Health Care Reform NOT

Chuck Sheketoff

"I mean, people have access to health care in America. After all, you just go to an emergency room."

-- President George W. Bush, Cleveland, Ohio, July 10, 2007

Read the full statement by the President here and discuss.

  • (Show?)

    No wonder he failed at every business he ever ran. He has zero concept of how not having universal coverage it forces millions of uninsured (and underinsured) to only seek medical care through the least effective most expensive method we have (the E.R.)... usually when problems only become acute (hence the least effective part) and thereby causing cost shifting to those who do have insurance and the overall cost of medical delivery through rate and service fee hikes.

    The best thing we could do to help small businesses and local businesses is to institute single-payer universal coverage. This would shift a HUGE portion of the cost to employers off of their books and actually reduce the overall cost of medical care for everyone.

    Yet another aspect of why it is harder for our companies to compete in the world market, when we are the only industrialized western nation to not have universal coverage and the cost shifting is ultimately paid for by our businesses.

  • Sid Leader (unverified)

    Nothing like a $250 bottle of Robitussin to make some poor, sick guy feel better!

    Then again, this is the same President who applauded a woman for working three jobs just to make ends meet in GWB's America.

  • JTT (unverified)

    Bush: the best health care policy is one that emphasizes private health.

    No Mr. Bush, the best health care policy is one that emphasizes primary and preventative care and that allows health care to be affordable and available to everyone.

    Bush: and it is working, right here in America today.

    Really, you think it's working? You just told 46 million Americans that there's no reason they don't have health insurance...that it's their problem and the government and private sector is doing everything right. Talk about out of touch!

    Surprisingly, Bush talked about the need for price and medical outcome transparency, which is a necessity for reform. He also talked about the need for electronic medical records and technology, which is also essential for reform. America (gov't and private sector) spends next to nothing on health care IT and as a result our system is inefficient and our outcomes are poorer. He talks about pooling, which is good, but he ends by talking about HSAs as the solution. HSAs may be a solution for healthy people who can actually afford health insurance in the first place...but they aren't the solution for middle class working America.

    Though he touched on some good things (surpsingly), this speech simply highlighted how OUT OF TOUCH Bush is with the crisis of health care in America.

  • (Show?)

    You sure can tell Bush has never been to the ER for anything.

    They look at you, tell you something is wrong with [insert part of body here], and that you need to go make an appointment with your doctor.

    If you're lucky they prescribe something, and then send you on your way.

    Unless your pain is really, really bad, it's almost impossible to get pain medication. I've had them tell me that they don't like to prescribe medications - especially pain medications - anymore. They'd prefer your primary care doctor did that.

    I've had to practically beg for meds to get me through the weekend until my doctor's office opened on Monday. That's happened even when it was my own primary care doctor who sent me there because they couldn't fit me in on Friday and thought I couldn't wait until Monday to be treated.

    And getting more than a simple diagnosis almost never happens, and they're definitely not going to set up a treatment plan.

    And don't even get me started on the wait.

    I was attacked my a raccoon once, which bit my leg and took two good sized chunks out of my left arm. Where we lived in Texas it was faster to drive to the ER yourself. So my dad drove.

    We got there and they had me sign it - never asked what was wrong, and it didn't ask on the sign in form. I tried showing the nurse I was bleeding, and she just waved me over to the waiting area.

    Several more times we tried to show them I was bleeding, but they didn't seem to care.

    More than an hour later I got called back. Now, there was about 6 other people waiting in this huge waiting room - that was it. And with the exception of 2 they were all waiting on someone to come out. So they weren't extremely busy. It was early in the day on a weekday - maybe around 8 a.m. And I should note I did indeed have insurance at the time - I was working for a Congressman and I had great insurance.

    They did my pulse, blood pressure, and asked what was wrong. And then I had to wash the area of my arm myself. Then I was sent back out to wait some more.

    After a long wait again, I was finally called back to a room. Where I waited something like 45 more minutes. Then a doctor finally came to stitch me up.

    He barely looked at the wound, and no tests were done to see what kind of damage was done underneath the skin. They gave me a quick shot of pain killer, and then went to work.

    When I told the doctor I could feel the needle as he sutured me up, he told me I was wrong. Of course I now know that I was indeed right - I don't react to pain meds correctly and have to be given more than usual. This was confirmed when I had my c-section and I felt the doctor cutting me open. Those doctors immediately gave me more meds - since they were already working and it was an emergency c-section, it was enough morphine to knock me out. But the doctor at the ER wouldn't even consider that maybe I could indeed feel them squeezing and holding the injured areas, and that I could feel him stitching.

    Thanks to his great work, I have limited use of my left arm. Apparently there was damage to a ligament, muscle, etc. from the bites. While I can squeeze my hand the same, and can push against things the same, I can only hold things for a short period of time. That pull you feel in the lower half of your arm when you flex your arm is no longer present in that arm. And my ability to pick up anything heavy (like my 5 year-old) is limited.

    Bush will never understand what "health care" at an ER is like. Because of who he is, even if he went to one at any point in his life, he'd be treated differently. He wouldn't need three trips to the ER for a condition before it was finally treated. Or to spend all that money to go to the ER, only to be told to go to your primary care doctor.

  • ellie (unverified)

    Access my ass.

    That's like saying I have access to millions of dollars just because I can walk into a bank.

  • (Show?)

    Meanwhile in Oregon...

    -The Democratically-controlled Legislature passed HB 2213, ensuring that patients can receive estimated costs of treatments from insurers before selecting a treatment.

    -The Democratically-controlled Legislature had not one, but TWO committees dedicated to Health Care reform: Sen. Bates and Sen. Westlund's Special Committee on Health Care Reform and Rep. Greenlick's House Committee on Health Care Access.

    -Republicans and Democrats came together to craft HB 3097--which provides pilot project grants to experiment with much-needed reform to the health care delivery system, concentrating on primary care in communities.

    -Republicans and Democrats came together to pass SB 329, which will lead Oregon down the road to universal access to health care.

    -The Democratically-controlled legislature is sending the Healthy Kids Program/Tobacco Tax increase to the voters this November in a win-win for Oregonians' health.

    -The Legislature will convene in February to consider a constitutional amendment declaring Health Care as a Fundamental Right, just like education and public safety.

    It shouldn't take a terrible President to make us realize just how valuable our state government can really be. But just look at what's been accomplished!

  • (Show?)

    ...or like saying every citizen "access to democracy" just because he/she can poke a button on a touch-screen.

  • pat malach (unverified)

    ...but you know what's really scary? The collective brain trust of the Democratic machine managed to lose to this meatstick ... TWICE.

  • Robert G. Gourley (unverified)

    The objective has got to be to make sure America is the best place in the world to get health care, that we're the most innovative country, that we encourage doctors to stay in practice, that we are robust in the funding of research, and that patients get good, quality care at a reasonable cost.

    Instead of this, how about perfect health for everyone?

    It's kind of like a golf score of 18.

    But it has several features. First we'll be able to tell, in detail, how well we are doing. Second, the closer we get to our goal the less our health care system will cost.

    So if you were going to design a health care system for securing perfect health for everyone, what would it look like?

  • j_luthergoober (unverified)

    If you really think about it, and you're working, say, for a company (or a State or Federal government) in America, and they provide a health care plan for you, there's a third-party (privately employed) payer. Well, if somebody else pays the bills, why do you care what the cost is at the time of purchase?

    Junior has unknowingly admitted to America that he is a welfare king.

  • Nina (unverified)

    People are still listening to this puppeteering monkey speak?! We all know by now he's completely out of touch with anything outside his microscopic bubble of wealth mixed with extreme arrogance and spiced up perfectly with stupidity.

    We provide the best health care to Georgie boy and the rest of our federally elected officials with our tax money. It's only right, fair and just that they return the favor. I've e-mailed those thoughts to DeFazio. Hey Mr. D--I'm helping to ensure you have excellent health care coverage. You need to do the same thing for me.

    A trip to the ER doesn't guarantee a damn thing. Just ask the woman who died last month (in California I believe) waiting to be seen at her local ER.

  • Payal (unverified)

    Has anyone heard of SB 329 that was just passed in Oregon. The Healthy Oregon act is Oregon's attempt to pass a state health care system to cover all Oregonians and addresses the "Crossing the Quality Chasm" goals of hih qualilty, effective, safe, patient-centered, evidence based and affordable health care. SB 329 combines parts of the Archimedes movement, OHP and other pieces to create health reform that will make sure all Oregonians (including students such as myself) are covered!

    Any comments or opinions about this? I'm sure Bush would have no opinion on this because he has no idea that this is even occuring in "his" county even though he is technically (on paper) the president.

  • Payal (unverified)

    P.S. I am a MPH student at PSU and would like to hear what people think about SB329...sort of an online focus group. Anyone interested? If individuals do express and interest in the next two-three weeks, I will post an email address that individuals can use to contact me...easier to organize and exchange info...

  • Robert G. Gourley (unverified)

    SB 329 combines parts of the Archimedes movement, OHP and other pieces to create health reform that will make sure all Oregonians (including students such as myself) are covered!

    SB329 is a start, a within the state start. But to provide a long term, lasting solution the provisions of SB 27 needed to be passed too. Go to the Archimedes Movement to join in on the debate.


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