Our nation must rethink health care
Re “GOP leaders scurry for health bill backing” (Page 1A, March 15): Why even talk about insurance? Why don’t we start providing health care as a basic right of our society, like most advanced societies do?
We don’t allow seriously ill people to die in the gutter. We call an ambulance to take them to the emergency room, where treatment is mandated. Once they recover, then we toss them in the gutter to fend for themselves, if they can’t get insurance. Meanwhile, insurance executives make millions of dollars, while making care hard to get. The harder it is to get, the bigger their profits.
I have a patient, a young child newly diagnosed with cancer, who I wanted to refer to UC Davis Medical Center. UC Davis won’t even talk about an appointment until I get prior authorization from her insurance company. If this were your child, would you want to sit around waiting while someone decided that cancer needed immediate treatment?
Richard Buss, M.D., Jackson
Covered California didn’t work well
Our company switched from Covered California to private insurance this year. Same insurer, medical group, doctors and premiums, but deductibles fell from $6,000 to $1,000 per employee.
Covered California could or would not remove an employee’s spouse from coverage, or add the spouse of another employee to the coverage. They cost our business thousands of dollars due to their bungling.
Why should people pay for coverage they will never use? Why can’t we buy insurance from a company from outside the state if it offers better benefits at a lower cost? Why can’t we offer our employees a package that they want, and not one dictated by politicians?
In a competitive market, people buy what they want, whether it’s a car, a home or a business. Why should health insurance be any different?
David Henry, Roseville
Obamacare has improved care
Re “U.S. health care is a mess” (Letters, March 15): Letter writer Charles Hummer states health care and insurance was rarely a problem before Obamacare and illegal immigration.
Did he forget that nearly 45 million Americans had no coverage prior to the Affordable Care Act, and were getting health care at emergency rooms? Others were being denied coverage for pre-existing conditions. The right contends a market-based system will magically make health care available for all. Nothing could be further from the truth. The only real solution is universal health care, the elimination of insurance companies and regulation of drug costs.
Powell Svendsen, Rancho Murieta
College is not merely ‘stuff’
Re “Democrats overpromise more free stuff” (Editorials, March 15): Anyone concerned with the dumbing down of America should be disappointed in The Bee’s editorial referring to the legislative proposal to make college more affordable to people of low-moderate income. The headline scolds Democrats for promising more free stuff. Making college more accessible to ordinary people is not just “more stuff.” It is essential to keeping California’s economy vibrant.
Of course, the issue of cost must be addressed. Consider a recent New York Times piece by David Leonhardt, who writes that public universities, especially the CSU, are among those that have served as engines of social change and upward mobility.
Every retired CSU teacher (I am among them) proudly recalls students who were the first in their families to attend college. To enable access to college is not more free stuff. Leveling the playing field for college entry to all who desire and can gain from it is the stuff of which actual progress and wealth are produced. Of course, it will cost money, and there are other emergent demands on the public fisc. Still, we now know benefits outweigh the costs.
Alan D. Wade, Sacramento
De León should back off
Re “De León fights Trump, stands up for immigrants” (Marcos Breton, March 15): Senate President Pro Tem Kevin de León wants legislation that will prohibit law enforcement, schools and essentially all government agencies in California from assisting any other agency in the deportation of persons who are in this country illegally. The California Penal Code defines a criminal conspiracy as two or more people conspiring to commit a crime. Won’t this legislation make criminal conspirators out of the legislators who enact this law?
Richard Munk, South Lake Tahoe
EXTRA LETTERS ONLINE
Find them at:
HOW TO SUBMIT
Online form (preferred):
Other: Letters, P.O. Box 15779,
Sacramento, CA 95852
150-word limit. Include name, address and phone number. Letters may be edited for clarity, brevity and content.