Sunday, July 19, 2009

Sen. Ted Kennedy on universal health care

In a Newsweek article, Sen. Kennedy writes about universal health care, "the cause of my life".

He writes about his experiences when his son Teddy had cancer as a child and how other parents who did not have resources plead with doctors:

What chance does my child have if I can only afford half of the prescribed treatments? Or two thirds? I've sold everything. I've mortgaged as much as possible. No parent should suffer that torment. Not in this country. Not in the richest country in the world.

That experience with Teddy made it clear to me, as never before, that health care must be affordable and available for every mother or father who hears a sick child cry in the night and worries about the deductibles and copays if they go to the doctor. But that was just one medical crisis. My family, like every other, has faced many—at every stage of life. I think of my parents and the medical care they needed after their strokes. I think of my son Patrick, who suffered serious asthma as a child and sometimes had to be rushed to the hospital for treatment. (For this reason, we had no dogs in the house when Patrick was young.) I think of my daughter, Kara, diagnosed with lung cancer in 2002. Few doctors were willing to try an operation. One did—and after that surgery and arduous rounds of chemotherapy and radiation, she's alive and healthy today. My family has had the care it needed. Other families have not, simply because they could not afford it.


Sen. Kennedy writes about the history of efforts toward universal health care by others, including Truman, Teddy Roosevelt and the Clinton administration. He notes how John Kennedy supported Medicare. Sen. Kennedy also notes that in the 1970's he introduced a bill for health care that was lost in the aftermath of the Watergate scandal in 1974. (A timeline of his own efforts, including legislation he has supported, can be found here.) He explains how, over his long career, he predicted that businesses would eventually join on in realizing changes were necessary and outlines the current situation and what changes are necessary.

You can read the rest of the piece here.

1 comment:

Brittanicus said...

It is a shame that some Americans are so gullible, to the outlandish propaganda and lies spat in the newspapers, television and radio about Obama’s health care agenda. They have demonized the British, Canadian and other worthy plans. Hidden under a disguise cover, these radical entities are determined to keep the special interest organizations in absolute power. Comprising of the money-draining profitable insurance companies and their rich stockholders. They don't want any changes to the broken system of medical care, because it will hurt the status quo. I was born in England, in the county of Sussex and until the inception of the European Union and the European Parliament dictating to Britain. That they must accept millions of foreign workers, the nations medical system was exemplary. I never had to wonder if I would have to file bankruptcy, to pay my medical bills, or listen to the incessant ring of debt collectors on the phone.


On several occasions I ended up in the cottage hospital and their was never a cost applied to it, never a ream of paperwork. No doctor, no hospital or specialist ask me for my Social Security number, drivers license or if I was covered by a predatory for-profit insurer. Today the British Isles is being submerged under a barrage of legal and illegal immigrants, who have never paid into the system, have caused some rationing. Prior to the importation of foreign labor my trips to doctor, to hospital, the eye or a dentist was paid from my taxation. Unless we pass a national health care agenda, Americans will never know what it's like to breeze through their lives, without worrying about paying for health care? Tell your Senators and Congressman you want an alternative to the--GET RICH-- insurance companies, before a Universal health care is killed. 202-224-312 REMEMBER THE INVESTORS AND STOCKHOLDERS DON'T WANT THEIR PIECE OF THE $$$TRILLION$$$ DOLLAR PIE DISTURBED. EVEN SOME POLITICIANS HAVE THEIR DIRTY FINGERS IN THE PIE?
AS AN ALTERNATIVE TO THE PRIVATE HEALTH CARE, A GOVERNMENT SINGLE PAYER SYSTEM WILL ASSIST IN REVITALIZING THE WILTING US ECONOMY.