Commentary: Healthcare vs. Insurance Care

by Patricia Cogswell, Byron Center, MI

I have been following the health care insurance issues very closely. I am a retired Health Care practice manager and a former RN. I have seen the evolution and downfall of health care over the years.

The major change is in the word Healthcare which exists only in the minds of doctors, nurses and other healthcare workers. The new word is Insurance Care. The Insurance industry has taken over the healthcare industry. Patients want healthcare but they do not know that it no longer truly exists. Insurance controls the healthcare.

I may be an old retired healthcare worker but I also remember when the medical people decided what a patient needed. I remember the times that when a patient was sick, he was treated according to what the doctor thought he had. Not today — today a non medical person working in an insurance company decides what he needs. The need is based on how much profit the insurance company can get. Yes, it is the same insurance company that went out of the way to promote their product over their competitors to woo you or your employer to sign up with them and take your money for an insurance policy that you and/or your employer decided upon. All goes well until you or your co-worker becomes sick. Suddenly, you are a monetary statistic on a chart created by the insurance company. That chart says that you may have had a pre-existing condition or an un-approved condition.

Pre-existing condition is a loop-hole for insurance companies. Many of us are born with something we did not ask for and maybe did not even know about until we were diagnosed but the insurance company stats person pounces because their stats say that we were previously deemed by this disease therefore we are not now eligible for coverage. A worse scenario is that we did know about the disease but we changed jobs or was laid off or our company closed their doors, etc. The Insurance stat person double pounces on us. We have a pre-existing condition and therefore not eligible for insurance. Oh, they can insurance us but the cost will be very prohibitive. The wealthy will smile and say okay, the rest will just lay awake nights wondering how they can pay for the prescriptions and doctors appts. they need. Many will just give up and no nothing and not fill the prescription or visit the doctor and death will take them. Others will go but take their credit cards to max and remortgage their homes, etc and then have to file bankruptcy or lose their homes.

Okay, these are some facts I have presented. Now I have a question for you – Are you so wealthy you do not need insurance and do not care about others who do or are you a person who cares about your neighbors and believes in the Golden Rule? You choose and I hope you choose the path to Universal Insurance coverage for all.

I am a compassionate Christian who believes in Love Thy Neighbor as Thyself and there is no question how I (if I were a Congressman or Rep) would vote. I could not live with my own conscience if I were to vote for the Insurance companies and the Profits that are made on heathcare. My conscience would not allow me to say that a tax break should be put in place for a citizen for Insurance. A person who cannot afford the premiums for health care would find the tax break worthless. This idea of a tax break is only another example of a loophole tax break for the wealthy. It reminds me of Marie Antoinette who said “Let them Eat Cake” when they could not afford bread.

Please pass this on to anyone who is in desperate need of healthcare or cannot afford the premiums, copays, etc . I just want you to know that I do really care about you. I have given up on passing it on to the congressmen who can actually make a difference in your lives. If you think they will listen, please pass it on to your powers-that-be in your State.