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Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Bend Over! It's ObamaCare!

Brought to you via Curmudgeonly and Skeptical, we have twitters (twitterings? tweets? twits?) (whatever the fuck it's called) by a feller named Peter Fleckstein. He goes by Fleckman on twitter.
Even though our senators - the people who are supposedly representing us - don't have time to read the proposed health care bill, somehow Fleckman does have the time.

Do yourself a favor and go read through his 'notes'. If you have any affiliation with health care, be afraid. Be very afraid.

The reality of the whole government run health care scenario to me seems rather obvious from the get-go. But I don't think people really believe the government could or would actually dictate this stringent of a set of rules. I think these same people are also in for a big fucking shock.

Hospitals will be told what (to treat), where (which facility), when (until you're no longer getting better), who (which patients) and how (which procedures) to treat patients.
Doctors will be told what tests they can order, what treatments they will get paid for, and how much of a salary they will make. Gee. What's your incentive to work 12-16 hour days and be on call 24-7-365 now?
Medical and life insurance companies, HMO's, all that shit will go away too. They won't be needed. You get the picture.

You'll call a government representative/consultant for an ailment you may have. If you're lucky, this person will have medical background rather than a predefined script tree to read from when determining your ailment and the seriousness of it.
Then they will tell which doctor you can see, or which hospital you go to. The one closest to you is too busy right now so you'll have to go to the one in the next county and so on.

Let's do some play acting here. let's call the government run health system and see if we can get some treatment:

ObamaCare Specialist:"Good afternoon. Thank you for calling ObamaCare. What city please? "

Curmudgeon:"_____________ Nevada."

ObamaCare Specialist:"One moment please..."

ObamaCare Specialist:"This call may be monitored for future customer service relations issues or improvements. Please state your name, social security number, full street address including city, state and zip code, your date of birth, mother's maiden name, bank name, address, phone number and account number."

Curmudgeon:"What the hell? My bank information? Why?"

ObamaCare Specialist:"Sir, we can't help you until we know we can automatically withdraw the co-pay. Now please state your name, social security number, full street address including city, state and zip code, your date of birth, mother's maiden name, bank name, address, phone number and account number. Speak slowly and clearly please."

Curmudgeon:"My name is ... adrresss... Social is ... etc."
Curmudgeon:"Now I cut my arm and I'm bleeding pretty good. Can you send an ambulance?

ObamaCare Specialist:"One moment sir. I need to verify the information you have provided. ..."

ObamaCare Specialist:"Thank you for waiting sir. Now what is the service you desire?"

Curmudgeon:"Like I sadi, I cut my arm and I'm bleeding pretty good. Can you send an ambulance?

ObamaCare Specialist:"Mmm-hmmm. I see. Is there any pain involved?"

Curmudgeon:"Yes! There's friggin' pain! I cut it bad!"

ObamaCare Specialist:"Uh, sir, please speak slowly and clearly. This call may be monitored for future customer service relations."

Curmudgeon:"Yes - there - is - pain, I - cut - my - friggin' - arm - and - I'm - bleeding. Can - you - send - an - ambulance?"

ObamaCare Specialist:"And do you have any weakness, nausea, shortness of breath?"

Curmudgeon:"Not yet, but I'm sure I will. Now can you send an ambulance?

ObamaCare Specialist:"Sir, are you unable to drive?"

Curmudgeon:"I suppose I could steer with my feet, ..."

ObamaCare Specialist:"There's no reason to be that way sir. We're only trying to help."

Curmudgeon:"Yes, I'm unable, uh, no - I can't drive."

ObamaCare Specialist:"Is there anyone you can get to drive you? A family member, neighbor, ..."

Curmudgeon:"No. No family. The neighbor is at work. The other neighbors I don't know."

ObamaCare Specialist:"Sir. This country is nothing more than a village. You should really get to know your neighbors for times like these. "

Curmudgeon:"Uh. Maybe later. Right now, I have no one to drive me."

ObamaCare Specialist:"Okay sir. I'll send the ambulance. One moment please..."

ObamaCare Specialist:"Okay, I have two ambulance windows available. Either between 4 p.m. and 8 p.m. this evening or between 9 a.m. and 1 p.m. tomorrow morning. Which would you prefer?"

Curmudgeon:"Are you shitting me?"

ObamaCare Specialist:"I'm sorry sir, those are the first available time slots. Which would you prefer?"

Curmudgeon:"Maybe I can get my cousin Bob to drive me. It will take him about an hour and a half to get here though, can you tell me where the closest hospital is?"

ObamaCare Specialist:"Yes sir. One moment please... "

ObamaCare Specialist:"Okay sir, the closest hospital is St. Rose, located at 1234 South _____ street. The major cross streets are Elm and Main. But they have reached their allocation of patients for this week so you will not be able to go there. You will have to go to Lake Mead hospital. It is located... "

Curmudgeon:"I know where Lake Mead hospital is. But are you friggin' kidding? St. Rose is full?"

ObamaCare Specialist:"No, sir. They have met the maximum number of admissions as mandated by ObamaCare and can accept no more G-6.1.b sub 3 patients."

Curmudgeon:"G-6 dot one six - huh?"

ObamaCare Specialist:"G-6.1.b sub 3 are non-life threatening emergency patients, sir."

Curmudgeon:"And if I gawd-dam bleed to death? What is that?"

ObamaCare Specialist:"Sir, I will not listen to profanity. Thank you and have a good day."

Curmudgeon:"WAIT! I'm sorry. I'm just worried here. My arm is bleeding, my pants are soaked in blood, the dog is licking the floor, I'm feeling faint, and you're telling I need to drive in rush hour traffic for nearly an hour, to a hospital clear across town when there are rooms available at the hospital a ten minute drive from my house? "

ObamaCare Specialist:"Yes sir. There is a nurse and physician shortage. Nurses are only allowed to be responsible for so many patients, so when that limit is reached, we must divert patients to other hospitals."

Fast forward to being admitted after all the indigents, welfare moms and illegal aliens, whereupon there are no (as the government already determined) unnecessary treatments, tests, ...
The underpaid and understaffed doctors are too busy to spend any time with any one patient, so any other questions you may have will go unanswered.
The short-staffed nurses are getting paid a shitty salary and know they won't be replaced because of the shortage, so they aren't too terribly interested in bedside manner or going out of their way on your account.

Now why would I think they're getting paid a shitty salary? Well, you have to manage salaries in order to manage costs.

I'm sorry. I can't find one good thing in the whole setup. And I think I could go on for hours here. So I'll give up.



Hammer said...

Your crystal ball is working pretty damn good.

curmudgeon said...

Just a guess, but...

Anonymous said...

yea a wrong fucking guess

curmudgeon said...

That's what I love about anonymous commenters. They're just so full of wit and wisdom and insight.

Let me guess anon, you voted for the fucking moron, right?