Will local care providers know how to work with individuals and families who lack necessary coverage but have been
told they’re ‘entitled’ to proper care?
The thing about saying the United States of America is the greatest country on the planet, or words to that effect, is that you have to qualify it. You can't just claim one country is simply the best across the board; there are simply too many factors to consider.
We've heard how the United States ranks against other industrialized nations in education, life expectancy and other areas that are able to be compared and show that the U.S. is not the best, but it's health care where the United States might claim to have the best of the best by providing the best care you can find anywhere, but only certain people are able to receive that care. That's what sets the U.S. apart from its industrialized counterparts across the globe. Our health care system and pharmaceutical industry are too often motivated by profit. So excuse the cynics out there who raise an eyebrow when the president of this nation stands in the White House Rose Garden surrounded by his biggest fans and says certain things.
President Donald Trump declared a national emergency the other day in that Rose Garden speech. In making that announcement, he said that Americans will get the care they need regarding COVID-19/coronavirus, and the care they are "entitled" to.
Really, Mr. President...”entitled” to? So, great insurance coverage, so-so insurance coverage, inadequate insurance coverage, or no insurance coverage at all, if people need care related to coronavirus, they're going to get it because they're entitled to it?
Sorry, but the Rose Garden is a long way from the local hospital or clinic. Can't you just picture a sick individual or a mother with a sick elderly parent or sick child seeking care they're "entitled" to at a local health care provider, only to be told by the local provider that they're still waiting to find out just what this national emergency declaration is all about and what it really means? They might get amazing care, but who in the end will be stuck with the huge bill?
A U.S. senator last week grilled the head of the Centers for Disease Control and peppered him with numbers until she got him to say that people, insured or not, will get free coronavirus testing if it's determined that they need it. Really, that sounds great...but see the last sentence of the previous paragraph.
Hopefully, again, hopefully, all of this unprecedented reaction ends up being an overreaction. A global pandemic and the response of our nation’s leaders shouldn’t become a partisan football, but here we are. Just consider the reasons spurring the writing of this very editorial. But if the intense degree of this reaction works and slows the spread and decreases the coronavirus impact on the U.S., how can you call it an overreaction? Maybe it will end up being just what we needed to do. Problem is, if it works, the partisan political effort to seek credit with the November 2020 election on the horizon might possibly outpace the efforts we’re seeing now to battle the virus’ spread.
If the experts are right, and we need to trust their words far more than the president’s claims, then this is going to get significantly worse before it shows any sign of getting better. It could get downright crazy for many months.
And in that event, all Americans are going to need to be treated and cared for equally. Trouble is, that’s not how America rolls.