Sunday, August 03, 2008

Health, Insurance and Calling Dr. Kildare

A few days after sending in a hefty check for COBRA (Consolidated Omnibus Budget Reconciliation Act) coverage, I pour over the differences between choosing a PPO or an HMO. I have a new job, and I must choose health insurance coverage. I long for the days of Dr. Kildare and Marcus Welby, M.D. Things were so much simpler then.

As I look at papers, more acronyms like HIPPA (Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act) jump at me. I will have to call the benefits administrator to see if there is an exclusion for pre-existing health conditions like my Big C. Since I have had no gaps in coverage, I should be okay on this front.

Additionally, with a million dollar baby in the family, I watch my son and daughter-in-law struggle with insurance issues each day. A preemie born as early as baby Nicolas soon becomes a veteran health care consumer.

So, I do not know on what planet those who think everything is hunky-dorky with health care in the U.S. happen to be living. It certainly isn’t the one I’m on.

I don’t know if one politician can do anything to move America on this front and help bring much-needed reform in this area, but I damn sure don’t think John McCain, the so-called maverick Republican, can. I will give my vote to Barack Obama and hope he is a man of his word about working across party lines to bring this change.

It’s a real challenge to fight the influence of corporations and organizations with payrolls full of former politician- and backslapper-lobbyists, but I am putting some of what little money I have left after paying for my health insurance on Obama.

Pop Culture Note: Photos: 1) From Calling Dr. Kildare with Lew Ayres as Dr. Kildare and the great Lionel Barrymore as Dr. Gillespie. I had no idea there were so many Dr. Kildare movies in the late 30s and early 40s. I believe there were 10 with Lew Ayres and Barrymore continued with a few more movies as Dr. Gillespie after Ayres went off to war (as a conscientious objector who served in the Medical Corps). 2) TV’s dreamy Dr. Kildare portrayed by Richard Chamberlain is the Dr. Kildare I grew up loving.


Sarge Charlie said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Sarge Charlie said...

Oh Miss Shelia, you are praising one of the scariest parts of this ..... platform. Check with some Brits, Canadians on socialized health care, when they can wait no longer they come to the US to have their problems corrected. It is often that I hear the left complain about the VA, medicare and medicaide, why because they are socialized health care and they fail those they are supposed
to help. Government health care is a looser.

Sen Obama is a so far on the left fringe that I cannot understand a woman of your statue being a supporter.

My comment about his background and training by Malcome X is true, he is a radical Sheila, look into his background and you will fear him as I do......

We are still friends even though you have weird ideas.

Sorry I had to delete and correct my comment. Please study, you are wrong on this one.

Naomi said...

Healthcare is an ongoing issue in Britain too Sheila. Over here we have the National Health Service which in theory entitles everyone to free healthcare but quite often there are long waiting lists so you end up going privately and paying anyway. It's a difficult one. P.S. They used to show the Dr Kildare series over here. I always thought Richard Chamberlain was the best Dr Kildare too.

Marion said...

Things are getting better in Canada re the long wait lists, etc, at least it seems so to me. Not long ago, times were really tough on this one. Here in the interior of BC, though, I have had no long waits for any of the specialists I've had to see.

I still say I prefer to see everyone, no matter who they are, have medical care, whether they can pay or not. Those on Social Services are taken care of; the rest of us pay a remittance. It's a good system when it is working well.

Lorelei said...

Why can't we have both? Leave private healthcare the way it is for those who want to pay extra for it, and offer the other type too? I mean, we have public schools but we can still choose to pay extra to send our kids to private schools. If you can't afford the private school, your kid can still go to school. Can't it be the same with healthcare?

Marshamlow said...

I haven't made my decision yet on who I am going to vote for, but you make an excellent point. I do beleive though that pretty much all politicians of both parties want to make health care better and more affordable. My understanding is that McCain wants to lower costs, you know hold the medical people responsible for things like the $10 aspirin. And Obama wants to offer govt insurance to anyone who wants it, those who are happy with thier insurance can keep it, but a not for provit govt insurance would be offered to the public for those who want to go that route instead.

And I think that there are a lot more unhappy Americans with regards to health care than there are unhappy Europeans/Canadians. Even though the conservative radio and tv people are saying that Obama want to make us like the Europeans that is not at all what he has said he wants to do. But, I am not at all sure that I want to vote for him, just thought I would set the record straight.

floridagirl said...

I am SO glad to see you back on the blog! Thanks for the comments that you left on my blogger. I actually started the DASH diet and have lost 8 lbs. I am sure a lot of it is fluid but I am eating healthier . I guess having a 2 year old grandson really lit a fire under my behind. I want to be in good shape to enjoy my grandchildren.
LOVE, LOVE, LOVE the Dr. Kildare pics- esp Richard Chamberlain, who I had a crush on as a kid!

Hootin' Anni said...

Go Obama!!!
I read your comment on another blog about McCain being 'old'. He IS. There is no unknown fact. I lived in Arizona for over a decade with McCain in office, and I wouldn't even think of voting for him. He's has a vile temper, I've seen it many times. I'm afraid he'll either keep us in a war that is wrong OR get us into a NEW one.

And I have many many friends who live in Europe and the health care is so called 'free'...well, they also tell me that their TAX is extreme...which in turn makes it run about the same as our health care insurance. So, I'd say, no...the European's health care is not free. The Americans see it as free comparing to our health insurance, but in the long run, it's MORE expensive to live in Europe with the amount of tax they have to pay out compared to ours.

AND...the commentor who says "We can still be friends?"....Ummm, I'm an Obama backer, and he said the same thing to me at one point.

Again, Go Obama.

Sheila said...

Delightful to hear from everyone. Welcome new reader anni. Thanks Naomi and Marion for a non-U.S. health care perspective.

Lorelei, I agree with you. A hybrid or combo is a great idea.

Hope you will consider Obama. I think he can bring us together as Bush promised but failed miserably.

Tavia said...

You write very well.