Tuesday, September 8, 2009

GOP Response, You and Your Doctor the Same Old Scare Tactic

Greg Sargent at the Plum Line is reporting that the GOP is tailoring their response to President Barack Obama’s speech. Their new and fresh idea is that health care reform will be getting in the way of you and your doctor. Sargent states:

So after Obama’s big speech, a Republican doctor will come on the air and say that Dems refused to join Republicans in a bipartisan search for a health care solution — and warn that Obama’s reform plans will put bureaucrats between you and your doctor. Hey, that line has been working for reform opponents since the 1960s, so why shift gears now?

And that is true. Reagan was the actor in charge of pushing the exact same message and that message is refuted simply. We already have someone clearly in the way of you and your doctor.

In our current health care set up that someone comes in the form of insurance and pharmaceutical companies. I know I know, to those in the “know” I am beating a dead horse, but alas by the polls a lot of people are confused so let’s clear something up, that argument “government in between you and your doctor is a big pile of horse dung.”

Example I have an HMO plan in Illinois. My employer allows me to “choose” from two options for each provider, PPO 1 or 2, PPO 1 or HMO (I must add I am lucky to have insurance some don’t have a choice reform includes this as well). My plan works like this I pay a chunk out of my paycheck EVERY paycheck and when I need to see the doctor I only have to pay $30 to see him, if he doesn’t recommend I see someone who knows more than he does. How this breaks down is rather fun. If I have a prescription that needs refilling here is what I would have to go through.

1. Contact Doctor get voicemail
2. Contact Doctor’s referral assistant
3. Assistant contacts me says “I think the doctor might need to see you again.” I have already seen him same thing as before…she then goes on to say after seeing the doctor I can then go see a specialist, after which I can then go to the pharmacy to renew the prescription I ALREADY HAVE
4. This is pretty much how it goes with everything, HMO requires me to have referrals for referrals of referrals

If you are following along she has suggested I pay $30 to see the doctor again for something he already has said I have, then go see the specialist who confirmed what I already have and pay an additional $30, then go to the pharmacy and renew the prescription for $75! The insurance company requires my doctor to follow that procedure, so that when he suggests something, they get paid too and paid a lot and often. Now you might be asking FRANK, then switch your plan? It doesn’t get much better than that. My daily paycheck withdrawal in my other options would be much higher and some part of the other plans restricts which “area” my doctors fall into. I am fairly healthy person, however anyone can tell this is a whole lotta nonsense.

I am not even scratching on the surface, but the GOP argument is that government will be getting in the way of me and my doctor; I say “at least I can vote them out of office next time they screw me over.”

What has become increasingly ragetastic during the health care debate is how simple the argument really is and how much nonsense is spewed in response. The GOP has been using this” you and your doctor” line since the beginning of the health care reform, yet people and the media act like it is revelation. What they really care about is the insurance and pharmaceutical companies and their back pockets. By opposing health care reform you are essentially saying you don’t want everyone to have health care, you don’t mind people going bankrupt because of health care costs, you can AFFORD health care and you don’t think anything is wrong with our current system. Now some might be worried about spending and costs, but those aren’t even legitimate concerns being brought up by the GOP. We get death panels, gubbament between you and your doctor and Obamacare scare tactics, but if you are a smart person as I assume you are for reading this blog, you already know that.

So fixing health care should be and needs to be the actual debate. A key elemental to actually making sure there is less interference between you and your doctor is the public option. Why Frank you smart, intelligent, gorgeous Asian is that, you might ask? Well it will force a bit of fairness out of the insurance companies and allow you as a taxpayer a choice. If you want to keep your current plan go ahead and if you want another option, by all means. Robert Reich explains the public option and this below I suggest you take the full long winded 150 seconds.

It really is this simple.

I am Frank Chow and I approved this message


Batocchio said...

Yeah, many people get screwed by that dance you describe - unless they have a doctor who's actively trying to save you money. Salaried doctors, as at the Mayo clinic, would eliminate much of that. (Have you seen the Al Franken-at-the-fair video yet?)

Robert Reich is very sharp, explains things clearly, and is almost always right. When he and Krugman agree (and they often do), I say, make it so.

Asian-American Pundit said...

The Al Franken video was priceless, he handled it like a seasoned Senator.

I would agree that if the policy has both Krugman and Reich behind it, probably not a bad idea. Weird how people would rather listen to Newt or Darth Cheney over two reputable and educated men.

After the speech last night, I think the old tired tactics might not work this time.

Batocchio said...

Let's hope so. I heard it on the radio, but haven't seen the whole thing yet. I thought Obama did well overall, and some pandering to the "both sides" crap is fine, but I'm concerned any public option will be pretty weak, and his "not one dime" to the deficit rhetoric could box him in and is bad long-term politics. Although he slammed the fiscal irresponsibility of Congress and the GOP on Iraq/Afghanistan and tax cuts for the rich, and implicitly the hypocrisy of the so-called deficit hawks, he has to stop the Reagonomics rhetoric about government - Krugman made the same point the other day, actually. But let's see what happens.

Batocchio said...

A 14 point jump is really impressive, though, if accurate. Now let's get the best policy possible passed...

Asian-American Pundit said...

The response of 14 points is more than I expected, if only we could get them to stop talking about stupid Wilson by this weekend....