A doctor speaks out

A doctor speaks out:
The most economically and ethically viable change to make for health care

Letter to the Newport News Times
by Jerry J Robbins MD
April 7, 2017I am writing my thoughts about health care reform because of a concurrence of recent events. I felt good that there were enough members of the national House of Representatives to say "no" to the Ryan-Trump proposal on Health Care Reform to cause its withdrawal/demise. It seemed to me that the changes in this plan were too harsh i.e. worthy of rejection. Health insurance is too important to take away the safeguard of what is acceptable for a minimum range of benefits. Also, it was too draconian to take away affordable insurance from millions of people who qualified for coverage under the ACA due to the expansion of Medicaid. The failure of the Ryan-Trump proposal also showed me that the Members of Congress in D.C. (blue and red) were listening to their constituents.

Just before the events in Washington, there was news coverage of a bad auto accident on Hwy #20 between Newport and Toledo in which a woman was severely injured. She was flown to Portland for extensive surgery on her legs. At the end of the article was a plea for money (via "gofundme.com") because despite the fact that all auto insurance policies pay for medical expenses, there is a limit! In this State/Country, this woman should not have to worry about paying for her lifesaving medical treatments. Her medical care, indeed all medical care, should be provided by a system of universal health care funded by a progressive income tax that would eliminate private health insurance policies, auto insurance "medical pay", worker's comp, the VA system, etc, etc. Health Care is like police and fire protection; important at all ages, all stages of life, no matter what the circumstance.

Our current Health Care "System" in this country was improved by the Affordable Care Act, but it is still fundamentally flawed. The most economically and ethically viable change to make is to a single payer system. If you are sick or injured, you should get the care you need from the doctor or hospital of your choice.