Thursday, May 18, 2017

Disastrous Marketplace Medicine

Disastrous Marketplace Medicine

by Stephen Lendman

Commodifying healthcare is a rationing scheme, the deplorable way America’s system works, the world’s most expensive by far - affording anything patients want based on the ability to pay, not human need, testimony to an I don’t care nation.

Writing in the Chicago Sun Times, Phil Kadner asked “(w)ill someone please tell me what evidence exists that a free market benefits consumers in this country when it comes to health insurance?” 

“Would anyone even argue that market demand ought to determine how much a person pays when it comes to saving the life of a baby” - or anyone else?

Free market policy-makers prioritize maximum profits and minimum costs. Insurers want the right to charge older Americans and ones with pre-existing conditions higher premiums.

Proper coverage already is unaffordable for most households - aggravated by insurers seeking ways not to cover expensive treatments if they can get away with it.

They want their in-house medical specialists able to override private physicians when they recommend expensive treatments.

All other developed nations and many others have some form of government-sponsored single-payer coverage.

America, the world’s richest country, is the outlier, denying a fundamental human right to millions of its citizens, leaving most of them way underinsured because of unaffordable cost.

McClatchy’s DC Bureau wrote about Julie Marie Forbes Anderson’s experience, “a tearful mom,” they called her, “kicked out of…Rep. Patrick McHenry’s Gaston County (NC) office” for complaining about his vote for Trumpcare.

Video of what happened streamed online got an astonishing 4.8 million views and 105,000 shares.

Anderson’s daughter needs medication costing $12,000 monthly. “Making my child uninsurable for something that’s not her fault is not OK,” she said.

In the video, she explained she didn’t raise her voice, yet was ordered out of the congressman’s office after staff called local police.

Walking to her car, she said she told McHenry that the photo of her daughter she showed him “was the kid that he voted to let die.” 

“I’m not willing to let my kid die because I don’t have money,” she said. “There are thousands of people like me who are watching their kids get sicker and sicker and we can’t do anything about it.” 

“And people are actively working against us to let our kids just be sick because they’re a drain on the system, because Medicare and Medicaid are too expensive. They can send people to wars but they can’t fix sick kids at home.”

Millions of other Americans are like her, without healthcare coverage, losing it, or unable to get enough of it because of high cost if Trumpcare becomes law.

Most Americans want government-sponsored universal coverage - Medicare for all. Republicans and Democrats support unworkable marketplace medicine.

Thousands of US physicians and other healthcare professionals are on board. Most congressional members and the administration are against the rights and needs of all Americans, serving the privileged few alone.

Stephen Lendman lives in Chicago. He can be reached at lendmanstephen@sbcglobal.net. 

His new book as editor and contributor is titled "Flashpoint in Ukraine: How the US Drive for Hegemony Risks WW III."

http://www.claritypress.com/LendmanIII.html

Visit his blog site at sjlendman.blogspot.com. 


Listen to cutting-edge discussions with distinguished guests on the Progressive Radio News Hour on the Progressive Radio Network.