Monday, March 22, 2010

The Health Care Plan

I know, I'm going there. And I sincerely hope I don't anger anyone, or cause a fight-because I certainly don't want to. I would actually love if I could get more conversation going on this, because I keep getting confused.

I lamented on Facebook about how I was not happy with the Bill passing-because I don't like the government dictating what we have to buy. I don't like the precedent of allowing the government to decide even more of how I MUST spend my earnings. And yes, I understand taxes, social security, and medicaid are just like that, and those examples are all the more reason I don't want the government managing my health care and dictating what my cost is going to be. I believe they have done a horrible job at money management. My husband and I aren't even counting social security or medicaid to be able to fund anything by the time we come of age for retirement-we are instead taking responsibility for ourselves and stashing away as much in our Roths and other retirements as we possibly can.

I feel this Bill is different than home owners insurance or car insurance, because owning a car or a home is a privileged and you aren't fined for not owning one. I myself walked and rode a bike for many years because I couldn't afford car insurance. I had a car, but it just sat without tags and insurance until I could afford it. I wasn't fined for not having the car operational.

With health care though, I do think there are huge issues that must be fixed-that are actually due to current laws the government set for insurance companies-like dropping people from coverage when they get too expensive. That, obviously, shouldn't be allowed. There is a risk taken by people that don't have insurance,and insurance companies take a similar risk by covering people, so they shouldn't be able to back out.

As for pre-existing conditions-so long as you don't let your coverage slip, you should be covered. If you let coverage slip, well, sorry, but that is the risk you took. That you were able to choose to take. It is all about choices and personal responsibility. I ate cans of peas and walked during college so I could afford to pay my own health insurance-because my parents didn't, and never had, health insurance. Us kids were covered by Medicare until age 18,and then after that I paid my own. It was a bill I chose to make more important than other bills I could have had-like my car insurance.

As for women costing more? Why should be cost the same as men? Women have far greater issues that get checked every year. We have babies. We have different organs. How can you tell an insurance company they have to charge the same? AND for everyone that says it isn't fair they have to pay extra as a woman-do you really think this bill will make your coverage go down to what your husband pays? My bet is that, instead, your husband's coverage will now increase to what yours is.

And I keep hearing that just by forcing everyone to pay into the system will provide the money needed to cover everything-however, I just see how it will be enough. I think our taxes are going to skyrocket to cover costs the government is underestimating (and they are already going to have to skyrocket to just try to pay off our government's incredible deficit) and I think our premiums for everyone will also sky rocket. And for those saying taxes won't go up, well, from what I have read, there is a 10 year plan for taxes going up. And what do you bet after 10 years they will go back down?

What I have been able to read of the Bill, doesn't clearly state where the money to cover all of this is coming from. So I don't know much, except that they are cutting medicaid-the coverage of our elderly.

Aren't the elderly, who are on fixed incomes, the ones we should be helping the most? They are the ones needing the most expensive health care, in general it doesn't settle well with me that the government has the power to dictate the quality of care and coverage groups of people get. Have we just set up a health care where the government can decide how much to spend on saving someone? And what happens when the government runs out of money for all this? Care gets cut? Who is going to stop them? How is that better than what we have? And I'm not saying how everything is should be left alone-I agree changes need to take place in how health care operates-I just don't buy that this bill will actually make health care "affordable" and better for all.

I will gladly pay more in premiums and taxes, if it truly does give wonderful, high quality care to everyone, and everyone is able to pay the high premiums and taxes without compromising the grocery bill. But is that really feasible? Can the 32 million uninsured actually afford to have taxes go up and lose more of their paycheck to this additional bill? And is making them pay the bill-or the fine, as most probably will-actually going to cut down on people using the emergency room? Is a sudden flood of that many more patients not going to cause unbelievable long lines and wait periods of months to see doctors? You don't think if someone has to get on a wait list, they won't just use the emergency room, and we will be back at square one again? I don't know, but I am concerned.

The Bill is impossibly long and it was passed only through a backdoor deal to not fund abortion. Which, since it is an executive order, can be thrown out by the next president, retracted by this president, or even deemed invalid by the Supreme Court when the Bill goes up for review. So what did we just vote for? Which on a side note, any of you saying you have read all 6,800 pages of the Bill and Reconciliation, I'm calling you out as liars. There is no way. If you really did, then I want you in the Senate and Congress because I'm sure as hell none of them could read the whole thing in the 72 hours between when it was finished being written and voted on. And the Reconciliation was still being written when the Bill was passed.

What was the huge hurry to get it through before it could be read? Why? Why shouldn't something of this importance be carefully read completely? In theory the Bill sounds wonderful-but what exactly is in all those pages? How many stupid back door deals, tea cup museums and bridges to no where are included in the cost? What what power are we really allowing the government to take from us-and what might be the future cost of opening that door?

That is the biggest issue on the bill for me.

I don't know. Like I said, I go back and forth so much. I have so many wise and politically active friends that are strongly and passionatly on each side-and they do easily sway me in each direction.

*If you have thoughts or opinions to share, please remember to keep it a friendly discussion, or I will remove your comment. I welcome all discussion, as I really do want to understand what is going to happen, and so far, I feel like my head is just spinning in circles as I talk to friends on both sides :) *


4 comments:

Caitlin said...

http://thomas.loc.gov/cgi-bin/query/z?c111:H.R.3590:

On that link, you can find all of the health care legislation, including senate amendments.

You know how I feel. I can see how you think car and home insurance are different, but the reality of the situation is, if you have a car, or will use a car, you are required to have auto insurance. By the same token now, if you will use our health system (which every person in this country will) you will be required to have health insurance. It's really no different.

And I'm not sure why you're concerned about the gov't managing the money. You are still paying your insurer directly. That has not changed. I really and truly think you are confused between this legislation and a single payer system, which is government organized health care. The government is NOT running health care with this bill but they are regulating it. Big difference.

Caitlin said...

It's okay, its sort of hard to wade through the muck some days! I thought you might like this too, it's a comparison between the current bill, the Republican version of 2009, and the Republican version proposed in 1993 when the Clinton administration tried to pass health care reform.

http://www.kaiserhealthnews.org/Graphics/2010/022310-Bill-comparison.aspx

Happy reading...I bet you're glad to have your new glasses! :)

Miche said...

Oh my gosh, yes! Thank you! AND I am super happy with my new glasses-esp now that I have a gazillion and one pages to try to wade through here :) hahaah! Happy reading to me, right? right? hahaha!

Alexandra said...

not a fan of this bill at all! just another way for the government to gain control of our lives.

I do think that healthcare has some major problems...but big government is not going to solve it. Just make it worse. :(