actions represent theft from all citizens, and the penalties should be on par with those for espionage, up to and including capital punishment for the most egregious offenses. Move this beyond the current get caught, pay a fine as part of the cost of doing business to one where the consequences of misbehavior are severe, and include the loss of liberty, destitution, and possibly loss of life. In the case of corporations found guilty of inappropriate conduct the penalties should reach out to personally touch the CEO and board of directors so the consequences of misbehavior are not just a cost of doing business born by the share holders.


      Why is it that prescription costs are so much lower in Canada? I presume that the drug companies are still making a profit, otherwise they wouldn't sell there, so it seems like those of us in the good old USA are getting screwed. If it's driven by the drug companies need to recover R&D costs, what if the US Government reimbursed R&D costs for drugs that meet a predetermined need, in return the drug companies agree to a modest profit and receive extended patent protection.


      I worry about the current health care reform legislative process, where 1,000+ page bills are hurriedly assembled by staffers and lobbyists, see little debate and are largely unread & not understood by most of the members of congress who ultimately vote on them. Seems that some well thought out actions to reduce the waste in the current system would go a long way to controlling cost without the collateral damage that will result from blowing up the current system and starting over.

  • Anonymous
    Judy
    Jun. 30, 2009

    I think I'm going to reserve judgment until I know more of the true facts.  I do believe that it is more cost effective to provide coverage for people who are poor because we end up paying more for them to go to the emergency room and to require more complicated care than they would have needed earlier.  The other thing is that lately, I've heard...

    RHMLucky777

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    I think I'm going to reserve judgment until I know more of the true facts.  I do believe that it is more cost effective to provide coverage for people who are poor because we end up paying more for them to go to the emergency room and to require more complicated care than they would have needed earlier.  The other thing is that lately, I've heard some stories about an abominable amount of Medicare fraud, which is probably just the tip of the iceburg.  If we are losing billions to fraud, we need to direct some serious attention to rooting that out - pay to get the legwork required to check for red flags.  I also think there should be a cap on lawsuits against the medical profession because the cost of that insurance is very prohibitive and we end up with shortages in certain fields where the risk is higher.  People are human and mistakes will happen, but are they really worth millions of dollars?  I think this is such a huge area to fix, there is no one solution that will make everyone happy.  My observation (totally subjective) is that our healthcare costs seemed to start climbing when we decided we needed HMO's - some of these groups are making huge profits and we have them because?  So we can pay a middleman to tell us what we can and can't have, regardless of what we need?  We need a better way, for sure, but I don't think it's going to be simple or easy - I'm glad I'm not the one who has to figure it out because I sure as heck would not know where to start.  No matter what is decided, there will be angry people so I hope Obama can retain his calm composure.  This is going to be a hard one to pull off and it would be for anyone.

  • Anonymous
    LD
    Jun. 30, 2009

    There was no debate. There was no other alternative offered. Any other alternative to this socialized health care scheme is being dismissed by team Obama.

     

    Don't buy into the nonsense about keeping your current plan. It will be put out of business by the government plan. You see, the government plan does not have to turn a profit. How is a private entity...

    RHMLucky777

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    There was no debate. There was no other alternative offered. Any other alternative to this socialized health care scheme is being dismissed by team Obama.

     

    Don't buy into the nonsense about keeping your current plan. It will be put out of business by the government plan. You see, the government plan does not have to turn a profit. How is a private entity going to compete with that? Look at how well the government runs VA hospitals. Look at how well the government runs anything.

     

    Do you really want some unelected bureaucrat to determine treatments that should be decided between doctor and patient? Don't fall for this charade. Look for other options, but don't allow the government to manage your health care.

    • Anonymous
      macko
      Jul. 01, 2009

      My insurance company is already making those choices and they are only motivated by profit. I was against the reform in the past, but I say bring it on. If the private market is so good, what is the problem? I have had three different companies in the last 10 years and they have been costing me more and doing less, including getting between me and my doctor....

      RHMLucky777

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      My insurance company is already making those choices and they are only motivated by profit. I was against the reform in the past, but I say bring it on. If the private market is so good, what is the problem? I have had three different companies in the last 10 years and they have been costing me more and doing less, including getting between me and my doctor. Now if I loose my job I don't know how I can afford it. Single payer, I say bring it on.

    • Anonymous
      LD
      Jul. 01, 2009

      The private companies are far from perfect. Before jumping in with both feet to a government solution we ought to explore ways that would improve the private companies. Once a government program is started there will be no way to end it if it turns into a nightmare. And based upon the other failed government programs you can pretty much...

      RHMLucky777

      Read More

      The private companies are far from perfect. Before jumping in with both feet to a government solution we ought to explore ways that would improve the private companies. Once a government program is started there will be no way to end it if it turns into a nightmare. And based upon the other failed government programs you can pretty much bank on failure.

       

      One such way of improving private companies would be to remove government obstacles which don't allow you to shop inter-state. Another would allow you to shop various types of packages. For instance, an 85 year-old lady would have no need for child care, which may come with the one size fits all government plan.

       

      Certainly there is room for much serious debate. By serious I mean people should be aware of the disaster stories attached to other tried and failed government plans in other countries.  

    • Anonymous
      maco
      Jul. 01, 2009

      I am tired of the typical talking points which state the gov can't run anything. that is bogus. they run the military. you can't deny that our military is the best in the world. they run medicare and provide more services for less overhead than the private insurance companies, they don't deny coverage or over charge for pre existing conditions. Again...

      RHMLucky777

      Read More

      I am tired of the typical talking points which state the gov can't run anything. that is bogus. they run the military. you can't deny that our military is the best in the world. they run medicare and provide more services for less overhead than the private insurance companies, they don't deny coverage or over charge for pre existing conditions. Again my insurance payments have gone up dramatically in the last 5 years. Almost every primary care physician will tell you they have had their reimbursements cut by almost 25% over that same time. That means that the physician has to see more and more patients to keep the doors open. I have no problem with co-ops. But when it comes to health care insurance companies do not have the same adgenda as their patients, the numbers say it all. Why would the administrative costs be nearly twice what the government pays? Because they need to make a profit and they are responsible to their share holders.

      I know first hand what is going on I run a small medical office. The situation is getting out of hand. In a few years you will not be able to see a physician for primary care, most of the office visits will be handled by a PA (Physician Assistant) or NP (Nurse Practioner)

  • Anonymous
    robin
    Jun. 29, 2009

    The statment was we are suppose to sacrefice our health and our well being for the sake of our childrens health and well being. Now its ok to let the adults die while allowing the children to live, Thats selective genecide. I was raised that all life was sacred and valuable.

    what are they going to do rewrite the hypocratic oath.  

    • Anonymous
      Anonymous
      Jun. 29, 2009

      Didn't you know, doctors are not required to take the HIPPOCRATIC OATH anymore at graduation.

      However, there is a Hippocratic Society that they may join which protects them should they decide against euthanasia, abortion, etc.

    • Anonymous
      Tod
      Mar. 14, 2010
      Hello everyone. It is curious that physical courage should be so common in the world and moral courage so rare. Help me! I find sites on the topic: Mephisto mobils. I found only this - mephisto waltz star. Allow city in the savage land begins as a formidable brain for matches, mephisto. Having done of the year at the partner of her dress gwen stacy's laser,...
      RHMLucky777
      Read More
      Hello everyone. It is curious that physical courage should be so common in the world and moral courage so rare. Help me! I find sites on the topic: Mephisto mobils. I found only this - mephisto waltz star. Allow city in the savage land begins as a formidable brain for matches, mephisto. Having done of the year at the partner of her dress gwen stacy's laser, she is dark to be first on boots for her world, mephisto. Thank :mad: Tod from Iran.
  • Anonymous
    Anonymous
    Jun. 28, 2009

    My question is will this program benefit those who really need it? Or will the rich find a way to take advantage of the system and get in on it too? Health care reform should be for those who can't afford it, or to supplement an existing plan that you already have. Will they be fair about who gets it? We don't need a friends only health care program.

    • Anonymous
      miaa
      Jun. 29, 2009

      What you say, sounds like what "they" call Socialized Medicine" here...and they use that term to scare the people out of the idea..after all..with a few billion in the bank, they figure they need their piece of the pie, too..The Billionaires Club met in New York last month and decided to put the major thrust of their billions toward "population Control"...eliminating...

      RHMLucky777

      Read More

      What you say, sounds like what "they" call Socialized Medicine" here...and they use that term to scare the people out of the idea..after all..with a few billion in the bank, they figure they need their piece of the pie, too..The Billionaires Club met in New York last month and decided to put the major thrust of their billions toward "population Control"...eliminating 11% of the worlds population.

      I have news for them. there is enough here for all of us, but not if a few of us figure it is out "right" to own most of it.

      I think what you say makes a LOT of sense...but it will not happen. Obama and friends will make their mark..on all of out bodies..and yes, I think it is wrong. Life and health need to be a matter of fairness for ALL.

  • Anonymous
    frustrated
    Jun. 27, 2009

    Here is my take on the 20/20 show... If we truly want to change the healthcare in the US then we need to start by putting caps on the amount of money awarded to people who sue for absolutely small garbage. We need to find peers that will not reward stupidity ie the McDonald's coffee caper. By capping the amount people can be award for medical malpractice,...

    RHMLucky777

    Read More

    Here is my take on the 20/20 show... If we truly want to change the healthcare in the US then we need to start by putting caps on the amount of money awarded to people who sue for absolutely small garbage. We need to find peers that will not reward stupidity ie the McDonald's coffee caper. By capping the amount people can be award for medical malpractice, the sooner we start to cut the amount of malpractice insurance a doctor must have. The trickle down effect will start. The result will not only be felt by the doctor's but also at the hospital level as the hospital will not have to have as much insurance and then costs could be reduced on that level as well.

     

    As we turn to a society that makes people accountable for their actions, so should we make society responsible for their own health. If you smoke or are obese of your own accord then the amount of money you must pay for insurance should reflect the life style. For those of us who take care of ourselves, loose the weight, eat healthy and exercise, we should be rewarded for our work by having our insurance premiums reflect our hard work.

     

    Our insurance companies need to concentrate their efforts on prevention. My insurance company has started by reimbursing an amount of money paid to weight watchers for staying with the program for a certain amount of time. Koodos to them. I hope they will keep trying to come up with ways in which to help people become healthy and therefore reap the rewards by fewer healthcare claims.

     

    I do not believe that just because we reach a certain age we should have to just step aside. If I do what I need to to stay healthy and I have a heart problem at age 70, why should I not be allowed to have a pacemaker. Who is to say that I would not live another 30 years with one. Since each person is different, who is going to play God and say whether I am worthy or not. I am a paramedic and I am not allowed to play God, why should my government be allowed?

     

     

    • PJ Hamel
      Health Guide
      Jun. 29, 2009

      I believe health care dollars should be limited in a reasonable fashion when someone is clearly nearing the end of their natural lifespan. Should a 90-year-old get a hip replacement when all of his/her systems are failing, and death within months looks inevitable? Or would that money be better spent on an otherwise healthy, 35-year-old mother of 4 facing a...

      RHMLucky777

      Read More

      I believe health care dollars should be limited in a reasonable fashion when someone is clearly nearing the end of their natural lifespan. Should a 90-year-old get a hip replacement when all of his/her systems are failing, and death within months looks inevitable? Or would that money be better spent on an otherwise healthy, 35-year-old mother of 4 facing a battle with cancer? This is an extreme example, obviously, but makes my point: if health care is to be made available to all Americans, as it should be; and if the government is the agency which offers it, as it seemingly must be; then the flow of money into the system is limited to what taxpayers will kick in. Which is NOT an unlimited sum. PJH

    • Anonymous
      miaa
      Jul. 05, 2009

      Not a good answer, P.J. Hamel....Fact is..America  CAN afford health care for everyone. Let's talk abput GREED...eh...? No, you bet your sweet life you will not..!

      Aside from that..In this example of yours, you are comparing oranges and apples...!

      Lets look at this one...: My 100 year old cousin needs a hip replacement...My daughter needs cancer treatment....

      RHMLucky777

      Read More

      Not a good answer, P.J. Hamel....Fact is..America  CAN afford health care for everyone. Let's talk abput GREED...eh...? No, you bet your sweet life you will not..!

      Aside from that..In this example of yours, you are comparing oranges and apples...!

      Lets look at this one...: My 100 year old cousin needs a hip replacement...My daughter needs cancer treatment. Is there a choice..? And what it it..? Well..the choice is in the consideration of whether the cousin can WITHSTAND the surgery..and how SUCCESSFUL it can be in the face of pain, the actual ability for her to USE the repair.In the case of my daughter, the same is not applicable..because we KNOW cancer insists on treatment...KAPISH..?.LOTS more than MONEY...MOney, Money, Money..NO it is NOT first and foremost. Have a little human compassion and consideration..!!! THINK..!!!

  • Anonymous
    Anonymous
    Jun. 27, 2009

    Adding a public health care system with which the American private insurers can compete, may end up with the needy falling under the public system and the not so needy sought after by the insurers.  The Canadian one payer system is not perfect, no system is, but it is rational and subject to continuous improvement, and everyone is treated the same no matter...

    RHMLucky777

    Read More

    Adding a public health care system with which the American private insurers can compete, may end up with the needy falling under the public system and the not so needy sought after by the insurers.  The Canadian one payer system is not perfect, no system is, but it is rational and subject to continuous improvement, and everyone is treated the same no matter who they are.  A little bit of socialism is no threat to the Amreican exclusive obsession with free market.  The free market is what makes the Canadadian economy work as well.  And yes, I am Canadian.

  • WohaliWaya
    Jun. 27, 2009

    I'm sorry PJ, I AM a GenX'er and I don't want ANYONE "stepping aside" for me!!! My husband and I are blessed to have insurance through his company. I say blessed because I was in a plane crash 9 years ago and now have a spinal cord injury with 12 other diagnoses and 5 of which cause severe, intractable pain (Cardiac Adrenal Pain Syndrome from Adhesive Arachnoiditis...

    RHMLucky777

    Read More

    I'm sorry PJ, I AM a GenX'er and I don't want ANYONE "stepping aside" for me!!! My husband and I are blessed to have insurance through his company. I say blessed because I was in a plane crash 9 years ago and now have a spinal cord injury with 12 other diagnoses and 5 of which cause severe, intractable pain (Cardiac Adrenal Pain Syndrome from Adhesive Arachnoiditis with Central Pain and CRPS Type II, Cauda Equina syn. and Epidural Fibrosis). Untreated or UNDER-treated and my pain level is so high and the stress on my body is SO great, that a heart attack or stroke is eminent. I am most fortunate to have found a specialist who can treat me so that - 9 years of hell - I can have a life outside of my bed again. UNIVERSAL HEALTH CARE WILL KILL ME AND those like me who need a deep amount of care and for NO REASON!! I and other chronic cases will be judged and found wanting by a system we never asked for. There are smarter ways to use public funds and better ways to cut all the pork in the system to bring down costs instead of having sending all the old, weak and infirm to "Carousel" where we can be shot and make way for those young, fit people deemed to live. (when did my country's leaders lose their MINDS enough to think the plot lines from science fiction movies made good public policy?!?)  The old and disabled don't just die without care - they suffer and time drags on. It is a moral outrage and I feel if this passes we have LOST a huge chunk of our own humanity. Creator help us.

    • Anonymous
      Anonymous
      Jun. 27, 2009

      I have worked in health care and have seen lots of suffering life and death. It seems this president is forcing this government healthcare (socialized medicine) lets call it what it is, then you and your family deserve to have the same health care you want the people to have.  All government senators, congressmen/woman and all who surround this...

      RHMLucky777

      Read More

      I have worked in health care and have seen lots of suffering life and death. It seems this president is forcing this government healthcare (socialized medicine) lets call it what it is, then you and your family deserve to have the same health care you want the people to have.  All government senators, congressmen/woman and all who surround this president should have the same health care as everyone else. 

      If it is good enough for us it is good enough for them. 

       

      You say the old should step aside..well I don't smoke..I run(started at age 58) strength train..and am in better health than many 30 & 4o year olds.  To prevent is good but genes play an important part even if one does everything that is right.

       

        This system you are trying to force feed is an outrage and immoral. How can you call this health care?  The people of the Unites States of America will not stand for this agenda of yours.  This is our nation, you hold the office of the president you are not a king or dictator though that is how you are trying to run this country.   

      Our future generations deserve the chance to know our great nation as our forefathers found it.  It is in God we trust not you from what you have rushed this nation into so far.    

      GL   

       

  • Anonymous
    JEFFREY ROSS
    Jun. 27, 2009

    The compromises we, as American Citizens, are being asked to make reguarding healthcare have been left to an opportunistic refomer/reparationist that has nothing to do with people or healthcare. I know this sounds simplistic so simply put, until we evaluate Cost vs. Benefit solutions in human terms we will keep failing just as we are now. President Obama is...

    RHMLucky777

    Read More

    The compromises we, as American Citizens, are being asked to make reguarding healthcare have been left to an opportunistic refomer/reparationist that has nothing to do with people or healthcare. I know this sounds simplistic so simply put, until we evaluate Cost vs. Benefit solutions in human terms we will keep failing just as we are now. President Obama is in a "gotta break some eggs" kind of mood when it comes to this issue as he has been with Wallstreet, Banking and the auto makers. The money players get the bone. Hence, the sweetheart deals with the Auto Unions and many others. The AMA is not so willing a partner, but it won't matter. This crushing money grab has momentum. Somewhere in this process, we the people must define the parameters of this discussion and not allow our government to dictate our terms when it comes to healthcare or any such matter. We can discuss true Cost vs. Benefit solutions until this passes. After that, I guess we will have voted once again and once again got what we deserve.

  • Anonymous
    Anonymous
    Jun. 27, 2009

    P J Hamel can "let go" if she chooses but this guy is going to hang on.

    • PJ Hamel
      Health Guide
      Jun. 27, 2009

      I will absolutely let go when it would take heroic measures and lots of operations and special care to save me. Life is a cycle; I don't see the sense in messing with it. My spirit will leave my body and simply go back into the endless life force that I know is out there. PJH

    • Anonymous
      miaa
      Jun. 29, 2009

      My friend, I have seen a lot of people die as you say you wish to. At the end it is rare when the person really wants to carry through with your sort of plan. No reasin to force others into what you want for them, is there..? So, at the end of your life, do as you please. Don't try to sell that kind of morbidity to the rest of us..or force it on us, either....

      RHMLucky777

      Read More

      My friend, I have seen a lot of people die as you say you wish to. At the end it is rare when the person really wants to carry through with your sort of plan. No reasin to force others into what you want for them, is there..? So, at the end of your life, do as you please. Don't try to sell that kind of morbidity to the rest of us..or force it on us, either. Many of my friends and family are 100 years old or older. Many of those have endured surgical procedure that hurt..a lot ! None of them are sorry for having undergone it.

  • Anonymous
    allanj
    Jun. 27, 2009
    I am so upset with Obama trying to push his health plan down our throats my family is very happy with the insurance we have why should we have to change it to fit him and his croanies. I hope people will think before they let him pass this bill he has done enough to makes things worse since he took offfice. please do not let this happen to us. We in the USA...
    RHMLucky777
    Read More
    I am so upset with Obama trying to push his health plan down our throats my family is very happy with the insurance we have why should we have to change it to fit him and his croanies. I hope people will think before they let him pass this bill he has done enough to makes things worse since he took offfice. please do not let this happen to us. We in the USA do not want to go thru what Europe goes thru to get help when they have a major problem I know I have been there.
    • Anonymous
      michmom
      Jul. 01, 2009

      Easy for you to say while you are employed.  My husband is losing his job, for the first time in our married life.  We lost all of our benefits in May of this year.  We looked at suggested policies and companies, but could not find one that covers pre-existing conditions.  The deductibles are high and you hardly get any coverage before you...

      RHMLucky777

      Read More

      Easy for you to say while you are employed.  My husband is losing his job, for the first time in our married life.  We lost all of our benefits in May of this year.  We looked at suggested policies and companies, but could not find one that covers pre-existing conditions.  The deductibles are high and you hardly get any coverage before you have paid out the huge deductibles and monthly premiums.  So go ahead and talk about the president "pushing this down your throat", you might find yourself out of a job too.  Millions of Americans have, during this recession that started when Bush was president, if you remember.

       

      Also, if you look at the statistics, the 47 million Americans that were uninsured before the recession started [I am sure it is much higher now] were not aliens, or deadbeats.  Over 20 million were children.  Somewhere near 12 million were young adults who had finished college or high school, but hadn't gotten a good enough job yet.  They are good standing citizens according to the studies published. 

       

      Finally, we should desire a change because millions of our citizens can't afford decent health care because of some reason.  We need to have some kind of reform for moral reasons.  It doesn't necessarily have to be socialized medicine either.  You better watch out, because you could end up in the same class as those who are uninsured. I bet you would hurt just as much as a parent of a sick child (if you are a parent) that can't afford health insurance.  You see it has everything to do with cost, not poor citizenship.

  • Anonymous
    Anonymous
    Jun. 27, 2009
    I am so upset with Obama trying to push his health plan down our throats my family is very happy with the insurance we have why should we have to change it to fit him and his croanies. I hope people will think before they let him pass this bill he has done enough to makes things worse since he took offfice. please do not let this happen to us. We in the USA...
    RHMLucky777
    Read More
    I am so upset with Obama trying to push his health plan down our throats my family is very happy with the insurance we have why should we have to change it to fit him and his croanies. I hope people will think before they let him pass this bill he has done enough to makes things worse since he took offfice. please do not let this happen to us. We in the USA do not want to go thru what Europe goes thru to get help when they have a major problem I know I have been there.
  • Anonymous
    Anonymous
    Jun. 26, 2009

    If this plan is going to be so great (except for Seniors) then I think all Government employees, including the President, should have the same plan. 

    • Anonymous
      LD
      Jun. 30, 2009

      Amen. In fact, let them do a five year test run first.

  • Chapeaugirl
    Jun. 26, 2009

    I do believe that the healthcare system, eg:  wait times could be a lot better but it is alot better than having to worry about not having insurance to enable you to get healthcare when required. 

     

    In the province of Ontario...Phsiotherapy, Psychiatric care, dental, prescriptions are not covered under the plan.  Psychiatric care is available...

    RHMLucky777

    Read More

    I do believe that the healthcare system, eg:  wait times could be a lot better but it is alot better than having to worry about not having insurance to enable you to get healthcare when required. 

     

    In the province of Ontario...Phsiotherapy, Psychiatric care, dental, prescriptions are not covered under the plan.  Psychiatric care is available through the hospital, etc. so it depends whether covered or not.  Usually our private health care plans cover these things or a certain percentage of them.

     

    I live in the Province of Quebec and if things are Urgent, Urgent care is provided.  Also, every person living in the province is covered for Prescription Drugs, etc.....if a person does not have the benefit of a Private Plan then the Government steps in to cover those expenses.

     

    I believe it is the same throughout the world.  The quality of doctors, their compassion and their ability to diagnose serious health issues and take people seriously define how long a person has to wait for serious, health saving procedures.  It doesn't matter whether you are young or old....everyone has to take their own healthcare in their own hands and be responsible to ensure their Doctor is listening and paying attention to our concerns.  If not a call to the College of Physicians soon solve that problem. 

     

    If a patient doesn't speak up and demand proper care, request consultations with Specialist, etc. they must file complaints otherwise the problem will be ongoing. 

     

    I realize that there are many people waiting for Urgent tests and from experience I see personally that hospital personnel families are put on List ! (Urgent) or if one is on WCB or Workplace Insurance then tests are available within a 2 week period.  Thus putting the normal everyday person through the wait time stress.

     

    Sorry I went off here but the above is from my experience.  It may not have much to do with Obama but a quick overview of my experience with medical system....it is all about the Docs who have to order these tests and not the people who provide the testing.

     

    I honestly feel that if we look at all the horror stories of people falling through the cracks in the medical community it has to do with their DOCTORS not giving a damn....not the places that provide the services.

    • Anonymous
      Cassandra
      Aug. 20, 2009

      Dear Chapeaugirl:  your explanation that in Canada:  "If a patient doesn't speak up and demand proper care, request consultations with Specialist, etc. they must file complaints otherwise the problem will be ongoing.......everyone has to take their own healthcare in their own hands and be responsible to ensure their Doctor is listening and...

      RHMLucky777

      Read More

      Dear Chapeaugirl:  your explanation that in Canada:  "If a patient doesn't speak up and demand proper care, request consultations with Specialist, etc. they must file complaints otherwise the problem will be ongoing.......everyone has to take their own healthcare in their own hands and be responsible to ensure their Doctor is listening and paying attention to our concerns.  If not a call to the College of Physicians soon solve that problem." 

       

      Your solution may work for a patient who is NOT urgent & is NOT ill.  Let's examine the case of a truly ILL patient.  The truly ill patient can barely drag themselves out of bed & get to the doctor.  They're in no condition to have to fight for their own survival with the Bureaucracy of A Big Government Monopoly. Do you really think that a government Monopoly is going to care enough to help a seriously sick patient?  A patient who's sick is not capable of fighting for their life, especially against an impersonal monopoly. 

       

      When you're too sick to travel elsewhere & the government controls all the medical facilities near you, you're stuck.  You have no choice. How is an ill patient going to "demand proper care"?  How can a seriously ill patient even speak up?  Perhaps you've not experienced all the wonders of being seriously ill in a government-run health care system.  You have nowhere else to go because the government has eliminated your choices.  

       

      You can't somehow get to a different doctor or the hospital across town because the government controls all.  And the government does NOT like individuals deciding to go elsewhere, thus Canada will not allow you to transfer to a specialist who can better care for you unless the bureaucracy first gives you permission.  Do you realize there are personnel in the bureaucracy who might have screwed up, who don't want to let you see a specialist? Do you realize it takes precious time to get permission?  And if the current doc you have has done some screw-up in your care this doctor can hinder you from getting a change to a specialist (where the poor care could be discovered). But don't worry, the specialists become so scarce under government controls that you'll probably die before one actually is able to treat you.

       

       

      I hope for your sake you're never too sick to make demands, and that you're always capable & strong enough to reach across the hospital bed & get hold of that phone, balance it, hold it long enough & actually manage to make a phone call (if the government has allowed you to have a bedside phone, that is) to the College of Physicians (during business hours of course), otherwise you'll be dead.

       

      By the way, to correct a myth: those who don't have insurance DO get care in the U.S.  After being laid off I've been without Insurance (the government only allows your employer to purchase your insurance at group rates & for years politicians have refused to allow the people more freedom so politicians created this problem) and was never refused care.  It's tough when you're over 50 and the government has created the problems that make you lose your insurance when you lose employment. (thank the Politicians for this "caring" about us).

       

      When I needed medical care, whether or not I had Insurance, I was able to get care with no WAIT and no GOVERNMENT RESTRICTIONS.

      I'd rather be alive and in debt than DEAD and forever SILENCED.

  • Anonymous
    Anonymous
    Jun. 26, 2009

    You are CRAZY if you are willing to step back and accept lesser quality health care for the benefit of who, uh, the illegals, the deadbeats, etc.  I work EXTREMELY hard to earn a decent living in order to afford health coverage to maintain a good quality of life.  NO ONE has the right to deny me that and I refuse to become just one of the ailing masses...

    RHMLucky777

    Read More

    You are CRAZY if you are willing to step back and accept lesser quality health care for the benefit of who, uh, the illegals, the deadbeats, etc.  I work EXTREMELY hard to earn a decent living in order to afford health coverage to maintain a good quality of life.  NO ONE has the right to deny me that and I refuse to become just one of the ailing masses forced to give up my good health on someone else's behalf.  That's a bunch of BS and is a clear denial of our individual freedoms that this country was founded on - it's called socialism, I believe.  The people in other parts of the world are already worried that if the US goes the route of their own socialistic countries, where will they then go to receive high quality medical care?  Just look at Great Britain, etc., who has gone full circle with socialized medicine and all of its horrors and who are now voting in more conservative programs and policies and candidates.  Wake up and smell the coffee, America!!!  Obama's "CHANGE" is NOT for the better.  Change for the sake of change amounts to a dangerous undermining of our freedoms.  I will not accept that I have to be brought down so that others might rise.  Eventually there will be no more upper income earners and then where will the money come from to take care of everyone?  Can you say C-R-I-S-I-S?  Don't let this happen to the greatest country on earth! 

  • Anonymous
    kelly
    Jun. 26, 2009

    Wow PJ,

     

    I have never read your column before and I am impressed. Thanks for pointing out that the moral questions ruled. To me the whole issue is one of morality. 23 years ago in college we studied biomedical ethics. The only rational way for a human society to make policy is to consider all humans as persons and all life as valuable. Jane Sturm is a...

    RHMLucky777

    Read More

    Wow PJ,

     

    I have never read your column before and I am impressed. Thanks for pointing out that the moral questions ruled. To me the whole issue is one of morality. 23 years ago in college we studied biomedical ethics. The only rational way for a human society to make policy is to consider all humans as persons and all life as valuable. Jane Sturm is a perfect example. She knew the value of her mother's life. The insurance company nor the federal government can know that. The only correct standard for policy is to decide in favor of life. Her life might not be valuable to some beureaucrat, but it is to her and to her family and to God.

     

    I am so grateful for your article and for health central. We do not need to have the "courage to cooperate" as the president said.

     

    WE NEED TO HAVE THE COURAGE TO OBJECT.

     

    Even dr.s who voted for him are not going along with this. 87% of Americans are satisfied with their health care now. We can strengthen the safety net without destroying the whole sysem.

     

    Dear God, Please don't let them make every doctor's office like the DMV. That is how it is with the VA and with public health and the military. I know from experience and friends. Thank God for the internet, too so we can get more than one side. We can only get one side on the networks who will support any thing the administration does because he was their candidate.

     

    We have to speak out before it's too late. 

     

    Kelly  Cool

    www.rawarrior.blogspot.com

    • PJ Hamel
      Health Guide
      Jun. 26, 2009

       

      Thanks for your comments, Kelly - I appreciate you sharing with the community here. And ditto to all of you commenting - we can disagree agreeably, and to me that sums up freedom of speech. PJH

  • Anonymous
    Aggie
    Jun. 26, 2009

    Do you understand what Obama was saying? He flatly stated that some people (the elderly, the very sick) have a duty to just go ahead and die for the good of society! Hitler couldn't have said it any better himself!

     

    The problems we have with health care are directly attributable to government interference in health care and the distortions that laws make...

    RHMLucky777

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    Do you understand what Obama was saying? He flatly stated that some people (the elderly, the very sick) have a duty to just go ahead and die for the good of society! Hitler couldn't have said it any better himself!

     

    The problems we have with health care are directly attributable to government interference in health care and the distortions that laws make in the health insurance business. For example, due to lobbying by various interests, insurance companies are increasingly burdened with requirements that they cover many kinds of treatments and tests that many people don't even want. Some treatments, such as chiropractic and psychological care, may go on and on, costing everyone a lot for the benefit of a few. This is what makes health insurance unaffordable for many people.

     

    What we need is a true free market in health care where the individual decides what coverage he wants for himself and his family. There should be a more direct connection between what one spends on health care and what it is actually worth. We always spend our own money more prudently than we do if something is subsidized or "free". Just recently on 20/20, there was a segment on Medicare and it showed wealthy retirees visiting their doctors just to talk. Why? Because they were not paying for the visit themselves. The taxpayer picks up the tab.

     

    Have you seen the stories from the VA system or from Canada and Britain? A woman in England was denied treatment for a heart condition because she was deemed to be too old. Her age? ... 61. People sit in ambulances outside of hospitals, because there is no room at the ER. A person I know in Ireland waited a year and a half for gall bladder surgery, even though she was on the "urgent" list. When a relative of mine was covered by military health care, she was told she would have to wait 2 weeks for an appointment when she had a kidney infection. Fortunately, she had the option of paying for private care herself. This is not allowed under a mandated government system. This is just a small sample of the horrors people suffer under government health care systems.

     

    Government programs always lead to distortions in the relationship between value and cost. Costs increase, quality declines, and shortages (rationing) are the order of the day.

     

    If this program is going to be so great, then why has Ted Kennedy included language in the bill that exempts Congressmen and their families from participation? This will be no different from the old Soviet system where those with power can obtain whatever they want and the rest of us are relegated to a primitive, substandard system.

     

    Finally, many things are necessary to survival and none of them are rights. When you say people have a right to health care or anything else, you are saying that you want the government to force someone else to take care of you. When one person is forced to labor for the benefit of another, that is the definition of slavery. What we need is freedom, personal responsiblity, and charity for the poor. This is what has made the US the richest nation in the world.

     

    BTW, the statistics you hear about the supposed inferiority of US health care are false. In fact, cancer patients have a better survival rate in the US than in any other country in the world. Other statistics, such as newborn survival have also been distorted due to different definitions as to what constitutes a live birth vs. a stillborn.

     

    I wonder if Obama would tell someone in his family to take a "pain pill' if they needed a pacemaker? Somehow, I doubt it. If you want a cold-hearted politician or bureaucrat deciding whether you live or die, then go ahead and support nationalized health insurance. We will all have our little cards stating we are covered. We just won't be able to see a doctor or get treatment for months or years. One way to cut costs is for patients to die waiting for care. As I said, Hitler would be proud of this plan.

    • Anonymous
      Rose Ann Baxter
      Jun. 26, 2009

      You are so right, it's going to be bad for people that have insurance and the poor will always be taken care of. They call an ambulance to go to the hospital for a headache or stomach ache. This just isn't right. I'm glad I'm a senior citizen and won't have to worry about the corrupt politicians and government too much longer. the politicians arn't looking...

      RHMLucky777

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      You are so right, it's going to be bad for people that have insurance and the poor will always be taken care of. They call an ambulance to go to the hospital for a headache or stomach ache. This just isn't right. I'm glad I'm a senior citizen and won't have to worry about the corrupt politicians and government too much longer. the politicians arn't looking out for anyone and they are so well taken care of. Makes me sick.

    • Anonymous
      Anonymous
      Jun. 26, 2009

      There are many people who cannot afford health care! A government system is necessary to get these people ANY care. As far as people going in to their doctor just to talk because Medicare pays for it, this simply is NOT TRUE. Medicare doesn't pay for preventative care (i.e. physicals). And maybe that person was so stressed he/she NEEDED someone to talk to....

      RHMLucky777

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      There are many people who cannot afford health care! A government system is necessary to get these people ANY care. As far as people going in to their doctor just to talk because Medicare pays for it, this simply is NOT TRUE. Medicare doesn't pay for preventative care (i.e. physicals). And maybe that person was so stressed he/she NEEDED someone to talk to. Mental health is just as important as physical health.

    • Anonymous
      mylilgems
      Jul. 24, 2009

      Perhaps you are right we should allow medicare to pay for preventative care and espesially for immunizations.  Other than that I totally agree with the person you responded to.  I don't want to have what they are offering.  I am not the rich over 250,00/yr.  we only make 50-60 thousand yearly with a family of 5. 

    • Anonymous
      Randall Graves
      Jun. 29, 2009

      Right on the money! Congress has EXCLUDED THEMSELVES! What does that tell you? They are going to "redistribute" $$ 100 billion from Medicare to Obama care. Too bad for the elderly. This isn't about health care, this is about YOUR FREEDOM! Do Not let them take this from you! If they really wanted to fix the health care system, they would pass laws on tort reform...

      RHMLucky777

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      Right on the money! Congress has EXCLUDED THEMSELVES! What does that tell you? They are going to "redistribute" $$ 100 billion from Medicare to Obama care. Too bad for the elderly. This isn't about health care, this is about YOUR FREEDOM! Do Not let them take this from you! If they really wanted to fix the health care system, they would pass laws on tort reform and limit frivolous law suits. They would control our borders and enforce our immigration laws and remove the biggest drain on ALL of our resources and infrastuctures, Illegal aliens. Hospitals in California in addition to a YMCA, have closed due to providing services for free to people that SHOULDN'T EVEN BE HERE! Our generous natures are being taken advantage of. Time to WAKE UP AMERICA!Yell

  • Anonymous
    Deanna Thate
    Jun. 26, 2009

    The Town Hall meeting was great, but it really needed to be at least 3 to 4 hours instead of 1 hour to incorporate everybody's questions to be addressed. I know that the Network probably will not allow that much time, but there should be somewhere where you can send your questions or comment to so they can be answered.

  • Anonymous
    Anonymous
    Jun. 26, 2009

    From what is printed above sounds to me like President Obama is going to be making choices against the female of the USA.

    • Anonymous
      Mark
      Jul. 20, 2009

      Not just the female.  Obama's plan is against the males, too.  These independent boards he wants to set up will have no oversight.  they can decide to withold care and no one will stop them.  Consider also that Obama's Orszag and Emanuel both believe in assisted suicide and withholding care from those they deem do not deserve it, all for...

      RHMLucky777

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      Not just the female.  Obama's plan is against the males, too.  These independent boards he wants to set up will have no oversight.  they can decide to withold care and no one will stop them.  Consider also that Obama's Orszag and Emanuel both believe in assisted suicide and withholding care from those they deem do not deserve it, all for the God of Cutting Costs.  For now, it would be the very elder and the gravely illl.  Next, it could be breast cancer patients.  In fact, what Obama is trying to push through is right off the T-4 declaration of Hitler.  A good move is to crush his plan and make sure it never passes.

  • Barbara Lee
    Jun. 25, 2009

    Well, I guess we could all be jealous of those who can afford private care and call them elite, or we could be grateful that those who can afford care are going to take responsibility for themselves and not further tax the public system.  All those who can afford it SHOULD pay their own way!  Duh!!!  Someday perhaps that system will slop over...

    RHMLucky777

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    Well, I guess we could all be jealous of those who can afford private care and call them elite, or we could be grateful that those who can afford care are going to take responsibility for themselves and not further tax the public system.  All those who can afford it SHOULD pay their own way!  Duh!!!  Someday perhaps that system will slop over to social security as well.  I've actually known folks who have refused to accept ss.  Talk about being patriotic--there you have it!

    • PJ Hamel
      Health Guide
      Jun. 25, 2009

      It takes a generous spirit to think that way, Barbara - thank you. PJ

    • Anonymous
      Karl
      Jun. 26, 2009

      I agree.  That's why Obama felt that we could pay for much of the health care reform if those who make more than a quarter of a million a year would just be willing to pay about 3% more, like they did when Reagan was in office.  People that wealthy can afford Cadillac health care plans anyway, if they want them. Many wealthy people have said...

      RHMLucky777

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      I agree.  That's why Obama felt that we could pay for much of the health care reform if those who make more than a quarter of a million a year would just be willing to pay about 3% more, like they did when Reagan was in office.  People that wealthy can afford Cadillac health care plans anyway, if they want them. Many wealthy people have said that would be fine with them.

       

      But, the Republicans are not letting that happen.  Even though it's the easiest way.  The wealthy have had years of paying lower taxes (especially because of loopholes). It would be nice if they'd step up to the plate.  Many are willing to do so, but the GOP simply won't allow it.  So, at least Obama has found other ways to pay for most of the plan. 

    • Vicki
      Jun. 27, 2009

      I am sick to death of hearing people blame the Republicans for every cotton picki' thing! My husband and I have workied hard all of our lives and the onething we always ,ade sure of is we had health insurance. Sure, we had a big deductible, but we figured we could pay it if we needed to. Anyway, most hospitals and clinic/Dr's will take payments on the bal....

      RHMLucky777

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      I am sick to death of hearing people blame the Republicans for every cotton picki' thing! My husband and I have workied hard all of our lives and the onething we always ,ade sure of is we had health insurance. Sure, we had a big deductible, but we figured we could pay it if we needed to. Anyway, most hospitals and clinic/Dr's will take payments on the bal. not covered. I'm tired of people expecting someone else to pay their way. I just had cancer for the second time and I'm not expecting someone else to pay my way. Anyway, with this disgusting health plan, I probably wouldn't be elgible for care because of my age. I think there are too many younger people who do not apprectiate our freedom, or what is left of it. If this keeps up, they will pay the price and so will their poor children. FREEDOM IS NOT FREE!

    • Anonymous
      John Wieland
      Jul. 20, 2009

      The bottom line to both posts above is that a universal single payer plan is the only solution.  I make a fixed amount, my last premium went to 1599.99 per month for my family, roughly 65% of my income.  New plan, only 794. a month, but at increases of 20% per year, it won't be long again.  Oops, forgot to mention that I had to drop my wife from...

      RHMLucky777

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      The bottom line to both posts above is that a universal single payer plan is the only solution.  I make a fixed amount, my last premium went to 1599.99 per month for my family, roughly 65% of my income.  New plan, only 794. a month, but at increases of 20% per year, it won't be long again.  Oops, forgot to mention that I had to drop my wife from insurance, as she has a preexisting condition, so we as taxpayers are already "paying" for her (known in the insurance industry as "price shifting".  We have to make a big choice based on three questions:

      1) Is healthcare a right or a privilege?

      2) Do we want a system where we have free choice?

      3) Do we want more than a two class society (ruling class/poor)?

      The answer to all three for me is yes.  Which leaves the only viable workable solution as single payer universal health.  Please go to the Physicians for National Health Plan website to read what universal health coverage REALLY means before just repeating what we hear on inflamatory talk shows.  Thanks for letting me express my opinion, 

      John 

       

       

    • PJ Hamel
      Health Guide
      Jul. 20, 2009

      Thanks, John, for your reasonable response. I appreciate it. PJH

    • Anonymous
      Cassandra
      Aug. 20, 2009

      @John & PJ Hamel. It's a shame you take the Authoritarian Road and tell us to look to Big Government to save us by giving them a MONOPOLY of all things. Might I suggest a nice, simple, concise book that discusses the damage of using an Authoritarian Government to solve your problems? It's a small, easy-to-read book: "Economics in One Lesson" by Henry Hazlitt....

      RHMLucky777

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      @John & PJ Hamel. It's a shame you take the Authoritarian Road and tell us to look to Big Government to save us by giving them a MONOPOLY of all things. Might I suggest a nice, simple, concise book that discusses the damage of using an Authoritarian Government to solve your problems? It's a small, easy-to-read book: "Economics in One Lesson" by Henry Hazlitt.

      Government created the distortions and cost-shifting in the medical markets, pushing prices up far beyond what they'd be without government meddling.  And you think the government can solve the problems IT created if you just give the government total control: a monopoly? When has giving the government a monopoly ever made things better?  Let's see, if we gave the government a complete monopoly over all letters and packages mailed in the U.S. would that solve the U.S. postal service problems?  As it is, government only causes cost-shifting in that area.  If delivery of all letters and packages were turned over to competition in the private sector, they'd innovate & use new methods & inventions to deliver our mail, & prices would drop like a rock and you'd have post services available conveniently across the nation. Keep government involved & it's a bottomless money pit.

      The U.S. government currently controls 51% of every health care dollar spent in the U.S.  With this level of meddling the free market hasn't existed in health care for well over 2/3 of a century. If you got the government out of medicine & out of controlling the education of our children (government-run schools are also failures) you'd have a vastly more intelligent and responsible population.  The fact you actually think forming a monopoly will solve the problem does reveal a deficit in one's education.

    • PJ Hamel
      Health Guide
      Aug. 20, 2009

      Thanks for commenting here, Cassandra. I don't agree with you, but I'm glad we live in a democracy, where we can agree to disagree agreeably... PJH

    • Anonymous
      Cassandra
      Aug. 20, 2009

      Rather than create an Authoritarian, heavy-handed, Big Government Monopoly (which IS the ELITE) to totally control our Health Care why don't we let costs fall in a totally free market.  If people could freely donate to pay the health needs of those disabled and disadvantaged persons who cannot compete in a truly FREE market we'd have no trouble making...

      RHMLucky777

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      Rather than create an Authoritarian, heavy-handed, Big Government Monopoly (which IS the ELITE) to totally control our Health Care why don't we let costs fall in a totally free market.  If people could freely donate to pay the health needs of those disabled and disadvantaged persons who cannot compete in a truly FREE market we'd have no trouble making sure everyone has the care they need at reasonable prices.  FORCING people through the IRS does not create the incentive for the economy to grow.

       

      Health Care has not had a free market in many, many years & Government meddling in Health Care has so increased the prices and caused cost-shifting, so that now the Politicians want to fool us into believing that if we just give them a total monopoly they will actually fix it once and for all.  Who here really, honestly believes that a Big Government Monopoly will LOWER costs and CARE about you at the same time? Yes, just like your friendly Politician really cares about you, and they care about you at the IRS too.

    • Anonymous
      Arsen
      Feb. 19, 2010
      Hi. The supreme irony of life is that hardly anyone gets out of it alive. Help me! I can not find sites on the: List of online mba programs. I found only this - cf online university mba. Darden's executive education wife owns to be spoken accordingly by the the financial times seeking: the field leads both competitive and concentration skills, online mba. The...
      RHMLucky777
      Read More
      Hi. The supreme irony of life is that hardly anyone gets out of it alive. Help me! I can not find sites on the: List of online mba programs. I found only this - cf online university mba. Darden's executive education wife owns to be spoken accordingly by the the financial times seeking: the field leads both competitive and concentration skills, online mba. The life-long today about your today is that it is regular not for platforms to bring, online mba. Thanks :eek:. Arsen from Indonesia.
    • Anonymous
      Anonymous
      Jun. 27, 2009

      Obama's health plan will bankrupt this nation and destroy our health care. I have worked in the health field for 31 years and hence have seen many changes. Doctors are currently unhappy with their field because it is run too much by the insurance companies and they also are paying huge amounts for insurance to protect themselves against the legal system. ...

      RHMLucky777

      Read More

      Obama's health plan will bankrupt this nation and destroy our health care. I have worked in the health field for 31 years and hence have seen many changes. Doctors are currently unhappy with their field because it is run too much by the insurance companies and they also are paying huge amounts for insurance to protect themselves against the legal system.  The quality of people going into the health field has greatly diminished and we rely heavily on foreign doctors to fill our needs. There is no way we have enough nurses and doctors to fill the proposed needs we would have. Also our country is unique in the world because we have a huge percentage of our population that is obese which would furthur tax the system, since there are so many more health problems associated with obesity.  If you look at what goes on in the countries that have socialized medicine, you would see how it does not work. There are alot of limits put on who gets care and the waits are so long that people die before they can be seen by a doctor. Actually instead of looking at other countries we have only to look at the system already run by our government: medicare and medicaid. These systems result in lost revenue for hospitals and doctors. Many doctors refuse to take medicaid and medicare patients because the government pays so poorly on these patients that they cannot afford to work under this system.

    • Anonymous
      Anonymous
      Jul. 01, 2009

      No one I know can really afford there health care, but thank God we have it.  I think just out to get the rich man that has no problem paying for care.  If people would stop and see that it is the rich man that keeps things going not the poor.  Rich people give you jobs and help on charity's all the time.  And if you know people who worked...

      RHMLucky777

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      No one I know can really afford there health care, but thank God we have it.  I think just out to get the rich man that has no problem paying for care.  If people would stop and see that it is the rich man that keeps things going not the poor.  Rich people give you jobs and help on charity's all the time.  And if you know people who worked and did not get social secuirty when they could get it, than that's foolish.  We all stuggle to pay our health insurance. Let thank God we have it.

    • Anonymous
      Anonymous
      Sep. 10, 2009

      I agree that the wealthy do contribute greatly to the economy.  They do not stuff their mattresses with their money, they know how to make the best use of it and they spend it where it counts for everyone.  One thing lacking in public schools is teaching students how money works.  Also lacking is how to budget and be responsible with spending....

      RHMLucky777

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      I agree that the wealthy do contribute greatly to the economy.  They do not stuff their mattresses with their money, they know how to make the best use of it and they spend it where it counts for everyone.  One thing lacking in public schools is teaching students how money works.  Also lacking is how to budget and be responsible with spending.  

       

      I don't think the government will do a better job at all.  I also think that the majority of people create their own health problems.  A better education all around is needed.

    • Anonymous
      Sondra Heaton
      Jul. 21, 2009

      Since I have worked and earned Social Security, to me it is an entitlement.  I paid and my employer paid--the government did not contribute.  They have "robbed" social security funds or there would be a lot of money available now.  I have also paid medicare and still pay it whenever I work (I am retired) so I feel like it is an entitlement. ...

      RHMLucky777

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      Since I have worked and earned Social Security, to me it is an entitlement.  I paid and my employer paid--the government did not contribute.  They have "robbed" social security funds or there would be a lot of money available now.  I have also paid medicare and still pay it whenever I work (I am retired) so I feel like it is an entitlement.  Right now I can afford a good supplemental insurance, but I am concerned that when the new health care reform becomes effective, I may not be able to afford what I have now.  Then, I will have to settle for less and probably still pay more.