Daily Independent (Ashland, KY)

April 16, 2013

In Your View

The Independent

ASHLAND — Health care needs one-payer system

The individual is responsible for his or her own well-being, and rightfully so. Take health care for example, now unaffordable for the majority of Americans and over-priced for all.

Just as in the case of our soaring national debt, the soaring cost of health care is forcing the issue. These problems, obvious for decades, now reaching critical mass, are monuments to the incompetence of our governments. Patchwork half-measures are not the answer. They merely complicate the situation, and this includes the Affordable Care Act.

Regardless of all the propaganda to the contrary, governments, employers and insurance companies do not pay your medical bills. All three groups had their motives for getting into the health care game. Politicians were interested in making themselves indispensable and in taking care of their establishment buddies.  Employers were simply protecting their vulnerable backsides and bottom lines. Insurance companies wanted their percentage of the take.

Now that it is evident the system is failing, all three groups are writhing and wiggling. Isn’t this a pitiful state of affairs? How are you going to pay for health care?

Let’s create a state-of-the-art “single-payer” health care system with these characteristics: every American citizen included, free choice of medical provider, negotiated prices for services, negotiated prices for pharmaceuticals, limits on court-awarded damages, tiered rate structures from basic preventive care, built-in incentives to lower costs, monetary rewards for staying healthy, with the individual paying at the rate proportional to the goods and services he or she requests and receives above the basic care-minimum rate everyone pays.

Combine Medicare, Medicaid and Affordable Care Act into a single-payer system, getting rid of the impractical employer-based health care debacle and eliminating the insurance industry participation that provides no health care.

Michael Myers, Ashland

Shoes valuable in severe storms

Spring has returned and with it the increased possibility of severe storms.

A couple of years ago, during a TV interview, the reporter asked an emergency room doctor what types of injuries he sees most often. The doctor looked into the camera, and raised his voice and stated, “People, when bad weather is forecast, put on your shoes.”

The doctor went on to say exposed nails, shattered glass, splintered wood and twisted metal cause horrific foot injuries as people try to climb out of the wreckage of collapsed buildings or search for loved ones, often in the darkness and rain.

Don’t wait until they are telling you to take cover. Get the safety items together ahead of time.

It might also be a good idea to have the children put on their bike helmets and place small animals in their carriers.

Let’s all hope for a safe and peaceful year.

Lucia Beeler, Cecilia

Hospice seeks more volunteers

Community Hospice will have a volunteer orientation from 10 a.m. t0 4 p.m. May 14 through 16 at its office at 1480 Carter Ave. in Ashland.

Community Hospice continues to grow in the surrounding communities and can use your support! If you would like to provide a steady source of comfort and strength to patients and families in their time of need, please come to our volunteer orientation. Community Hospice volunteers truly make a difference in these individuals’ lives.

Reserve your seat today by calling (800) 926-6184 or (606) 329-1890

LuAnn Vance, director of volunteer services, Community Hospice, Ashland