Thursday, August 20, 2009

Obama's Health Plan Won't Matter

Being that I am a health care provider, it seems like everyone wants to know what I think about the possible reformatting of our health care system. I have given it some thought and I have come up with an answer. But before I give it to you, I must first say this.

There absolutely needs to be some kind of change in the system we have or it will continue to spiral downward and get more and more out of control. However, change does not mean better it ONLY means different.

So now my answer to the question… doesn’t really matter. Before anyone gets upset, let me clarify.

When I say it doesn’t matter, I mean in relation to helping out the health crisis this nation finds itself in today. The World Health Organization has us listed around 35th (+ or – 2 spots) on the healthiest nations in the world. We are number 1 in emergency medicine (what medicine was to be used for) but way down on the list for chronic, preventable diseases.

Let me ask you some questions. How many people have health insurance? I think we can all agree that most people have some form of health insurance. When are you allowed to use your health insurance? If you are thinking “when you are sick,” then you are right. When do most people go to the doctor? When they are sick or have problems, and in the mean time, do nothing until they have another problem.

You see, we currently have a sick-care system and sick insurance – NOT health care with health insurance.

We have been brainwashed for several decades now that your health is all about how you feel. If I’m not in pain/sick, then everything is good. When pain/sickness is present, now there’s a problem. When it stops hurting, the problem is fixed and all is good once again.

This just simply is NOT how your body operates. We are not machines with nuts and bolts. We are dynamic, biological systems that are constantly assessing, compensating, and adapting to the environment we are in. Unless you can think of the exact moment you experienced trauma when your pain began, then it is something that has developed over time. Even then, the scar tissue left behind from an injury will cause that area to prematurely decay if not payed attention to.

Until we adopt a system that puts more emphasis on the prevention of health problems, we will always have a messed up system. You can’t wait until your car breaks down before you decide to take care of it and expect it to perform at a very high level. We all get that with our cars and our teeth, so why do we not get that about our health.

The health care crisis in this nation has little to do with the presence or absence of a health insurance policy. The crisis originates with the thought process currently used with respect to our individual health. The government is not going to get you or your children healthy. The insurance companies are not going to get you or your children healthy. We’ve been following there lead for several decades now with vaccination, drugs, and surgeries and look where it got us.

Obviously each individual case is different, and I would never say that we don’t need any of those things. In the right circumstances it is greatly needed. If I break my arm or my appendix ruptures, don’t come at me with some herbal paste to rub on my skin. Get me to a hospital first for some pain medication and possibly surgery. After things are stabilized then I’ll probably check out your herbal remedy.

The overhauling of our system needs to start with changing our out-dated ideals of health and use some of the research we’ve been spending billions of dollars on over the last 20 years and start applying it. Then we need to develop a system that encourages the individual to be more responsible for their own health. Until that happens, we will always end up right where we are at today.

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