Massachusetts: Better than all the rest, but still FUCKED

Massachusetts currently has about the best health care system in the country, and it is still a disgrace. What’s worse, my impression is that the country is headed in the same direction as Massachusetts, and that worries me. We have near universal coverage, with a mandate for universal, and that’s fantastic. We have a decent coverage system (Mass Health) for poor and disabled residents, and even though they recently slashed what they’ll authorize, it’s still as good as any other health care coverage. And we have mental health parity, which means people’s mental health is as important as their physical health.

So why am I complaining? Because our health care system is set up so that insurance companies determine what kind of health care services you can get. A college-level kid with no medical or behavioral health knowledge is sitting on the other end of the phone line making decisions about whether you can have weekly psychotherapy, whether you should be forced to try this medication because the drug company that makes it is offering it cheaper, whether that surgery your doctor wants you to have is really “medically necessary.”

That’s FUCKED. Why should an insurance company be in charge of deciding any of that? Why should anyone but the provider and the patient even be INVOLVED in the decision? Insurance companies care only about two things: Making a profit and liability. They don’t care about you or your health. It is criminal that this sort of corporatism is even allowed.

I am glad Obama is taking on health care as an issue, and I’ll take what I can get, but it is FUCKED UP that in order to get anything close to universal health care coverage in our country we are going to have to cede control of our medical decisions on a national level to corporations and drug companies.

We should be providing universal health care as a basic right that comes with citizenship. Doctors and therapists should have to justify all their expenses and be reviewed by an impartial medical review board regularly for standards of care, but the only people who should have a right to be involved in decisions about what treatment you need are you and your providers.

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~ by realsupergirl on March 12, 2009.

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