Tuesday, 15 September 2009

The Morality of Health Care Reform: Competing Voices

May_30_Health_Care_Rally_NP (547)Image by seiuhealthcare775nw via Flickr
The following has been clipped from The Bilerico Project Report posted 14 September 2009.


During Take Back America 2008, I spent part of a day running around with a camera and a microphone asking people which issue was most important to them in the upcoming election. Just when I thought I was done, the camera turned to me and I was faced with the same question.

My answer came quickly and easily: health care reform. When I explained why, the argument that came out of my mouth was based more in morality than economics.
“In a country as wealthy as this one,” I said, “It’s criminal that a single child lacks coverage and does without health care.” I was thinking of my own two kids -- particularly Dylan, who was less than a year old, and had regular well-baby checkups. But I was also thinking about children like Deamonte Driver, whose death from complications due to lack of access to dental care and a resulting abscessed tooth made headlines a couple of years ago.

It wasn’t because the cost of providing coverage and care to children was less than the cost of not doing so. (Though an $80 tooth extraction would have spared Deamonte the need for brain surgery and $250,000 worth of medical care because of the spreading infection.) It was because of a core belief that, as a country, we have moral imperative to make sure everyone has access to quality health care.

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