Second Guessing a Life: US Health Care System Robs Security and Human Dignity

Donna Smith is the Executive Director of Health Care for All Colorado. 

Donna Smith is the Executive Director of Health Care for All Colorado

Published on Thursday, February 27, 2014 by Common Dreams
by Donna Smith

The dysfunction of the US health care system does more damage than causing the deaths and the bankruptcies forced on the sick and injured who don't have enough coverage or cash to afford life-saving care.  The damages extend to robbing millions of people of their personal sense of security and human dignity. The recent insurance reforms offered through the Affordable Care Act/Obamacare don't do much to relieve the suffering.

Most of us have no way to predict when an illness and injury will strike, and most of us do not have an infinite stash of cash ready for any health crisis.  Even with health insurance, many of us do not have any or adequate sick or personal leave time to allow us paid time off from work.  As medical costs mount, work pressures do too.  Few bosses or businesses can wait forever for the absent employee to be well enough to return to full duty.  It is even worse for those who are trying to attend to someone else who is sick.  Missing work and losing pay multiplies the pressures many-fold.  And American society is not forgiving about these conditions in our families and our neighborhoods.