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Reality Belies a Health-Care Scare Tactic (Opinion from Washington Post)

Posted Jul 14 2009 10:56pm

This talks about the scare tactics being used with bringing in a government run plan, and some good points are made as far as care, what we are getting now, the government has nothing to do with it, private companies are in the driver’s seat.  I read this morning that we are reaching one image trillion on the deficit, perhaps pretty close to the amounts in “rainy day” funds, or “reserves” held by the health insurance companies if cumulatively added up?  There’s money and funds out there, but it’s just not being applied to healthcare but rather feeding an investor feeding frenzy. 

If you read what has been in the press recently and in their own words, the focus is on being the best “national carrier” for employers, not healthcare for all, dollars and cents and little or no mention of providers come to think of it in most of what I am seeing recently.  BD

Into this debate about the role of government in medical care, I come jaded by experience. In addition to having been Combat Cohen, I was also Cohen of Claims when I worked for an insurance company. This means that whenever someone says something about "government bureaucrats," I smile because I was once a non-government bureaucrat. It is not government bureaucrats who say that certain treatments will not be covered, and it is not the government that purges insurance rolls of the sick or the old, and it is not the government that makes money -- lots of money -- on health insurance. It is private enterprise.

But as Potter points out, the insurance industry sets out to spook the public with talk of "socialized medicine," "government bureaucrats" and "government-run health care." My loved one recently had to return to the emergency room because she was dehydrated. Her insurance company listed the reasons someone could return, and dehydration was one of them. They still denied her claim. The government had nothing to do with it.

Wendell Potter Speaks on PBS with Bill Moyer on Health Insurance Reform – The Industry Did Not Keep Their Word (Video Previews)

The ongoing health-care debate is complex -- not as interesting as Michael Jackson or Sarah Palin. But in deciding what to do and who to support in the current attempt to reform health care, don't rely on insurance industry propaganda, but on your own experience. Recall the last time you went to the emergency room and ask yourself whether the government could possibly do a worse job. If the answer is yes, you might need medical attention more than you realize.

Richard Cohen - Reality Belies a Health-Care Scare Tactic - washingtonpost.com

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