Odd Accident Illustrates Need For Universal Health Care

An odd accident happened in Council Bluffs last week. As Jeremy Clingenpeel and his son were practicing with their bow and arrows for the upcoming bow hunting season an unfortunate accident happened that left the father, Jeremy, with an arrow stuck in his chest, but alive. You can read about it here.

What caught my eye as I read this story is that here is yet another example of a family that is being put into financial crisis because of this country’s backward policy of health insurance and health care. If we had universal health care coverage like most first world nations I would not have read these following paragraphs: (from the same article)

Now, the family is worried about a long road to recovery, especially since Tracy, a former nurse, was diagnosed just last year with a debilitating neurological illness. Finances and care are now a concern for the family.

Jeremy worked full-time in waste management. He also took his wife to her weekly doctor appointments. She told 6 News that he even helped with daily tasks, such as bathing and showering.

“There’s a big question of, ‘Am I able to get my medicine? Am I able to get the care that I need? Is he going to be able to get the care he needs?’ ” she said.

Tracy Clingenpeel said that they spend thousands of dollars on her medicine, and will now be adding her husband’s medical bills.

The article does not say if the family has health insurance.  It does mention that Jeremy’s wife has a debilitating neurological condition. As if his accident and her illness weren’t enough to worry about, now, thanks to our insane health care system, finances and care become one more brick in an overwhelming load.

And it doesn’t have to be this way. We need to elect men and women to office that will put an end to this insanity. It is long past time that America join the civilized world and set up a health care system where families in health care crises do not have to watch their world dissolve due to finances.

Let me remind you that America pays almost twice per capita for its crappy health care system that leaves a huge swath of people uncovered. It is an insane system. No one can defend the current system, yet the radical right wing keeps it in place through lies and parliamentary procedures.

Don’t forget that one of the parts of our disjointed healthcare system that almost works – real Medicare – is under attack by the radical right that wants to make Medicare subject to reapproval by congress at some periodic juncture. Rick Scott – head of the Republican Senate election committee – says every five years. With today’s setup in congress, Medicare would never be reapproved even once.

While our lousy health care system is not one of the top issues in this year’s campaign, it should be in the back of everyone’s mind. 

Think of how devastated your family might be by an accident or unexpected illness. Then vote for those who will set up a system to fix the system.

The radical right will never institute universal health care. Vote for Democrats. 

About Dave Bradley

retired in West Liberty
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