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The Pulse of Natural Health Newsletter

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More Health Care Reform Ideas

13

These are from John Goodman, a top healthcare analyst now at Goodman Institute.

Goodman has proposed a number of reforms that we think should be considered in any effort to improve or replace Obamacare.

  • Offer tax credits to employees. Tax credits are offered to individuals purchasing health insurance through the Obamacare exchanges. If tax credits are extended to the group market, Goodman estimates a 5 to 6 million increase in group-sponsored insurance.
  • Allow employers to buy portable insurance. Obamacare imposes substantial fines on employers who buy individually-owned insurance with pre-tax dollars. The 21st Century Cures Act (which did not pass) waived this fine for small businesses, and this waiver could be extended to all businesses, giving employers the freedom to choose between the individual and group markets for their employees.
  • Give states the ability to impose a premium tax on group insurance, and use those funds to insure high-cost patients (sicker, pre-existing conditions) in a separate pool so they don’t drive up costs for everyone else as they do under Obamacare.
  • Allow free market risk adjustment. Obamacare makes it illegal to discriminate against any group of enrollees based on their health status. This prevents specialized insurers from trying to attract heart patients or cancer patients. In a more open system, providers would compete to attract patients with certain illnesses.
  • Allow individuals and families to buy insurance appropriate to their income and health status. As we’ve maintained, people should not be forced to purchase insurance that covers a wide array of services that they don’t want or will never need. If they are forced to do this, we will never get to a consumer led healthcare system.

If you’d like to read more about these ideas for a consumer-driven health care system, take a look at this article written by Goodman for Forbes. Or check out his website.

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  • Annabelle Herbert

    You are ignoring the fact that Medicare for all is the simplest, cheapest and easiest solution for everyone. Systems in Europe and Canada all work well in spite of rumors to the contrary.

    • patgo

      Medicare was an abysmal failure for us. It allows doctors to get away with abusing ALL PATIENTS. It caused us phenomenal grief and suffering, and we can’t even sue, because they do it to EVERYONE, and therefore it is accepted as Standard of Care. I talked to plenty of other patients who were also poorly served. Those who advocate Medicare for all haven’t really had to deal with the medical Establishment yet in a big way. People who have are in no position to assert their right to better care. I talked to plenty who were in total despair of ever getting anything better. Systems in Europe and Canada introduce long waiting periods, during which many people die from lack of care, and they bankrupt the country. The consequences that we experienced from over-medication have cost us thousands of dollars, which we will never get back, and could not afford, and we are still not past the major problems that could STILL kill the patient, or at least cause unbearable suffering for the foreseeable future. We need a system where people really DO have REAL choices: standard medical care, alternatives, etc., and where competition will drive down costs. The pharmaceutical companies are making billions from over-medication, and they sell even more drugs to alleviate all the suffering this causes, until people are so toxic they will live years less than they could, and suffering, not healthy.

      • Annabelle Herbert

        Patgo, Re: Medicare

        I’m sorry you have experienced grief and suffering using Medicare. I don’t agree that Medicare has been a failure for most however, and I vehemently disagree that “doctors get away with abusing all patients”. That is a blanket statement that has no basis in fact. I have never had a complaint with my care. I can only surmise that the standard may vary from state to state. If that is the case, I would urge you and other complaintants in your state to lobby your representatives in Congress.

        My brother was diabetic and couldn’t get health insurance in the States. When he had a heart attack and couldn’t afford the surgery he needed, he had it done in Canada. He was able to get one of the best heart surgeons available on the west coast, and it cost him a fraction of what it would have in California. His only complaint was about the food during his time there. As I stayed near him during his ordeal I can verify that he got the best of care.

        When visiting family in Canada over the years, I also have had to avail myself of care in Canada and found it to be excellent with very little waiting, -especially for emergencies. I am aware that wait times vary from province to province, but in the 17 years I’ve been coming to Canada, I’ve never heard of “many people dying from lack of care” either. That is patently false. I don’t know where you have gotten your information and I suggest you read up on the successes of universal health care in most other countries. Those countries happen not to be bankrupted by health care, and they’ve been providing it for a very long time.

        • Sargam

          You caught Canada while it was quite rich from the commodities boom. Does not translate into Universal Medicare U.S. being a good idea. Completely different cultures, govmnt culture, medical culture. Canadian doctors do not expect to earn a million bucks a year. They respect their gvmnt. Same with Europe. America distrusts gvmnt, does not respect it, and it is considered too corrupt to work properly.

        • patgo

          I stand by what I said about abusing all patients. Most doctors don’t even realize they are doing it. They kill 100,000 Americans a year by overmedicating. They refuse to discontinue unnecessary treatments. I talked to so many people who were being abused.

          Of three hospitals, the best one killed two patients I personally met. If you are put on “nothing by mouth – NPO”, you will suffer excruciating mouth thirst sensations, and they do absolutely NOTHING about it. One fellow kept calling “agua, agua” and nobody paid any attention. They gave him a sedative to calm him down. He was dead two days later. Another had minor heart surgery. She was so drugged up, she didn’t come out of anesthesia. I knew a simple remedy, but they would never use it. Her daughter hated her and ordered them to pull the plug (simple respiratory assistance) and killed her. The clinic was notorious for killing patients with simple heart operations. It is not required that a trained anesthetist accompany them, so they don’t bother: too expensive. I got this from two different people, one of whom has a brother who is a heart surgeon and told him that.

          They use terror tactics to try to get people to comply with unnecessary and distressing treatments. Happened to us. They tried to terrify us into not demanding that the treatment be discontinued. Medical literature said the longer the treatment continues, the MORE likely for adverse events. We pressed it, treatment was discontinued, and the patient thrived.

          Overmedication: happened to us. Gave 14 medications against our will and behind our backs. Sent him into acute respiratory failure. Required a tracheostomy and a stomach tube. The “food” they give stomach tube patients contains corn syrup (the major ingredient in marshmallows), almost certainly GMO, soy protein (fake meat, almost certainly GMO), maltodextrin (causes destruction of intestinal flora, and minute quantities of vitamins. Corn syrup causes sugar spikes, sends people into diabetic range, so they ROUTINELY give insulin. We had to buy expensive food that took a week to deliver, so the patient would have something fit to eat. People eating by mouth don’t fare much better. Everything is overcooked, so vegetables are mush, and meat becomes hockey pucks. Required by law.

          Even the decent doctors insisted on continuing all those medications. We had to fight to get rid of them, and they finally threatened us with expulsion if we didn’t accept something (illegal). Best hospital of the three.

          Later hospital experience was better, but they wanted to do a colonoscopy (very expensive, invasive and dangerous). We asked for a simple, non-invasive test. They refused. Doctor prescribed an antibiotic on discharge that contains a chemical (“inert”) that can release formaldehyde (deadly). When we asked for a different drug, he wouldn’t give us the time of day. Insurance companies refusing to pay for drugs that are safe to take, and insisting on covering generics with things like sodium lauryl sulfate (present in over 7000 medical products), a skin irritant. We had to fight to get a drug that was safe to take, covered.

          Lots and lots of damage to our patient: thousands of dollars of personal cost to get decent care to heal the damage, untold suffering for close to two years, and not over yet.

          We tried to sue for malpractice. No attorney would touch it. This is “standard of care”. Livanta investigated all three hospitals, and came back with the same verdict: standard of care. You know what “standard of care” means? It means, we do it to everyone, so we can get away with it. Hence, my claim they abuse everybody.

          I have plenty more stories where these came from. I talked to lots of patients.

        • patgo

          More stories: female relative, had obstruction in throat, went to hospital, asked for 1/2 dose of medication because she’s sensitive. They gave her twice the dose. Blood pressure medication caused dementia; had to discontinue it. It upset her, but she figured it out. Did a biopsy on her lung. Cancer. It would have lain dormant indefinitely if they’d left it alone. Biopsies spread cancer. All three standard forms of medical treatment for cancer cause intense suffering and shorten life; none works for 99% of folks. (Chemotherapy causes cancer to develop resistant strains; next time chemotherapy won’t work. It SPREADS cancer.) She refused. We gave her herbs for comfort. Hospice was hostile and treated us poorly; in the end, they apologized. She was alert and happy. Many people came in drugged so silly they couldn’t even think, were totally unaware. Many people who have worked in the medical industry refuse standard treatments. I know people who cured cancer, sometimes overnight. No thanks to modern medical “science”.

          Prophylactic drugs: don’t get me started!

          Male relative, needed prednisone for emphysema. They put it on his chart but never gave it. He died. Hospital personnel gave his widow the runaround when she asked questions. When he died, they called and said they didn’t think he would make it. He was already dead. They lied.

          Female relative, on too many drugs to count. Obese, can’t walk far enough to do a grocery shopping trip. On GERD medicines (PPI) for years; FDA says they’re dangerous after two weeks. Can’t get her to get off them; she refuses to speak to me if I bring up any such thing. Took me five years to get her off statins. Statins are deadly. Has diabetes, sleep apnea. Has broken multiple bones (medications she takes weaken bones). Diabetes is curable, but pharmaceutical companies suppress the information, even resorting to assassination of doctors who cure it and speak out.

          Statins kill. They destroy muscle (hint: the heart is a muscle) attack the MAJOR material of the brain (cholesterol), can cause kidney and liver failure. For starters. But they make lots of money for pharmaceutical companies.

          Male relative, had his colon removed. A simple treatment of cabbage juice drunk repeatedly for a short time would have cured him. My friend cured her husband of the exact same condition that way. Has had multiple severe health problems since, will need a kidney transplant. Winds up in the hospital repeatedly.

          Friend went on statins. In one month, they totally sapped his muscles. He went from being able to lift car engines and paint his eaves to being weak like a kitten. I told him to get off, provided evidence, and he was outraged. Quit, got his muscles back, and took care of his wife who has Alzheimer’s, by himself, for five years. Her Alzheimer’s was probably caused by blood pressure drugs. 92 years old, takes no drugs, and blood tests are all normal. Doctor can’t figure it out. Took him a couple of years to talk his friend out of statins; he was too petrified to even discuss it. Statins deplete CoQ10, NECESSARY for the heart. Pharmaceutical companies got doctors to stop giving CoQ10, because it gave statins a bad name. You have to treat a hundred patients to achieve one APPARENT improvement for longevity in men. Women: no difference in longevity whatsoever.

          Need I go on? This is the health care system people are insisting should be single payer. NO THANKS!

    • ca_ssandra

      Sorry, but all Medicare for All will do is support a sick, distorted and broken system that has no concept of what health or healing are about. As a corollary, when you turn over total control of a broken system, you will never fix it and the only beneficiaries will be the current medical monopoly and natural medicine/functional medicine/naturopaths and herbalists will slowly but surely disappear and nutritional therapies that now cost pennies, such as therapeutic vitamin d capsules will become high priced prescription drugs.

      The medical monopoly is only good for accident/trauma, surgery if you really need it and possibly diagnostics. If you want total coverage for those activities, fine. Most of everything else is a waste of money.

      • Sargam

        Thank you, Sandra. Yes, it is a temptation to say just hand it ALL over to the gvmnt but that is out of the frying pan and into the fire. As we are discovering w/ O-Care, monopolies are bad and gvmnt ones worse. O-care’s primary effect on medicine has been to accelerate its criminilization into a medical mafia, the major cause of the rate increases, but people refuse to see it because most receive subsidies.

        Private insurance – the under-65 market – does not directly compete with Medicare but just its existence (at least, pre-O-Care) was enough to keep Medicare in line. Without it, a universal system – ‘Medicare for all’ – becomes even less accountable. Gvmnt works differently here than Europe, sorry. In case you haven’t tried dealing with a major agency recently.

  • Dr.S

    I don’t know what Mr. Goodman’s been smoking, maybe Malcolm Forbes’ old tax returns. He thinks we want “a consumer-driven health care system”? No one wants that since we just want something simple so we don’t have to worry about stuff. It’s also more like what we had before the ACA when half the insurances didn’t actually cover anything worth a damn but “consumers” would buy them since they were cheap and sounded acceptable.
    Does he really believe that in “a more open system, providers would compete to attract patients with certain illnesses”? The only illness insurers would be competing to attract is affluenza and people with no health problems at all. Why on God’s green earth would they compete to get people who are going to use a lot of medical care? Those are exactly the people they don’t want.

    • patgo

      I WANT A CONSUMER DRIVEN HEALTH CARE SYSTEM. Get the government OUT OF health care, and let US decide for the alternative care we want. Those who don’t want to have to “worry” about stuff will finally wind up in a place where all they have time to DO is worry, and will be powerless to change the situation. I talked to plenty of people in exactly that situation.

      Otherwise, you are QUITE CORRECT that the only illness insurers would be cometing to attract is affluenza, and people with no problems. No, they wouldn’t compete to get people who will be expensive.

  • earthcaretaker

    universal healthcare works around the world an studies show it is cheaper than what we have now. Don’t like the idea of all these quirks that can lead to problems

  • Gary Edson

    These recommendations are unrealistic at best. What insurance group would want to “attract” coronary heart disease patients, for example, unless they wanted to trap them somehow into paying super high premiums or lose there lives. Perhaps they would accomplish this by not having allowing choice to leave the group. And then to propose allowing the state to impose a premium tax? Is that so the state can be cut in on the swindle? All of this so “they don’t drive up costs for everyone else” is kind of ignoring the whole idea of insurance spreading the risks. Young people may save but they eventually grow older and no one would want to be trapped in such a high risk pool of an insurance company’s making. This is attempting “free market” mechanisms for the sake of “conservative political correctness” when is against the overall benefit to the community being served.

  • tbran10

    No matter what you call it: Affordable Care Act (misnomer), Obamacare, Ryancare or Trumpcare it
    will never fix the runaway costs of Healthcare in the US that are the highest in the world.
    We over medicate, over utilize, over diagnose and over treat our citizens in our sickcare system.
    Until our Washington politicians have an honest discussion with their constituents on the root causes of the problem, nothing will change. Just get worst! We have a failed food growing and processing system delivering too little nutrients and too many trace toxins that are impacting the health of Americans from the cradle to the grave. In turn, our healthcare providers are not addressing the issues of prevention and reversal of disease states. Our corporate medical entities are the beneficiary and not the American public of a lobbyist designed healthcare system. It’s time that all Congressman take a pledge: I WILL NOT TAKE MONEY FROM THE MEDICAL LOBBYISTS; In the meantime we will go deeper into debt with the excess cost of healthcare contributing around a TRILLION dollars per year.