Tuesday, September 8, 2009

8 myths of the Healthcare bill proposed by President Obama's administration

With all the yadayadayada talks and the finger pointing going on about the proposed health care reforms, I received an email from the White House (I had subscribed to their mailing list), as part of their efforts to spread the message, explaining some important details about the proposed bill. Included in the mail were some of the "myths" (as claimed by the White House) and I thought as a responsible individual I would also play my part in spreading the message.
Please be aware that I am not in a position to support or talk against the proposed health care reforms but one thing that I am sure of is that
  1. No one should be denied coverage just because they fall seriously ill
  2. No one should go broke just because they fell sick and could not afford health care bills
  3. No one should be uninsured and feel insecure all the time.
I am in for any reform that would guarantee these basics for all individuals irrespective of their status, race, gender or religion.

8 Common "myths" about the proposed Health Care reform
  1. Reform will increase "rationing": It’s a myth that reform will mean a "government takeover" of health care or lead to "rationing." To the contrary, reform will forbid many forms of rationing that are currently being used by insurance companies.
  2. We can’t afford reform: It's the status quo we can't afford. It’s a myth that reform will bust the budget. To the contrary, the President has identified ways to pay for the vast majority of the up-front costs by cutting waste, fraud, and abuse within existing government health programs; ending big subsidies to insurance companies; and increasing efficiency with such steps as coordinating care and streamlining paperwork. In the long term, reform can help bring down costs that will otherwise lead to a fiscal crisis.
  3. Reform would encourage "euthanasia": It does not. It’s a malicious myth that reform would encourage or even require euthanasia for seniors. For seniors who want to consult with their family and physicians about end-of life decisions, reform will help to cover these voluntary, private consultations for those who want help with these personal and difficult family decisions.
  4. Vets' health care will be affected: It’s a myth that health insurance reform will affect veterans' access to the care they get now. To the contrary, the President's budget significantly expands coverage under the VA, extending care to 500,000 more veterans who were previously excluded. The VA Healthcare system will continue to be available for all eligible veterans.
  5. Reform will add burden on small business: It’s a myth that health insurance reform will hurt small businesses. To the contrary, reform will ease the burdens on small businesses, provide tax credits to help them pay for employee coverage and help level the playing field with big firms who pay much less to cover their employees on average.
  6. Your Medicare benefits will reduce: It’s myth that Health Insurance Reform would be financed by cutting Medicare benefits. To the contrary, reform will improve the long-term financial health of Medicare, ensure better coordination, eliminate waste and unnecessary subsidies to insurance companies, and help to close the Medicare "doughnut" hole to make prescription drugs more affordable for seniors.
  7. You cannot keep your current insurance or doctor: It’s myth that reform will force you out of your current insurance plan or force you to change doctors. To the contrary, reform will expand your choices, not eliminate them.
  8. Government will have access to your bank account: It is an absurd myth that government will be in charge of your bank accounts.  Health insurance reform will simplify administration, making it easier and more convenient for you to pay bills in a method that you choose.  Just like paying a phone bill or a utility bill, you can pay by traditional check, or by a direct electronic payment. And forms will be standardized so they will be easier to understand. The choice is up to you – and the same rules of privacy will apply as they do for all other electronic payments that people make.

Please keep in mind that by spreading the message I am not necessarily agreeing that these are indeed myths. The main reason being that I still have not gone thru the details of the bill for me to take one side or the other. But from what I have been following on CNN, I believe CNN has done a good job of researching on our behalves about these myths and confirmed that most of these are indeed myths and handiwork of republicans in spreading the wrong message. So I am kind of tilting to agree that these are indeed myths and not the truth, but still not 100% on that side of the court.

Go ahead and let me know what you think about the proposed health care reforms.



  1. Hi Mr. Shyam,

    Like a good Individual (I do not know if you are or are not a citizen) you have done a great job spreading it to other people, since it has directly come from the White house :)

    And Thanks for the information!!

    Like another helping individual, I will help you spread this.

  2. I agree with the previous poster, it is good that you're sharing the message, whichever "side" people are on. I do agree that nobody should be without healthcare, regardless of income, but I, also, worry about an already common practice of deciding which procedures are considered necessary, becoming more widespread, and more and more people suffering, as the government does not want to pay for procedures that may not be necessary to one, but is very necessary to another. One example that comes to mind is California recently cutting all dental care for adults. Some consider dental as cosmetic, while anyone educated in that field knows, having dental problems can affect one's entire health, not to mention their self esteem and ability to find work, etc., etc. I love that second cartoon you showed... stumbled it... says a lot!

  3. Hi Wecognize & Alicia - Thanks for stopping by and commenting. Much appreciated. Also, thanks for agreeing to the fact that no one should go without health insurance. Please keep spreading the message.

  4. Yesterday, I told my doctor I can't afford the CAT scan he recommended (over $2000 and that's WITH a discount for people without insurance). Fortunately, the test I won't be getting was just for a chronic inner ear condition. If I had cancer, I'd probably die. As such, I can only shake my head at this ridiculous "death panel" fantasy the far right has thought up...

  5. I have enjoyed reading your blog very much. Rest assured, your take on the Myths of Healthcare Reform are right on the mark. Calling them Myths is actually kind-- they are more like lies and deliberate misrepresentations promulgated by the healthcare industries and their minions. But that's another story.

    I also enjoyed your post about saying Please and Thank you. I thought the woman was a little rude to demand it of you, but perhaps not. Anyway, the end result seems to have been good for you. At least in the Americas (and apparently the UK), a little courtesy does indeed go a long way.

    Good luck with your blog!
    La Huerita

  6. YogaforCynics and La Huerita, Thanks for your comments and agreeing with my views about the health care myths. As I had mentioned in the blog, we all can make a difference by starting to spread the message from grass roots level. I have done so in this blog and would appreciate if you can also do so.

  7. I don't know overly much about the current healthcare system in the US except what I see on American TV shows and the odd documentary.

    However if the states can impliment a health care system like the UK it could potentially be one of the best things to happen to the USA. Here in the UK the NHS saved my life already, I'd either have been in debt or dead without it. The only problem with a free health care system (which is where the republican rhumour mill seems to get its ammo) is the funding. The level of care will of course be funded by the state but what standard of investment do you make? If they can work it so that the Healthcare system is well funded and organised, it could be that you won't get long waiting lists and the care could be the best in the world. I think the problem with the mindset of a lot of Amercians is that it wouldn't benifit those who are already in a position to be able to afford potentially better medical care already. The sad thing is its a pointless argument as like here in the UK there are still private hospitals where people can pay for specialist treatment and you can buy medical insurance til its poping out of your ears still. All it would probably cost is a little more tax... whats the price on a strangers life?

    Gotta love American politics!


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