Sunday, July 19, 2009

Riddle Me This

Can any one who supports government health care really guarantee that citizens will enjoy the same, or better, coverage under a government plan than they enjoy now? Here's the scenario you have to work with"

White male, 81 years old. He has suffered a series of strokes that has left him paralyzed on the right side of his body. His left knee has been replaced, he has a pace-maker and cancer. His every need has been covered under his private insurance. What say you?

I think it is obvious that the man in the above example is my father. He is going to die, we all are, but in his case it is a pretty good bet his death will come sooner than later. Ten years ago when he had his strokes his doctors gave us a decision. They told us that if he lived that he would be paralyzed, he would be brain damaged. My father had (has) a Living Will and the doctors were not required to do anything. The decision belonged to my mother and I. Can anyone guarantee that if the health plan places, that other families will be given the same opportunity my Mom and I were given?

Dad had surgery Friday to remove a blood clot. His doctor was pretty pissed off with him because he had fallen more than a week ago but didn't seek medical attention because his doctor was on vacation. I told him that pretty soon he may not be eligible for medical coverage so he'd needed to quit being so stubborn and accept care now while it is still available. He countered by asking me to promise that I would have a surgery that I have put off for over a year. I haven't looked at my Dad in the eye and lied since I was sixteen years old so I told him that I would "check it out".

Some people, employing a ratio of contribution to society/cost to society would argue that treating my father simply doesn't make sense and is an inefficient use of society's health dollars. I say let society keep its health dollars, the private system is working just fine.

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