Monday, November 9, 2009

Health Reform Goes to the Senate!

I am a conservative that agrees with Robert Reich. :-) I absolutely hate the idea that the lawyers, insurance companies, and pharmaceutical companies are benefiting from this reform. The groups who are profiting from health care should be shouldering the cost. Restoring the doctor patient relationship, and cutting the profits of those who are profiting from health care would be a good start to containing costs. Here are some questions that I have that I would like senators to consider.

1. How did the country maintain costs for many generations before costs went out of control?
2. Since the percentage of uninsured in our country is similar to countries with a single payer plan how will that contain costs?
3. Will the growth of Health care reform become self serving when bureaucrats are making health decisions?
4. Why should lawyers be the ones to regulate health care when they are the one that are driving up costs due to defensive medical practices?
5. Why should pharmaceuticals companies be allowed to advertise new drugs when that increases health care and they benefit from them?
6. Why should experimental technology be covered by insurance when it represents an assumed risk on the part of the patient?

Health care costs are out of control!

Health care reform should be based upon containing costs not covering the 16% of people who are uninsured. Other countries with single payer plans have many people that do not contribute into the health care system that is a similar percentage to what we have in our country.

* Over the past decade, premiums have doubled, out-of-pocket costs have increased by a third, and deductibles have continued to rise.
* If there was ever a time for Washington to put partisanship aside and get something done, this is it.
* We have a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to fix what’s broken with our system and build on what works.

We should consider cutting cost by re-instating the doctor patient tradition in our country. The watch dogs of HMO's and attorneys are only increasing costs. Will a bureaucratic watch dog do any better? The pharmaceutical industry is promoting cost increases. The patient or family should consult with his doctor to decide on a treatment protocol that works for everyone.

Doctors should be tested for ethical judgment as well as medical training. Alternative practitioners who pass the ethical treatment test should also be allowed to practice medicine restricted by the confines of their knowledge. Medical practitioners should be removed who violate ethical principals.

Limiting technology and its expense is also a way to contain costs. Technology is driving costs up. There should be fewer restrictions on the use of experimental technology. These decisions should be subject to the doctor patient relationship. In addition any procedure or drug deemed as experimental should not be covered by insurance. The people who take these kinds of risks should also assume the costs associated with these risks.

Alternative medicine practices should be regulated and covered under medical insurance. China currently uses a two prong system of health care that uses traditional Chinese medicine as well as modern pharmaceuticals, surgery and rehabilitation to help their people. Could alternative medicine practiced by US Chiropractors and health food supplement stores bring hope and relief to many people in our country as well? Alternative medical treatments could help contain costs by offering competition in the medical marketplace.

Congress must pass real health insurance reform in 2009. If we fail to act:

* Within a decade, one out of every five dollars we earn will be spent on health care.
* The amount our government spends on Medicare and Medicaid will eventually grow larger than what our government spends today on everything else combined.

The answer lies in containing costs. The health care system will not be solved by insuring an uninsured population that already is covered by emergency rooms.

Pat Parris

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