Here is what I, as an average American, think.
Middle class Americans, don't expect miracles or want extremes. We don't expect to own a Ferrari. We feel the same about healthcare. We don't expect unnecessary medical expenses to be covered.
What we do want:
- Basic health care coverage. To be able to go to the doctor when we are sick and be taken care of. To receive the tests and medicines we need to get well.
- We want to know that if we have a heart attack or get cancer, that we won't go bankrupt and lose our homes or jobs.
- We want to know that our kids are covered until they become part of the workforce.
- We want to be able to get insurance at a reasonable cost and not be denied because we burped when we were two and that is considered a "pre-existing condition".
- We want our doctors, nurses, techs and hospitals to be paid a living wage for taking care of us.
- We want to be told the truth by our health care providers. If a generic drug works and is cheaper - we're good with that. If a test isn't going to do as advertised on TV - tell us - we'll get that.
- We want to be treated fairly.
- We don't want to have our insurance company cancel our policy because we got sick and they don't want to pay.
- We don't want our insurance premiums spent on bonuses for folks who figure out ways to deny coverage.
- We don't want to be procedured to death because that is how our doctor's get paid a living wage.
- We don't want to pay for Ferraris and mansions for Healthcare CEOs and COOs. They deserve to get paid a decent wage. They don't deserve to become multi-millionaires on the backs of the rest of us. Especially not at the same time they are denying us the right to get well or even live. Honestly, we want the Health Insurance Companies to be non-profit because no one should be making profit off of other's health misfortunes.
Some of the folks complaining about Obamacare death panels and socialist medicine haven't really bothered to find out the truth or even to look honestly at what we have in this country today. We have death panels. They work for the health insurance industry. They are the folks who deny you coverage or the ability to get a particular test, procedure or drug. If you get your care from an HMO - you have to go through a gatekeeper to see a specialist. (Referral anyone?) That is no different than what the English go through, so the ingenuous remarks are beyond overdone.
Unlike Canada, the citizens of this country don't have a egalitarian streak and that is too bad. Everyone is treated differently and while we know it on a subconscious level, we don't know the full extent of it. What we need is a system where we all pay the same cost and it is a fair cost. There are too many paper and numbers games being played with the true cost of health insurance. The actual true cost of everything needs to be posted like it is in other countries. We are told that we need to pay more attention to healthcare costs so that we understand the true cost. That is difficult to do when the price of something depends on who you work for and what percentage they are paying, who provides the insurance, who provides the service, who is getting kickbacks, what day of the week is it, and if there is a solar eclipse that day.
Maybe the Affordable Healthcare Act isn't perfect. It doesn't go as far as it should. It needs tweaks. But more importantly, the folks slamming it need to look in the mirror and do a "Pinocchio nose" check because the American people expect and deserve the truth and not the lies and obfuscations coming out of their mouths. We are tired of the Hypocrites and Liars spieling away and the media talking heads hanging on every word like lovesick teenie-boppers instead of doing their journalistic duty by questioning the blanket statements and pointing out the lies.
It is hard to fix massive things like this, but it has to be done. Ask anyone from another country who lived through the massive changes that occurred and they will tell you it was not easy; however, they will all tell you that they are happy with the healthcare they have now and wouldn't want to be in our shoes. Our Senators and Congressmen need to quit playing games and do the jobs they were voted in to do. They need to quit pandering to the extremes and the big money and start working together for all of us and to make this country a better place to live. If they don't, American exceptionalism will go the way of the dodo bird and we will be just another footnote in the history books along with the Roman Empire. We have been falling down the lists. Pick a list and we won't be at the top. We won't even be in the top ten, unless the list is "countries who spend the most on defense".
I would suggest that this is the way most of us feel. We may not always agree on the fine points but we all have the same complaints about the big stuff.