Friday, 23 September 2011
HSCB - "My friend from America"
I love writing to people all over the world. Love to know what makes them tick, understand the differences and appreciate the similarities. I have American friends and I asked my dear friend ‘Eddie’ if he would consider writing a guest post on the blog re the differences of healthcare in The United States. He declined but gave me permission to publish excerpts from his letters. They are as follows (unedited apart from the first paragraph):
” When I think of America there are 3 things that immediately come to mind: Unaffordable health insurance (I have none)….
"About the health care issue, I'm sorry but I try to avoid blogs and it's not that I don't trust you, far from it; I just quite simply don't have the time. Also I don't have that much to tell really but feel free to use what ever I might come up with, perhaps under the heading "My friend from America" because I do look at you as my friend. One thing I can relate is that I had surgery for two hernia's about ten years ago and when it was over I owed $5000. I paid them what I could afford every month but that wasn't good enough so they put a collection agency on me who threatened to ruin my credit if I didn't pay up. I told them to go ahead and I also told them that you can't get blood out of a turnip. I finally paid them off, it took me five years.
"I didn't realize that your NHS was in jeopardy, and you should fight it because believe me you don't want the alternative. And let me guess it's your conservatives who are pushing to get rid of it?
"There are two main reasons why we have no nationalized health care in the states, lobbyists and the Republican Party. There are many different kinds of lobbyists in Washington, the gun industry has them, the pharmaceutical industry has them and the health care industry also. They are in Washington to fight for their respective clients interests and that entails blocking legislation that may be detrimental to said client. Last year Obama tried to over haul our health system but ran into such rabid opposition that the resulting bill ended up hurting the very people it was intended to help, i.e. poor people. Now I think I told you that I am a life long democrat (liberal) and would never under any circumstances vote for a republican (conservative). In my opinion the democrats are the good guys (or at least the lesser of two evils, politicians in general seem to be a rather unsavory bunch). It's democrats that have pushed legislation that actually help the average person and the poor, social security (which the conservatives are still trying to take away) unemployment insurance etc. The republicans have aligned themselves with white evangelicals and whenever they want to stir up their base they do what they always do, use fear. They started running ads during the health care debate that said Obama was trying to take away their health care and give it to the poor and also that Obama was a socialist (a very dirty word here). There was a public outcry against Obama i.e. the tea party (have you heard of these idiots?) and Obama was forced to back down. I would really like to ask these so called "Christians" what they think Jesus would say about all this. Do they think he would be against legislation that would help millions of poor people? I think not but the real motive for these people is money, they're afraid their taxes would go up. Christians in the U.S. are worried about your soul, because it's relatively cost effective to do so, but they don't give a damn about your health.”
My grandchildren might be writing something similar to the above in years to come when the NHS (as we know it) is dead and gone. The NHS is already partially privatized (PFIs) and will be more so soon. You, the tax payer will continue to contribute towards the NHS - but it will no longer be yours.
When you need a hip or knee replacement or whatever – you won’t get it. Do you get it? If you can afford private health care/insurance you just might be okay, that is if you mention the chest infection you had fifteen years ago – sure sign of COPD – for if you don’t you won’t be covered.
Private insurance companies want to make money from you – not pay for care.
Adopt a Lord (pretty damn soon) and stop the Health and Social Care Bill. Do it – or regret it (at painful) leisure.