Worlds & Time

Saturday, July 11, 2009

A Confession

No, not mine.

Wendell Potter is interviewed by Bill Moyers through this link. The interview is 30 minutes long, so if you don't have time to watch it all, let me sum up:

Michael Moore was absolutely correct on Sicko.

Mr. Potter is a former healthcare executive. On the PR side of things.

If you haven't seen Sicko, you should go rent it, because now we know what the industry did to cast Moore as radical crazy person and suppress his message which is basically: we shouldn't fear government involvement in healthcare.

There are a few talking points that are addressed that everyone should have now have counterpoints for:
  • Michael Moore is a radical leftist. No, he's a guy that asked around the world and then recorded the answers. It's the CEOs that are the radicals, trying to remove your ability to know what's going on in your healthcare system.
  • Michael Moore is part of the Hollywood elite. No, he's from Flint, MI. He started making documentaries after he saw how GM treated its employees.
  • Government should stay out of healthcare. In the countries where there is government involved healthcare the people like their healthcare more than we do. Germany, especially.
  • Getting government involved in healthcare would mean a beaureacrat between you and your doctor. Right now there's a CEO between you and your doctors. At least you could vote to replace the government beaureacrat.
  • Beaureacrats would be prescribing treatment, not doctors. Again, what we have now is corporate beaureacrats prescribing, not doctors. And what's worse, they have a bottom line to maintain.
  • Delayed care is denied care. Sort of like how people can't go to the doctor for a cough that may become pneumonia under the current system because it costs them too much out of pocket? That's denied care.
  • Medical services would be rationed! None of the proposals under consideration for the U.S. would stop someone from using private insurance or even themselves from paying out of pocket for services that they might need. If they can pay for it, more power to them.
I think one of the silliest things is that insurance might be able to make money from a government run system with less emphasis on "medical loss ratios" because the government would be paying for more of the normal services! Insurance would still be a good idea but the companies could afford to limit themselves to the least likely to get hurt and thus the least likely to need expensive proceedures but people more likely to get sick would still get the care that they need.

Maybe instead of a medical loss ratio of 77%, they'd start seeing medical loss ratios of 50% and people that need lifesaving treatment could still afford it.

(Interview via)



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