3 Good reasons we need Health Care Reform

Health care is a very heated debate right now. According to the latest polls, public support for health care is slipping. A CBS poll last month shows support for health care reform dropped from 42 percent  in October, to 36 percent in January. Though what is unclear is why the public does not support health care reform. It seems scare tactics do play a role and also the idea of cost. Both of the arguments against health care are the very reason why we need health care reform. Here are 3 good reasons why health care reform is an important issue that needs to pass Congress.

These are real accounts from real people. I have changed their identity, but I assure you these are real. If any of these stories were yours I am sure you would be a strong advocate for health care reform.

1.   I was discussing health care with a couple of co-workers of mine about a month ago. One co-worker, Kim, is opposed to health care. When I asked her why all she could say was that she didn’t like the idea of the government having their hands on health care. I asked her if she knew anyone who was really happy with their current health care plan. To this she had no answer. I also tried to explain to her that there are a lot of people out there who cannot get insurance do to pre-existing conditions and that is when my other co-worker, Sarah chimed in.

Sarah’s sister is a self-employed writer. She does not have health insurance, as she cannot find anyone who is willing to insure her. You see, when Sarah’s sister was in college she had an ailment that often caused her to pass out at random times. She was in and out of the hospital numerous times. The doctor’s never figured out what was wrong with her, but it has been many years since her illness returned.

In the insurance world, they call this a “pre-existing condition” which means they do not have to cover her. By not permitting insurance companies to deny coverage due to preexisting conditions, health care reform could and would change this.

2.   A couple years ago, I decided to do what thousands of other American’s do every year… I decided to become self-employed. It sounded like a great idea, but I quickly realized it’s a lot of work, and most people do not make much money right out of the gate. That and being self-employed means you have to get your own health insurance.

I did not need full-coverage. Just enough to get me by if something major came up. After researching many options, I decided to go with the insurance my co-workers had. My co-workers were all male. I, however, am a female. This meant that my rates were nearly 3 times more than my male counterparts. They paid around $120 a month for health insurance, while I had to pay around $350. I was not able to opt-out of coverage that would relate to having a baby and this was the source of the cost difference. By not permitting health care to be based on a persons gender, health care reform would change this.

3.   The last reason is what is really driving me to write this blog. It was after a long phone call I had with one of my best friends, Jane. Jane operates the HR department for her company of 14. Being the sole HR personnel, she is the one in charge when it comes time to renew the company’s health plan every year. Jane has until March 1 to sign up for her health care plan. While Jane is crunching her numbers, she is constantly reminded the fact that she is possibly suffering from an intestinal disease. Seven of Jane’s co-workers are between the ages of 50 to 60, and two of her co-workers wives are battling breast cancer.

Her company is suffering like most, so the news was extra hard to hear. In March of 2008, her company paid $330 per month per person for health insurance. In March of 2009, that number jumped to $550 per person. And in March of 2010, she has to convince her boss to pay $780 per person for the same coverage. Keep in mind this is per person. If an employee is married with two kids the total cost per month is $3,120.00 or the equivalence of someone’s monthly salary.

Jane’s company is Main Street; these are your average Joes. This is small business, Middle America. Companies like Jane’s have to make the choice between giving their employees health care and losing employees, or dropping health care altogether. This is not right. By capping rate hikes or passing a public option to promote competition, health care reform could and would change this.

Protecting the currently unprotected Americans from greedy insurance companies is exactly why we need health care reform.

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2 responses to “3 Good reasons we need Health Care Reform”

  1. Sandy Chapman says :

    I think there has been a strong message being sent by people disguised as grass roots – working folks – that is touching emotions of many. We love to hate and distrust politicians, been told for years the government can’t do anything efficiently.

    I was particularly amused at hearing Glen Beck touting learning about ______ at the library, the FREE library!!!
    Excuse me, the library is paid by the public funds (aka “the commons” .

    Another example is Virginia and Massachussetts are COMMONWEALTHS, you know common-wealth… taxes are a must to provide for the COMMON good…

    Taxation should be fair, not just tax working people that earn below a certain amount.

    We should all think in depth, what things are for common good, and what things are private sector (for profit), what things should be combined. (A la public option… OPTION being key word.)

    There is some misconception that many good community (communist?) things come that from taxes and GOVERNMENT are better being privatized (or FOR PROFIT)!

    We are already paying too much for coverage and increasing by leaps and bounds.

    Minimum reform should be regulate health care insurance. The code for “buy across state lines” is: insurance company can set headquarters in the least regulated state.

    People want to point to illegal aliens or someone to blame for this. We cannot stop there, we can look at CEO, board members, stockholders, smokers, overweight people, drug addicts and alcoholics. Blame them and leave my Medicare alone.

    Continually raising rates will drive away MORE customers from buying insurance, causing ever more rising premiums for individuals AND businesses. The response has been “I have to cut somewhere”, businesses say pay more or all of your own, individuals will put off things that may be treated and return to work to care for themselves and family.

    Public option is a necessary component to health care reform, because competition works best to control costs.

    Yes, we are trained to think the government is evil and free market is good. Well, why do we have insurance agents selling insurance policies that say this and that is covered up to a certain amount or age only? Isn’t that a panel (insurance company) one must stand before to be scrutinized?

    Medicare is wonderful for those over 65, just ask them. We had government create the Medicare part D that restricts and gives certain profit to certain corporations.

    The problem is there is higher unemployment, less revenue going out to a growing segment that needs more care. The younger person is likely to put off buying insurance. The ideal for insurance would be collect premiums from the young and healthy to pay for the ill or injured.

    Social Security is wonderful, just ask anyone collecting it. Working folks pay (insurance premium?) for the elderly, with their turn later. Myth: Social Security will die before I collect.
    Check your pay stub, small print shows a maximum taxable income. Federal IRA form says EXCESS FICA (Federal Insurance Contribution Act). Solution: remove or raise income maximum (that is being done incrementally under the radar now).

    If nobody is able to sell for excessive profit, then the prices would remain consistent and revenues collected would create a pool for treating the public that does not have other options.
    If we have health care reform with a public option, we have equipment manufacturers/sales for profit, buy stock in those things like gloves, masks, surgical instruments.

    Interstate highways are wonderful and used by corporations and individuals. Without these roads, we have to hope for the road to be maintained enough to travel.

    These things are government taxes collected but basically works like insurance. We share the cost for others and use when we need it.

    The following words deserve a moment to digest what they mean to Americans.
    We hear Socialism and Communism are bad, but society and community are good. We have a segment of society that have an initial response to people as distrustful and suspicious, fear responses. These responses are more noticeable if the person is different.

    There is a sort of tribal response, fight or flight. Analyze the situation, size up the person, then strike out or run away from it.

    Those politicians and lobbyists that are influenced by insurance and drug companies know how to make people fear and loathe the government. But if we think it through, we are defending the corporations that are responsible for our misery (rising COSTS of health care). Not a lowering quality, since people are happy with Medicare.

    To me, Health Care has been co-opted by insurance companies for profit making.

    Think of the drug ads permeating the media and how much TV air time costs. Think of how much the CEO and Execs on Insurance and Drug companies make in bonuses and stock options! No wonder they are fighting against it, trying to manipulate minds to fear and hate the government.

    In my opinion, it is obscene and immoral to have someone decide what life is worth, putting a limit on how much will be paid by insurance, what treatment or drug is too costly, whom will be covered and how a doctor should treat a patient.

    If people would think of an insurance company CEO like they think of the President (substitute distrust of the president or politician for corporate interest).

    Unless you pay cash for health care (I suppose that is possible, remember paying doctor with livestock?), you are subjected to scrutiny by insurance company.

    We have lost our way, allowing corporations to form huge mega corporations and becoming confused by hating big government and ignoring big, huge multinational corporations.

    I believe the tea bag folks have some very good points, angry with being “left behind” and victimized by government and politicians. They are RIGHT! The only thing is, they are not seeing that multinational corporations are TAKING CONTROL of our government and the politicians are more and more bowing to those with the money.

    That is a topic for another day… Supreme Court Ruling that Corporations are people with rights and can donate unlimited amounts to candidates.

  2. penni4urthought says :

    Good to know I’m not the only one fired up about this subject.
    I believe we put Obama in the white house because we were fed up with the government and big business. I still believe he has big ideas. I believe he WANTS the public option. I just do not understand why the Senate won’t pass it. I mean I understand, but it IS what the people want.
    The right wing has been telling lies for so long I believe they actually believe what they are saying. There are politicians who want to do good things, but sadly they are the minority.

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