Ugh...blech...patoey:P I curse thee Ohmommy for making me dive into this pool *shaking fist in the air* (I kid, you know I love)...
If you are not aware, Ohmommy lit up the blogoshpere over the weekend with this post, followed by this post on the proposed Obama health care plan.
Now, I DON'T pretend to know what the answer is, and NO I have not read the proposed plan. That being said, I need to address some of what I read both in the posts, and in the comments.
First...one of your commenter's Karen (who I can not link to since she left no link) I believe she is a nurse, said...
"I'm sorry, but I must live in a bubble...
The pediatric patients,that I encounter everyday and care for regardless of their sex/race/financial status, receive free treatment, from a team of people that sincerely care and make sure they receive the attention they need/deserve. The children receive this care regardless of their idiotic parents that refuse to get a job, because life is better living off the benefits they receive from our government.
Vaccinations for their children must be hard to pay for when there are acrylic nails, cigarettes, and alcohol to be bought."
There seemed to be a general consensus that if you had insurance and a good job, it was because you worked hard, and if you didn't it was because you were lazy. I wish life were that easy. (please know Karen that I mean no disrespect to you, I am not walking in your shoes...it may be that way from where you are standing)
What I do know is...the day I went into the hospital to have Miss Peach for reasons completely beyond our control, our insurance was yanked out from under us (illegally)...the. day. I. went. in. That was followed by a 9 day stay in the NICU for Miss Peach.
I am a hustler, I have and will continue to work hard all my life. Husband is the smartest, and hardest working man I know, and we got knocked off our horse. The timing could not have been worse, and it was completely out of our control. That said...we came home from the hospital, having to sell our house to pay a $28,000 hospital bill. (that was not the only factor for selling the house, but it weighed in) I still consider myself lucky that we had an option. I know there are many folks out there who don't have options. To make the assumption that those people are lazy or unwilling to work is not only naive, but it is elitist. How can anyone make that assumption about anyone else without being in their shoes? Is it true in some cases? Probably. In all cases? Absolutely not.
I also can't help but notice the problem you Pauline, and some of your commenter's have with the idea of doctors being paid by salary.
"...work as hard as you can in school and get into Harvard Med School and then work even harder; but, it actually doesn't really matter because you will get paid the same as a non-specialist"
Is putting doctors on salary really the end of the world? I'd be willing to bet many people go into medicine to actually HELP people, and not simply for the monetary gain. Let's say we did put doctors on salary...would that really be the end of the fine medical care that many great hospitals in the US currently give?
I find it interesting that two of the three hospitals in your question...
"Name three hospitals in the United States. Easy, no? John Hopkins, the Mayo Clinic, the Cleveland Clinic."
currently pay their doctors by salary rather than procedure or volume based (The Mayo Clinic, and The Cleveland Clinic).
They pay medical doctors a fixed salary that is unaffected by patient volume. The thinking behind this is to decrease the monetary motivation to see patients in large numbers and increase the incentive to spend more time with individuals. Salaries are determined by the marketplace salaries for physicians in comparable large group practices. So, it seems to me that these hospitals are ahead of the curve...
I know I don't have the answers...I'm even pretty gosh darn sure Obama doesn't either. That said...I know where we are now is not good enough. When Burgh Baby said...
"My mother died of breast cancer because we did not have the means to pay for insurance or any health care."
I know that is not what we as Americans should settle for. Why do we either have to choose what we have now, or adopt what Europe or Canada have? Why can't we as Americans expect something more...something better...for everyone? I'd like to think more hospitals can adopt the kind of practice being done at The Mayo Clinic. I'd like to think that doctors will be able to practice medicine in an environment where they are able to treat the patient rather than throwing expensive tests that may not be necessary to make more money.
Perhaps I'm asking for too much? Perhaps unicorns will fly out of my a$$ and it will start raining gumdrops? I do know one thing...change will not happen until we come to the table and start talking about it. It seems to me, that's where we are now. Let's get this one right.