Editore"s Note
Tilting at Windmills

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August 12, 2009

STATUS QUO WATCH.... About a month ago, Bill Moyers sat down with Wendell Potter, a former executive at a major health insurance company, who's become a whistleblower, explaining the way the industry "put profits before patients" and is doing everything possible to block health care reform now.

Asked what prompted his change of heart, Potter said he visited a health care expedition in Wise, Virginia, in July 2007. "I just assumed that it would be, you know, like booths set up and people just getting their blood pressure checked and things like that," he said. "But what I saw were doctors who were set up to provide care in animal stalls. Or they'd erected tents, to care for people.... I've got some pictures of people being treated on gurneys, on rain-soaked pavement. And I saw people lined up, standing in line or sitting in these long, long lines, waiting to get care."

Potter added that families were there from "all over the region" because people had heard, "from word of mouth," about the possibility of being able to see a doctor without insurance. He asked himself, "What country am I in? It just didn't seem to be a possibility that I was in the United States."

What's worth remembering is that this exact same scene keeps playing out, across the country. Reader R.B. sent me this item earlier:

The free medical clinic at the Forum in Inglewood [near Los Angeles] reached capacity again Wednesday, as hundreds camped out overnight to receive medical and dental care. [...]

More than 2,000 sought services on the first day of the medical clinic -- and hundreds were turned away. People were lined up Tuesday night, hoping to get in. The MTA announced it was extending service of Line 115 because of "overwhelming demand" for rides to the clinic, which runs for eight days. [...]

Doctors, nurses and other medical workers who donated their time said most visitors' ailments were basic. But "many have chronic diseases -- high blood pressure, diabetes, asthma -- conditions we can't deal with in just one day," said Dr. Nancy Greep of Santa Monica. Some had problems, such as a recurring cancer, that demand long-term treatment.

"What country am I in? It just didn't seem to be a possibility that I was in the United States."

Remember, in some conservative circles, there's still a belief that health care reform isn't necessary. Last month, one right-wing member of Congress even boasted, "There are no Americans who don't have healthcare. Everybody in this country has access to healthcare."

Here's a thought: head down to Inglewood and let folks know about this. While you're there, let them know that health care reform might lead to "rationing" and "long wait times."

Steve Benen 3:45 PM Permalink | Trackbacks | Comments (47)

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Comments

Truly, this is third-world-nation/refugee camp type health care. What's happening in this country is appalling and I'm sure just one more reason to hate the US beyond our borders (except for Obama). How our leaders can allow this--and allow tens of millions of citizens to go uninsured--is outrageous. Instead of these ridiculous health care forums or town halls, these so-called "representatives" should have stayed in Washington until something productive was achieved. I have to keep the faith that Obama knows what he's doing or this would really be depressing.

Posted by: Mrs.Jones3 on August 12, 2009 at 3:51 PM | PERMALINK

More and more, I find a song playing in my head, and the sound of David Bowie singing:

"A little piece of you
The little peace in me
Will die
For this is not America"


Posted by: biggerbox on August 12, 2009 at 3:57 PM | PERMALINK

See, all those folks at the L.A. free clinic are just commiefascist illegals -- taking advantage of the charity of us God-fearing Real Americans. Hell with 'em...

Posted by: JCB on August 12, 2009 at 3:59 PM | PERMALINK

I don't wish to be rude, but it is awfully late for this sort of stuff to be publicized, as these charitable clinics have been going on for some time. Aren't they common knowledge in the United States?

Posted by: Bob M on August 12, 2009 at 4:02 PM | PERMALINK

I find it amusing when people say their current health insurance coverage is just fine. How would they know? They are obviously lucky enough and healthy enough not to have found out how good their coverage really is. You don't know how good your homeowner's coverage is until your house burns down!

Posted by: Sam Simple on August 12, 2009 at 4:04 PM | PERMALINK

Like Mr. Potter, I do not think many people in America know about this. On the homepage of RAM, the organization that is running the LA free clinic, there is a 60 minutes piece on it from 2008.

http://www.ramusa.org/learn/media.html

I suggest we all share it.

Posted by: Neal on August 12, 2009 at 4:10 PM | PERMALINK

What country? This country:

Ron Williams - CEO of Aetna
Total 2008 Compensation: $24,300,112

H. Edward Hanway - CIGNA
Total 2008 Compensation: $12,236,740

Angela Braly - WellPoint
Total 2008 Compensation: $9,844,212

Dale Wolf - Coventry Health Care
Total 2008 Compensation: $9,047,469

And so on and on...

Posted by: koreyel on August 12, 2009 at 4:11 PM | PERMALINK

Steve, your faith in Americans does you credit. Don't you see that the suffering of others is the primary emotional satisfaction of the American right? Cruelty is a feature, not a bug.

Posted by: JMG on August 12, 2009 at 4:12 PM | PERMALINK

And exactly why is this guy not on, say, The Today Show ? I mean they have on creatures like Michelle Maulkin and Anne Coulter .......

*********************************************

I am an old hippie who also remembers the day we had 'free clinics' that were manned by doctors and nurses that volunteered their time. There were so many volunteering their time, and the drugs were free, that anyone who was poor could go there and be treated. It worked just fucking fine. Why don't we do this again all over this country: requiring doctors and nurses to volunteer their time, like say, a few hours a day once a week. Given how many doctors and nurses there are these clinics could be fully staffed and they could all still make their livings. Why not ?

Posted by: stormskies on August 12, 2009 at 4:12 PM | PERMALINK

This reminds me of a question one of my friends asked today whether any average but non-white citizens are authorized to talk about health care on the air waves. Judging from the fact that CNN and FOX don't run stories like this, I'd say no.

Posted by: Tobias on August 12, 2009 at 4:13 PM | PERMALINK

...And the right-wingers responsible for this suffering are the same ones who claim that only they are living out Christian values.

Posted by: Chris S. on August 12, 2009 at 4:14 PM | PERMALINK

why not stormskies? because that's a stupid way to provide health care, that's why not.

Posted by: just bill on August 12, 2009 at 4:16 PM | PERMALINK

Remember the good old days when they were talking about a "third-world country with a first-rate military?" And they meant Russia?

Posted by: Greg Worley on August 12, 2009 at 4:17 PM | PERMALINK

Well we're not getting "health care reform" now are we? It's been rebranded as "health insurance reform"

Maybe you should link to the Moyers episode that has two health care experts on that both say the Obama/dem plan is a disaster and nothing more than a giveaway to the insurance industry.

Posted by: grinning cat on August 12, 2009 at 4:18 PM | PERMALINK

why not stormskies? because that's a stupid way to provide health care, that's why not.

just bill: it reality it worked just fine .. in reality. just like all those showing up now, thru necessity, at those free clinics .. it's working for them cause they need it too ........

Posted by: stormskies on August 12, 2009 at 4:20 PM | PERMALINK

How about photos of one of these rather than of the "teabaggers" at a town hall

Posted by: Ken on August 12, 2009 at 4:26 PM | PERMALINK

THESE are the events we need to be having to support health care reform. Instead of idiotic town hall meetings where whack jobs express outrage over nonsense they've been fed by Limbaugh, why not have doctors who want reform set up one day clinics for the uninsured?? Let the media talk to those people for a change.

Posted by: WSP on August 12, 2009 at 4:28 PM | PERMALINK

Real physicians despise the doctors who work at events like this.

Not only are the people who do this unlikely to be able to practice medicine in a competitive setting, they get people riled up to think healthcare should be a right.

Posted by: Mlke K on August 12, 2009 at 4:30 PM | PERMALINK

These free clinic now, and in the hippie days, certainly are 'stupid' from the point of view of the folks that need them. Let's see why don't we take a survey or a poll of all the 47 million American who have no health insurance at all because they can't afford it due to the greed of the health insurance industry. And in that poll or survey let's ask them if they would feel, or feel, that 'free clinics' offering them the health care that they need would be or is stupid. I think all rationale people know the answer.

Posted by: realitybasedcommunity on August 12, 2009 at 4:36 PM | PERMALINK

I'm surprised that Fox news hasn't accused Obama of planting these healthcare-seekers in order to make it seem like we don't have the best health insurance system the world has ever known, so that he can then euthanize everyone's grandmother.

Posted by: qwerty on August 12, 2009 at 4:37 PM | PERMALINK

stormskies,

Great for you that you were able to go to a free clinic, but from where exactly did the funding for their medical equipment, rent money for the space, utilities, necessities like bandages, sterile gloves, vaccinations, etc COME FROM? Yes, the doctors and nurses may be able to donate their time, but there's a whole lot more to a free clinic than some guy showing up for his 8 hours per month pro bono work with a stethoscope.

Have you been in a free clinic since the Vietnam War? I go there twice per month (to advertise free legal aid services for the indigent and disadvantaged). They are not a good model for providing health care for the homeless, unemployed, immigrants, abuse victims, or people with chronic conditions. There's never enough funds (government subsidies or private donations), never enough hot water, never enough people to take care of the folks coming in. A lot of the women who show up there with their children are immigrants - legal and illegal - who don't speak any English, who can't get healthcare because their husbands are migrant workers, and who desperately need to get their child's eye infection seen to. It's horrible. The days I go in and do outreach, I always take half an hour to clean the bathrooms and waiting area because the staff doesn't have time. I bring my own bucket, mop, toilet brush, and cleaners because there's no guarantee the clinic will have any.

Free clinics may have been nice back in the days of student protests and widespread acid use, but the population has exploded, the gap between rich and poor has widened, the price of drugs have reached stratospheric levels, and the demand is impossible to keep up with.

Posted by: Ephemereal on August 12, 2009 at 4:40 PM | PERMALINK

qwerty,

It's right there in the quote...these folks are being bussed in!

Posted by: TonyB on August 12, 2009 at 4:41 PM | PERMALINK

Ephemereal: God bless for the work that you are doing. Your report is really an indictment of what our country has become. The IDEA of a free clinic is not the issue here. The issue is exactly what you have reported in your experience. And that, indeed, is the indictment of this country that it could be this way while all the evil vultures of the health care industry make their billions in profit. A few years ago I saw an anonymous survey of medical students at UCLA. And the question was: how many of you are becoming doctors because you desire to heal others versus doing so in order to make lot's of money. The answer was 75 percent wanted to do so to make money, not heal. And there you have it. That's what this country has become. The idea of free clinics would work just fine if we had a majority of people that actually cared about other people. In the hippie days all those things you point out WERE DONATED, even the buildings themselves. Everything was donated. Nowadays, as you have sadly documented, it's not. So, to me, it's not the issue of Free Clinics as such, it is the nature of the society that our country has become. God Bless you for the work that you are doing.

Posted by: stormskies on August 12, 2009 at 4:49 PM | PERMALINK

"What country am I in? It just didn't seem to be a possibility that I was in the United States."

But, but; on my TeeVee I keep hearing Republican senators and representatives say, 'America has the best health care in the WORLD!'

-And I have yet to hear a 'newsperson' reply, "With all due respect, Senator, you're full of SHIT!"

Posted by: DAY on August 12, 2009 at 5:10 PM | PERMALINK

koreyel's comment at 4:11pm is the most important one on the thread.

America has the most profitable "health care" system in the world, and the insurance corporation executives who are raking in multimillion dollar annual salaries are determined to keep it that way.

When former insurance corporation executive turned whistleblower Wendell Potter was interviewed by Amy Goodman on Pacifica Radio's Democracy Now!, he recounted that shortly after his visit to the health care expedition in Virginia where he saw the conditions described in Steve's article, he found himself once again flying across the country in one of CIGNA's corporate jets, being served a gourmet meal on gold-plated china. And that's when he realized that there was something very wrong about what he was doing.

That, and having to serve as the corporation's public relations spokesperson when one of the company's customers sued to get the life-saving medical care they had fraudulently denied her, and finally won, but then died before she was able to receive care.

Death panels? The insurance companies KILL PEOPLE, deliberately, every day, for profit.


Posted by: SecularAnimist on August 12, 2009 at 5:21 PM | PERMALINK

And, that, indeed, is the 'story' that should be on every cable channel, 24/7, every newspaper, everyday, and all network 'news' all the time .. and for good measure someone, anyone, should force lou dobbs to repeat on every one of his shows.

Posted by: stormskies on August 12, 2009 at 5:27 PM | PERMALINK

one right-wing member of Congress even boasted, "There are no Americans who don't have healthcare. Everybody in this country has access to healthcare."

And to that fool, these clinics simply prove his point.

Somerby has a good take on why the liberals just can't win when it comes to health care and here's an example: Obama trying to explain why we need reform says that we "spend $6,000 more per person" than other countries.
When the president can't get basic facts right about the issues, how can reform occur?

Posted by: TJM on August 12, 2009 at 5:32 PM | PERMALINK

I wonder how many of those attendees at the Virginia clinic are actively apposed to reform efforts in Washington? I wonder how many of them have been so ramped up by Republican fear mongering that they honestly feel that getting treated on a sidewalk is better than 'government healthcare' or 'taking away their choices' or 'killing grandma'?

The Republican party's greatest achievment is making huge numbers of American's fear anything that might actually have a chance to improve their lives.

Posted by: thorin-1 on August 12, 2009 at 5:43 PM | PERMALINK

Almost every Sunday afternoon, in Chico, California, the Shalom Free Clinic offers very basic free medical and mental health services. Open for over two years. It's sponsored by two religious congregations, one Christian and one Jewish. There is no charge for the services. The medical and mental health providers are all professionals, licensed, and volunteers. It's held at the UCC church in Chico.

Almost every Sunday afternoon, the Clinic sees 30 - 50 people. It was started out of compassion and a desire to bring some justice to people in need, not as a protest to the state of our healthcare system.

How many of these angry, yelling people would say they are born again Christians? I'm ashamed, as a Christian pastor, that many of them would. Yet another adventure in missing the point of the teachings of Jesus.

Posted by: revchicoucc on August 12, 2009 at 5:46 PM | PERMALINK

To add to Ephemereal's account, @16:40:

I, too, volunteer at a free clinic -- in Rockbridge County, Virginia. We have 1600 patients (200 brand new, added in the past 2 months, since jobs are still being lost), 8 paid staff and 140 volunteers. Some of the volunteers are also patients -- that's how they give back. Two of the paid staff do nothing else but try to raise funds for continuing operations -- begging for grants, organising fundraisers, negotiating with pharmaceutical companies for give-away medicine (which the companies can then knock off their taxes), etc.

It really is *not* a way to run a healthcare system. If a volunteer doesn't feel like coming in, he/she just doesn't come and there's no replacement. It's almost OK when it's someone like me -- I just clean and sterilise the instruments (I say my official title is "the chief dishwasher"). But, when it's the doctor or a nurse or a chairside assistant/dental technician, the whole day's schedule collapses and patients don't get seen to. The woman (paid staff) who does the scheduling is in tears half of the time. I've learnt to call her the night before a scheduled clinic, to make sure that it's still a "go", at least as far as she knows.

It really is enough to make one sick to the core. I've been there for just a couple of weeks short of a year and am begining to feel burnt out (started with 2-3 times a month, am going now 6-8 times, for 4hr stints) and my friend the scheduler says that the burn-out and turnover rate is, indeed, fairly high.

And, thorin-1, @17:43,

Don't know about the folk at the Wise County but I talked to one family here who are very much opposed to public health. And they're not some uneducated hicks, with more tattoos than teeth, either. But they homeschool their 8 children, so you can figure out where they're coming from. "We don't believe government should be involved. We think people should be self-reliant". Never strikes them that they're getting their healthcare through charity, not self-reliance.

Posted by: exlibra on August 12, 2009 at 7:07 PM | PERMALINK

Stormskies: I love the idea of free clinics. Let's put them everywhere, accessible to anyone who has need for medical care. Everyone who comes in will receive treatment at no cost. And let's call it Universal Health Care, the same kind of system that every single first world country (except us) has had for decades.

Enough of this blathering and dickering about private vs public options, getting the consent of the insurance company overlords, begging Big Pharma to show an iota of compassion. It's the 21st century, time to grow up and provide health care to every single citizen as needed.

Moreover, we'd be more competitive economically in the global marketplace if we eliminated the roughly 30% overhead/profits of insurance companies from the roughly 18% of our gross national product which health care costs. Shouldn't all non-health businesses be screaming for the advantages of nationalized health care?

Posted by: GringoNoraca on August 12, 2009 at 7:24 PM | PERMALINK

Exlibra,

We have an exploding homeless population thanks to job losses, and a LOT of families with children are out on the street. A lot of the new people who come to the clinic are single, low-income, hourly wage, service job holding women whose healthcare was inadequate to being with. Now they've been let go, they've been evicted from their crappy apartments because they can't pay rent, and a lot of them simply don't know that their children qualify for SCHIP. That's one of the big reasons I do legal service outreach at those clinics, because these women do qualify for aid from various sources, but they just don't know about it. I do it at women's shelters for the same reason. If legal services professionals didn't actively reach out to them, they would be in the dark, and suffering, and if we didn't assist them through the application process and find the loopholes, they'd give up after being turned away.

One of the other things I do on behalf of the clinic and the shelters is organize donation drives at local churches for gently used clothes, reasonably clean bedding, and children's school supplies. No matter what, we have to keep these kids in school. I have a friend who runs the YWCA's drives for business interview clothes for women; I send a lot of these women to her. The clinic isn't just providing medical care; it's a link in a network of people who can provide basic living necessities to the indigent.

These are the people the GOP says can go live in shit while lobbying for insurance company execs who make $25 million every year. There are no words for how much I fucking hate them for it. These people are evil. I have to wonder, if they saw the human suffering I do every time I go volunteer, would it change their minds at all?

Posted by: Ephemereal on August 12, 2009 at 8:47 PM | PERMALINK

Mike:

"Real physicians despise the doctors who work at events like this.

Not only are the people who do this unlikely to be able to practice medicine in a competitive setting, they get people riled up to think healthcare should be a right."

What a thankless, cruel, and untrue thing to say! Please let us know the names of physicians you know who "despise" healthcare professionals who donate their time at free clinics, so the rest of us can avoid going to these assholes and so we can spread the word. If indeed there are such physicians, which I somewhat doubt, THEY are the ones to be despised, NOT those who donate time. And why would helping to take care of people who have no other health care make the providers incompetent? You, sir, are a cretin.

I'm a retired medical librarian, ret'd now for 3 years. When I was working, I was one of a number of faculty who interviewed prospective medical students applying to the University of Arizona Medical School. Many of the students applying had volunteered in free clinics in the U.S., or travelled to poor countries as volunteers to participate in clinics there. Let me assure you that, far from "despising" these applicants, this kind of service was HIGHLY valued and made it much more likely that the student would be admitted.

Not all healthcare professionals do such volunteer work, and I'm sure many have valid reasons for not doing so. But I cannot imagine any physician or nurse that I know, and I know many, who would "despise" anyone volunteering in a clinic to help those less fortunate than themselves.

BTW, my father, 86 years old, staunch Republican, politics somewhere to the right of Attila the Hun, would probably be sure that many of the people waiting to be seen in these clinics could pay for their own health care, if they hadn't gone out and bought an RV or a plasma screen TV or some such. Along with many conservatives, he absolutely refuses to face just how bad things are for many people, and if they're in a tough situation, it's somehow their fault. This may be true of some people but most are hard-working citizens who want to be productive, but who have lost good-paying jobs, and if they are now employed, the pay is lousy. Even so, I can't imagine my dad saying that physicians "despise" others working in free clinics.

Ephemereal: Kudos to you and keep up the good work.


Posted by: Wolfdaughter on August 12, 2009 at 9:18 PM | PERMALINK

Stormskies

I remember the clinics of the ‘60s and ‘70s. They were wonderful. Caring Doctors, Nurses and staff. And no one ever made you prove how much momey you made. If you needed care they gave it to you. That is the way all healthcare should be.

We have a free clinic in my small, very poor, community. Unless you are in the “crack” between medicaid and affording insurance according to their books, you cannot get care. As much as I respect these people, this is not a “free clinic” in my eyes. The screening is overwhelming. I think you have to be below the 400% poverty line and not qualify for medicaid. This leaves out a whole lot of folks who can’t afford healthcare or insurance out of the healthcare loop.

We need Single Payer. Medicare for all. A solution that takes care of all human beings. In my opinion, there is no middle road. I gotta’ say, I just don’t understand why anyone would deny this to their fellow human. How disgusting can we be? This is not the country I loved and bragged about when I was growing up. My parents did not teach me this shit. They taught me to take care of my family, my friends, my community, and most of all my country.

They were taken care of by Medicare. Big time. They would be flopping in their graves over this, if they were not dancing in the stars with each other.
I’m so happy they don’t have to see this total selfishness that is taking place. My Dad would be beside himself!

Posted by: elouise on August 12, 2009 at 9:35 PM | PERMALINK

I think you meant "health care exposition".

Posted by: emjayay on August 12, 2009 at 10:27 PM | PERMALINK
What a thankless, cruel, and untrue thing to say!

That's because he's a spoof. Our own mindless partisan troll, Mike K, has two spoofers, Myke K and MIke K. Sadly, Mike K rarely needs to be spoofed, as his own posts are sufficiently stupid in their own right.

Posted by: PaulB on August 12, 2009 at 10:35 PM | PERMALINK

Ephemereal, @20:47,

I envy you your legal skills; I wish I, myself, could do more but I had been trained as a teacher of English as a second language, 37yrs ago, in Poland. Not, exactly, useful :) Yes, our clinic, too, has (some) used clothing, day-old bread and baby formula (about to go out of date) -- all on the "take what you need" basis. And we we have a "million pennies" jar -- on the "give what you can" basis...

I'm -- almost -- used to seeing single mothers and such, but we're now beginning to see people who, not long ago, were *employers* (small businesses). That's a whole ecosystem going down the tubes, since the people they used to employ are now out of the safety-net's reach also.

Elouise, @21:35,
Our "Free Clinic" isn't truly free, either. We cover those for up to 200% poverty level and the paperwork -- as you say -- is horrendous. Our *pediatric dental* was up to 400% poverty level, because we got a "dedicated" grant for it and had enough money to do it. But we're rethinking; some of our volunteer dentists have quit, because they're afraid that such generosity will take away their paying customers. They have to make a living too, and we can't do without them, so...

The whole American healthcare "system" seems to be a "crazy quilt" (if you're not "into" textiles, check out the term) of half-solutions. We're lurching, from one crisis to the next, plugging the leaking dikes with paper towels, while the water rises, and rises, and rises...

Sometimes, I pat myself on the back, for having kept my dual citizenship. Sometimes, I smack myself for not insisting that my son -- who had the same opportunity at 18 -- take it...

Posted by: exlibra on August 12, 2009 at 11:48 PM | PERMALINK

Aren't they common knowledge in the United States?

Considering that I didn't know about these giant once-a-year clinics until very recently, I doubt they are common knowledge. I was pretty horrified to hear about them.

But, as others have said, even that won't change some people's minds. They'd rather be "self-sufficient" and take charity than take that same money from the same people when it comes in the form of taxes. I suspect our old friend Republican projection is at work again: they hate and resent paying taxes so much that they can't even imagine that some people think of them as the price we pay for a civil society and assume that everyone who pays taxes despises them as much as they do. Therefore, they'd rather take money from people who gave it voluntarily since it's not tainted by tax hatred.

Posted by: Mnemosyne on August 13, 2009 at 2:32 AM | PERMALINK

God bless Ephemereal, exlibra, and everybody else who gives their time and energy to our country's free clinics.

stormskies, I don't know what you're thinking, but you're not doing enough of it. Waiting in the rain overnight to get treated in the hog barn at the local fairgrounds on a one-shot may constitute medical attention, but it is not anything resembling "health care."

Posted by: hamletta on August 13, 2009 at 3:03 AM | PERMALINK

hamletta: Well I certainly am not thinking about 'free clinics' as they are now. I was talking about the way free clinics used to be in the late 60's and early 70's. ANYONE could go. No questions asked. They were fully staffed. All were treated with respect. And everything was DONATED. There were no shortages of anything. And, gee, IT WORKED.

Posted by: stormskies on August 13, 2009 at 11:03 AM | PERMALINK

60 Minutes ran a story about this several years ago. Obviously it was not watched by many Americans.

Posted by: Dennis B on August 13, 2009 at 1:35 PM | PERMALINK

Stormskies, have you ever read "The Fifth Sacred Thing" by Starhawk? It's a post-apocalyptic-esque, ecotopian novel set in San Francisco. If you're a student of history, it's scary in the prophecies. Basically, in the ecological disaster brought on by global warming, the U.S. government as we know it has collapsed, and corporations run segments of the country. S.F. is off by itself, the area largely isolated by topographical changes; the citizens there overthrew the corporation running the place, and turned it into an ecotopia. Health care was free. One of the characters, a representative of the Healers' Guild, when reporting to the city council says, "There is sickness here, but no one lacks for care."

This health care "debate" is a symptom of the corporatocracy we have now finally coming out into the open. We're going to be to that point someday soon, the road we're on. It won't be a government just beholden to rich corporate interests, the corporations will openly run the place. And it will take a lot of brave people to come together and say no. The recent resurgence of urban farming, permaculture, and local food and work co-ops gives me hope, but I'm afraid it won't be enough.

Posted by: Ephemereal on August 13, 2009 at 1:40 PM | PERMALINK

I was aware of lots of ways that MDs and other health care practitioners donate their time, but I had never heard of these mass clinics.

I think that it would be a good idea for proponents of health care reform to hold their town meetings at some of these events.

I can imagine some possible downsides (e.g., the patients might include a lot of illegal immigrants, when opponents do not want their tax dollars supporting illegals), but the events would promote awareness ("raise consciousness" as they said in the 60s) of an aspect of the problem that proponents are trying to solve.

Posted by: MatthewRMarler on August 13, 2009 at 3:49 PM | PERMALINK

Free health care clinics are all great but as a registered nurse i see uninsured and homeless and illegals ALL THE TIME. Dont give me the garbage that people dont have access to healthcare. Have you people even read the house version of the bill? they want to ration everyone in health cares pay starting with the doctors. Nurses (me) are not required to work in outpatient clinics. Who you ask, is then? organizations like ACORN who btw know absolutely NOTHING about medicine. The people protesting in the town hall meetings are real people and they have real feelings. i dont understand the liberal leftists who continue to blatently ignore it and brush it off as crazy people. To you all i guess we should tuck tail and run but i have news for you, we will not, we WILL fight you in your endeavors to destroy the very fibers of this great nation. You will lose and lose big. We outnumber you. We are coming for you.

Posted by: RAL on August 22, 2009 at 8:45 PM | PERMALINK

Have you people even read the house version of the bill? they want to ration everyone in health cares pay starting with the doctors.

Really? That's funny, because the AMA -- the largest group of doctors in the nation -- SUPPORTS the bill.

http://www.ama-assn.org/amednews/2009/07/27/gvl10727.htm

You may or may not be a nurse but you clearly don't know anything about this bill and are driven by violent, childish emotions instead.

ou will lose and lose big. We outnumber you. We are coming for you

Oh fuck off, Mary. No one is trying to destroy anything. We're trying to cover people who have no insurance and are being dropped or refused coverage because of preexisting conditions, trying to have medical bills not bankrupt those who already pay premiums, and trying to find a way to combat premiums that are doubling every ten years.

If you really are "coming for us" then I think the editors at Washington Monthly better inform the FBI. By posting here you've left your email and IP address. Say hi to them for us!

Posted by: trex on August 22, 2009 at 9:02 PM | PERMALINK

Hello ...
This is the good hospital site and most of information is given on it which is highly informative.....
and most of patients are visit this site and get information..
So through this site i want to share Tubal reversal process....

This article definitely provides correct information opn tubal ligation and tubal ligation reversal. Another great thing about my baby doc Reversal Center is that they provide accurate and truthful statistics. Others do not provide this information.

What a wonderful option for women out there who are desiring to have more children after a tubal ligation.
The suggestion are highly appreciated
Every woman has right to dream of having a baby. Tubal reversal allows a woman the ability to conceive naturally without any harm. Although tubal ligation is considered a permanent method of birth control,

While I agree it should be the women's choice, the procedure and apparently a great many attempts to reverse it come out of the public coffers.

I agree she should be allowed the proceedure as she's a responsible adult, but she sould also be required to sign a waver stating the PUBLIC medical system is not on the hook for a reversal should she later demand it.

Fair is fair. Be responsible for the decisionand be responsible for your later decisions should they change.

Posted by: tubal reversal on August 29, 2009 at 3:44 AM | PERMALINK

A tubal ligation is a relatively simple out-patient surgery done in a clinic, doctor's office, or hospital. It can be performed under local or general anesthesia. Mini-laparotomies and laparoscopies are the two most common techniques for female sterilization. Other procedures include laparotomy, culpotomy, culdoscopy, hysteroscopy, and hysterectomy. Each procedure carries different risks and benefits. Be sure the clinic discusses surgical options with you, describes the risks, and answers all of your questions before the surgery.
In the laparoscopy procedure, the abdomen is filled with carbon dioxide gas so that the abdominal wall balloons away from the uterus and tubes. The surgeon makes a small cut just below the navel and inserts a laparoscope, a small telescope-like instrument. A second incision is made just above the pubic hairline to allow the entrance of the instrument that will cut, sew or burn the tubes. The surgery takes about half an hour.

Posted by: tubal reversal on September 12, 2009 at 6:09 AM | PERMALINK




 

 

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