Email from my DH to family and friends this morning.
Wednesday, April 25, 2012
When I opened my email this morning there was an email from my DH to family and friends today. Remember he is up in Pennsylvania visiting the grandkids. My DH has been saying for a long time that our funding of healthcare in this country is out of whack. Obamacare does not address this issue and will bankrupt the country in short order. He says Tax payers should not pay for people that abuse drugs, alcohol, FOOD, or cigarettes. He continues that if people want to be fat and smoke, fine let them. Just don't expect the taxpayers to pay for the medical care that will inevitably follow. Unfortunately, no one in government has the nerve to address this problem. Obamacare does nothing to address this issue. It simply hopes to spread the unfair costs of this problem to all of us. This article (hope you can read it) as it addresses this problem very well. My DH doesn't usually send out articles like this and such but he did so after stopping at starbucks today after dropping the grandkids off at school and watched two very obese people load up on fattening pastries, regular flavored lattes, (no non-fat, sugar free syrup for them) and then sit outside and light up a cigarette. So my DH was on the war path and sent this article to all of us. I agree with him to some degree but feel that a solution might be to put a very high tax on all unhealthy processed foods, alcohol, cigarettes and such and use those funds to set up counseling programs to work with people to create better habits and learn about diet and nutrition. Also have programs in school to educate our youth. I know this is very controversial and I usually stay away from subjects as such myself. But this hits me very close to home. First of all I must say that alcoholism runs in my family. My grandfather died of it at 51. Also type 2 diabetes which my grandmother died of at age 60, my age. Both of these deaths could have been prevented if they watched their diets and didn't drink. Knowing these things run in my family, I made extra sure to get the extra pounds off and to enjoy a drink (yes my beloved beers) only once in awhile. As you all know, it's not easy. I struggle daily but work hard at it and love feeling good. It also hits home as right now I have an Aunt who has had open heart surgery 3 times now and still continues to smoke several packs of cigs a day. And her daughter has been in the hospital now for 7 weeks with liver and kidney failure (around 50 years old) due to alcohol. So I have two family members using tax payers money due to their own poor behavior. I love them but do not have sympathy for them. We have all tried to help but they won't help themselves. So what a topic for me to share. Hope I do not offend anyone. Not my intentions. I just want people to think more about what they are doing not just to themselves but to the whole of the country when they do not take care of themselves.
Thank goodness for sparks and it's help to all of us that need it to motivate and guide us to eat right and exercise!
Have a great day.
Member Comments About This Blog Post
Hi Sallie. I'm new to your blog. From personal & professional experience I agree that our Healthcare system is in more than dire straights. I'm a Registered Nurse & worked in the hospital where I got my nurse's training from for over 31 years. My speciality was the Post Anesthesia Care Unit or PACU. Where you go from the O.R. before going to a bed elsewhere in the hospital. The end of 8/2008 the hospital closed its doors & joined others on the closed hospital list. The hospital closing was tragic. And many more tragedies will occur due to a hospital being in a short distance away. We had a high indigent population & the hospital was not fully reimbursed on the amount that was actually spent caring for a patient. Kindly excuse any politically incorrect remarks I may make. This issue has been much more than a 'pet peeve' of mine for a very long time. Americans have a warped sense of priorities. We pay someone to do something with a ball millions of dollars yet when it's time to talk about preventative healthcare &/or putting an Advance Directive with one's will & power of attorney there is silence. People don't want to talk about it. The 'it's not going to happen to me syndrome'. Then when something does happen that could have been prevented, healthcare professionals are told to just fix it, make me better no matter what the cost is. Then you have people who have immigrated to the US & don't have health insurance. They are taken care of the same as the patient with insurance is. A person can be born, raised, & live in the USA. They have a job but it doesn't give them health insurance as a benefit. When they have a health issue & maybe needs to be hospitalized they are expected to pay for the care & hospitalization. Receiving free medical care can be a strong incentive to immigrate to the USA. Then there are the repeat offenders who are not responsible enough to practice safe sex, they come to the hospital to get rid of the unwanted pregnancy. I am pro choice & I feel that a female has the right to decide what to do with her body & an unwanted pregnancy. But do not use an interruption of pregnancy as your means of birth control. I not only cared for the females but since I am a tax payer, I also get to pay for the hospitalization. There is always the issue of the 'Big Pharms" causing ever increasing costs for medications. People are always real quick to accuse the pharmaceutical companies. I'd pay dollars to donuts that there is only a rare person among them that knows all that is entailed in the making of a new drug. It is not a simple procedure to get it passed the FDA & on the market. Now we have health insurance, I have had it via my employer, self-insured, & know mandatory Medicare. Medicare is a nightmare for me. Due to erroneous information that I was given, I applied for Plan C outside of the time frame for when it was supposed to be & thus my application was denied & I'm told I'm not eligible until I'm 65. Quite ironic considering I worked as a healthcare professional & the Supreme Court is deciding on whether or not US citizens can be required to purchase health insurance. The article & Sallie's comments talked about some very valid points, however, there will always be those who have a mindset that smoking, drinking, not getting preventative check ups especially when something runs in the family. Start by putting health classes back into schools from early age on up. Teach our children how to live a healthy lifestyle instead of using unhealthy foods as bribes or rewards. Raise the tax on cigarettes to the point that they are too expensive. Realize that when someone has that mindset & they smoke they will finds ways, good or bad, to get them. I don't know what the solution(s) maybe. I only worked in the system & tried to give my patients the best care I could regardless of whether they had insurance or not. I thank-you for reading this.
1909 days ago
I lost my brother of 39 in December to a heart attack. He was overweight, smoked, drank, and didn't eat real well, but exercised regularly. I would give anything to have him back and make changes to his life. He worked 6 days a week at 2 jobs when he died, and had been paying taxes since he was 14. No tax money went to his medical bills or his family. He never had a chance to recover and either decided to continue to smoke, or change his lifestyle. He just dropped dead, right in front of his new wife.
I'm not going to blame him, donuts, or President Obama for my loss.
1912 days ago
very thought provoking and it takes courage to put yourself out there personally to express your opinions.... all in all I have trouble controlling myself and cannot begin to think about how to fix anything or anyone else..... I will have to wait and see what will happen. Thanks
1913 days ago
The last I heard, the United States of America was "the home of the free." I agree people *SHOULD* take better care of themselves, but I agree that it needs to be through education. Why are there soda and candy machines in schools? I guarantee they weren't there when you were a kid.
I can't see how Obamacare is THE PROBLEM. Demoacrats have been trying to reform a very broken healthcare system since the Clinton years. With no help from the Republicans.
1913 days ago
Comment edited on: 4/25/2012 8:06:23 PM
I can see where this is coming from, but where do you draw the line? Food and drug abuse are mentioned, but there are 1000s of other ways humans *choose* to endanger themselves. Do you not provide treatment for skin cancer if the victim has been to tanning salons? how about someone who speeds and gets in an accident? chooses to play a sport like football and gets injured?
1913 days ago
Wow Sallie, I think you disturbed a hornet's nest LOL. I agree that we all have to accountable for our own health but it deeply bothers me that our great country does not have a national care program. Our health care system certainly needs to be reformed but I think we all have the basic right of healthcare.
1913 days ago
What has happened to our sense of community?
We are all in this together. Which of us has always
made the best decisions when it came to how we
we eat, exercise or not, get stressed out, drive too
fast or any of a myriad of other behaviors that could
contribute to health issues in our future? We need
to support each other. And when do we need that
support more than when we are ill?
Most people who smoke or are fat do not choose to
be that way. How do we find solutions by blaming
them for their problems?
While I strongly support single payer health care,
(It is a much cheaper way to deliver health care than
our profit-driven system.) I know that what is really
broken is "health care" itself. It is not a system that
brings health; it is disease care system and it is well
on its way to bankrupting us all.
1913 days ago
Comment edited on: 4/25/2012 6:47:25 PM
Agreed, I also feel there needs to be education and programs to help our kids at young ages to educate them on the dangers of bad decisions of eating poorly and also diseases. Well, I know if you need a transplant I know a hospital won't give you one if you drink and smoke it is hard to get one and also some insurances will not insure you if you drink or smoke or they jack up the prices on insurance if there is drinking or smoking. I would like to be compassionate to an extent say if someone had made some bad decisions in the past but have changed but the medical issue is still there then I think it could be a case by case basis if they could get the help. Alcoholism runs in my family to and I myself have to be careful. I have been fortunate to not have diabeties or any heart issues as my relatives have had and ones who have passed due to it, the extent of my medical is due to military related issues with dislocations and surgeries to fix so I am grateful for my health and because I am grateful I want to take care of myself the best I can.
1913 days ago
Thank s for sharing Sallie. This is a big issue and I for one, feel that it is up to people to take positive steps on their health issues. There is so much everyone can do, like eating healthy wholesome food. Food does not work that is adultrated and processed. Our bodies are made to eat good whole foods and process them. Fresh fruits and veggies are plentiful, but unfortunately, it is much easier to run through the drive in and eat all the processed adulterated foods. It does not take that much time to make fresh veggies and a good protien with fruit fo a meal.
1913 days ago
Great topic Sallie! I agree with you. There should be more responsibility in taking care of our selves. There is plenty of things we can blame but in the end we decide what we do every day.
1913 days ago
I still agree with you 100%.
1913 days ago
I certainly don't want to come off holier than thou. I am just trying to point out that people need to start waking up to take care of themselves. My father-in-law was funny in his response this morning to my DH article and mail. He said if it weren't for booze killing his brother and cigs killing his sister he would still have a younger brother and sister. And my FIL had a heart attack when he was 57 and right then and there quite smoking and started to eat better. Then he said when his son(my DH) and I moved his "sorry a_ _) to Mexico we dragged him off and signed him up to a gym! He said he has been thankful ever since and feels great at 84. It's like what Dr. Phil said to a guest yesterday on his show. This was a young beautiful gal who had every advantage one could have but was a drug addict who Dr. Phil got help once already. She relapsed and that was why she was back. Dr. Phil told her right out that she had to stop blaming others for her drug habit and take responsibility. He said he would help her one more time and put her in rehab again but if he got any bad reports or she wasn't doing the work then he would tell the center to "kick her sorry a _ _ out on the street!". He believes in tough love. So many of us have worked so hard to beat our demons. I for sure have had my share being close to 200 lbs and drinking until drunk daily. But I finally got my act together....was it easy. Of course not but doable. I fight my demons daily. It would be so much easier to eat crap, not exercise and drink.
I know the insurance companies are corrupt as well as banking and don't even get me started on lawyers and malpractice law suits that make us all pay so much for medical care. And I know there isn't one solution and one magic bullet....all I am saying is that we need to stop enabling those that just refuse to act responsible and get help if needed.
I have so many dear Canadian friends down here in Mexico who have shared with me the horrid stories of their social healthcare system. Somehow I just don't think that is the right solution.
Sorry, like Lis said, I will get off my soapbox now.
1913 days ago
Love your blog and fortunately here in Ohio will voted in the last election to repeal Obacare. We won't have that law in Ohio. I know other states have done the same. As a veteran I'm not too big on big goverment. Russia tried that and look how well it worked for them.
1913 days ago
unfortunately these 'people' only think of themselves and their instant gratification, they don't look at the future...too bad they don't
1913 days ago
Everyone should take responsibility for their own actions. If you insist on smoking, eating the wrong "foods" etc. don't expect someone else to pay to "fix" you.
Then again... it is the food industry, health industry, drug industry They go hand in hand. It all about the money, not about the people. The government (our tax dollars) subsidizes corn (sugar!) and soy - eat that and your health will suffer, now your need health "care" and drugs to make you "better" Drugs have side effects - so pop another pill to negate those... etc, etc, etc.
What happened to prevention, taking care of yourself and being a responsible citizen??
(Jumping off my soap box)
1913 days ago
I think one of the big myths of our time is the delusion that we are not already paying for "people that abuse drugs, alcohol, FOOD, or cigarettes." The fact remains that WE ARE ALREADY PAYING FOR THEM but in a less-fair manner than would occur with a single-payer system operating on a lower margin rate than for-profit insurance companies.
It works like this - let's say I drink, smoke, abuse drugs and weigh 600 lbs so I have a lot of medical issues. If I have private insurance to cover my costs, all the other people who have private insurance are covering those costs. Why? Because insurance companies need to make a profit for their stakeholders so the simple business formula is to take all the income minus all the expenses and distribute the rest to whose who have invested in the company. The 'income' is from insurance premiums paid by all of us so you will pay more for my diseases!
But let's say I don't have insurance - YOU ARE STILL PAYING FOR ME even if I don't go on welfare! The way that works is that I get sick but because I don't have insurance, I wait until I can't avoid it any longer and then go to the hospital. Because I waited, my medical needs are worse than the would have been if I had gotten earlier treatment - my medical bills are also higher as a result. But without insurance, I might just bail on the bill, refusing to pay it after the care is given. GUESS WHO ENDS UP PAYING?? That's right, all the people who have insurance! Because again, the hospitals have to cover their expenses so if uninsured people show up with an emergency and don't pay, they have to raise the costs for everyone else, which raises our insurance premiums.
IT WOULD BE SO MUCH LESS EXPENSIVE TO HAVE NATIONAL HEALTHCARE - we can't keep pretending we aren't already paying for the medical care of others! And we can't keep avoiding the need to do more governmental control over the situation - we can play the 'blame game' all we want but it won't change the facts - our medical care costs are out of control and at least Obama has had the guts to address it - the Obamacare bill doesn't go far enough because of profit-minded people who selfishly think they can skim off the top and let everyone else cover the balance. Unfortunately, they have done a terrific snow job on the people who actually don't think the whole topic through to conclusion!
Most likely ALL medical issues are complicated by 'bad behavior' - but instead of 'blame the victim' we need to take a more global look at the situation. No system is perfect, of course, and every 'solution' is going to have unintended consequences. We already have massive taxes on cigarettes and laws against abusing drugs, for instance, but haven't really addressed treatment programs to deal with the issues because we delude ourselves into thinking it's 'their problem' and they should just 'stop the bad behavior.' Ahhh, if it was only so easy! In many cases, there is a physical component behind the addictions so it's not just a matter of 'will power' - but even if it was, I think the world would be much better off with a more compassionate viewpoint rather than a 'high and mighty, holier than thou' selfish attitude.
As an educator, I strongly believe that EDUCATION IS THE KEY - we have made tons of progress in the area of drunk driving and tobacco by focusing on education - Michelle Obama is certainly spearheading a national effort to educate people with an eye to improving nutrition and increasing activity - we need more of that and less rhetoric about how national healthcare is going to bankrupt us - I believe it's the other way around and we will be bankrupt if we don't have it!!
We need to start providing more preventive medicine, early intervention and education - it's extremely difficult to change a behavior that is well-entrenched, esp if it is addictive behavior. It's much easier to prevent the behavior from getting started - it's a very complex issue and there isn't going to be any 'silver bullet' solution but step one is going to be for EVERYONE to take responsibility for dealing with issue and stop focusing on 'blame' and acting like we are holier than they are. We all need to stop judging and start helping!
1913 days ago
Comment edited on: 4/25/2012 11:57:14 AM
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