Category Archives: Health Care

Looked Like a Hippie Storm Trooper

I spent almost an hour this morning looking up at Sasha, my dentist’s new dental hygienist.

I’m not sure this picture does justice to how much it felt like I was looking up at some kind of hippie storm trooper, between the shield (“never realized before how much I get splattered; will never work without one again”), the mask, the dentist’s loupes (“makes it so much easier to see everything…they say it impacts your vision long-term, but I won’t be doing this for ever”), and the colorful hat.

In what may not be a sign of how much anti-mask sentiment is sweeping the nation, Sasha made me take off my mask before she would clean my teeth.

Posted in Health Care, Personal | 1 Comment

We Predicted This

A.I. Is Learning to Read Mammograms (NY Times). We predicted this, and lots more where it came from.

Admittedly, it was pretty obvious.

Posted in Health Care | 1 Comment

Straight to the Heart of the Matter

This is a great ad:

It’s produced by the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee, and speaks well for Chairman Chris van Holland.

Spotted via Crooks and Liars, This Ad Will Kill Trumpcare, And Rightly So. A slightly optimistic title given recent machinations in the Senate, but we can only hope…

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IRL (R-27) Says No

Ros-Lehtinen Announces Her Intention To Vote No On AHCA Bill As Written

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I Guess This Means I’ll Have to Leaflet

“Generation Opportunity”–the people who brought you that hideous, weird, Creepy Uncle Sam Video–are coming to UM during Homecoming.

Yes, the Koch-bros-funded astroturf group that wants to persuade young people to forgo health insurance on the grounds that it costs money–and why learn to plan ahead for your future when they are working so hard to make sure you don’t have one?–are coming to Coral Gables. They are well funded (NYT):

Evan Feinberg, the president of Generation Opportunity, said in an interview that the group would spend “close to three-quarters of a million dollars” on the campaign, which will include not just online videos but also events at college football games, music festivals and other gatherings that tend to draw young adults. The group will ask young people to pledge not to sign up for insurance through the exchanges, Mr. Feinberg said.

And they’re coming here (emphasis added):

Generation Opportunity, which formed in 2011 and gets funding in part from the conservative Koch brothers, is about to embark on a tour of 20 college towns nationally, including a Nov. 9 stop at the University of Miami. The pitch is that you shouldn’t feel compelled by the government to buy insurance, and that it may be cheaper outside the marketplaces.

A blueprint for an upcoming tailgate calls for games such as beer pong and cornhole, free Taco Bell and beer. Pictures of people signing petitions to opt out would be sent over Twitter, Facebook and Instagram.

I’m a big believer that ‘you start where you are’. So if these guys are coming into my back yard, I will probably feel compelled to do something. Leafleting on the importance of critical care insurance, and the lifelong value of knowing you have insurance even if you lose your job, seems a possibility.

Pointers to any good ready-made leaflets or graphics online gratefully accepted. I suppose if I were really going to get organized about this, I’d try to liaise with relevant student groups (college Democrats?), but that sounds like more meetings….

Posted in Health Care, U.Miami | 1 Comment

The $23,800 Bug Bite

Greg Knauss describes his son’s $23,800 bug bite, and why Obamacare (and thus this coming election) is important.

This is how medicine is supposed to work. Everybody has been kind and patient and our stay has been nothing but reassuring and comfortable. Alerts were raised when they should have been, and professionals acted accordingly. Score one for the American medical establishment.

The bill is $23,800.

I’ll have to have to pay less than 6% of that, because I’m lucky enough to still have insurance.

Two years ago, the company I worked for up and skedaddled — that’s how you say it, right? — to Texas, for a “better business environment” than you can apparently find in California. I think that means that the CEO doesn’t have to pay state taxes and is allowed to hunt low-level employees for sport. I’ve been working as an independent contractor since — and having a good time doing it — but I haven’t been able to find private insurance. Everybody loves the small businessman, the fabled self-sufficient entrepreneur, unless he’s got a history of kidney stones and a ruptured disc and, delicately put, a “problematic height/weight ratio.” They didn’t say which way it was problematic, but I think it’s insurance industry jargon for “Tubby McLardass.”

But California — in an effort, no doubt, to discourage business — lets former employes extend their COBRA coverage for an additional 18 months after the federal limit runs out. I’m paying the full premium, but I and my family have insurance.

It’s good, I suppose, to be reminded that although President Obama has been so disappointing in so many things I care about — torture, drone killings, Guantanamo, stimulus, bank fraud, immigration (until election pressure got to him) — things could be even worse.

But the Republican convention just finished up, and tens of thousands of people gathered in Tampa to cheer every mention of reversing the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act. The PPACA is how literally tens of millions of Americans can avoid having a bug bite wipe them out financially.

Uniformed troops are out of Iraq, although that has at least as much to do with the Iraqis kicking us out as it does with the Administration’s determination to leave. We did get almost a quarter loaf on health care, and the cause of gay rights has advanced.

Spotted via rc3.

Posted in 2012 Election, Health Care | 4 Comments