Tag Archives: physicians

Let Congress Go Without Insurance by Nicholas D. Kristof

Posted by betham37

Op-ed by Nicholas D. Kristof

Nicholas D. Kristof

Nicholas D. Kristof


New York Times/Nicholas D. Kristof—Let me offer a modest proposal: If Congress fails to pass comprehensive health reform this year, its members should surrender health insurance in proportion with the American population that is uninsured.

It may be that the lulling effect of having very fine health insurance leaves members of Congress insensitive to the dysfunction of our existing insurance system. So what better way to attune our leaders to the needs of their constituents than to put them in the same position?

About 15 percent of Americans have no health insurance, according to the Census Bureau. Another 8 percent are underinsured, according to the Commonwealth Fund, a health policy research group. So I propose that if health reform fails this year, 15 percent of members of Congress, along with their families, randomly lose all health insurance and another 8 percent receive inadequate coverage.

Congressional critics of President Obama’s efforts to achieve health reform worry that universal coverage will be expensive, while their priority is to curb social spending. So here’s their chance to save government dollars in keeping with their own priorities.

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Dad’s Life or Yours? You Choose by Nicholas D. Kristof

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Doctors from All 50 States Visit the White House to Support Health Insurance Reform

President Barack Obama speaks to doctors on the health care reform in the Rose Garden of the White House, Monday, Oct. 5, 2009

President Barack Obama speaks to doctors on the health care reform in the Rose Garden of the White House, Monday, Oct. 5, 2009

White House blog—It might seem merely symbolic that there were doctors from all 50 states here at the White House, but it’s symbolic of a deep truth about the health insurance reform debate. As the President said today, “when you cut through all the noise and all the distractions that are out there, I think what’s most telling is that some of the people who are most supportive of reform are the very medical professionals who know the health care system best — the doctors and nurses of America.” He continued:

“These men and women here would not be supporting health insurance reform if they really believed that it would lead to government bureaucrats making decisions that are best left to doctors. They wouldn’t be here today if they believed that reform in any way would damage the very critical and sacred doctor-patient relationship.

Instead, the reason these doctors are here is because they have seen firsthand what’s broken about our health care system. They’ve seen what happens when their patients can’t get the care they need because some insurance company has decided to drop their coverage or water it down. They’ve seen what happens when a patient is forced to pay out of pocket thousands of dollars she doesn’t have for treatments that she desperately needs. They’ve seen what happens when patients don’t come in for regular check-ups or screenings because either their insurance company doesn’t cover it or they can’t afford insurance in the first place. And they’ve seen far too much of time that they want to devote to taking care of patients spent filling out forms and haggling with insurance companies about payments.

So these doctors know what needs to be fixed about our health care system. And they know that health insurance reform will do — that it will go a long way towards making patients healthier and doctors and nurses to be able to perform that — those tasks that are so important to them and led them into medicine in the first place.”

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Television Ad: “Every Day”

President Barack Obama’s campaign organization released a new national television advertisement on Tuesday morning aimed at amplifying the White House’s effort to make doctors and nurses the face of health care reform.


Related Story

John Zogby: Decision Day For Democrats: Poll Shows Path to Healthcare Reform By S. Ward Casscells, MD and John Zogby
Despite suggestions that Americans were either tired of the health care issue or did not consider it to be enough of a priority, we found that people would read the long description of the bill, then wade through 10 amendments. Even after months of off-putting rhetoric by an over-heated, over-publicized few on both sides, Americans do indeed care about this health care debate.
Moreover, they sent a clear message: Only one proposed amendment raises support for the bill to even: malpractice reform. The second biggest boost was from eliminating the individual mandate, and third: adding a public option.

Read More: Here

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Dad’s Life or Yours? You Choose by Nicholas D. Kristof

Posted by betham37

Op-Ed by Nicholas D. Kristof

Nicholas D. Kristof

Nicholas D. Kristof


New York Times/Nicholas D. Kristof—So what would you do if your mom or dad, or perhaps your sister or brother, needed a kidney donation and you were the one best positioned to donate?

Most of us would worry a little and then step forward. But not so fast. Because of our dysfunctional health insurance system, a disgrace that nearly half of all members of Congress seem determined to cling to, stepping up to save a loved one can ruin your own chance of ever getting health insurance.

That wrenching trade-off is another reminder of the moral bankruptcy of our existing insurance system. It’s one more reason to pass robust reform this year.

Over the last week I’ve been speaking to David Waddington, a 58-year-old wine retailer in Dallas, along with his wife and two sons. I’d love to know what the opponents of health reform think families like this should do.

Mr. Waddington has polycystic kidney disease, or PKD, a genetic disorder that leads to kidney failure. First he lost one kidney, and then the other. A year ago, he was on dialysis and desperately needed a new kidney. Doctors explained that the best match — the one least likely to be rejected — would perhaps come from Travis or Michael, his two sons, then ages 29 and 27.

Travis and Michael each had a 50 percent chance of inheriting PKD. And if pre-donation testing revealed that one of them had the disorder, that brother might never be able to get health insurance. As a result, their doctors had advised not getting tested. After all, new research suggests that lack of insurance increases a working-age person’s risk of dying in any given year by 40 percent.

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Mad as Hell Doctors: Will be in Washington Today

Posted by Audiegrl

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Press Release—Frustrated with the health care ‘options’ coming out of Washington, D.C., six “Mad as Hell” Oregon physicians are taking an unprecedented road trip across America to lobby Congress for a single-payer health care system. A big part of their plan is to take the entire country with them.

Called a “Care-A-Van,” these road-tripping Oregon physicians will leave in a used motor home from Portland, Oregon on September 8th, inviting doctors and ordinary citizens from other states to join them on their twenty-city tour across the country. Their journey will culminate in a D.C.-based event on September 30th, scheduled to take place on the
steps of Congress. Demonstrating with the doctors will be thousands of fellow ‘Mad as Hell’ single-payer advocates, all adorned with the movement’s new symbol – the white ribbon. Their demand: Single-Payer Now!

Coming to a city near you!

Coming to a city near you!


“We’re mad as hell because our health care system is run by people who profit from illness” says Dr. Paul Hochfeld, lead Mad As Hell Doctor and producer of the documentary Health, Money and Fear. “The rest of the civilized world has test driven single payer and it works. But elected officials in America won’t even allow a discussion.”

“The public option is a trap.” Hochfeld continues. “It sounds very reasonable, but the problem with it, no matter what the final bill looks like, is that it will continue to allow private medical insurance companies to dictate America’s public health policies. And that’s just plain wrong.”

Several national, single-payer advocacy organizations including Physicians for a National Health Program, Health Care Now, Single Payer Action, and even groups like Progressive Democrats of America and Jobs with Justice are supporting the Oregon physicians by setting up Mad as Hell Town Halls across the country in anticipation of their arrival.

“People need to understand what single-payer is–and isn’t,” says Dr. Mike Huntington, a radiologist from Corvallis, Oregon and fellow Mad As Hell Doctor. “It isn’t Socialism, any more than police and fire are Socialism. And it doesn’t require any more money.

Simply put, single-payer is a way to take the current premium payments that go to a thousand different private insurance companies, and redirect them into a single, public fund that insures everyone. That’s all it is. But when we do this, lots of wonderful things happen, not the least of which is to save Americans 500 billion dollars a year starting day one. That’s billion – with a ‘b.’ America needs this information. That’s why we’re taking the tour.”

Click here for their website.

Check out a Mad As Hell Doctor on MSNBC’s The Ed Show

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