Warning: Universal coverage will save lives, money and pain

Utah Savage tells the story:

My friend Z is doing amazingly well, considering. She is complying with her oncologists. But now that the radiation is burning her throat, and the chemo is making her queazy, the doctors are prescribing drugs that will alleaviate these problems. But Z doesn’t believe in Western medicine and when it came time to sign up for Medicare she assumed that she would never get sick enough to ever need the part A, B and D of Medicare coverage. Now she needs them all and the enrollment period won’t come around again until November. It is part D that would have paid for her drugs. It is part D that would make a drug that costs $150 at most $3.50. I audibly gasped when she told me that she didn’t have part D. I couldn’t help myself. I said, “But you need part D.” She was furious and shouted, “Don’t tell me what I should have done. That doesn’t help me now.” And of course she’s right. Now that it’s too late, it doesn’t help to tell her what she should have done.

If you’re healthy, you never think you’re going to need insurance and prescription drug coverage. And if you’re young you never think your going to get ill. But everyone needs insurance. That is why the healthcare debate is so terribly important. We need a public option. Please call your Congressional Representative and lobby for a public option for healthcare. We need you healthy. We need you paying attention to the issues that will make a difference in all our lives.

We are not allowed to drive a car without insurance and we don’t think twice about that. But we are so careless when it comes to insurance for our own health. It should be mandatory that everyone is covered with health insurance.

Does your mileage differ?  Tell us in comments.

5 Responses to Warning: Universal coverage will save lives, money and pain

  1. Nick Kelsier says:

    The mother in that case got taken in by a bunch of quacks and a, as far as I can tell, bunch of white people pretending that they were Native Americans.


  2. We had a story here in MN of a 13 year old and his parents who were refusing to get the kid chemo because they didn’t believe in western medicine, and in fact thought the medical treatment would kill him. The state had to get a court order to have the kid treated. That’s why I was surprised by someone getting a treatment that they don’t believe in by their own choice.


  3. Ed Darrell says:

    I’m also curious why someone who “doesn’t believe in western medicine” would be getting rad treatment or using pharmaceuticals.

    Rain falls on the just and the unjust alike.
    There are no creationists in cancer wards nor infectious disease wards.

    Health care is necessary for the healthy and the ill, for the rational and irrational, and especially for those who think science doesn’t work like science but now face different circumstances and the chips are down.


  4. While I support universal coverage, the auto insurance analogy doesn’t fit. Mandatory auto insurance is to cover the other person in case you cause damage to them or their vehicle.

    I’m also curious why someone who “doesn’t believe in western medicine” would be getting rad treatment or using pharmaceuticals.


  5. george.w says:

    Yes, my mileage does differ. It is not carelessness or a sense of youthful invulnerability that defines why many young people have no health insurance, it is cost. My son was not able to finish college and he makes about $12K/yr. Meaningful health insurance would require him to make some rather draconian, even ironically health-threatening choices.


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