Wednesday, May 03, 2006

You may be about to lose insurance benefits

The US Congress, in an obvious bow to HMO's and insurance corporations, have developed bill, S. 1955 Health Insurance Marketplace Modernization and affordable Act of 2005, which would allow health insurers to bypass state requirements for minimum benefits. That means your HMO could potentially eliminate key benefits in your coverage, including cancer screenings, contraception, emergency services, mental health care and diabetic supplies, should this bill be passed. Don't you love the Orwellian name of the bill? What's bad is good.

And how much did the CEO of Blue Cross/Blue Shield make this year? I could be wrong, but it was in the neighborhood of 42 million dollars. We all know that for a corporation to make profits this big, someone is being short-changed, and it's us.

What concerns me is the fact that Americans are being sold down the river for profit. All other industrialized nations have a form of national healthcare. It is an investment in their country's future.

According to an article in the New York Times "Americans 55 and over are much sicker than their British counterparts even though the United States spends more than twice as much per person on health care as Britain, researchers said Tuesday. The article, in the issue of JAMA to be published Wednesday, said "middle-aged to older U.S. residents have higher rates of diabetes, hypertension, heart disease, heart attack, stroke, lung disease and cancer than their English counterparts."

Gee, do you think that healthcare for everyone just might be a good idea? I do. But the NY Times article attempted to spin the information, saying "But, the press release said, the study found that "differences in socioeconomic groups between the two countries were so great that those in the top education and income level in the U.S. had similar rates of diabetes and heart disease as those in the bottom education and income level in England."

My interpretation would be that the wealthy in the US get poor healthcare across the board, with the poor being totally left out. If 45 million Americans have no healthcare, then how can we actually compile statistics, except to extrapolate from hospital admissions? We all know that you have to be practically dead to be admitted to a hospital. Patients are sicker when admitted than ever before.

We need a national healthcare plan, a single payer plan. F** the insurance companies. They ration care now, although they deny it. It is very sad that we, as a nation, do not value our citizens. The poor are throwaways, and the middle class will soon be gone. We will just die off because we can't afford healthcare or medications.


No comments: