Making Sense of the Health Care Bill

Photo of a print out of the new health care reform bill.

Over a thousand sections and five binders of health care legislation make up the new bill.

Mending the System

By Joaquin M. Turley 

The debate on health-care is currently raging. Millions of people are getting sick every day and they don’t have enough money to afford it. These people fall victim to the big insurance companies, while the companies get rich off the people’s unfortunate circumstances. The field has continuously shown no compassion when it comes to providing affordable health care. Something as imperative and necessary as health insurance should have been fixed decades ago, but now there is finally a plan to help people.  

As we all know President Barack Obama has been pushing and pushing for a type of universal health care reform, where everyone will be able to have health insurance. This idea is extremely revolutionary in a time where a recession is in full effect and lower income families have to choose which necessities of life are more important than others. This bill will help their dilemma because it gives people the option of not only choosing their health insurance, but also deciding how much they want to pay to gain that insurance.  

Why the GOP has been fighting Obama every step of the way has baffled me. This type of resistance to a plan that is going to help millions of uninsured Americans is telling of the GOP mindset.  

Their mindset is selfish, as they would like to see the rich get richer and the poor become only poorer. I am speaking of their actions as a whole. They have done nothing but try to block or distract the President in order to delay the vote; they have become the party of “No.” Obama even had to delay trips to Indonesia and Australia, where he would work to improve relations, in order to stay in Washington and push through the bill.  

It is sad that Obama has had to deal with such bitter partisanship in his tenure as president. My question to you as a reader is why? Is the public missing the underlying message that the Republican Party is sending with their actions? Perhaps Obama is actually trying to help Americans without a hidden agenda of his own. Republicans say they support health-care, though not this bill. Why is it then that they did not do anything while Bush was in power for eight years?  

People need the government, but the government also needs the people. So it is almost safe to say the government could possibly be rigged in such a way that people will always need to run to this institution for help. Obama’s plan is liberating the public to a degree. This plan will give people the freedom to choose their insurance instead of being locked into a situation where they deal with an insurance company that will raise premiums to an impossible height. In addition, now Americans do not have to worry about being dropped from their insurance because they have preexisting conditions.  

We all understand the plan to end the strife regarding health-care is not perfect (nothing is) but it is definitely a step in the right direction. What is Obama as the President of the United States of America supposed to do? Sit around as some other presidents have done and watch people live their lives hanging by a string called hope? No! A president should be a fearless leader willing to go the extra mile for the people that put him in his position. In my view this is what we finally have. We have a president willing to work in the people’s favor, who is willing to put his reputation on the line to fight for something he believes in. He has endured bitter criticism and spent countless hours over the past year debating health care, though his determination and vision has finally brought hope for the American people. It is about time someone in the political arena fulfills their campaign promises.  

It’s about time someone in a powerful position really cared about what is happening in America instead of unwinding at his private ranch when disasters occur.  

Maybe this is the beginning of a great change in the faulty governmental thinking that has plagued America for far too long. 

Now, That’s Reform

By Maurice King 

After 100 years of trying to implement health care reform, finally HR 3590 has become a reality and has heralded in a new era in the United States. It was the topic of discussion in the government and the media for over a year before its passage. Some unrest over the bill still exists in the Republican Party, which opposed the bill from the outset, and John McCain said that the Republicans will repeal the bill. For now, however, the bill is law.  

Some people have already said they are glad the struggle is over so that it will be possible to discuss something else for a change. Many people express doubt as to what impact the bill will practically have. The only real way to know what the bill means is to read it and that is quite an undertaking: its 10,909 sections span over thousands of pages. The bill does not currently provide for a public option, which is a disappointment to many. The bill specifies that purchasing health insurance is mandatory, but for persons who cannot afford the insurance, subsidies will be available. At least that is what the summary of the bill seems to imply, but my experience has been that some people always fall between the cracks, so I have a “wait and see” status. I would like to see that everyone will have health-care, so I am hoping to see an improvement.  

Enough nay-saying went on during the bill’s history. The Republican Party remained unswerving in its opposition to the bill throughout. We heard talk of the United States becoming a socialist nation because of the health-care bill, although I felt that such talk bordered on hysteria. The bill did not provide for a single payer health-care system similar to the systems in European countries; it empowered insurance companies by requiring everyone to have health insurance. My own sentiments were for a single-payer system, as I lived with such a system for 22 years while living abroad and had no problem with it, but detractors tried to say that such a system would lead to rationing of care and, as Sarah Palin herself put it, “death panels”. I fail to see how these ideas did not apply to the existing broken system; insurance companies also deny coverage and drop persons from coverage as they see fit.  

I truly would like to believe that the passage of this bill will improve health care in the United States. The status quo was untenable and demanded change long before now. The bill is law now, and the talk of a socialist state resulting from the bill’s passage has proven to be so much hot air. Some dissent still exists; I wonder if that will intensify or dissipate with time. The real test will be in the implementation of the bill, and it is too early to judge that. I am hoping for the best; it’s the only sensible way to be. 

Issues |Health, Mental|Health, Physical|Political commentary

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