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Saturday, March 25, 2017


If anyone is still confused  as to why Donald Trump is our President, open your eyes and pay attention. People are fed up with politics and Donald Trump was the beneficiary of that backlash. Anyone involved in politics that doesn't heed that warning, will most likely also feel the political blowback. It just so happens that Republicans received the benefit this go round.  Democrats and Republicans need to take advantage of  the opportunity to start listening to the American people and start benefiting the American people, not their own agendas.

This week in Washington was another perfect example that they are not listening . Politicians can have all the Town Hall meetings they want, but what we really need now are some politicians that can put aside their politics and begin to actually show some leadership.

Healthcare is not a "Republican" or "Democrat" issue. It is a basic human rights issue and we need to realize that. The Affordable Care  Act is not a perfect solution, but it was a start.  As a small business owner I used to provide healthcare for myself and my employees. One day out of the blue, we received a letter from the Healthcare provider telling us that in a short time they would no longer be writing health insurance in Connecticut. We shopped around, but as a small business, the prices were astronomical and prohibitive.

I had no health insurance at that point and I was, from what I thought at the time, relatively healthy. I would pay for any medical costs out of pocket and at that time it was a relatively small annual cost for me.

Fast forward several years and like I said, I figured I was relatively healthy so insurance was not a major concern. Eventually my health and genetics began catching up with me. I was diagnosed as a type 2 Diabetic, but between generic prescription meds and diet, I was able to keep it under control, or so I thought. Because I wasn't properly managing my healthcare, it caught up with  me.

I was still uninsured when I eventually had my first stroke. Most likely caused between my high risk factors of my diabetes and my blood pressure, which I didn't even know was a problem for me until I had the first stroke. If I had healthcare insurance, I probably would have acted a lot differently and managed my health differently and more aggressively and eliminated many of my problems before they actually became problems.

I had a great Primary care physician at the time, and he worked with me as much as he could, even providing me with medication samples monthly. But there was still follow up things like regular blood work and tests that I had to pay for out of pocket, so I would let those slip until they were absolutely necessary.

I was thrilled when the Affordable Care Act  became reality, and I could finally get affordable health insurance without the rejection letters for pre-existing conditions. The first year I didn't really shop, I just jumped at the first plan I saw and knew I could afford. Even with its roughly $6,000.00 annual deductible, it was still extremely reassuring knowing it was there if I needed it.

I won't go into all of the medical issues, more strokes, a heart attack, internal bleeding. but I am convinced if healthcare was easily obtainable, myself and probably many others would have managed their healthcare much differently. I know I am paying the price now.

It seems popular to parade people in front of the media to state that without the Affordable Care Act they wouldn't be alive today. I don't know if I can say I would be dead by now, but I think I can say with confidence I wouldn't have my eyesight today and probably wouldn't be able to walk without my stints in rehab at Mt. Sinai after my 3rd stroke and being taught how to function again. The vision, laser surgery and treatments and the rehab were only treated because I had health insurance in place.

I am getting off track here, but this past week in Washington was a disgusting display of politics at its worst , by both Democrats and Republicans. I don't think either party can claim the moral highground on this one. The venom and the sniping is what the people have made clear that they are tired of , and if politicians don't see Donald Trumps Presidency as a warning of how fed up we are, get ready for more of a bumpy ride next election.

I think confidence will be restored by which ever party can really roll up their sleeves and put the rhetoric aside and make a difference for the people they represent. Right now Congress has the Rolls Royce of healthcare plans along with the clinic they have right in the Capitol for their health needs.

 I wish there was a way to tell every member of Congress that their medical insurance was being cancelled and they were on their own to find their coverage. I bet the health insurance problem would be cured in a matter of weeks, not years if Congress people were harmed the same way millions of Americans will be harmed if their insurance is taken away. Someone needs to get the policy makers in a room and say"we aren't leaving until this is fixed". Take the parts that work and replace the parts that don't. I think they call that consensus building, maybe we should try it.

The Affordable Care Act is not perfect, but it was a start. I think what we need are some of our so called "leaders" to begin to lead. We need the Nancy Pelosi's, the Paul Ryans, the Chuck Schumers and the Chris Murphys in Washington to put the political egos aside. If they all put as much effort into fixing the problem as they do into hunting out the TV cameras for their sound bites to attack each side, this problem would be fixed quickly.

I have  plenty of good things to say about the Affordable Care  Act, as well as some horror stories also. I think if calmer heads prevail and really make an honest effort, a solution is within reach

When do you think Donald Trump or Barack Obama worried about how they would pay for a procedure or if they can cover the cost of their medications this month? Many people I am sure are stressing right now over what Congress will do, but it should be the other way around. Congress should be stressing over what the people are going to do if they don't begin governing and doing the jobs we elected them to do.


Nicky said...

Very sorry to hear about your health issues. I also have family history of heart disease, stroke, and cancer, and as a 52 year old male, wish we have better healthcare options. Employment and jobs are not what they were years ago when you had medical insurance for life. People have periods of unemployment, freelance, and create small businesses with gaps in coverage. Just think if we had decent and "affordable" coverage that would follow us from opportunity to opportunity and not tie us down to a company just for the health insurance. Maybe this was part of the Republican plan, but the cost would have excluded so many older Americans it would have been cruel and unusual punishment and early death. And to think it would have excluded mental health and substance abuse treatment when so many are battling drug addiction was puzzling.

Bill Katz said...

I echo concerns for your health Kevin. I have two stories to tell. Years ago, I had a bike accident. I fell off and shattered my elbo. I had a health care plan but before the new regulations. I was convinced that a ride to the hospital would cost me $1,000.00 in deductible. Someone asked if they should call 911 and I said no. someone eventually gave me a ride hipome in his pick up truck. I walked around my house cradling my arm with an ice pack until I realized I needed to go to the hospital.

For worse, a friend of mine who had been unemployed for years, died of a very treatable disease. She was losing her home because she could not find enough work. She was the former director of the Amistad Foundation of Culture. Dirdra Bibi didn't need to die but it seems she was too proud to beg for public assistance.

This is the fear that we all have lived with and died with. I hate what America has turned into. Or maybe it has always been this bad. We enjoy spending much of our wealth on killing machines and the military so we can finance our recurring invasions. But when it comes to health care coverage of its people, no way.

It doesn't rank in importantance to killing people while trying to coerce the world into our image and likeness.

You're correct, Kevin. This issue should not be a political issue. But everything ultimately becomes a political football where one aside says black and the other white. No matter with the issue is. It's hot on one side and cold on the other. Then the special interests enter fray with bags of money to get their taste. And We, the People get F_ _ _ked all over again. Every time.

Anonymous said...

If I recall correctly, the blog owner was hee hawing over Trump during the election. Do ya think the chickens have come home to roost?


No, I think both parties have shown an extreme lack of leadership. We all know healthcare is a mess and someone needs to fix it. Only time will tell if President Trump or the Democrats have the leadership and integrity to fix it

Bill Katz said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
General Grievous said...

The republicans made the same blunder as the democrats - ramming through a bill that nobody had read. Realistically, no or very few democrats are going to be cooperative with any bill that changes "Obamacare". It's an admission that their ACA is flawed.

At least the ACA bill architech Gruber was honest when he said that they were relying on the stupidity of voters to pass the bill.

Trump made a campaign promise, to repeal and replace ACA. He can say he kept his side of the bargain, and bonus points for making #NeverTrump Ryan the fall guy.

They will have to come back to resolving health care, because the fundamental premise of ACA has failed: young people are not buying health care, ACA economics are broken. Insurers are dropping out. The failing ACA will have to be fixed.

Bill Katz said...

Kevin, I deleted my post because I had too many typos. Issues with IPad and me eyes.