The need for guns!

Has the fabric of our society deteriorated to such a point that so many people feel there is an overriding need for everyone to carry a gun in order to feel safe?

Is the only answer to all the gun violence in this country, really to increase access to guns and reduce or eliminating gun control laws so that everyone can easily gain access to guns and rifles?

If that is so, then we have problems that transcend our political, moral and religious differences. Has the NRA become so powerful in this country that it can continue to preach it’s doctrine of more and more guns without the fear of retribution?

Please tell me why any civilized person would want to live in a country like ours, and not try to change it?

That is not the country I was born in, nor is it the country I prefer living in!

A headline for the ages

CANCELLED SURGERIES COSTING HOSPITALS MILLIONS

From Anesthesiology News:

Between patient no-shows and cancellations on the day of surgery, hospitals are losing millions in revenue each year, researchers have found…….

Astonishing isn’t it! I might have even been appalled if I weren’t so disgusted.

Nowhere in the article is there any discussion of the possible harm to patients due to missed surgeries. Nowhere is there any discussion of why patients may have cancelled, e.g. cost to the patient in terms of missed work and/or lost wages.

Based on this article it would appear the only ones suffering here and risking harm are the health care providers.

For me, this article simply further highlight how inadequate our health care system is, and how distorted our value system has become in this country, when lost “opportunity costs” (profit) is what’s on the mind of health care providers the most.

But then again, a fee-for-service, for-profit health care system was never meant to promote concern for the patient!

What do you think of your health care?

If you’re one of the 27% of Americans defined as having had a serious illness, medical condition, injury, or disability requiring a lot of medical care, or who had been hospitalized overnight in the past 12 months, you probably don’t think very highly of it.

In a poll conducted by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, NPR, and Harvard School of Public Health, of those 27% of Americans

…… more than 40 percent say that the cost of their medical care over the last 12 months has caused a “very serious” (20%) or “somewhat serious” (23%) problem for their or their family’s finances. …………One in six sick Americans say that there was a time in the past 12 months when they could not get the medical care they needed (17%). Among the sick Americans who could not receive care, 52 percent report that it was because they could not afford the needed care, and 24 percent say it was because their insurers would not pay for it. Lastly, about one in ten sick Americans (11%) report being turned away by a doctor or hospital for financial or insurance reasons at some time during the past 12 months when they tried to receive care.

Not only that, but many of those respondents also complained of quality of care issues,

  • ……..about one in eight sick Americans believe they were given the wrong diagnosis, treatment, or test (13%).
  • About a quarter of sick Americans say that their condition was not well-managed (26%).
  • A quarter of sick Americans report that a doctor, nurse, or other health professional did not provide all the needed information about their treatment or prescriptions (25%) – or they had to see multiple medical professionals, and no single doctor understood or kept track of all the different aspects of their medical issues and treatments (23%).
  • Three in 10 hospitalized Americans say there was poor communication among the doctors, nurses and other health care professionals involved in their care (30%).
  • About one in six sick Americans believe they did not get the tests they thought they needed (18%) [I find that hard to believe], while 15 percent of sick Americans surveyed were tested or treated for something they believed to be unnecessary. [That I can easily believe.]
  • Nearly three-quarters of sick Americans say they want their doctor to spend time with them discussing other, broader health issues that might affect their long-term health (72%), as opposed to just talking about their specific medical problem (21%). [Like that’s ever going to happen, in a time of continually reducing reimbursements!]

Shocked! You should be, but then again, maybe not. I wasn’t. For-profit health care has never been about the patient. It’s only about profit, and how to maximize it.

Someday we will come to that realization, as those numbers increase [and they surely will], but how bad do the numbers have to get, and how many people have to die, or suffer needlessly before we do something about it?

A headline for the ages

CANCELLED SURGERIES COSTING HOSPITALS MILLIONS

From Anesthesiology News:

Between patient no-shows and cancellations on the day of surgery, hospitals are losing millions in revenue each year, researchers have found…….

Astonishing isn’t it! I might have even been appalled if I weren’t so disgusted.

Nowhere in the article is there any discussion of the possible harm to patients due to missed surgeries. Nowhere is there any discussion of why patients may have cancelled, e.g. cost to the patient in terms of missed work and/or lost wages.

Based on this article it would appear the only ones suffering here and risking harm are the health care providers.

For me, this article simply further highlights, how inadequate our health care system is, and how distorted our value system has become in this country, when lost “opportunity costs” (profit) override the health considerations of individual patients.

But that’s what for-profit, fee-for-service health care is all about!

It’s not called for-profit health care for nothing!

I’ve been told on occasion by a doctor friend of mine, when I’ve informed him how lousy I’m feeling, that I should take an anti-depressant. Well, for those of you who don’t know me, I have always staunchly refused to do so, not because I didn’t think they worked (I really couldn’t say one way or the other), but because I felt it wasn’t necessary, could do more harm than good, and I could deal with such feelings better without them.

And after watching last nights 60 Minutes, I feel vindicated in that belief. There now appears to be some evidence not only supporting my belief, but also casting doubts on the efficacy of anti-depressant drugs.

But why this should come as a surprise to anyone is beyond me.

I have always preached on the ineffectiveness of vitamins and supplements, and how you can’t boost your immune system. I’ve always believed it is simply a scam perpetrated by the vitamin and supplement industry to separate you from your hard earned money.Everything you need to maintain proper health and nutrition is available in it’s natural state.

So why should drugs be any different?

In a ‘for-profit’ health care system, with so much money involved, and so much time to bring new drugs to market, there will always be the incentive to skew results in the pharmaceutical industry’s favor, highlighting the good results, and sweeping the bad results under the carpet.

So it’s not surprising, the pharmaceutical industry is fighting tooth and nail to dispel the [compelling] research of Dr. Kirsch, after all this is an $11.3 billion industry, and could put a serious crimp in the profits of the pharmaceutical industry. But regardless of the final outcome, this should be a wake up call, and a learning lesson to everyone.

BE SKEPTICAL OF EVERYTHING! (And not just in the health care arena.) Don’t be fooled by special interests, who appear authentic and concerned, but are truly only looking out for their best interests, and their bottom lines.

Freedom of religion means freedom from religion

Why are Democrats so timid? Why can’t [won’t] they defend the policies they support? Why do Democrats always let Republicans distort their positions, and never respond in kind? It’s always the same, and I’m tired of it!

It’s no wonder so many people are so easily swayed, and have so much trouble separating facts from the lies and distortions.

And this latest directive by the Obama administration, requiring all health insurance policies to cover contraception, is the perfect example.

It’s not an attack on religious freedom, as Republicans claim, to require health insurance policies, even for employees of religious organizations, to cover contraception, and protect the reproductive rights of women. It’s an act of religious freedom to require it.

By opposing this action, the Republicans are doing exactly what they claim Democrats are doing, and that is trying to restrict the religious freedom of Americans. What right does the Catholic Church, the Republican party, or right wing evangelical groups have to impose their religious values and beliefs on others? There’s nothing in the constitution allowing such actions, and that sure isn’t what our founding fathers meant when they talked about religious freedom.

It’s time the Democrats started standing up for their beliefs, and telling things like they really are. It’s time the Democrats started pointing out the real agenda of Republicans which is to create a theocratic state, and impose their religious values and beliefs on everyone. [All you have to do is listen to Rick Santorum to know how true that is!]

Remember, freedom of religion also means freedom from religion.