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Health Care

February 9, 2011

Such a major issue, and there is politics in the air.  Who can truly believe in their own heart and soul that not every single person in the United States should have appropriate access to quality health care?

However, health care is not free. 

Democrats up for re-election in 2012 will feel tremendous pressure to reverse/alter/justify their vote on health care; and no doubt some (many?) will alter their positions depending on opinion polls from their districts.

Republicans also face concern.  If Republicans stay on the “repeal heath care” wagon, it will become a distraction from the economy, which at least in the eyes of the American voters, is just about the only thing that really matters.  The American public wants to see lower unemployment and in general, feel secure in their financial future.  A continuing bombardment of political rhetoric on heath care will have a devastating impact on the Republicans in 2012.

But back to health care:  The Unites States needs to provide access to quality health care for all.  I know of no one who would want to watch someone sick and be denied appropriate healthcare.  Some things, in my opinion, need to happen, and happen soon: 

  • The FDA needs to be quicker in its approval for medicines, trial clinics, etc.  We simply need to remove the bureaucracy of red tape surrounding the FDA; although to do so, we need drastic changes in tort reform.  FDA Commissioner Margaret Hamburg recently indicated that an estimated 25% of the economy is affected by FDA oversight.  As further indicated by the Milkin Institute in a University of Chicago study, life expectancy gains since 1970 added $3.2 trillion per year to America’s national wealth.  A 1% reduction in cancer deaths would equate to $500 billion!

 

  • Mandates – a very hot topic.  Simply, the law of large numbers is critical to the success of managing health care.  I understand and appreciate the argument – why should I be forced to buy health insurance?  Many people have compared it to car insurance in that it is mandated – but the difference is individuals can choose to drive and thus, at a minimum, liability insurance is required.  The argument is different with health insurance.  Sometimes, the moral obligation outweighs and this is such a time.

 

  • Another key component is allowing interstate commerce for health insurance along with portability.  A major challenge exists with the interstate commerce of health insurance because insurance is regulated at the state level; there needs to be federal regulation of insurance.  While I am no fan of larger governments, I have seen state insurance regulation in action for over 25 years – and it has its positives, but entirely too many negatives.  

 

Bottom line, the absolute root of health care starts in the home (as does Education, a topic for another time) by creating a healthy lifestyle and in turn, prevention measures.  Michelle Obama should be commended for her “Healthy Eating” and “Let’s Move” initiatives.  These are critically important.  Jamie Oliver’s eight episode TV show Food Revolution should be mandatory for every parent, child, school board and educator in the country.  On a personal note, my children watched it, enjoyed it and are understanding healthy choices.

By way of simply example, obesity can be better managed which in turn will lower diabetes, control cholesterol, manage blood pressure, mitigate heart attacks, stokes, blood clots, etc.   

I firmly believe that an active dialogue on health care can lead to some amazing and real results.  The current health care act needs some changes, but in principle, it is the right thing to do.  It will cost money and other programs must be cut and altered.  Sacrifice will be required from all angles; but do we really have a choice?  I submit we have a moral obligation on this issue.

2 Comments leave one →
  1. February 9, 2011 8:28 pm

    If the healthcare is not repealed, it will bankrupt the country and wreck the economy. The Republicans can save the economy by repealing this destructive law.

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