Tuesday, December 11, 2007


Click to enlarge.

I heard about this ad from the California Nurses Association they purchased. They use Dick Cheney as a centerpiece for what's wrong with the Medicare system today. The ad begins "The patient’s history and prognosis were grim: four heart attacks, quadruple bypass surgery, angioplasty, an implanted defibrillator and now an emergency procedure to treat an irregular heartbeat."

It seems our California nurses feel that patients (especially Vice Presidential patients) can predict their heart attacks occur and determine their care when it is rendered. They assume that if this happened to anyone else, "they'd be dead."

Nothing could be further from the truth.

But it does not make for sensationalist ads. Instead, they want House Resolution 676 supported by our presidential candidates, arguing for "Medicare for all" as the answer to our healthcare crisis. As if it were free. No holes barred. Pay for everything. Nothing but the best. Expand our governmental bureaucracy to included every man, woman, and child, with complete medical, dental, vision, and long-term care. Hell, throw in a Rolls Royce for your driveway, too!

As if it's all free. You can have ANYTHING! Yee-hah! We're ENTITLED! Just like the Vice President!

Don't look at how we got where we are. Nope. Just more of the same, ONLY BIGGER!

Frickin' brilliant.



Anonymous said...

where does it say in the ad that healthcare will be free? i'd rather pay the medicare administration (via taxes) than pay WellPoint or Blue Cross . . .

DrWes said...

i'd rather pay the medicare administration (via taxes) than pay WellPoint or Blue Cross . . .

How has Medicare's track record been so far? It's been in existence for 42 years, and the bill continues to climb for our nation's healthcare to the point where soon 1 in 5 dollars of our entire GNP will go toward healthcare. And who's profiting? Is it the patient? Is it the doctor? Or is it corporations, government oversite committees, lobbying groups, hospitals, political action committees, billing and collection agencies or third party payors? So how has the government done managing YOUR money so far?

While I agree with you that insurers are part of the problem, there's plenty of other parties hell-bent to make sure the bureaucracy expands to unending heights to assure your "safety" and "outcomes" at huge expense to all of us, while forgetting what matters: the doctor-patient relationship.

Anonymous said...


By the way, I'm entirely amused that my cardiologist has a blog, and an excellent one at that. Keep up the good work. :)

Anonymous said...

Dr. Wes,
Do you have a post somewhere with your proposed solution to the health care crisis? My feeling is that I'd rather have a vast government bureacracy than a for-profit private insurer. At least I know Medicare doesn't have shareholders to please every quarter -- it has tax-paying citizens to please, and the "return" is good public health. While I agree that there are major problems with Medicare, I think these problems are fixable. I'm not sure the private insurers are fixable.


IVF-MD said...

Shawn, when you say "At least I know Medicare doesn't have shareholders to please every quarter -- it has tax-paying citizens to please", are you remembering the big difference between these two situations? Shareholders own the stock voluntarily. If you don't please the shareholders, they will sell the stock and take their money elsewhere. Taxpayers, on the other hand, have no such choice and thus there isn't the same need for accountability. Medicare can do a horrible job and the taxpayers still pay, especially as long as those who get the entitlements vote for politicians who will legislate to keep growing the bloated bureaucracy. Without the accountability of CHOICE, it's like the difference between the government postal service vs Fedex or UPS. Giving more control to politicians will make the situation worse.