Friday, September 19, 2008

"Every patient is a doctor after his cure" and other thoughts on healthcare

Dear John, Barak, Sarah, and Joe,

Yes, it is true. I know how to reduce all of our chance of dying...well at least temporarily. Maintaining a healthy weight (which for most of us means losing a pound or two) and not smoking. And guess what, this also solves some of our health care needs, as it will decrease rates of other health problems as well. I guess this would increase costs some though, as people would need care for longer lives, but those longer lives would be lived healthier.

OK, so I know I did not just solve all of America's health care issues with that one little statement. But here is a comment that Sarah Palin made in 2008:

"Our choices often lead to heart disease, diabetes, underage drinking, drugs, violence, and abuse. Soaring health and public safety costs are sometimes unfairly passed on to others. But more importantly, by ignoring or accepting selfish choices that cause the abuse, children, families and entire communities are destroyed. Government cannot cure all ills. And don't assume more laws foisted on Alaskans are the only answer--most "bad activity" is already illegal. We have got to make wise, healthy personal choices, including choosing not to ignore child abuse. I'm counting on families, communities and faith-based groups to step up, together, to help passionately here, too."
Source: State of the State Address to the 25th Alaska Legislature Jan 15, 2008

I think that this comment captures two things. One is that our outcomes are based on the choices we make. This is true on several levels. One point is that our health on a personal level is dependant on our own choices. We choose to eat well or not, to exercise or not, to smoke or not. Are some of these choices very hard? Of course. Are there some things we are powerless to control. Yes to that too. And we must choose not to ignore the things we can change.

This goes for spending as well. Both personal and national.

Personally we must choose to prioritize health care. It is not a travesty that at times we would choose not to get medical care because of the cost. I personally have made this choice over the past year, since I have chosen a high deductible with low coverage for myself. So I only go to the doctor when I NEED to. I am not afraid to go, though, because I use the money I save on premiums to build my savings for times of need. But I know that health care must come before cable and eating out and other "wants". It is a need.

Nationally we also must consider this debate. What do we want as a nation, what does it cost, and what will we give up in order to get it. Oh yeah, and who will pay. Here is an interesting is a bit long, but talks about the limits to our budget and what we can spend on all government programs. This candidate will take your vote, I am sure, if you don't like either of the current front runners.

But the thing is, no one wants to cut spending. Everyone seems to say "Gimme Gimme". And there are lots of arguments why we should give people more in the way of health care. But I fear out attempts to 'give' some people more will eventually lead to much less for all. And when we get more from the government we become slave to them. When they control our most important needs, we become beholden to them. So I fear to give them control over my health care. They have already messed up so many things.

Well, in the interest of information, I am just going to link to John McCain's website for his planks on Health care. There was just too much to summarize here. But with his plan, designed to give power to the people and tax breaks so we can buy our own health care. The thing is, this still means there will be less money to the government, so they will have to fix their spending problem. Obama wants the government to provide more health care, so costs will go up and either taxes must match or spending must go down. Either way, we as a nation must fix our spending problem and make good choices...

But so must individuals. We must get off credit cards, give up goodies, and prioritize our spending. And guess what...if we did this we may not even need the governments help. Just think about that one. You can solve your own problems!! Be empowered.

We all know we need an affordable, sensible way for all people to get health care. And the government does need to be involved. But so do we. The government must fight corruption and help those who have no other options. Both candidates say they will do that, and even after some research I still wonder how.

And we must open our eyes to those around us. Don't expect the government to take care of YOUR neighbor when you can do it much better.

And if you don't like this plan, you may like the Dunlap-Brawls health care plan. I warn you, there are some crude spots, but nothing too over the line. (And yes, this is facetious).

Hope these thoughts add to the debate. This is a complex problem and I know I did not wade to deep, but I think the spending issue is the lead in issue to the HOW of the healthcare debate.

CaDh 8

1 comment:

brd said...

My first crush was on a guy named David Walker. Do you suppose that the cute little guy in my elementary class turned into the guy in the video? (Not Dunlap-Brawls!)

What he had to say was really important, I think. I believe you are thinking broadly about this whole topic: preventative life styles, and the power of choices, etc.