Listen to Your Nurse: It’s Time for Senator Bernie Sanders’ Medicare for All Act
Bonnie Castillo

It’s going to be beautiful, beautiful healthcare and Mexico will pay for it.

Should professional nurses know what Medicare is? Forget those legislators who can’t use Google to get the right word.

On average, Medicare covers about half of the health care charges for those enrolled. The enrollees must then cover their remaining costs either with supplemental insurance, separate insurance, or out-of-pocket.

Medicaid Vs. Medicare

Both can help you pay for healthcare, but Medicare is an entitlement for seniors 65 and over — and some younger people with disabilities — while Medicaid is a public-assistance program for needy Americans of all ages.

So, I would like to talk about healthcare for all ages fully paid with public money, not Medicare-for-all (which sounds like bs).

The Bill itself sounds much more Catholic than the Pope… oops, more socialist than the Canadian system which is a classic “single payer” (the majority of universal care countries are not even single payer). Got relatives or friends in Canada? Ask questions to them. Ask those Canadian medical professionals who moved South (no pun intended) why they did it. Make informed choices. I myself lived with universal care (for the record, I’m fine with it, given I know how to navigate it).

I would like to compare the bill with the Canadian system which I myself know well.

  1. Even this system is NOT fully single payer, the moneys come from some provincial sources not only the feds, and managed by provincial governments.
  2. It’s NOT Medicaid-for-all or Medicare-for-all (as defined in the US). They don’t only differ but are built on top of a different system.
  3. It doesn’t pay for drugs, vision and dental for everybody as the bill proposes (some employers offer insurances covering them).
  4. It doesn’t provide services to ALL residents as the bill proposes. It’s restricted to citizens and legal permanent residents that’s been residents for a certain period of time (no undocumented people, temp workers, citizens who lived abroad and just returned or that mother-in-law overstaying— they have to buy their own insurance).
  5. It’s financially supported by everybody, through provincial income and payroll taxes, not just 5% of top income earners as on the bill, this is not enough (The financing part of the bill is full of nonsense like “excise tax(!) on payroll” and “tax on stock transactions” — so, garage startups should be taxed for being opened, right?)
  6. Most important, it’s government managed (with medical professionals being the gatekeepers), you can’t just go and get what you want anytime you want. Don’t expect that it’s “we’re going to have the same abundance of medical options as now with the government paying for everything”. The only truth about it is that you don’t have to manage your bills, the system will do it for you (but you still pay for the services, as tax). But government insurance doesn’t equate to availability of medical services. “She can’t afford it” becomes “the government can’t afford it”.
  7. It can be probably described as a version of Kaiser-Permanente-for-All but with longer waiting times and no option to say FU and shop for a better plan.
  8. It does provide better preventive care and discipline, as it’s a different attitude, health maintenance vs emergency. You better get a good GP, attend annual checkups, eat healthy and exercise than wait till you get sick, discover that you were not prepared and now can’t get the services quickly enough.
  9. It’s fine once you get used to it… Just the middle class shouldn’t expect it to be the same as they have now, it’s an entirely different creature. People are eager to fight for moral choices until they discover they lose big on their personal ones. Sorry, you either accept one-skimpy-size-fits-all-for-everybody-including-yourself or have a market to shop for things. But you can’t have both, have your cake and eat it too.
  10. Ask your Canadian friends, they will tell you that healthcare is a human right… in the US. You are free to purchase your own insurance and services, not to rely on your government and gatekeepers to decide what you need and when to give it to you.
  11. However, I strongly doubt that private insurances would be banned in the US, it’s not going to fly for many reasons. Which means, for many patients it would be a return to the pre-Obamacare days but with higher taxes and insurance cost. So, why not to propose a much simpler bill “let’s raise taxes to offer more Medicaid assistance programs”?
  12. You’re being duped, people, into giving up Obamacare. Grass is always greener behind that Wall.
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