Obama's Health Care Reform


(mamacolby) #1

What do we all think?  Potential pros/cons?  Impact on type one's?


(system) #2

I will admit I know very little about this because I haven't taken the time to look into it. I realize how important it is (or can be).

I did hear there was a part in there somewhere about insurance companies can't deny you for pre-existing conditions. That would be great. Right now I have an impossible time finding independent insurance because most companies aren't willing to pay for diabetes supplies or other specialists I see. I graduated so I'm no longer eligible for student insurance. Luckily, I can stay on my parents' insurance for $125/mo until December, then I have to go on COBRA which is $405/mo. Yikes. I'm not eligible for benefits through my current job, and I tried looking for a different job with benefits for a couple months with no success. Finding private insurance would certainly be a lot easier and probably more affordable if companies legally couldn't deny me. That's a possible pro.


(paulg765) #3

As President Obama has said himself, health care reform in the United States is no longer an option..., it is an emergency.  There are too many people with serious chronic conditions like diabetes who are unemployed and can not afford the health care offered by the private insurance companies.  Having a "public" option will not only provide a low-cost alternative, but it will also force the private insurers to be more competitive.  Our health care system also needs to be streamlined and modernized in order to control rising costs and wasteful spending.  Personally, I don't believe that the wealthy should be making huge profits at the expense of others being able to have health care.  It's about time somebody stepped up to the plate and made a commitment to resolving the health care crisis in the country.  It should have been done years ago.  Thank you President Obama.  I support your efforts.


(sarahslp) #4

From what I understand, not only will insurance companies be required to cover people w/ pre-existing conditions, they will be required to charge everyone the same amount, with an exception for a higher rate based on age. 

I'm hopeful, but the bill still has to be finalized in the house, combined w/ the senate bill, etc, etc, so we'll see what happens.

Can you imagine being able to take any job you want (I've always wanted to go into private practice!) w/o having to worry about not having insurance coverage? It's like a dream!


(Monique H) #5

I agree that reform is absolutely necessary.  No one should have to face bankruptcy because they or someone in their family becomes ill, and no parent should ever have to choose between buying groceries and taking their sick child to the hospital.  And, there needs to be a better way of controlling costs.  I took our youngest to the clinic for a burn, and they charged me $15 for a 4x4 sized non-sterile gauze.  I buy an entire box at the pharmacy for a couple of dollars.  And, there needs to be transparency in the billing and payment process between insurance companies and providers.  Many times I never see the bills our insurance company is paying because I'm left completely out of the loop.  How do I know those costs are legitimate if I never see them?

On the other side, I'm not sure insurance companies should be forced to pay the costs of caring for people who do not take reasonable care of their own health.  The CDC just stated yesterday that obesity costs $140Billion per year in additional medical costs in the US, and the problem is getting worse every year.  I realize there are some individuals who truly struggle with weight, but if you're exercising and eating well, the negative effects can be minimized.  Overall, obesity just seems to have become an accepted lifestyle in the US, and the costs associated with a lifetime of poor choices have become enormous, both to indivduals and families, and to the insurance and medical industries.  I'm sure my MIL's T2 would either reverse entirely or improve enough to get her off insulin if she lost 100 lb, took a leisurely walk around the neighborhood twice a day, and ate healthier foods.  It would also significantly reduce her chance of a second heart attack.

I know it sounds pretty harsh, but perhaps under a reformed system there should be some way to adjust insurance premiums based on how well you choose to care for your own health.  I think most insurance companies have come a long way in covering preventative care, smoking cessation, etc., but each individual needs to take responsibility for their own health by taking advantage of programs that are offered, or just doing it on their own.  Otherwise, under a regulated system, we're likely to bankrupt the health insurance industry, and then have to bail it out with taxpayer funds...

Hoppin' off the soapbox...

Mo

 


(hcole) #6

I don't even live in the states, however, I was just in Hawaii for 10 days about a month ago.  I put my tooth right through my lip surfing and had to go get stitches.  I wouldn't have bothered if it wasn't my face because I only needed 2.  To have the wound frozen, rinsed out, and stitched cost me $600 US, which ended up being just over $700 Canadian!!!  That is ridiculous!!!  In Alberta I would have gotten all of that for $0.


(hcole) #7

So yay for public healthcare!


(DDrumminMan) #8

[quote user="Heather Cole"]

So yay for public healthcare!

[/quote]

Of course you're paying for it in higher taxes everyday.  But it does sounds like a good system to me.  I've talked to people in Canada and Great Britain and they both were happy with their coverage.

As far as what we'll get in the USA, I am skeptical as far as what benefits we'll see.  I read in the paper today they compromised to get more congressmen/senators to go along with it.  They removed the stipulation that all business must either provide health insurance or pay an 8% tariff.  Now only businesses who make $500,000 or more have to do this.  The government option which really is just Uncle Sam buying insurance for you will be available for 11% of your pay.  Remains to be seen what that covers and what co pays are etc.  But if a person makes $40,000, their premium would be $4400 per year or $370 per month.  Originally they wanted the government plan to pay Medicare rates, but after the compromise, individual doctors and hospitals can negotiate their own rates.  Chalk up a win for Doctors and Hospitals and drug companies.

I'd prefer to see some system where the US Government would buy insurance for every American as the largest pool of all times.  They should be able to negotiate a fair rate.  Insurance companies would no longer have to advertise etc, so their costs could go down.  They would become a claims processing service primarily.  Make a law that all people getting health care now would get the money the company conrtibuted added to their pay.  Then raise taxes on EVERYONE 2% or 5% or whatever to cover it all. I think although I could be wrong that it is pretty much what Canada does.

I'm not trying to be a pessimist, just a cynical realist.  But I think in 10 years we'll be paying a higher percentage of GDP on health care and getting less.  With as much power and influence the insurance and pharmaceutical industries have, it will be hard to change it for the benefit of the people and not the insurance and pharmaceutical companies.  And of course congress does what the people who give them the most money to put in their freezers and golf trips and fancy steak dinners and cognac want them to do.

But, we'll see ...

 


(A-D) #9

There was an interesting article on cnn money: http://money.cnn.com/2009/07/24/news/economy/health_care_reform_obama.fortune/index.htm it wasn't entirely positive but it did bring up some interesting points.  If I have access to the treatments I want and can see a doctor I like - I'm happy... guess time will tell...

Cheers!

A-D


(hcole) #10

[quote user="DDrumminMan"]Of course you're paying for it in higher taxes everyday.[/quote]

 

I seem to get my taxes worth with stitches and getting my shoulder re-located.  Ugh.  I am a walking disaster.


(Kateski) #11

[quote user="Heather Cole"]

I don't even live in the states, however, I was just in Hawaii for 10 days about a month ago.  I put my tooth right through my lip surfing and had to go get stitches.  I wouldn't have bothered if it wasn't my face because I only needed 2.  To have the wound frozen, rinsed out, and stitched cost me $600 US, which ended up being just over $700 Canadian!!!  That is ridiculous!!!  In Alberta I would have gotten all of that for $0.

[/quote]

That actually sounds really cheap to me for US emergency care... When I broke my wrist on an indo board it cost me about $2000!


(Kateski) #12

I also am a walking, flying, balancing, speeding, riding, gliding disaster, without health insurance...  


(BryanPon) #13

[quote user="Kate"]

I also am a walking, flying, balancing, speeding, riding, gliding disaster, without health insurance...  

[/quote]

RE: disaster -- ditto,  but I do (luckily) have insurance...


(DDrumminMan) #14

Exactly.  That's the way it's supposed to work.  A lot of other people in Canada don't have diabetes or any other chronic condition and aren't walking disasters.  They pay taxes and don't recoup.  It balances out.

The problem in the US is we have insurance comapnies and hospitals etc. that can cover only who they want and not everyone pays into the insurance.  So, the people with insurance pay more and a lot more is paid by taxes.  Many can't see doctors at all becuase they don't have insurance.  So, when they get the flu, they don't go to the doctor's office, they go to the hospital emergency room. it is very expensive and since they can't pay, people with inusrance and tax payers pick up the bill.  Truly it is a mess.  I wish we could go to what you have.  But down here, money (and only money) talks.  The insurance companies and pharmacueticals etc. have LOTSSSS of money so what they're saying is what's getting heard.


(Brittany) #15

I don't know much about it either but I think it would be good. We need help especially since the economy. My dad is about to loose his job. He almost lost it the first time they layed people off. He works at Freightliner in Mt. Holly NC. The economy has hit them hard. My parents don't know I know this but I overheard them talking. Since he is loosing his job we are loosing his insurance and we will have to go on my moms. When we go on hers it will cost a couple a hundred a month. If we ever needed a Health Care Reform it's now. I mean alot of people aren't able to get the right medical supplies they need like Type 1s. I think it would help alot. I'm just really worried.


(A-D) #16

Brittany,

For those who are drowning and saying - "quick throw me a line" I am just hoping that line is attached to a floatation device and not a boat anchor...  There is a need for a change - I am always worried about jumping at the first offer...

Cheers!

A-D


(h8cldwx) #17

There is soooo much for all of us to learn about it.  As of yesterday, I became a member of the JDRF and have volunteered to talk to my state reps about being Type I and the associations, such as medical costs and research.  It's part of the Promise campaign.  This campaign is about getting more money for research and about making sure we as Type I's have coverage if/when this new reform goes into place.  You too can join and meet with your state representatives... just click on the ad near the top of the page about educating others.  I think eventually it will make a difference.


(Brittany) #18

[quote user="A-D"]

Brittany,

For those who are drowning and saying - "quick throw me a line" I am just hoping that line is attached to a floatation device and not a boat anchor...  There is a need for a change - I am always worried about jumping at the first offer...

[/quote]

A-D I know exactly what you mean! I am worried about that too.


(dietpepsiislove) #19

I like the fact that it has a part in it making it so that insurance has to charge people about the same rates, and can't deny based on health conditions.

I don't think they're doing it quite the right way, though.  Have you heard about this mandated "end of life counselling" or any of the other waste in it?  The bill is too long for the lawmakers to really read and go over, and it's too long and complicated to be practical.  There's a bunch of crap in there that somebody at one point said, hey lets try this, without thinking about the effects, and we're going to have to deal with that once it gets passed.  If it gets passed.

And then there's the issue of raising taxes and national debt...


(paulg765) #20

In my opinion, I don't know how any person with Type 1 Diabetes could intelligently argue against any health reform which would provide affordable health coverage for all Americans,.. rich or poor, employed or unemployed.  Yes, the particular legislation like all legislation will undoubtedly by over-complicated, full of unnecessary provisions and far from perfect, but we have to start somewhere.

Type 1 diabetes under the best of circumtances with no complications is a very expensive illness to treat with all its required medications (insulin), supplies, lab testing, and doctor visits.  Add to it the possibility of laser treatment for retinapathy, dialysis or transplantation for kidney disease, intervention cardiology and surgery for heart disease, etc. and it could be life threatening without access to health care.

Pharmaceutical, insurance and other corporate entities are spending millions of dollars a day lobbying congress against a health reform bill.  It would be a huge defeat for YOU and all Type 1 diabetics if they get their way.