Health care mandate in the United States

At a health care town hall last year, our representative said that US citizens have not given Congress a mandate for health care.

I raised my hand. “I beg to differ. The mandate is already law. The law says that no person in the US can be refused care at any emergency room. We have the mandate. Unfortunately the emergency room is the most expensive and cruel and last minute care that we could possibly choose.”

Expensive: any ER visit costs more than a whole day of visits to my rural family medicine clinic.

Last minute: the emergency room doesn’t do chronic care. Their purpose is to 1. try to stop someone from dying and 2. decide if the person should be hospitalized or should follow up in clinic. They do not do prenatal care, treat high blood pressure, treat diabetes, depression, high cholesterol, alcoholism. They do not do chronic care and aren’t meant to.

Cruel: you can go to the emergency room to try to keep from dying. Say you go coughing blood. They find a lung cancer. Now, you have a choice: be treated and maybe you will survive or maybe you will die anyhow and your house will be sold to pay for the medical care. Do you choose to go home instead and die so that your family inherits the house?

The United States spends twice as much per person as the next most expensive health care system in the world and they have universal health care and we don’t. We care more for corporate profit then US citizens and visitors health. I cringe when the discussion is about health INSURANCE not health CARE.

I am a physician but I also own my own business. As a small business owner, I think that I will soon have to close. Why? I am in my 50s with a daughter. I think that within two years my HEALTH INSURANCE will cost more than I pay myself. And I will close the clinic.

We need health CARE not health INSURANCE. The Obamacare law said that health insurance companies can ONLY keep 20 cents of every health care dollar they collect, down from 22.5 cents. They have to spend 80 cents on health care. For medicare the overhead is 2-3 cents per dollar.

Medicare for all, single payer. Put 97 cents of every health care dollar to health care instead of only 80 cents. Or shall we continue down the road to small business and local government collapse and citizen health collapse?

Congress, you can’t wheel and deal your way out of this one. We want health care for our dollar not insurance.

For the Daily Prompt: wheel.

7 thoughts on “Health care mandate in the United States

  1. newepicauthor says:

    I just heard that the nation’s wealthiest Americans would get a hefty tax cut from the Senate health care bill. Those in the top 0.1%, earning $5 million or more, would receive an average tax cut of nearly $250,000 in 2026, according to a new analysis by the Tax Policy Center. Those in the top 1%, who earn $875,000 and up, would see an average tax savings of $45,500 a year.

    • drkottaway says:

      Yes, and meanwhile my disabled and poorest and elderly poor would lose coverage….great, it’s CongressHood, robbing from the poor, to further enrich the richest. So greatest country in what sense? Greed?

    • drkottaway says:

      I can’t press “like” because I am so angry at Congress and the greed of the top 0.1%. What, they need solid gold bathroom fixtures?

      • newepicauthor says:

        Trump thinks that he is doing a great job at draining the swamp, but from where I stand it seems to be getting bigger and deeper.

  2. Very thought-provoking post. My family has dealt with all kinds of issues with healthcare. It’s just not right.

    • drkottaway says:

      Thank you. I think it is not moral to say people can go to the emergency room but have to lose their house and descend into poverty to get cancer treatment or heart treatment or help them after a car wreck. It is a heartless cruel immoral system.

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