Mar 09 2010
I have been reading a lot recently about the situation of health care in the United States. Lots of people who have been losing their jobs have also been losing their health insurance, or are no longer able to afford health care. I am lucky because I have great insurance. Of course, while it includes me and my family, I pay about $7,600 a year for it. The community college district pays some too. People used to have health insurance as part of their jobs, but the expense in recent years has meant that some employers have stopped offering it.
While there are health plans for people over 65 who qualify for Medicare, or people who qualify for Medicaid, there is a large group of people who don’t have insurance, don’t qualify for Medicare or Medicaid, and can’t afford to buy it. Sometimes they can’t get insurance because of “pre-existing conditions.” (That means they have already been sick, so the insurance company doesn’t want to insure them.) I think it’s not a good idea for people to have to make a choice between seeing the doctor and getting some medicine or feeding their children.
Some people use the emergency room for little problems that aren’t really emergencies because they have nowhere else to go. Other people don’t see the doctor when their problems are small, and instead wait until they get really bad and then they have much bigger trouble. Some people skip routine tests that can find problems before they get big.
In addition to health care, some people are also very concerned with dental care, although it hasn’t been discussed as much recently.
Just as a personal note, I am doing okay. I had my surgery Friday, and now I have a port so they can take out blood and do chemotherapy without sticking me with needles in a lot of places. The only bad thing was that they changed the time of the appointment from 2:00 to 12:30 and forgot to tell me. I got there as soon as I could, and at least I was home by 3:20.
What do you think? Are you concerned about the cost of health care? Are there differences between the health care system in your native country and the health care system in this country? If so, what are they? What do you think is good or bad about the U.S. health care system? Do you think dental care should be included too? Is it included in your native country? Write a paragraph about your ideas about health and dental care. You don’t have to answer all the questions.