Aug 14 2009

“Not enough resources”?

Category: Uncategorizedharmonicminer @ 4:26 pm

I have a friend who is a social worker in the Antelope Valley of California, which includes the Palmdale/Lancaster area.  She sent me this accounting of government provided health care in the area:

As a Social Worker in Los Angeles County I have a lot of dealings with Government provided insurance (Medi-Cal). My clients receive this coverage. As such, they have real limits on access to care. For example, in the Antelope Valley (that is Palmdale/Lancaster), make sure you don’t break a bone. If you break a bone you can only have it treated one day out of the month. If it is not the designated day for them to treat broken bones, you are out of luck, unless you can afford to drive to Los Angeles to get it treated. This, despite the fact that there are two hospitals and a county Medical HUB (treatment facility) in Lancaster. All of which have the ABILITY to treat it, but don’t, because they “can’t allocate the resources” for it. Seriously. It is incredible. They will make a child go a whole month without even setting the broken bone– I’ve seen this in action. Los Angeles is a long ways off, and many of our clients don’t have the transportation or money to drive there.

At the hospitals in Lancaster, if you are on Government Health care and break a bone, they will x-ray the break and diagnose it, but they WILL NOT TREAT IT. Im not kidding. This is just the way it’s done.

Further, I had a client who was reportedly having some kind of neurological problem. The Medical HUB refused to refer her for a Neurological Exam, citing they did not have sufficient resources to provide this. I argued with the administration, the doctors, fought it as far as I could. Didn’t matter.

Ultimately, I had to get a Court Order in order to get her a Neurological Exam. Even then, she was admitted to the hospital 3 times (for at least a week each time) before finally they referred her for a Neurological Exam.

That is Government insurance. Yes, they are “technically” covered, but they just can’t access the health care services. “Not enough resources.”

Some people reading this will undoubtedly say that this proves that “health care reform” is necessary.  Yet it’s difficult to deny that this is exactly the kind of bureaucratic silliness that we see in other government agencies, local, state and federal.    To put this at its simplest, the farther away the decision makers are from the patients, the worse things will be.  Someone has told people having coffee in local hospitals that they should not set broken bones for children, except on one day per month. 

There is very little chance that the government can reform its bureaucracy by creating an even bigger one.
  And in the meantime, while tilting at bureaucratic windmills, it will have reduced or removed the ability of the private sector to take up the slack, as more and more employers see that it’s in their best interest to dump employees into the “government option.”

Aug 14 2009

Obamacare: destined to be a political rationing scheme

Category: healthcare,Obamaharmonicminer @ 1:37 pm

ObamaCare Will Lead to Rationed Care for Elderly   And the rest of us, too. Read it all at the link.

Elderly Americans are turning out in droves to fight ObamaCare, and President Obama is arguing back that they have nothing to worry about. Allow us to referee. While claims about euthanasia and “death panels” are over the top, senior fears have exposed a fundamental truth about what Mr. Obama is proposing: Namely, once health care is nationalized, or mostly nationalized, rationing care is inevitable, and those who have lived the longest will find their care the most restricted.

Far from being a scare tactic, this is a logical conclusion based on experience and common-sense. Once health care is a “free good” that government pays for, demand will soar and government costs will soar too. When the public finally reaches its taxing limit, something will have to give on the care and spending side. In a word, care will be rationed by politics.

Mr. Obama’s reply is that private insurance companies already ration, by deciding which treatments are covered and which aren’t. However, there’s an ocean of difference between coverage decisions made under millions of voluntary private contracts and rationing via government. An Atlantic Ocean, in fact. Virtually every European government with “universal” health care restricts access in one way or another to control costs, and it isn’t pretty.