Saturday, June 02, 2007

SiCKO Trailer

This is going to be one of those movies, for me. One of those movies, like 'Jesus Camp' and 'Saw' where I know what the plot is, I know whats going to happen, I know its going to bother me, so Im not going to watch it.

I cant watch SiCKO, especially after seeing this preview.

With my recent illness, Ive already spent a lot of money on drugs/office visits/etc... and I havent gotten my official bill from the hospital yet. You all dont know this, but I had a breast cancer 'scare' (ie it was absolutely nothing) that cost me hundreds and hundreds of dollars... and I didnt have breast cancer. Not one cut/biopsy was made. Just the doc visits up to that "Um, youre fine" diagnosis cost me big $$.

And I have 'good' health insurance.

Some people like to bitch and whine about AMSAs position on complementary and alternative medicine (note: bitch and whine, but not actually, you know, do something about it), but AMSA has always been right about universal health care.

I do not know how 'old' physicians can go to sleep at night. Supposedly clever individuals who have convinced themselves that stupid (I mean stupid) 'solutions' to our health care crisis is tort reform, so universal health care is unneeded/dangerous/whatever. Yeah, tort reform works GREAT in the states that have implemented it. Like in my home state of Missouri with one of the 'toughest' tort reform policies in the nation, where malpractice insurance costs are still increasing, patient premiums are still increasing, and doncha know it, but insurance profits are... still increasing, but at record rates. Yeah, lets put a limit on how much a mother can collect after a bad doc (whos been pushed from hospital to hospital, silently, as to not damage the reputation of the hospital that hired him-- could damage profits!) botches her delivery and shes left with a child that needs a lifetime of care. Lets limit that to $25,000. Fuck you.

Look, I know old people are scared of new things like 'remote controls' and 'cell phones' and 'Google', but I really, really dont give a shit that old physicians are scared of learning a new system for universal health care. I think they can deal with it. My problem is the complete denial, and utter lack of action and lack of responsibility physicians take with our health care crisis.

I cant watch SiCKO. It will just make me angry, and Im not in a position to help the people who need it (outside of my vote, of course).


Dustin said...

I certainly understand the medical bills for a look-over and boot out the door.

Back in 2004, I came down with a really bad strep infection and (unknown to me at the time) I developed strep reactive arthritis or some other kind of related rheumatic disorder. The doctor did a mono test and then decided it was all in my head when that came back negative. Three months later the symptoms finally went away, and then I got another strep infection in January. After kicking it, the strep reactive symptoms were back, but I still didn't know what they were.

I had a new GP who still didn't peg this one, and I got bounced around all spring long. I've spent hundreds of dollars on blood work, EKG's and the like, and only after I started digging through the medical journals did I realize everyone was way off base, and got myself to a rheumatologist.

Anyway, this idea that malpractice should be limited? Bullshit. That's exactly the same kind of stupid-ass mentality that led congress to believe that the best way of handling debt was not tougher regulation of creditors, but completely useless bankruptcy laws. As far as I know, most of the malpractice suits are directed towards a small percentage of doctors. Rather than punishing the patients, we should go after the quacks with enough legal force that their heads will spin like they're possessed.

ERV said...

Wow! I signed into my online insurance site to check on my claims-- and my last visit was ~$500 (I had an emergency I didnt blog about, if you can believe it), and I really just have to pay the $25 office copay.

Im in shock. I was expecting to pay almost $1000 in medical bills this month.

I had a new GP who still didn't peg this one, and I got bounced around all spring long. I've spent hundreds of dollars on blood work, EKG's and the like, and only after I started digging through the medical journals did I realize everyone was way off base, and got myself to a rheumatologist.
You know one of the benefits of working in a micro-immuno department is that they all diagnosed me with mono before the docs did, lol! I didnt have to do any digging!

And as for the malpractice suits, its a brotherhood. Physicians seem to defend one another no matter what. Theyve got it in their heads that if they let one physician get slammed, theyll all get slammed, so tort reform is good.

Davis said...

"I really just have to pay the $25 office copay."

That's fantastic.

When I was in grad school I had the standard RA/TA health plan. My lung spontaneously collapsed twice in six months, which led to corrective surgery to prevent future occurrences. With our mediocre plan, I ended up owing something like $1200 when all was said and done -- that was a big hit on my grad student income.

And I would have owed more, had we not unionized the previous year and obtained a reduction in the "out-of-pocket maximum" in our health coverage during contractual negotiations. Phew.

EoRaptor013 said...

I think there's a little baby/bath-water colloidal suspension in the area of tort reform. As a recovering attorney ;-) I often noticed two group characteristics in juries that, IMHO, often play into the hype over tort reform. First, juries often seem to feel that the plaintiff deserves compensation for the tragedy he/she suffered, even though the doctor committed no error. Although attorneys are not allowed to mention insurance in malpractice cases, most jurors assume that the doctor is insured, so it's no skin off the doctor's nose if her insurance company has to pay. Unfortunately, jurors don't seem to realize there are caps on indemnity or that when insurance companies lose money speculating in the stock market, they try to make it up by charging higher premiums -- premium that get passed on to the patient.
Second, many -- I'll go out on a limb and say most -- juries are not qualified to judge the esoteric facts in most medical-malpractice cases (or, indeed, any rigorous or complex field). We've all heard about the battle of the experts but that description does not well present the topography of the battlefield. Jurors, for the most part, can't rationally decide which expert is right, so they go with the one that, somehow, they relate to.
So, your point that tort reform legislation is punishing the patients for the failings of the medical profession has a great deal of truth in it. That does not mean, however, that the tort system in the country doesn't need some substantial reform.
My two cents.
P.S. I got here by way of PT -- you are now part of the conspiracy!

ERV said...

Raptor-- HAHAHA The comments on UD!
We are dealing with a powerful agenda out there, with a corrupt academy run by a self-selecting PC nobility that awards itself and its chosen partyline-parroting acolytes meal tickets for life.
Like I said to Horowitz: "I make $20,000 a year. How much do you make?"

A low-life Professional Creationist that came around these parts a while back made $3,000 to put on a weekend 'seminar' of four, one hour presentations.

I make ~$13 an hour, and Im taking a huge pay cut this fall to become a student.

Bottom-feeder Creationist: $750 an hour.

How much does Behe make?

Whos got a meal ticket for life? For sitting on their ass all day?

I wanna be in their conspiracy!

Die Anyway said...

Government is incompetent at everything it does. Why the hell would we want to put it in charge of universal health insurance? How many people do you want to kill off?
How about government-run health care for Creationists, IDers, and church-goers? The rest of us get the good stuff.

Anonymous said...

...And as for the malpractice suits, its a brotherhood. Physicians seem to defend one another no matter what.

The Mafia had a word for this: 'omerta' (the code of silence; 'don't snitch on your brothers').

Human life is not sacred in America. Money is. Everything our (our?) government has done over at least the last 13 years proves this.