Dr. Russ Fasolino: Fixing Obamacare
November 18, 2013
In regards to Rep. Scott Tipton's commentary about Obamacare, I appreciate his concern with the huge difference in policy price between rural vs. urban Colorado residents and his attempts to offer an alternative (H.R. 2300). The cheapest policy for my wife and myself is rising from less than $500 per month to just less than $1,100 per month with a higher deductible, which is unaffordable to us. So Tipton is right that Obamacare is turning out to be "a mess."
What I don't appreciate is how he took six opportunities to slander President Barack Obama and Democrats in general and left any alternative solutions for later in his article. I am a swing voter because I will vote for the candidate with the policies that make the most sense for solving current problems. In that regard, I think we all are swing voters. I voted for Obama twice because at least the guy was trying to fix a health care crisis in America. Republicans, you were not.
Here are my suggestions for fixing the mess. First, cut the for-profit middlemen (insurance corporations) out of the deal. This means either requiring health care insurance companies to be non-profit or to quit creating unfounded fears about socialism and have the government take over health care reimbursement.
Look, America already has many social systems that work fine. Roads, schools, airports, libraries, the justice system, even medicine, though it's reserved for our elderly. Why can't we trust our government to expand it to include the rest of us?
Second, control the tort system. A limit on malpractice claims would financially harm the very occasional person while benefiting the vast majority of patients with lower medical costs. Physicians would stop feeling the need to legally "cover their butts" by ordering multiple expensive tests. By lowering malpractice policy rates for these physicians, the cost can be passed on to the American public as opposed to lining the pockets of the insurance corporations.
Third, get rid of deductibles and cover preventive screenings (mammograms, colonoscopies, etc.) and "alternative therapies" such as chiropractic, acupuncture, massage, etc., all of which have been proven to encourage health and lower medical costs. Fewer and fewer Americans are using these services because insurance premiums and deductibles are so high that we can't afford any additional out-of pocket expenses.
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So politicians, please stop the rhetoric and do your jobs, which is to create meaningful legislation to ensure all Americans get decent health care at reasonable costs. America is rated dead last out of all western industrial countries, not because we lack in quality medicine, but because it is increasingly only available to the rich. This is not ethical. Do your job to get our votes.
Dr. Russ Fasolino
East-West Natural Health Clinic