Monday, October 01, 2007

a sad, sad shake of the head

Hey, Cameron - how's this for the next-up cause?

Start here, and then see here or here... Nah. Too infuriating, and too far north. Or mostly too infuriating (which doesn't mean it's unfair, mind you, or a bad verdict - just infuriating).

Let's try this instead:

Dear President Bush,

thank you for vetoing SCHIP, a.k.a HR 976, a.k.a the State Childrens Health Insurance Program. I appreciate your choosing to prioritize the budget over insurance for children. I think that budgets are important, and here at the Imperfect household we think about them a lot. We think about the $500,000 that it took to keep the Eldest alive and healthy in his first 18-24 months of life. We think about the expensive food that we buy for our kids, because they can't eat highly processed options. (And, at the risk of spoiling this lovely, lightly sarcastic tone I've got going, we think a little about the Farm Bill and why those processed foods are cheaper than ours. Hunh.) And we think about the jobs we take, the choices we make in order to make our monthly mortgage payments, to retain our insurance and to generally be responsible citizens.

Clearly, it is more important that we resist the Democrats' mincing progress to state-run insurance than we insure those uninsured kids. Hell, their parents are probably just throwing away the cash they'd otherwise spend on insurance. And frankly, I wouldn't be willing to spend an extra 61 cents on my daily pack of cigarettes to pay for a sneaky, political move like getting kids healthcare. Nah.

That's what the ER is for, right?

Sincerely,
Mama Imperfect

Now, if you disagree with me, feel free to express yourself in the comments section. Or, try writing here, if you have a child with hemophilia, or here http://www.house.gov/writerep/ and here http://www.senate.gov/general/contact_information/senators_cfm.cfm if you do not. Because, frankly, this is absurd.

Note of explanation for the Canadians: most US insurance is private, but there are some state-run programs for the uninsured, and specifically for children with medical disabilities. Hemophilia is one of those disabilities. However, if you are above poverty level, you have to pay some large premiums to get and keep that insurance. We Imperfects had a state run insurance for the Eldest for a while, and it was impressively expensive. Without insurance, there's not only the problem of getting medical care, but also once you've been uninsured for a bit you can be effectively uninsurable, thanks to a 'preexisting condition.' So the price for having a medical condition and not having coverage can be horrific.

Again, let me remind you: the Eldest's medication alone costs nearly $2,000-2,500 per week. Assuming I'm allowed to shop around for the lowest price, which insurers don't always let you, and pharmacies don't always want to tell you. No, really.

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And now, a slightly random array of links.

On the food allergy side of things, I found this promise of a Food Allergy Carnival: http://www.checkmytag.com/2007/10/join-me-for-food-allergy-blog-carnival.html

and Rational Jenn takes a moment to mourn the passing of the inventor of Benadryl: http://rationaljenn.blogspot.com/2007/10/inventor-of-benadryl.html

And this rather fun blog - my thanks to joy for this one: http://blanktop.blogspot.com/ I especially enjoyed his pirate-speak!
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Coming Up: a tale of the toddles, Gamma's Tuna-Rice Salad, and NO POLITICS. For at least one post.

4 comments:

dykewife said...

hmmm...i wonder if a sox logo on a kipa would be considered inappropriate :)

i don't envy you having to pay for insurance. the coverage of provincial health plans varies from province to province. i live in one that doesn't charge premiums for basic health insurance. whether one pays for medication and how much one pays is entirely dependent on income. because we're low income (or in our case, no income), boy's medications are free. Bran and I pay $100 every 6 months and then pay only 35% of the cost. add our student insurance and our medications are nice and cheap. without it, we'd be royally screwed.

mama o' the matrices said...

Absolutely! Why miss a good marketing opportunity? SAHMs make a nice sideline in puffy markering the local sports logos onto kipas.

Sounds like a good deal, dw, on the insurance. I am curious to see what the next election brings here in the US - universal healthcare is a pipe dream. But a really good backup would be nice to the current arrangement.

Cameron said...

Aw! You're so thoughtful to give me rant material!

First off, the Canadian blood issue. While there was no malice on their part, there was some gross incompetence. Blood screening has been in place since the early 80s when AIDS was found to be transmitted that way. I am irritated that the people who did this won't be punished and that the people who were infected have lost the case.

As for the insurance bit. This is a subject near and dear to me. I went into the working world at eighteen and until I hit about 27, I rarely was able to afford the monthly premiums on insurance. There was one time I had dropped to about 150 pounds because I couldn't afford to eat that much (And I'm 6'4 so you get an idea how bad that was). It's outrageous to me that insurance is still a luxury for a lot of people. But having seen what government here does for public housing, I'm not too keen on them running insurance either. Time to put the thumbscrews to the insurance companies!

mama o' the matrices said...

6'4 and 150 pounds? That's not a person, that's a collection of wire hangars. Oy.

Someone sent me this via email: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XS3mhjt7TrY
If the FDA had actual teeth and the ability to tell truth to power, then we'd get somewhere. But the combination of lousy oversight and unwillingness to prosecute is a deadly one. Okay, so literally.

As for insurance, I dunno. Insurance struggles to keep up - something else is driving costs. With blood products it's simple: lean on the drug companies to reduce prices. That would be a start, at least! And yes, you could take a bite out of insurance by regulating the market - 10% of BC/BS' income goes to advertising. Yeesh. I'd rather have 10% of my preminums, coinsurance and deductibles put back into my pocket.

But the idea of a govt-run insurance plan gives me the willies. Medicare/Medicaid requires an act of congress to cover a drug not on their approved list. Which means that it doesn't happen. Which means you can be impressively SOL if that's your unapproved drug...