Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Where the heck am I

Fact: The United States is the only major industrial country without universal health coverage.

To me, being German, it is just inconceivable that the richest country in this world will not provide this safety net to its citizens.

Almost on a weekly basis I read an article in the newspaper about someone without health insurance, who is loosing their home, having to file bankruptcy because they happened to get sick. I read about the numbers of the uninsured steadily rising. Just today I read about young people, like my 21 year old son, who loose their coverage on their parents policy once they turn 19 or after finishing college, who turn to online resources like WebMD for self diagnosis. Some resort to set their own broken bones, or share pharmaceuticals with others, or stretch their Asthma and Diabetes drugs. The young adults are the nation's largest group of uninsured people in America. There were 13.2 million of them in 2007, or 29%. To be able to get Medicaid, a single adult has to earn less then $707 a month, which is more then the minimum wage but the average insurance premium for a single, young adult is about $900. You do the math, who could afford that?
The latest numbers by the Census Bureau show there were 47 million-15.8% of Americans without health insurance in 2006. In 2000 this number had been 38.4 million, in 2005 the number was 44.8 million people-15.3%, so the average annual increase of uninsured people has been 1.4 million each year. Since the year 2000 there has been an increase of 22% in uninsured Americans.
For the last six years the numbers of Citizens without insurance has gone up each year and we don't even know yet the numbers from last year. For all I know it has not gotten better.

We don't even take care of the children. If the parents loose their health coverage, or they can't afford it and they earn too much money for Medicaid the little babes loose their health care as well. In 2005 there were 10.9 % of uninsured children, this rose to 11.7% in 2006. The census also found that children between ages 12 and 17 were more likely to be uninsured then children younger then 12.
More then 21000 people die each year because they have no insurance.
I can not understand, that in this day of age, the 21st century, in the richest nation of this world a statistic like above does not shock, depress or upset Americans enough to revolt.
People should be enraged, be out on the streets protesting this unjust treatment of their fellow citizens. It is time for this to end.

This is a bad reflection on this country.
Come on America, India has better health care then the US.

Health care is a human right!
When will you vote for universal health care?


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