Thursday, April 1, 2010

Health Care Reform

I have two Republican friends, three if you count my dad. One of these friends ,who is just several years away from being eligible for Medicare, is vehemently opposed to the new health care reform bill. The other friend just votes the same way her husband does, something not as uncommon in this country as you might think. And my dad is simply my dear old dad, so he is forgiven for anything, including his political views.

The health care reform bill has been in effect for less than a week, and already the news is reporting "Nation still divided on health care" whereupon Obama replied "Its been a week folks. So before we find out if people like health care reform, we should wait to see what happens when we actually put it into place. Just a thought."

My friend who is opposed to health care reform thinks it will bankrupt the country and that the poor in this country will abuse it. What is it costing all of us to take care of those poor people who cannot afford preventive care, and instead end up staying weeks in the hospital to treat an illness that could have been prevented or mitigated if treated sooner? What about a friend of mine who has his own consulting business, who has paid his "dues" for years, whose twenty-seven year old son has a serious but non-life-threatening disease but who would not be able to get health insurance without a job that provided it?

What about me, a 56 year old female, who is not employed at the moment, but who, previous to this recession, has always been employed since graduation from college? If not for Cobra, I would not be able to find a company that would insure me due to...asthma. Yes, asthma, a generally controllable and treatable condition that thousands of people have. I have never had cancer, don't smoke or drink, no longer have an appendix (this is a plus because I can no longer get appendicitis), have low blood pressure and cholesterol, am not overweight or a couch potato, certainly won't be getting pregnant, what's not to like about me?

Oh, yeah, I have seasonal allergy induced asthma. How could insurers possibly be expected to insure me?

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