Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Got Health Care Insurance?

Right now, we have no system.
We have 52 million Americans without health care coverage.
We have For Profit Insurance companies tending to their profit margins.
The way they profit is by taking your money, and limiting what they will cover.
You can be excluded from coverage because of a medical condition (i.e. the people who need medical care the most are denied access).
In most cases, not having access to basic care results in more acute care/trauma at a much higher cost.
At any point your health care coverage can go away- with a job loss, or even if you have a major catastrophic disease or condition that "maxes out" the limits of coverage.

60% of bankruptcies are Medical Bankruptcies-- CNN:
Most of those who filed for bankruptcy were middle-class, well-educated homeowners, according to a report that will be published in the August issue of The American Journal of Medicine.
"Unless you're a Warren Buffett or Bill Gates, you're one illness away from financial ruin in this country," says lead author Steffie Woolhandler, M.D., of the Harvard Medical School, in Cambridge, Mass. "If an illness is long enough and expensive enough, private insurance offers very little protection against medical bankruptcy, and that's the major finding in our study."

Three-quarters of people with a medically-related bankruptcy had health insurance

I'm quoting Blogger Nonnie on this easy to understand public option explanation:

It's really not that difficult to explain to people why a public option is a good thing:

1. if you lose your job, you will still be covered.

2. if you have no insurance now, you will be covered.

3. if you have a preexisting condition, you will be covered.

4. you will not have to declare bankruptcy and lose everything you have, if you get sick.

5. if you have insurance that you like, you can keep it.

We are being screwed by profiteer insurance companies.
So many people have no coverage-- but even the people who do have coverage, the so-called lucky ones, as Michael Moore called them in his movie SICKO, the coverage is iffy and spotty. Who amongst us has not seen work Health Care Insurance be a roller coaster of exceptions, exclusions, addendums, and a whole lot of fine print gobbeldygook, that basically boils down to a long list of what they will NOT cover.
This lengthy list of exclusions is often coupled with higher premium costs, co pays, and out-of-pocket costs.

You pay more for the coverage.
You pay higher co pays
and then you get an additional percentage of the original bill, the insurance did not cover.

It's like the insurance company says- let's split the bill 50/50.

That's coverage?

The irony and absolute tragedy is, for 52 million Americans- that would be an UPGRADE.

I cringe to hear the calamity of contrived uproar from the wingnuts.
Conjuring up visions of death panels.... deciding who could live under an *evil* socialized health care plan.

Guess what? We have death panels by default now- people are literally dying for lack of health care coverage.

All that clamor is choreographed by those who stand to lose big profits by the people uniting together & demanding better coverage.

Bottom line: Amidst all the noise & confusion-- Do you hear the GOP offering any serious alternative plan???


Fran said...

Please do click on the band aid/ GOP AID box graphic for better viewing.
Kudos to Nonnie for creating such a fine encapsulation of *what it is* the GOP has to offer.

Yes, I plan on enduring local Town Hall meetings.....
because this is such an important issue. I was so surprised to find the stats of Medical bankruptcies.
People who were otherwise financially stable, taken out by a major medical "event" of disease or diagnosis.

If this is a uniquely American experience (the shrub once said that of a lady working three jobs to make ends meet), it is a national shame & tragedy.

The idea here is to unite & get better coverage-- who would be opposed, but the fat cats who profit from (sick) business as usual???

Although that first parody is funny- it's true that Insurance companies now really can do whatever the hell they want.- and it always comes out in their favor.

Life As I Know It Now said...

Nice blog you have here. Our family is going through some tough times right now, as you know, because of medical issues and the lack of insurance. Anyway, I will add you to my roll asap.

Kellybelle said...

Insurance comapny Rules! I get to poke you in the eye and take your money! I wish I cd use them at work.

Nice Blog, Missy!

Fran said...

Hi Lib~ I know your family is in the thick of it, so it must be especially hard to listen to the "debate" when immediate family is in crisis w a major medical situation. Nobody plans on it.
I hope things take a serious turn for the better & soon.
Thanks for the kind words.

Ms K Belle~ That parody nails it. The health care disaster (let's not bs- there is no system) is not joke-- but the ins people do have their own set of seemingly made up rules.
My workplace is SO uptight & psychotic.... I would love to bring in Insurance company rules.

nonnie9999 said...

i'm so flattered you quoted me! it was a comment over at dcAp's place when someone mentioned that the dems are having a hard time with their message, because it's such a complex issue. it really isn't. it took me about 10 seconds to type that off the top of my head (not that my keyboard is on top of my head, i just meant it didn't take a whole lot of pondering).

i want even more than health care reform. i want the uppity-ups in the insurance industry to be arrested and tried for theft. after all, they use false advertising and misleading language to take money from people and then give them nothing in return. it's like the bogus mortgage industry, but even more despicable.

enigma4ever said...

great post- and really addresses all of the issues so well...and it is a mess..sadly...

I don't know what will happen..but it is a strange time- and the reality of it is so gripping...
my post is up about going to marcia fudge's meeting..
it was interesting....

Fran said...

To be honest Nonnie, your quickie, off the top of your head list was the best summary of public option health care I've seen to date.
The only way I could possibly understand someone being opposed to public option health care is if they never experienced any of those things- job loss, uninsured, preexisting condition, lapse of coverage, or medical bankruptcy. I could add *being short changed* (or totally screwed over) by insurance companies refusing to pay for expensive tests, or procedures- MRI's & dental surgery come to mind.
I've heard lots of horror stories about people diagnosed w cancer, getting dropped by ins in the middle of treatment. If you never had any of those things happen, you might be ignorant of the situation.
They should do a show of hands at tehse town hall meetings....
how many people have NO health insurance, and how many people have health insurance- how many of those people are happy with their policy?

But even if you live in health insurance nirvana, where your policy is all you'd hoped and dreamed..... would it not bother you that 52 MILLION other people have no health insurance?

Our family has crossed a few of those insurance landmine items- job loss, lapse of coverage, have preexisting conditions, and certainly feel underinsured, as the ratio of what comes out of pocket continues to increase.

If someone personally did not experience these things, they certainly know others who have, because there are 52 million people without coverage.

In a sense, this is like creating a Health Care Union, banding together to stop the for-profit ins. industry from it's rogue & discriminatory practices.

Let's face it, big pharma is big money... they stand to lose a lot of profit if there are imposed limits on just how much they can gouge people for meds.

You have to be pretty damned stupid to not be aware that the exact same med, made by the exact same company is sold for pennies on the dollar or at least half the price in Canada & Mexico-- just because they can price gouge in the U.S.

That alone is bankrupting so many people- especially seniors on fixed incomes.
I hear it all the time @ the pharmacy
"Call my Doctor, tell him/her to prescribe something else, I can't afford this medication".

What floors me is there was not much *angry villager* style protesting going on about war spending. We've spent about $900 BILLION on wars (and counting), and we struggle to find money for
health care.


We will have spent a trillion dollars on war.
I contend we could have purchased a pretty decent health care program with that money.

Also-- people seem oblivious to the fact other developed countries deliver health care services to the citizens as a right.

Right now we pay through the nose for ins, dental, co pays, %'s, and prescriptions. All those costs just keep going up, with no end in sight, because that is how it is set up.

Hell yes we need to change it.

E ~ I saw a clip of Ted Kennedy- he is out fighting for his own life w Brain Cancer..... but we NEED a Ted Kennedy. We NEED the lions roar right now.

Why is there not a fighting of fire with fire on this issue?

Get people out there stating facts. Showing cases of real people shut out of the medical system.
Showing profit margins.
Talking about medical bankruptcy.
Comparing the other countries that do provide public option healthcare-- for less money & better results.

This whole right wing *FREEDOM* buzzword campaign is so off track, it's not even funny.

Freedom to go medically bankrupt???

Freedom to allow 52 million people to be medically destitute?

What the hell?