Insuring a Nation | Teen Ink

Insuring a Nation

February 14, 2011
By AlexisB SILVER, Milner, Georgia
AlexisB SILVER, Milner, Georgia
9 articles 2 photos 10 comments

Favorite Quote:
A synonym is a word you use when you can\\\'t spell the other one.

Tommy Smith is 7 years old. Tommy is just like any other 7 year old boy: he likes to play baseball, he’d rather eat an extra cookie than a single bite of broccoli, and he watches cartoons on Saturday morning while wearing Ninja Turtle pajamas. Tommy also has brain cancer. Because of this, Tommy’s parents cannot get health care for their son. Without health insurance, the chances of Tommy receiving adequate medical care for his condition are very slim. Tommy is excited for his eighth birthday, which he may never see.

Even though Tommy Smith is fictional, his situation is all too real for over 50 million Americans all across the country who do not have health insurance. They come from every economic and cultural background, every age group, and every state of well-being. The 2009 health care law, dubbed “Obamacare,” is primed to remedy this situation and provide the 16.7% of citizens who cannot afford it or who have been denied coverage with health insurance.

In the capitalist market, health care services are doled out to the “highest bidder.” Not only is health insurance itself reserved for only those who are at least moderately wealthy, but not even every insured patient is privy to the same treatment and care.

Take seniors for instance. Medicine is expensive, and each year, after their insurance pays $2,840 of their prescription costs, the elderly are left on their own to pay $1,710 out of their own pocket, at which point the vicious cycle begin all over again. Under the new health care plan, this “doughnut hole” will shrink each year until it is completely eliminated in 2020.

Poor and minority patients are also a concern. In addition to patients with pre-existing conditions like little Tommy Smith, members of minorities are often discriminated against when attempting to get health care, sometimes being denied coverage completely. Obamacare outlaws discrimination against any group of people. In addition, the plan requires medical professionals to train in ways to enhance their knowledge about and treatment of specific ethnic groups.

And what about children like Tommy? Of the 50 million uninsured patients, 10 million are children. Under Obamacare children of struggling parents will also be guaranteed more-than-adequate health care coverage. As an extra bonus, all children, whether dependent or not, will be able to remain on their parents’ insurance until they are 26, leading to healthier college students who can put the money they would have paid on health insurance costs toward their college tuitions.

The other benefits of Obamacare are countless. In the doctor’s office, patients will be provided with teams of medical staff (primary care doctors, specialists, nurse practitioners) who will work together to on all aspects of each patient’s health. This means each of a patient’s doctors will know about all of his or her conditions and what medicines he or she has been prescribed by another doctor, diffusing potentially dangerous mixings of prescriptions and treatments. These teams of doctors, as well as their patients, will also now be privy to digital medical records which the patient will even be able to access from their home computer. Medical personnel will also receive bonuses for using preventative techniques, instead of getting that extra cash for what they must do after a patient is already ill.

Opponents of the healthcare law cite it as only another addition to the nation’s budget deficit. However, data from the CBO refutes these claims, showing that, though the federal government will be developing new community medical facilities and providing the economically disadvantaged with full health insurance coverage, the project will save the country about $8 billion over the next two years alone.

So remember your health. Remember the health of your family. Remember the health of your neighbors, coworkers, and hairdresser. Remember the health of Tommy Smith. By supporting Obamacare you’ll not only be insuring the well-being of these people, you’ll be insuring a nation.

The author's comments:
There are many opponents of new healthcare plan (Obamacare.) I hope that this piece will remove some of their bias if not sway them completely in its favor. It is a matter of life and death for so many people that this law gain back the support it originally had.

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This article has 4 comments.

on Feb. 21 2011 at 9:09 pm
writer-in-pearls GOLD, San Diego, California
10 articles 0 photos 42 comments
 I completely agree. What people opposed to health care aren't realizing is that the uninsured don't get regular health care, they end up needing surgery in the ER and tax payers pay for it anyway. Very well written, but I'd replace "Tommy" with a real case

on Feb. 21 2011 at 10:48 am
xJuneBugx BRONZE, Plymouth, Massachusetts
1 article 0 photos 14 comments
Excuse me, but what exactly is our "bias"?

on Feb. 21 2011 at 10:05 am
K.a.t.h.l.e.e.n. SILVER, Plymouth, Massachusetts
6 articles 0 photos 58 comments

Favorite Quote:
See everything, Overlook a lot, Correct a little.

NO. Obamacare will not save us money. Here are some facts about Obamacare you may be interested in: taxpayers will be paying for abortions, which violates federal law, it will cost over $940 billion over the next 10 years, a 40% tax on healthcare providers, for couples making over $250,000 or anyone making $200,000 each year will be taxed 3.8% because they are wealthy, if you fail to purchase Obamacare, you will be fined $695 or 2.5% of your income, which ever is higher. Government payments to Medicare Advantage will be reduced by $132 billion in the next 10 years. Medicare Part A (hospital insurance), tax will be increased from 0.9% to 2.35%. Medical device manufacturers will be requiered to pay a 2.9% excise tax beginning in January 2013! For all you tanners out there: health care reform will require you to pay a 10% tax each time you go to a tanning salon.

The facts and figures above have been taken from CNN and New York Times media outlets. 

These are only a few examples of why healthcare reform will only damage America!

Obamacare wins and the pain begins.

on Feb. 21 2011 at 12:34 am
Treefiddy BRONZE, Tarzana, California
1 article 0 photos 158 comments
Thomas Jefferson would be proud if he saw us today surrendering our liberty and property to the federal establishment for the promise of free goodies robbed from our fellow countryman. How about instead of surrendering more our liberty and our property to the government, we should liberate the markets, enabling people to lead productive lifestyles without the forceful hand of government to extend its hands into our pockets. The government has squandered the wealth of this nation through unscrupulous taxation, regulation, and spending, and the response to plunder at the hands of the government is always more government. Plunder begets plunder; lawlessness begets lawlessness.