PERSPECTIVE: Nationalized health care necessary

Allison Lazarus

By Haleigh Miller, ’12, News Editor

We live in a wealthy country. Even when our economy drops like a dead horse, we’re still one of the wealthiest nations on the planet. We proclaim over and over how America is the land of opportunity, where everyone is equal, and all are treated as such. If that’s the case, why are there people who can’t receive medical care because they don’t qualify for insurance?

Every day, people neglect to have minor health issues treated because they cannot afford to pay for their care out of pocket, and soon enough, the minor problem becomes life-threatening. At that point, if they can’t afford insurance premiums, they certainly can’t afford major surgery, chemotherapy, and multitudes of scans. Because of insurance companies’ stubborn views on who has coverage and who doesn’t, far too many Americans go without proper medical care, so they and their families have to suffer the consequences for the rest of their lives.

Insurance companies have become so difficult to deal with that many people would rather take their chances. With coverage often denied because of preexisting conditions, people who genuinely want to take care of their health can’t. While the logic behind denying someone with a heart defect is immoral yet sound, the insurance companies that deny coverage to the man who had a broken foot a year ago on the grounds of a preexisting condition are just sleazy. Can anyone explain to me why, in seeing the hoops our population is forced to jump through, some Americans are still against nationalized health care?

While some concerns are valid (how will it be managed, who will do the managing), some of the rumors floating around about our proposed health care plan are absolutely ludicrous. There will be no death councils! Senators and representatives will not be sitting around tables looking at files, saying, “Oh, well, this person isn’t worth it. Ciao!” While the proposed plan may have kinks in it, so did social security when it was implemented. When it was passed, social security was a much smaller program that was amended to reach its full potential. That’s what’s being pushed for now: somewhere to start that everyone can be reasonably happy with, so Americans can be taken care of. We need to pass something because, in all honesty, how much lower can we get than people being denied coverage because they once broke a bone?

Right now, many adult diabetics will admit that, at some time in their life, they have had to go without medication for an extended period of time and have done serious damage to their bodies because there was no way for them to have access to the supplies they needed. People are losing toes over the bang-up job our insurance agencies are doing! How is that right? People who scream about how nationalized health care will ruin us all probably have decent insurance policies. It’s becoming more and more necessary for them to look around and see other people taking idiotic and unnecessary risks with their health, just because they don’t have any other options. Most people want to take care of themselves! Unfortunately, the way our health care system is set up, many are ineligible for decent health care until they hit 65 and receive social security. While that’s a great program, the people who need it the most may never see 65.

So, with some people trying and not succeeding in taking care of themselves, others paying premiums they really can’t afford, and still others having just given up on the whole system, explain to me how nationalized health care is a bad thing. I will not even attempt to deny that there will be some issues at first, some knots to work out, but every solid program undergoes revisions and is stronger and better off because of it. At this point, any health care would be an improvement, and I can see no way around that.