The Norman Transcript


April 6, 2014

Apathy and lack of understanding may doom universal health care

NORMAN — Editor, The Transcript:

Enrollments in the federal and state health exchanges were higher than expected and late enrollments are expected, yet people still contend the Affordable Care Act (ACA) is not going to be successful.

People in our country will continue to be without health care particularly in those states refusing to expand Medicaid. Many people in these states, and even those not signing up for insurance, will continue to get their primary care by going to emergency rooms, a more expensive alternative, usually paid for from extra taxes by the rest of us.

Wes Schellenbaum, a conservative writer states, in the article titled “Should Republicans Embrace Universal Healthcare?” in the American Thinker, Jan. 31. 2014, “uninsured hordes … have used emergency rooms as their primary care, forcing healthcare providers to pass on the burden of debt to paying customers. He believes we need a national sales tax like the “European Value Added Taxes“ where everyone shares the burden. But many people in our country consider this “socialism” and are against this.

Some writers now quote a recent study by Harvard and CUNY researchers that estimate as high as 17,100 more deaths annually, in states opting out of Medicaid, because people will not get needed mammograms, pap smears, leave diabetes untreated and skip other needed medical procedures.

People suffer and die in the United States earlier than in most other civilized countries where less is spent per person on health care.

Unfortunately many people who are healthy and have health care simply don’t relate to this situation of the less fortunate and don’t really care. I doubt this attitude is likely to change and we are unlikely to have any type of universal health care in the United States.

Ed Harris


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