Health care reform

White Coat Underground

Category archives for Health care reform

As my regular readers know, I’m not a big fan of our current health care system. Our bloated, industry-driven system manages to deliver less effective care at a higher cost than most other industrialized nations. The system is Byzantine, unnavigable, and dangerous, and is kept that way in the name of the Holy Market. But…

Health care reform—democracy in action

It’s hard to imagine the that the hyperbolic rhetoric that characterized the health care reform debate could get any worse (death panels, etc.). But it will.  Representative John Boehner (Asshat-OH) started it of last night with what amounted to a call for the overthrow of our democracy. “Today we stand here amidst the wreckage of…

Rush Limbaugh doesn’t get it

Or if he does, he’s even a worse person than I’d realized. After suffering chest pain in Hawaii he was evaluated in a hospital. When discharged today, he held a briefing in which he praised the U.S. health care system as being the best in the world and remarked that he sees nothing wrong with…

An easy way to kill a debate on health care policy is to use the “R” word. We saw this early in the HCR debate with overheated talk of “death panels” and other nonsense. But we ignore the real issue of rationing at our own peril. Those of us who favor real HCR must embrace…

The mainstream media is finally catching on to a disturbing story–the insertion of faith-healing and other non-scientific practices into health care reform. Health bloggers have been on this story for a while, showing us that Senate Bill 1679 currently contains language that would require support for faith healing practices: The essential benefits provided for in…

When I see a patient at the office, I spend time developing trust, forming a therapeutic alliance, thinking through their physical complaints, examining them, and applying the best evidence to formulating a plan for maintaining their health. It’s a lot of fun. Less fun is the part where I try to get paid. To bill…

When there’s no place to go

A few weeks ago, I wrote a little about hospitals “dumping” patients. At least around here, it’s a rare problem. But what about people who don’t get dumped but have no place to go? Let’s take “Mrs. Anton”. She’s 68 years old and has metastatic breast cancer. She’s going to die of the disease, but…

The state of Michigan is facing massive budget cuts which will further eviscerate the Medicaid program. If the legislature passes it’s budget as planned, massive cuts to Medicaid will reduce federal matching funds further limiting access to health care for the state’s many uninsured. It’s not clear if there is a way out of this,…

Health care—an obvious moral imperative

I got a little cranky earlier during a facebook discussion, then heard the voice of a friend in the back of my head saying, “Blog it! Blog that shit!” And I was about to, when the hospital called with a minor crisis, and then I realized it was the probably one of the last nice…

Health care rationing vs. freedom to go broke

In the current debate over health care, the Right is pissing me off. They are whining about a “government takeover” that will lead to rationing and death panels, but also about runaway costs. Guess what? You can’t have it both ways. I just got off the phone with a Major Private Insurance Company. In order…