Medicare D(isaster) has brought the subject of health care into the consciousness of the public, as repeated stories and Congressional hearings about the flaws in the program illustrate.  Another illustration of the severity of the problem is in ilona ‘s diary, as gwb is advocating reducing veterans health care benefits.

Associated Press reported that “draconian” cuts in the Bush budget will mean that “at least tens of thousands of veterans” will face “delayed or even denied care” in coming years.

Veterans that have served in Iraq will be faced with decreased funding for medical care that is needed.  

An Army study shows that about one in six soldiers in Iraq report symptoms of major depression, serious anxiety or post- traumatic stress disorder, and some experts predict that the number eventually requiring mental health treatment could exceed 170,000. Up to one-third of Iraq war veterans are suffering from some degree of PTSD.

 

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As previously written, others who need mental health prescriptions have been denied them.  In some instances, they have had to be hospitalized or have faced other risks as gwb plays with health care in his way of balancing the budget.

It is necessary for the juggling of numbers and denial of health care to stop.  It is not the only the liberals who favor a single payer health care system.  Organized Labor has long advocated the importance of  single payer health care.  More recently, business has finally reconginzed the need for improvements to health care in this country.  Even Wal-mart if of the opinion that

the company can’t do it alone.

Today, the number of those who are uninsured is approximately 46 million, and, an estimated 18,000 die yearly due to a lack of health insurance.  As a solution, the following has been prepared advocating the goals of health care reform.

   1. Health care coverage should be universal.
   2. Health care coverage should be continuous.
   3. Health care coverage should be affordable to individuals and families.
   4. The health insurance strategy should be affordable and sustainable for society.
   5. Health insurance should enhance health and well-being by promoting access to high-quality care that is effective, efficient, safe, timely, patient-centered, and equitable.

More facts:

    . There are 37 million Americans living below the poverty line. That figure has increased by five million since President George W. Bush came to power.

    · The United States has 269 billionaires, the highest number in the world.

    · Almost a quarter of all black Americans live below the poverty line; 22 per cent of Hispanics fall below it. But for whites the figure is just 8.6 per cent.

    · There are 46 million Americans without health insurance.

    · There are 82,000 homeless people in Los Angeles alone.

    · In 2004 the poorest community in America was Pine Ridge Indian reservation. Unemployment is over 80 per cent, 69 per cent of people live in poverty and male life expectancy is 57 years. In the Western hemisphere only Haiti has a lower number.

    · The richest town in America is Rancho Santa Fe in California. Average incomes are more than $100,000 a year; the average house price is $1.7m.

And the expense (so far) of Medicare D(9saster)

is approximately $279.9 million, plus the amount that is being sought by Missouri (unspecified) in its litigation,  $400 million for the sales pitch, not counting the $325,000 spent on the Valentine ad/marketing gimmick, and $25 billion in corporate welfare.  

So far the running total is approximately $25,679,325,000.00!!!

As opposed to wasting money on different health care systems that are riddled with complexities (Medicare D(isaster) is a perfect example), or separate health care system that appears to be moving toward the denial of medical  treatment (possible cuts in the VA budget), the logical solution is the unification of these two. opposed to wasting money on different health care systems that are riddled with complexities (Medicare D(isaster) is a perfect example), or separate health care system that appears to be moving toward the denial of medical  treatment (possible cuts in the VA budget), the logical solution is the unification of these two.

However, in doing so, this would only serve to widen the gap between employers and individuals who pay purchase insurance.  

This system is a legacy of the second world war, when firms, hamstrung by wage controls, used health insurance as a way to lure in workers. It means that, according to census figures, around 174m Americans get health coverage from their own, their spouse’s or their parents’ employer. Another 27m buy health insurance individually, for which they do not get a tax subsidy.

 

The current administration favors cutting taxes and making individuals more responsible for their health care costs, as opposed to any real reform.  It is doubtful that this approach would work to a person’s benefit.  As taxes are reduced, the number dollars that are available for health care will also decrease.  As that happens, it could be necessary for insurers/bureaucracies to strentghten the eligibility criteria (determining who is and who isn’t eligible for medical treatment).  That would result in an increase of insurance premiums, taxes, and other medical costs that would be passed onto the consumer, as more and more people would depend on emergency room visits, as opposed to preventative care and treatment for conditions that could be/are chronic.

As minor conditions are left untreated due to health care and insurance costs, this is detrimental to the health of this country.  And, the band-aids that are being used to solve the health care situation at the state level (as opposed to the federal level) are not a real solution.  Instead, they are postponing the inevitable by

by hastening the day the current system falls apart.

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