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BigJon wrote:OT, you're constant twisting of the debate are, in turn, amusing and disgusting. Learn to stick to a point and make it.
Anyway, the biggest clunker you've thrown down is the potential for "savings" if there is a single payer system in the US. Please, pray tell, where are your savings numbers derived from?
OperaTenor wrote:BigJon wrote:Anyway, the biggest clunker you've thrown down is the potential for "savings" if there is a single payer system in the US. Please, pray tell, where are your savings numbers derived from?
BigJon wrote:OperaTenor wrote:BigJon wrote:Anyway, the biggest clunker you've thrown down is the potential for "savings" if there is a single payer system in the US. Please, pray tell, where are your savings numbers derived from?
I'm serious, please tell me where you learned those numbers. They don't resemble anything I've ever found. Or did you just pull them out of your nether regions?
My argument has never been about the financial impact - it's about the Constitutionality.
The States have the power to enact such systems, the Federal government does not - nor should it.
Our system is founded on freedom - and socialized medicine is contrary to that foundation.
Preamble to the Constitution of the United States wrote:We the People of the United States, in Order to form a more perfect Union, establish Justice, insure domestic Tranquility, provide for the common defence, promote the general Welfare, and secure the Blessings of Liberty to ourselves and our Posterity, do ordain and establish this Constitution for the United States of America.
Catmando wrote:Marye wrote::sing: health care
Not all it's cracked up to be Mary.
Suppose you and I are walking down the street, and we pass a beggar. If I reach into my pocket and give him a buck, that is compassion. If I reach into your pocket and give him a buck, that is theft. If I have someone else (i.e. the government) reach into your pocket and give him a buck, that is still theft, we just call it compassion so we'll feel better about it.
I would argue that it is impossible for the government to be compassionate, because the government is incapable of the emotions necessary to generate it. The government should not be in the business of charity, since it has the power to extract funds from even those who do not feel charitable, or who do not support the "charity" of the government's choosing.
In other words, they can steal in the name of compassion.
RE:The only way to ensure everyone is provided for, with respect to their health..., is to universalize health coverage.
And the only way to ensure that they get enough to eat is to univeralize farming and food distribution. And the only way to ensure they can get where they're going is to universalize the transporation industry. And the only way to ensure they get jobs....
and so it goes. It's not that I'm not charitable, it's that we have to draw the line somewhere, and I want to draw the line farther from my wallet than you do.
I don't have any working familiarity with the United Way. We don't contribute (as a corporation) at my workplace, although they have an active chapter here in town. I recall they had some issues with high corporate salaries a few years back, but I think that is all behind them.
In the miltary we had the Combined Federal Campaign, which was very similar. It acted as a clearinghouse for various charities, which were prohibited from soliciting government agencies directly. I used to give to them, always earmarking which charities I wanted my donations to support. Eventually, however, those of us in Reactor Department declined to donate to the CFC, because of what we considered "heavy handed" methods used by the department heads to increase donations. This, of course, was not a CFC problem, but a shipboard problem, and the CFC suffered unnecessarily because of it.
Hopefully, the United Way does not suffer due to similar problems.
I googled "medical relief fund", and found a number of individual, international, and veterinary relief funds set up, but none designed to help with medical bills here at home. I don't know if one exists. you may want to contact a local church to see if they are aware of any.
I didn't say you had to use a faith-based organization, I merely suggested that a local church may have information on such a fund. Not all charities supported by churches are faith based. I specifically avoided recommending that you ask your local Catholic church, because they probably would steer you towards Catholic charities, although it's possible they have such a fund (I haven't checked).
BTW, what's wrong with giving to a faith-based organization, if their doing the work you want done?
We've actually kicked around some ideas on the Bulletin Board before: tort reform, catastrophic health insurance, health savings accounts, etc. Many of them have been pooh-poohed by others on the forum as unrealistic, wrong-headed, etc, but they are ideas.
I personally carry additional coverage over and above my employer-provided coverage. It doesn't help with general health-care costs, but it pays per-diem for hospitilization and accidents. It doesn't cost too much, and pays well. It covered all of my sons out-of-pocket costs when his leg was broken and he spent three months in traction.
RE:A "lower middle class" child develops infant diabetes, which I believe is generally congenital, then they're just SOL?
I believe in such a case you could contact the Juvenile Diabetes Foundation and they would put you in contact with organizations designed to help such cases.
My stepson was born with Cerebral Palsy. He received care since the day he was born, even though his mother has never been below the poverty level. When we married, the situation changed, and we lost some of the coverage he had had since birth. We went a short time with no coverage, but he was never denied health care. We paid our bills as we could, and the hospitals were willing to work with, writing off thousands of dollars at times. Now twenty-five, his qualifications are independent of our income, and he has coverage even though he lives in our home.
America is a very generous nation. Many of us just don't like to be forced to be generous. Charity comes from the heart, not from government fiat.
I think that what we want in the system is the free enterprise, which will be lost if the system becomes nationalized.
Right now you have the ability, provided you can afford to, to select the amount of coverage you want. Most employers provide a minimal amount, although the terms under which it is provided vary. Our company shops for the plan that offers the best coverage for the money spent. Sometimes that means the deductables go up, sometimes the deductables are low but the maximum out-of-pocket goes up. Some enroll in "preferred provider" plans, paying a higher percentage of the costs if you go to a provider on the list. Some large employers opt to "self-insure", that is, they finance their own insurance plan, buying insurance only for catastrophic coverage, and thus saving for themselves the profits that would otherwise be made by the insurance company.
The key ingredient is choice. We have a choice of plans to choose from. Those options are lost if we go to universal coverage.
The insurance companies also have choices, whether or not to accept us, what providers will be "preferred", What terms they will provide coverage under, what pre-existing conditions they will or will not accept, etc. They use these choices to offer the best plan for their customers, while remaining profitable.
Those choices are lost if they are required to provide universal coverage. Their existence is threatened if they are replaced by a government-run health plan, so they are opposed to such a plan.
The insured also has choices. They may opt for additional coverages offered under their plan, they may opt for additional coverage offered by "third party" providers. They may opt to put money into savings to cover their out-of-pocket expenses, when they occur, or they may opt for none of these.
These choices also go away under "universal coverage".
I agree the system isn't perfect, but it could be worse. I don't know how much we, as taxpayers, stand to lose or gain by changing to a tax-funded system. I do know that there are many thousands of Americans employed in the health-finance industry who would stand to lose their jobs if the industry is dismantled.
He is covered under Medicaid. He was not eleigible for it when he was still a minor under our care.
Illinois Crippled Children used to cover him, but we lost that coverage due to our income. It was in the interim between Crippled Children and Medicaid that he was not covered.
Also, in regards to Piq's relating the hospital's ability to write off the charges as being reflective of excessive costs: Perhaps "write off" was a poor choice of words. Cardinal Glennon Children's Hospital, one of the hospitals at which he was treated, has an active network of donors, and they can cover many of the costs of treating uninsured patients by donations received. We, or rather my stepson, was the recipient of of charitible contributions made to the hospital. The other hospital was willing to negotiate with us on the costs, and removed charges we considered excessive, or treatments considered not needed. It helped that we had questioned some of those before they were performed. In addition, they transported him to Cardinal Glennon by helicopter, at a cost of thousands, despite delays which required five hours to elapse before transporting him. We had offered to check him out and drive him ourselves, but they would not agree. In the end, they charged us the cost of standard ambulance transport, agreeing that that should have been the means used.
The insured is limited in their choices because they are not the purchaser of the plan. If the employer pays for the plan, the employer gets to choose.
RE:Medicaid....how is that funded?
I'm not sure, the money magically appears and the bills are taken care of, faeries, I suppose.
Actually, since my stepson is over 21 and indigent, he qualifies for the program, as does anyone in his postion. The question that has been posed on this forum is whether the program, or one similar, should be expanded to cover the non-indigent (would that be the digent?).
The problem is the costs involved, as this link shows:
http://www.billingsgazette.com/index.ph ... dicaid.inc
If you accept the concept of doing so, then how do we transition the current system of insurance payments to a system of taxes to cover it, and ensure that it can be reformed if it fails? The government doesn't have a good track record there.
When an employee seeks a job, he and the employer, or the employee's bargaining representative, negotiate a salary/benefit package, which the prospective employee accepts or rejects by accepting or rejecting the position offered. If insurance is part of the package, then it is included in the negotiation. How much awareness the prospective employee is up to him. I would not expect that he would accept the job without full knowledge of the terms of employment, but many do. It is their responsibility.
The cost of insurance is "pooled" by the insurance company plan, as a collective body, to lower costs. However, as you point out, those costs are affected by the usage and insurability of any individual enrolled in the plan. This is understood in the benefits package. Whether or not any savings in the cost of medical care would be provided in the form of salary increases is debatable. The current proposal is to merely shift the cost of health care from private insurers to taxes to cover the cost to the government for providing the service. It would be expected that the employers would similarly make the shift, and the employee would see no difference in their paycheck.
So...who really pays? The employer.
OperaTenor wrote: We spend 57% more per capita on heatlh care than the second place country - Sweden, the poster child for socialized medicine. Of course going to a single payor system would decrease our costs, and there are scads of studies out there to prove it.
These guys just don't want to clutter their view of misunderestimatedantidisestablishmentarianism with a bunch of relevant facts and figures.
Catmando wrote:...Part of that is our (medical council's) arrogance in thinking that the only doctor who can practice medicine in Canada is a doctor who has gotten their medicine degree in Canada or the USA.
We have a lot of Canadian immigrant citizens with medicine degrees outside of North America whose skills are being under utilized and could fill up some of these shortages we have.
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