In the end, yes.
You are talking about a segment of the population that is at the
bottom of the economic scale.
Lack of formal education also comes into play.
Also what gets included is sex education (i.e. birth control) now that
Bush is gone.
Unrelated but it helps to illustrate the point that a little money
spent at the right time, can save a whole lot later.
Malaria is a serious problem in parts of Africa, primarily transmitted
Bill Gates has brought in some mosquito netting and given it to
The reduction in malaria cases has been dramatic.
As usual, things get down to timing.
As I said earlier, it is the real elephant in the room.
It is THE issue that society must face.
When do you say, "Enough is enough"?
Do we require everybody to have a "Living will"?
At least then, the desires of the person most affected are known.
Do we nationally adopt the procedures that are in place in Oregon?
Do we empower the government to make these decisions?
I think NOT.
What part does a persons religion have in this process?
Tough questions, but it now is the time to face up to what are not
only tough, but uncomfortable questions to answer.
I don't follow that at all -- everything you've written up to this point
seems to be supporting nationalizing all health care--now you're putting
it into the individual's province where I've said it belonged all along
and gotten ripped...I'm cornfoozed for sure now, good buddy.
I've stated and continue to say that the elephant in the room is "Mom
I am truly glad the decision(s) on how we as a society address this
issue is not mine.
In addition to the cold hard economic facts, there are the emotional
ones involving religion, personal values, etc.
I neither support or oppose "nationalizing all health care"; however,
I do support EVERYBODY having health care insurance.
My money is on some form of hybrid private/public program will come
out of Congress pretty quickly.
The politicians, if nothing else, astute at reading the tea leaves and
responding to what the public wants.
The majority of the public wants health care coverage for the total
population, and Congress is going to satisfy the public desire.
That's how they get re-elected.
No TV other than OTA networks. All stories in every paper I saw
indicated general public was highly opposed.
Just an observation that the pol's don't always do the expected and
other political factors come into play besides public opinion.
Certainly the current administration/congress leaders have intentions;
what they actually get incorporated is yet to be determined.
And, of course, there's the old saw of "careful what you wish for; you
just might get it".
Tsk, tsk ... that's precisely why we, the responsible, give to
charities, churches, and the like ... to care for both the unfortunate,
and for those unfortunately irresponsible ... a method with a track
record of more than a few thousand years, many more than the last couple
of hundred when governments became heavily involved and the
irresponsible became the prevalent type.
Nobody, including me, wants anymore gov't involvement in our lives
The exception being when the scope of the task is such that only
government has the necessary resources to handle the task.
Reorganization of the health care systems is IMHO, one of those tasks;
HOWEVER, is does not require the government taking over the health
care system such as has been done in other countries.
Rather is will require the government to develop a set of laws that
will govern the way private enterprise operates in the health care
One of those ways is for the government to form the John Q Citizen
division of the federal employees health care system and offer
coverage to anybody who wants to participate at competitive rates.
You don't have to buy the government insurance, but you DO have to buy
health insurance from somebody.
There will be a segment of the population which will require some form
of subsidy, and I leave that to others to resolve.
The whole purpose is to provide health care for everybody so that we
can transition from sickness treatment to preventative health care at
lower cost per transaction.
A benefit of such a program is that it will force the private sector
to offer competitive health insurance rather than the "Cherry Picking"
products now offered.
Open up the drug purchasing programs to competitive bidding, and I
don't want to hear any bull shit from the drug companies about
They all ready spend more on advertising than they do on research.
The above still does not address the ballooning costs of health care
for the elderly, but it is a start, and it would not surprise me if
much of the above is where things are headed based on some of Obama's
You forgot, "for a while."
Long-term care doesn't last forever.
Last year, we got to deal with the delight of poor diagnosis that
is post-bypass delirium. My father had bypass surgery and came
home from the hospital barely containable (he escaped an Alzheimers
wing twice). We, which mainly means my mother (since no one else
is local) got to going on the nursing home shopping process.
Dad has long-term insurance, but it has a lifetime cap. So the
dilemma pondered at the time was whether to use it or save it for
a worse time.
As it turns out, everything worked out fine and a few months put
him mostly back to his old self.
Not taking a side. Wish I knew what the ideal answer was.
Drew Lawson | It's not enough to be alive
| when your future's been deferred
That depends on the policy, of course. Some are better than others;
careful shopping is required (just as it is for any other major purchase).
Folks' policies (and ours) don't have time/$$ limits -- they last until
DOD once initiated and continue in qualified institution. Have opted to
self-insure for any possible inhome or assisted living type arrangement;
that's again a choice one must make based on specific circumstances.
I'll iterate that it still is a personal responsibility; not a generic
responsibility of the government however one chooses to go.
Do you have a cite that gives that quote in a useful context? All
I can find is:
The growing ranks of the elderly are projected to account for
just 0.4 percent of the future growth in health care costs, says
Paul Ginsburg, president of the Center for Studying Health System
That ends up looking more like a quote from an interview answering
an unquoted question. I'd love to know what specifics the number
was drawn from.
"The growing ranks of the elderly are projected to account" is
actually a vague classification/claim in this context. There are
two trends colliding at the moment in US health care of the elderly
-- increasing numbers of elderly and increasing per capita cost of
care for the elderly. It is unclear (to me) whether Mr. Ginsburg
intended to address both or just the former.
BTW, I mean "it is unclear" in the literal sense, not as Usenet
code for, "clearly you are wrong." I don't even *pretend* to be
an expert on economic issues.
I only came in search of answers, never planned to sell my soul
Glittering generalities... :)
That's the problem in everything I've yet heard/read on the subject.
There are great promises made in phrases much like the sentence you
wrote above, but never any actual details of what costs are avoided that
are greater than the cost of implementing/maintaining and operating the
new computerized system.
W/O a credible analysis of that, I'm unwilling to accept a general
statement that it will somehow just turn out that way. I compare it to
the implementation of word processing in business--we know turn out
reams of gorgeous paper spending hours in formatting, adding clip art
and so on, printing on color laser printers the same raw data that
formerly went on IBM selectrics. It isn't at all clear most of this new
technology does anything other than create busywork and the _impression_
of progress rather than anything actually real.
While I'm hear, I'll clarify what appears to be a misconception on your
part of what I've written with regard to welfare recipients and the
general provision of services.
If you read what I wrote, nowhere will you find that I wrote against the
truly disadvantaged or needy that are unable by virtue of illness
(mental or physical), handicap, etc., to have access to public aid. I
consistently referred to the (mostly young and healthy) group that
chooses to be irresponsible (like the ex-SIL I wrote about
upthread--he's only one of many of his buddies and others like him all
over the country) in order to have more disposable income while still in
good health. These folks should have consequences of that
irresponsibility come back on them to provide incentives to contribute
before they become direct drains on the system.
As for "cheats", I routinely even in this very small community see a
number of people cashing in on food stamps that could purchase every bit
of required foodstuffs they would need simply by having a car payment
half of that they obviously have. There and areas similar are where the
system as presently constituted again does not require personal
integrity nor demand personal responsibility.
Until there becomes a way in which bad decisions have negative
repercussions there is no incentive for those people to change their
behavior and under those conditions people will continue to take
whatever is offered. Hence, the conundrum that there is essentially no
limit to the amount of resources that _can_ be poured into any
program--"demand" will always continue to grow no matter how much is spent.
From what I've seen, there will be benefits not only in cost, but better
patient care. The HMO that we belong to is on of the largest in MA, They
went to a computerized system a bit over a year ago. My wife has a heart
condition that started in 2001. Her file was about 6" thick and was carried
from the central office to any of the half dozen doctors in four different
facilities. Now, nothing is moved and everything is on the computer.
An X Ray would be taken at the hospital. Two weeks later she'd see a
different doctor about it so we'd have to call for the x ray, pick it up and
carry it to the next doctor and he'd have to send it back when done. No
more, it is available at any of the computers in any exam room or doctor's
Prescriptions? A couple of mouse clicks and it is ready to pick up at our
pharmacy in our town 30 miles away.
I had some knee problems. My x rays and MRI results are right there, in
seconds, for the doctor to see.
I'm not so sure the government should be paying for the change, but I can
see the benefits anytime either one of us goes to the doctor, and that can
be very frequent.
What you are describing` is just the low hanging fruit.
Who knows what benefits lie ahead?
It is hard to tell which is progressing more rapidly, medicine or
electronics, but when driven to feed off each other, look out for that
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