“Hole in the body, hole in the spirit.”
There are some who believe that health care is a basic right and ought to be provided through a not-for-profit plan. Then there are those who believe that health care is a privilege based on an ability to afford it.
The latter group was who President Obama was up against when he succeeded in opening up health care to another 30 million people who previously, within the context of a for-profit insurance system, couldn’t afford to take charge of their own health care.
And who would argue against such a noble, humanitarian act.
Turns out a whole lotta folks.
The President’s first version of the health care reform bill included both a public health insurance option and single payer provision, but both were removed once he was unable to get the reform past the senate committee. The options were pretty straight forward:
The public health insurance option was a proposal to create a government-run health insurance agency which would compete with other health insurance companies within the United States. The public option was proposed as an alternative health insurance plan offered by the government.
The single-payer health care option is a system in which the government, rather than private insurers, pays for all health care costs. Single-payer systems may contract for healthcare services from private organizations (as is the case in Canada) or may own and employ healthcare resources and personnel (as is the case in the United Kingdom). The term “single-payer” refers to the single public body responsible for paying your hospital bills, which in some cases may be a state governance or a combination public-private system.
If either or both provisions had been passed, the effect would have been a double-edged sword for Americans, on one hand bringing down the exorbitant costs of medical insurance plans from existing healthcare provider giants who, let’s face it, make more money by not providing health care than by actually providing it.
Secondly private healthcare providers would have to compete with government sponsored low-cost, (presumably) quality healthcare, and a little friendly competition never hurt anybody. Once insurers began losing customers here and there, they’d lower all our premiums and co-pays to more humane prices. All, while still making millions.
Word is that President Obama will revisit the inclusion of the provisions once the entire plan is up and running to everyone’s satisfaction, a time in which the President himself has commented on recently, saying:
“I guarantee you this; once the Affordable Care Act Is working well, Republicans will not be calling it ObamaCare.”
If those who oppose the President’s Healthcare Reform Act understood — or cared — about the connection between poverty and poor health care, a connection alluded to on a deeper level by a Native American saying, “hole in the body, hole in the spirit”, they would see that the Affordable Care Act will have a transformative effect on lives all across the country. It does not advocate a government takeover of health care or socialism. What it does is firmly establish, as a civil right, personal and comprehensive healthcare to all — the rich, the middle class and the poor.
To be able to say, “At least I’ve got my health” not surprisingly, works wonders for our human spirit.
Hence, true healthcare reform, popularly known as ObamaCare.