The 2018 mid-terms saw the Democratic Party take back control of the House of Representatives. Among the new representatives are a group who have been pushing a more liberal agenda. That’s not a bad thing, but their supporters have a bad habit, egged on by the “professional left.” That is, much like various of the Tea Party on the Right, they’re enamored of catchy slogans than actual nuts-and-bolts policy. When asked what they think the phrase they’re using means, they come up with a wide variety of answers. That’s rather difficult to put into legislation, but in one case, it turns out that they don’t understand what they’re asking for.
Tag Archives: Healthcare Reform
A little over twenty years ago, I was working at a good-sized healthcare organization. Three hospitals, 20 clinics, spread over a 10 county area. Most of the facilities were in small rural towns, and as you can imagine, there was a lot of travel involved. That was when the organization decided to jump into some new technologies, which were touted as the future, which were going to revolutionize healthcare delivery and patient care. They were telemedicine and the electronic medical record. It would solve so many problems that the organization faced. No more having patients drive long distances to consult with a specialist, it could be done right there in their local clinic! No more waiting for records to be sent around, no more digging through reams of paper records on a patient, lab results available quickly, and oh, the opportunity to do outcome-based research to determine what worked in treatments! It was a great shining promise. Money was set aside, grant money was obtained, and we set about getting it done. That was the beginning of our problems.
The recent Supreme Court decision about Hobby Lobby being able to deny contraceptive coverage to its employees, because of … religious beliefs … has caused a major uproar. My opinion is that it’s probably the most weasel-worded, constitutionally questionable decision the Supreme Court has reached in quite some time. As a concept, the idea of a corporation as a person has any number of good features. The way conservatives, and in particular this Supreme Court, have extended that to the realms of free speech and religion are not among them. But, if corporations want to claim religious beliefs as a reason not to provide a benefit for their workers, I have an idea for making them regret it: Make them live up to it.
While the rollout of the federal exchange was … problematic, those problems have been mostly ironed out. No, it’s not “perfect,” but it’s apparent that it’s well on track to performing as it should. Will it ever not have glitches? No, but that’s the nature of information technology, particularly any complex system. It also won’t be for everyone, since there’s a dizzying array of personal conditions that don’t quite fit what can be done on a website and have to be handled in person, or people who simply refuse to learn to use technology. That said, it seems to be doing a lot of business, both in the state and in the federal exchanges.
I haven’t done one of these in a while, but I thought I’d look at what’s been happening over the past month. It’s been interesting, seeing the media change (without acknowledging that) their narratives from the initial reactions, as well as watching various Republicans spinning around trying to find something to push the media outrage button one more time.