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06.15 This all-male council in Texas just voted to ban abortion [1:59 video; Bad assumptions foment ignorant actions...]

06.14 The Trans Mountain pipeline is a disaster – but Trudeau can make it right

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06.14 Climate crisis: Alaska is melting and it’s likely to accelerate global heating

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06.09 Racism as a Public Health Crisis

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06.07 The Other Climate Threat is Fear & Apathy: We can Fix this by Voting in a Manhattan Project

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06.07 For 'Challenging Us All to Confront the Realities of the Climate Crisis,' Greta Thunberg and Fridays for Future Movement Win Amnesty's Top Human Rights Award

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06.07 All New British Columbia Light-Duty Vehicles Will Be Zero Emissions By 2040

06.07 Caribbean Solar Update: Curacao Solar Saves 10% In Energy Costs; Montecristi In The DR Doubles To 116 MW

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06.13 Hidden Figures Way: Nasa renames street to honor black female mathematicians

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06.13 What’s actually in the Green New Deal, explained with a video [7:30 video]

06.13 Even the 1% Know They Aren't Paying Their Fair Share: New Poll Shows 60% of Millionaires Support Warren's Ultra-Wealth Tax

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06.14 Justice Denied, Delayed, or Done Right? Serious Concerns as Prosecutors Throw Out Charges in Flint Water Crisis Cases [A very flawed prosecution using suspiciously limited evidence has been thrown out, a stronger case will be brought using newly found, voluminous evidence.]

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06.12 'Sea Rescues Have Been Criminalized' as German Boat Captain Faces 20 Years in Prison For Saving Refugees

06.11 Hundreds of North Korean execution sites identified, says rights group

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06.11 Capitalism isn't 'broken'. It's working all too well - and we're the worse for it

06.11 The problem with billionaires fighting climate change? The billionaires [Bloomberg's sanity to control greed to save the life-on-earth (and continuing profits) is unfortunately rare]

06.09 Elizabeth Warren’s economic nationalism vision shows there's a better way [As like championed by Economist Joseph Stiglitz]

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06.15 Africa’s Lost Kingdoms

06.15 Homophobic and transphobic hate crimes surge in England and Wales

06.15 Extinction Rebellion protesters stop rush-hour traffic in London

06.15 Hong Kong leader suspends extradition bill amid protest pressure [1:37 video]

06.15 The US must stand with the people of Hong Kong [But this attacks Xi's authoritarianism, which Trump is most envious of for himself...]

06.14 As Angus Taylor ducks, weaves and dithers, China zooms past

06.13 What does it mean to be genetically Jewish? [Doing a mental dance with archanery: could a significant number of Russians and Palestinians be intentionally included or excluded as genetically Jewish? And why would Israel do this?]

06.13 Two oil tankers struck in suspected attacks in Gulf of Oman

06.13 Theresa May’s carbon emissions plan will fail if the chancellor remains complacent

06.12 Hong Kong: police use rubber bullets as protesters vow 'no retreat' [1:34 video]

06.12 French medics warn health service is on brink of collapse

06.12 Leaked documents reveal Russian effort to exert influence in Africa

06.12 Extending the US Embargo on Cuba & Hurting the People [Doing what's cruelest]

06.12 Annexation Without Citizenship Is Apartheid

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  Dual Citizen Speaks Out About British And American Health Care Systems
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OP-ED:

Dual Citizen Speaks Out About British And American Health Care Systems

by Rita Inklovich
20 August 2009

As long as the US system ties health insurance to employment, the unemployed people of this country will be unable to get sick without being financially devastated.

I am English (and a dual citizen of England and the United States) and I am increasingly frustrated with the misinformation reported regarding socialized medicine. Several opponents of health care reform—including major conservative radio and TV commentators and several Republican politicians—claim that in England major surgery is not given to those over 59. This simply is not true!

My mother had open heart surgery at age 81, is now 88 and doing well. She received excellent care, and she did not wait three months for a specialist; her surgery was immediate. My cousin recently had heart and lung surgery; he is 70 and his surgery was immediate and successful. Unlike the United States, all people (particularly the elderly) are taken care of in England. Further, all English citizens do not pay for any prescriptions after the age of 60.

The biggest difference between their system and ours? Everyone has access to healthcare. Everyone. Comprehensive health care in England, like every civilized country except the United States, is considered to be a right of all people. Apparently, in the United States the people concerned about their rights don’t care that millions of Americans currently don’t have the same rights. I have observed that in the country people who oppose universal health care are quite selfish—'don't mess with my health care, but I don't care about anyone else having adequate health care.'

Opponents of health care reform probably haven't lost a job recently and lost their health insurance as well. As executive director of a major non-profit organization in the U.S., I see people every day who have been laid off, who need medication, and need care, but no longer have insurance and cannot afford to buy it.

What does it say about our U.S. system when the first question at the emergency room is not “what is the problem” but “do you have insurance?”

Are there problems with the system in England? Of course there are, just like there are problems with any other health care system. But: Is it acceptable for hospitals to turn away the uninsured? Is that the American Way? What does it say about our U.S. system when the first question at the emergency room is not “what is the problem” but “do you have insurance?” And don’t we all know someone who has cancer, is struggling with treatments and sickness, but must continue to work so that he or she won’t lose health insurance and can continue the treatments? As long as our system ties health insurance to employment, the unemployed people of this country will be unable to get sick without being financially devastated.

If our U.S. system is so superior, why is this country so low on the list of the healthiest countries? The U.S. spends the most on health care of any country in the world, yet is ranked only 11th in healthy population. Canada is ranked 8th and has the longest life expectancy in the world; they must be doing something right. Australia is ranked 6th; government involvement seems to work there too.

I am appreciative that my employer provides a health plan that I can buy into, and I am very satisfied with the quality of care that I receive and I hope that that quality will not be affected by change. But I cannot in good conscience support a system that excludes the unemployed and the underemployed and does not support the elderly.


Rita Inklovich attended college at the University of London and at Shippensburg University in Pennsylvania, grew up and worked in England, and is employed in the U.S.



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This story was published on August 20, 2009.

 

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