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Posted Mar 21 2010 9:05pm

Let’s face it. We are sick of healthcare. We are sick because we don’t have healthcare. We are sick because we (or people we love) can’t afford healthcare. We are sick of talking about healthcare. We are sick of the debate about healthcare. And after a year of having the twists and turns of the debate shoved through our television screens, we are sick of not even knowing what the proposed solution is . . . let alone whether it will work or not.
Here is where medical tourism comes in. It provides a solution for your healthcare problem, and guess what—it doesn’t even need two-thousand-plus pages of legislative lingo to do it. The idea of medical tourism is simple—it provides an English-speaking liaison between you and international health providers at hospitals equipped and geared towards international patients—usually at a third to a tenth of the cost.
Why Congress Can’t Solve Your Healthcare Problem
Let’s imagine that you or someone you love has a healthcare problem but because they are uninsured or underinsured, they cannot receive the necessary treatment. Here is the key question: What would change in your life if Congress’ healthcare bill were passed tomorrow? The answer: Problaby nothing. The vast majority of the bill will not be implemented until roughly 2015 , and even then, this bill does not include any public option, so every American will still be at the mercy of their private health insurance provider.
Here are the key changes that would be implemented within one-year under the pre-reconciliation bill (we don’t yet know what will be in the reconciliation bill) - Caps: Insurance companies will not be able to place a cap on coverage amount. However, unless the insurance company has informed you that your healthcare problem is covered, but you have exceeded your cap, this will have no effect on your coverage.
- Pre-Existing Conditions: The government has set aside money to support uninsured Americans with pre-existing conditions. The manner, requirements, and amount of support is still unclear.
- Dependants: Children may be covered by their parents’ plans until age 26 (currently children may be covered until age 25).
As you can see, the changes that could go into effect within the first year are meager. Additionally, these potential benefits are likely to be delayed. Between the steep opposition and procedural hurdles, the almost certain legal challenge to the bill’s constitutionality, and the necessity of implementing new government programs to administer the bill’s benefits, it is likely that any actual effect on any individual’s life is still too remote to factor the bill into any solution to your healthcare needs.
Ok, but let’s imagine that our country took a completely different path and went the way of our friends to the North (Canada) or across the pond (United Kingdom) by passing and implementing universal healthcare—that would solve our problems, wouldn’t it?
Again, the answer is: Probably not. Countries with universal healthcare oftentimes have problems with quality and speed of care. For example, when Canadian Prime Minister Danny Williams was diagnosed with a heart murmur, did he go through the state-run health programs? No. Instead, he went to a foreign country and told the media: “This was my heart, my choice and my health, I did not sign away my right to get the best possible health care for myself when I entered politics.” Also, on March 14, 2010, England’s soccer superstar David Beckham ruptured his Achilles tendon. Did he use state-run medicine? No; instead, he flew to Finland for his surgical procedure.
Bottom line is this: Even if healthcare passes, if you have a need for healthcare that is not currently being met, it will not be met for at least several years. Rather than suffer in vain while the political elephants and donkeys continue to battle over solutions that may never solve your healthcare problem, maybe it’s time to take a proactive approach, and see how medical tourism can help you right now.
–By Condor Crane

Ricardo Alonso-Salvidar, Washington Examiner:Healthcare 101: What Happens if the Bill Passes, March 15, 2010.
Ed Hornick, What can you and your family expect right away? March 19, 2010.
Tara Brautigam, The Canadian Press: ‘My heart, my choice,’ Williams Says, Defending Decision For U.S. Heart Surgery, February 22, 2010.
Robert Deenan and Ben Smith, The London Times: David Beckham positive about return to playing, March 16, 2010.

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