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Universal Health (I don’t) Care Coverage September 7, 2009

Posted by 5 Wester in General Announcements.


The debate rages on… the president pushing his agenda, “angry mobs” storming townhall meetings across the country…(Oops, correction) not angry mobs… “furious mobs”  (Oops, sorry again)… not “furious mobs”… just good ol’ common sense and critically thinking Americans who can smell dead fish from a mile away. It’s nice to know that that America still exists!

I think what the president ought to do is just STOP, LOOK, and LISTEN

STOP pushing the health care agenda…

LOOK at the current healthcare situation and do a comprehensive study…

LISTEN to the people and what they say…

I find it odd that a president, who hasn’t gone to church (as far as I know), who hid behind his desk during the National Day of Prayer, all of a sudden calls on the religious leaders of the country to urge them to tell their congregation that it is our “moral obligation” to get health care to the masses. It’s like atheists who cry “God save me!” when their plane is about to crash. I don’t think there has been any comprehensive studies made on the current health care situation of the country (unless you know of some, I’d like to hear from you). I believe this is what we need… not universal healthcare… at least not now.

Yes, health care is definitely important , especially today and in this uncertain economy. We all agree that the cost of health care has gone up as more and more people live longer, sicker lives. And although the thought of health care for everyone may be a noble idea, the reality is that, not everyone wants healthcare. Simply put, if one doesn’t care about their health, why should the rest of us have to pay for it? After all, this is AMERICA. We can do anything we want because we have the FREEDOM to do anything we want! Right?

We can decide not to live healthy, we can decide to live wrecklessly, we can decide to sit in front of the TV all day munching on salty tortilla chips and downing gallons and gallons of soda while piling on the ice cream and chocolate chip cookies till it comes out of our noses. We can decide to drink cases of beer or hard liquor till our liver turns yellow and we start pooping blood that gushes out where the sun don’t shine while we’re being turned in the ICU because we wanted “just one more sip” for 10 years. Heck, we can smoke all the cigarettes that can fit in our mouth all at once and go through 3 cases a day till we end up intubated in the ICU and dependent on a vent. We can eat all we can in those chinese buffets and Mexican restaurants til we get so big that nurses break their backs when they give us bed baths or turn us to prevent pressure sores. That’s all good, it’s your business, you’re paying your health premiums, do whatever you want. Live la viva loca. But what about those that don’t pay their health premiums or do not have healthcare coverage that live life in wreckless abandon? Don’t judge me… mind your own business!

Here’s the deal… and I think here’s were the debate comes in. There are definitely people that NEED health care because of their medical condition that IS NOT THEIR FAULT. For example, those who were born with developmental or congenital anomalies, those that were stricken with an uncurable degenerative disease who were otherwise healthy, those who are stricken with diseases of old age, etc., etc. There are also those that NEED health care because of disabilities that IS NOT THEIR FAULT. For example, those who got injured severely on the job, that lost all limbs or sustained a devastating head injury, unforseen accidents that caused their disabilities, victims of violent crimes, our veterans (most definitely), etc., etc. I’m sure we can name other situations that someone would need health care becuase of an unfortunate event that IS NOT THEIR FAULT.

On the other hand, there are those that NEED health care, BUT was caused by their wrecklessness. For example, drunk drivers getting into a car wreck and ending up paralyzed, victims of self inflicted gun shot wounds because of playing Russian Roulette, a failed suicide attempt (this is iffy), etc., etc. The list goes on, and on.

How about the people who have Medicare… those who’ve worked hard all their lives, were productive members of society who because of the frailty of old age are sick. They take care of themselves as much as they can, they take their medications religiously, they follow doctor’s advice, they do everything they can to live healthy lives. I’m sure they would definitely need healthcare. Then there are some who, for some reason or another, did not work hard, who couldn’t find a job, who were not fortunate enough to get educated and thus couldn’t find a job, who get sick because of poverty, who just did not have the means to contribute to Medicare. They need healthcare too, but who’s paying for that?

How about the difference between, universal healthcare access, and healthcare entitlement. Am I more entitled to healthcare because I contributed to society by working hard and raising my familiy right? Or do I expect other people to pay for my healthcare and continue to live my life as unhealthy as I please because I am entitled to it?

There is no doubt that the middle class mostly could afford health insurance, and that the wealthy, and politicians, do get the best health care available. There are people in the mid to lower class that have a job that could not, or do not have health insurance. They work and strive to make a living, yet healthcare is out of reach simply because they cannot afford it. Then there are those who are just plain lazy. They think the world owes them a living. They think society owes them from the years of “white man” oppression. They may be able bodied but refuses to work because they are entitled to something anyway. And so, on and so forth.

What can we do? At the moment, we need to do nothing. The best thing we can do is to STOP, LOOK, and LISTEN. And although pundits or even the president would say that if we do nothing, we are digging ourselves deeper and deeper into a hole, I believe unless we figure things out first… the what, whys, and hows… the only option we have is to keep healthcare the way it is. There is just too many people involved in this “broken” system that an overnight, over the weekend vote by congress, who do not even read what they are voting for, would solve anything.

I believe that the best healthcare experts the president could and should hear from are those who are at the forefront of healthcare delivery, WE THE NURSES!

We the nurses deliver healthcare. We the nurses see the effects of years of health abuse. We the nurses see the effects of lives lived in wreckless abandon. We the nurses see the mismanagement of healthcare resources. We the nurses see the exploit of physicians who run their practice as a business as opposed to service to the community. We the nurses see how hospitals exploit us for profit. We the nurses are the answer to healthcare reform. BUT WHAT ARE WE THE NURSES DOING?