Medicare? Who Cares About Medicine?

So, our Republicans are once again attacking entitlements … but this is a good thing.

House GOP considers privatizing Medicare

I’m not sure how this works, but I might be eligible in a few years, and my “private medical insurance” is reaching $20,000/year (for the family) … I’d like to get some relief from Medicare; I’ve paid into it long enough.

Obama’s “Health Care” Bill had nothing to do with health care, but everything to do with Insurance … despite the promises, my insurance bill went up another 10% this year … and would have been more, had I not long since adopted a “healthy life style.”

Conservatives now have a number of Doctors in Congress … only one retains his Practice, and Congressional “ethics” (as if they had any) are now challenging his right to deliver babies.

Here are the Docs who think Congress is a better place to practice medicine than their offices:

Senate Incumbents

  1. Tom Coburn (R, Republican), Oklahoma, family physician and ob-gyn
  2. John Barasso (R, Wyoming), orthopedic surgeon New Senator
  3. Rand Paul, (R, Kentucky), ophthalmologist

House Incumbents

  1. John Boustany ( R, Louisiana), cardiovascular surgeon
  2. John Fleming (R, Louisiana), family physician
  3. Bill Cassidy (R, Louisiana), gastroenterologist
  4. Tom Price, (R, Georgia), orthopedic surgeon
  5. Paul Brown (R, Georgia), family physician
  6. Phil Gingrey(R,Georgia), Ob-Gyn
  7. Ron Paul (R, Texas), Ob-Gyn
  8. Michael Burgess(R, Texas), Ob-Gyn
  9. David “Phil” Roe (R, Tennessee), Ob-Gyn
  10. Jim McDermott (D, Washington), psychiatrist

New House members

  1. Larry Bucshon (R, Indiana), thoracic surgeon
  2. Andy Harris (R, Maryland), anesthesiologist
  3. Dan Benishek (R, Michigan), general surgeon
  4. Nan Hayworth (R, New York), ophthalmologist
  5. Scott DesJaris (R, Tennessee), family physician
  6. Joe Heck (R., Nevada). emergency room physician

I helped elect Michael Burgess for his first term , but have since been redistricted. Prior to election, he had delivered more than 4,000 kids. Not a bad record. I also credit a Democrat Heart Surgeon (since retired) … he’d go to Africa for free surgeries during Recesses, but was never “ethically” challenged.

On the other hand, ever since LBJ (D, TX) invented Medicare and Medicaide, the Federal Government (not the public) has dictated what fees could be paid for medicine. With “insurance,” (be it from the Feds or Company insurance), individuals no longer challenge fees … they don’t have to pay them!

The key is what the docs and hospitals (many owned by Docs) can get away with. Some of my Docs hire “consultants” … I was one once, in a different industry … I agree with the consultants: raise your rates 10% per year, and no one will notice … despite the fact that Inflation has been below 3% per year for a decade. None of the Docs I have asked have increased their staff salaries anywhere near what they have increased their fees.

This all results in $455 for a litre of distilled water (actual charge) from a hospital, when Walmart charges 88 CENTS A GALLON for the same stuff.

It varies year-to-year, but the big money to Congress comes from Lawyers, Financiers, and Doctors … after all, that’s where the money is! People don’t count, because they don’t so much contribute.

By all means, cut Medicare reimbursements (but make them prompt) back to the levels of 2000. Maybe increase them by “inflation” (the CPI) since then. Just to be fair, require all doctors and hospitals to accept Medicare patients and Medicare rates.

“Privatizing” Medicare just introduces ANOTHER opportunity for insurance companies (another BIG contributor to campaigns) to add their 30% or more overhead to the costs of providing medical care.

I’m sure it is in Partisan best interests to investigate other political Parties … but if Congress really gave a darn about The People it represents, they would investigate the SOURCES (ie, Doctors, Hospitals, Clinics, and even the Public employees who can’t resist committing fraud) of high costs, and reduce some of their contributors’ income.