Millions denied access to dentistry in the UK

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Message 718596 - Posted: 26 Feb 2008, 4:14:48 UTC

I am usually all seriousness and no fun, but I could not resist poking fun at this article on my favorite socialist web site.

We in the states generally poke fun at the UK'ers for having bad teeth. I wonder what things the UK'ers poke fun at us statesiders?

read the article
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Message 718716 - Posted: 26 Feb 2008, 14:06:49 UTC

It's time that we throw out of office all those politicians that feel privatizing everything is in the best interest of the people.
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Message 718917 - Posted: 27 Feb 2008, 2:22:11 UTC

So the goverment kept raising taxes until it drove away a lot of rich British citizens (with their tax money), so now they have to reduce the "free" stuff they can give away.

Lest you think I am bragging, I am sure that after the US elects Obama we will do the same thing. They (our Democratic Party) will start doing free givaways (after taxing the wealthy until our weathly flee also.) Then have to cut back when they don't have the money to pay for it.

There is no such thing as free health care. It will invariably cause shortages. People who think that big goverment is their savior usually learn that it isn't in fairly short order.




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Message 718926 - Posted: 27 Feb 2008, 2:48:09 UTC - in response to Message 718917.  

(after taxing the wealthy until our weathly flee also.)

Let them flee... Our wealthy already store their money offshore and ship their businesses overseas... ;)

(Bye bye... And don't let the door hit ya in the keister on the way out!)
It may not be 1984 but George Orwell sure did see the future . . .
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Message 718942 - Posted: 27 Feb 2008, 3:27:31 UTC

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Message 719209 - Posted: 27 Feb 2008, 20:52:57 UTC

Since we already spend three times more per person in the US for medical care than anyone else, while only 2/3 to 3/4 of the people actually have access to care, finally joining the Western World and viewing healthcare as a Right, not a privelege, can be nothing but a good thing.

Imperfect care beats NONE!

As a University Prof on Disability Retirement, my crippled wife has the best insurance there is in the US; yet she must wait for weeks to see a specialist. Many of her prescriptions are vetoed by the insurance company and a costly appeal must be made. This is rationing in the name of profit for individuals. What a morally dispicable practice.

I wrote the first clinical pharmacy software that would run on a microcomputer in 1984-85. Before that, only large hospitals could computerize their operations. At that time, the "for-profit hospital" was in it's infancy, spurred by the idealogical zeal of the extremist Reactionary Reagan agenda. This agenda moved over 90% of the severely mentally out of "socialist" State hospitals into the prison system.

We (medical professionals and those connected with medical practice) had heated discussions about the positively immoral situation of operating an inherently money losing business (hospitals) for "profit". There are only two ways to make illness profitable; raise prices or reduce care. Now we have both.

The current system is totally insulated from the market forces of capitalism, with third party payers - the recipients of services do not even care to ask about the price! If they had to pay these prices, competiton [as opposed to the current price fixing by a de facto cartel] would have exerted downward price pressure and the obscene profits of hospitals, drug companies, equipment manufacturers, etc. would not be possible.

The "free market" hypocrites argue to protect a rigged system that methodically extorts money from everyone with Government sanction (essentially a private, uncontrolled, un-democratic tax), purportedly under the banner of "choice" and "a free market". What total hogwash!

Only a single-payer, Government controlled, non-profit system can deliver the best care to all for the least cost.

After nearly 20 years of care rationing by private accountants and "consultants", the specter of "Government rationing" and "lengthy delays" will no longer work. The fear campaign of the early 90's would only be describing what we have now!

The longer we put off a single-payer, National Healthcare System the longer we will be making our businesses uncompetitive and hobble enterpreneurs and employers from being able to compete fairly with other advanced Western Nations.

If this is idealogically unpalatible to some, there is always Mexico. Just don't keep trying to make the current Administration's goal of making the US another Mexico a reality!

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Message 719462 - Posted: 28 Feb 2008, 13:51:59 UTC
Last modified: 28 Feb 2008, 14:22:02 UTC

I am a disabled veteran, if you think your wife is getting the short end of it now, you can't imagine what it is like where the goverment is in charge of everything.

Months of waiting for followup care, never seeing the same doctor twice, if you are lucky enough to have a medical univeristy in conjuction with your va hospital you can get seen quicker but usually by a student who will hopefully call someone a little more experienced if needed.

They also have no qualm about switching medicines on you if the lower bid comes from a company that has a medicine that supposedly will do about the same thing to replace something that is effective.

Every year the VA goes hat in hand to congress for money to operate, when there is a public relations nightmare (like Walter Reed) they get extra bucks. When there is not watch out. When the anti-military crowd is in and there is nothing going on like a war they see no reason to spend a lot on it.

Monopoly ownership in the health system in a city drives prices up and the quality of care goes down. Seen it over and over. Single payer sysetems like medicare and medicaid do the same thing - ask anyone that participates in them. Where you have multiple insurers and multiple providers things get done in a timely and cost effective manner.

The true test of this is Lasick eye surgery, (which nobody can buy insurance for) where there are multiple providers the cost is around $700 US. Where there are limited choices the price jumps to over a $1000.

You complain of rationing - and you want to hand this over to the goverment? What happens when the cause of the day affects your ability to obtain healthcare?
- don't give it to smokers they don't deserve it
- don't give it to the obese, self inflicted
- don't give it to diabetics, they don't look after themselves properly
- don't give it to aids patient's, they did it to themselves
- don't give it to the heart patients - they don't eat right

It gets really scary. Need an abortion? - too political we don't do that. Motorized wheel chair? too expensive. Kidney transplant? - sorry Senator so and so got the last one (and believe me he would get it too).

When the goverment has control over your health care, then public policy can really impact - You want to have a real war on drugs? the goverment can require providers to check everyone that comes to a doctors office with a drug test and call the cops if they don't pass it.

The cost of care for one dialysis patient can pay for about 10,000 vaccinations, you might be out of luck if you get a bad kidney infection.

The cost of care for one aids patient will build the "Senator JJ Blowhard Memorial Parking lot" which will bring jobs to a depressed area and get some votes, wonder which will have the higher priority?

Sorry this was so long - slogans about "rights" might sound good, but they are not reflective of the real world.
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Message 719470 - Posted: 28 Feb 2008, 14:25:40 UTC

I confess...I have not and will not read the above.....

It's too painful intellectually to absorb.

We told you so.....all I can say.
Founder of BOINC team Objectivists. Oh the humanity! Rational people crunching data!
I did NOT authorize this belly writing!

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Message 719515 - Posted: 28 Feb 2008, 19:01:54 UTC - in response to Message 719462.  

I am a disabled veteran, if you think your wife is getting the short end of it now, you can't imagine what it is like where the goverment is in charge of everything.

Months of waiting for followup care, never seeing the same doctor twice, if you are lucky enough to have a medical univeristy in conjuction with your va hospital you can get seen quicker but usually by a student who will hopefully call someone a little more experienced if needed.

They also have no qualm about switching medicines on you if the lower bid comes from a company that has a medicine that supposedly will do about the same thing to replace something that is effective.

Every year the VA goes hat in hand to congress for money to operate, when there is a public relations nightmare (like Walter Reed) they get extra bucks. When there is not watch out. When the anti-military crowd is in and there is nothing going on like a war they see no reason to spend a lot on it.

Monopoly ownership in the health system in a city drives prices up and the quality of care goes down. Seen it over and over. Single payer sysetems like medicare and medicaid do the same thing - ask anyone that participates in them. Where you have multiple insurers and multiple providers things get done in a timely and cost effective manner.

The true test of this is Lasick eye surgery, (which nobody can buy insurance for) where there are multiple providers the cost is around $700 US. Where there are limited choices the price jumps to over a $1000.

You complain of rationing - and you want to hand this over to the goverment? What happens when the cause of the day affects your ability to obtain healthcare?
- don't give it to smokers they don't deserve it
- don't give it to the obese, self inflicted
- don't give it to diabetics, they don't look after themselves properly
- don't give it to aids patient's, they did it to themselves
- don't give it to the heart patients - they don't eat right

It gets really scary. Need an abortion? - too political we don't do that. Motorized wheel chair? too expensive. Kidney transplant? - sorry Senator so and so got the last one (and believe me he would get it too).

When the goverment has control over your health care, then public policy can really impact - You want to have a real war on drugs? the goverment can require providers to check everyone that comes to a doctors office with a drug test and call the cops if they don't pass it.

The cost of care for one dialysis patient can pay for about 10,000 vaccinations, you might be out of luck if you get a bad kidney infection.

The cost of care for one aids patient will build the "Senator JJ Blowhard Memorial Parking lot" which will bring jobs to a depressed area and get some votes, wonder which will have the higher priority?

Sorry this was so long - slogans about "rights" might sound good, but they are not reflective of the real world.

I take it you are talking of your experience of the American healthcare system?
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Message 719587 - Posted: 28 Feb 2008, 20:57:57 UTC

Yes, experience as a beneficiary of it and 25 years of working in it.

There is a lot that could be done better, but as messy as it is, it knocks the socks off of pretty much anywhere else in the world regardless of the high (unearned) praise the socialist systems do.

French patients dying do to insufficient air conditioning, British patients circling the hospital in a ambulance (google "ambulance stacking"), Canada shutting down intensive care units (they are too costly), and last year there was a story regarding an LA public hospital (provides free health care)where a patient died because everyone was too busy - while the family fratically calls 911 to have an ambulance come and pick her up from an emergency room to take her somewhere to save her. The somewhat confused 911 operator can't understand if she is in the emergency room how she can't be receiving treatment!


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Message 719638 - Posted: 28 Feb 2008, 22:39:10 UTC - in response to Message 719515.  


I take it you are talking of your experience of the American healthcare system?


No offense Tom, I understand what you're going through, however in response to Es99...Tom is not referring to the private American health care system, but rather the government controlled health care system.

Why do you think so many of us over here are opposed to "equal" coverage rather than the best my money can buy?

I'm not saying it's right, I'm not saying it's fair...I'm saying I know which one I prefer.


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Message 719665 - Posted: 29 Feb 2008, 0:14:47 UTC

To es99,

The experiance I gripe about is "Free". However, I also have the choice and do purchase private health insurance.

The difference is night and day, the one I pay for provides me a choice of Doctors to which I pay a small copay per visit, I am treated with respect and in the case of one serious emergency was met at the Hospital by my Doctor.

My rants concern the "free" insurance that I am entitled to. There is a movement to remove the private insurance system and replace it with a "free" system for everyone. I try to warn those that think such a system would be wonderful that there are many problems with free health care.

The first problem is everyones taxes would go up the amount of what I pay for my private insurance or higher and wouldn't provide anywhere near the level of service. My other objections you can read in my previous posts.




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Message 719680 - Posted: 29 Feb 2008, 1:41:00 UTC

A couple of facts.

An emergency cannot deny care to anyone who walks in whether they can pay or not. The payment for those that cannot pay comes out of our tax dollars.

Emergency room medicine is far more expensive than anything that a clinic does.

What I am arguing for is access to normal medicine for everyone. Certainly, if your private insurance is better, use that. Just have basic healthcare for all that is not provided by the emergency room. This actually could reduce overall costs. It would should remove a major burden and cost from the emergency rooms and spend some of that savings on better basic health care. I am not necessarily advocating for the government to take over all healthcare, but it may need to be the payer of last resort (it already is through unpaid emergency room services).

Why is US healthcare the most expensive in the world per capita, and not even in the top dozen countries in quality of healthcare?

An aside. I have had health insurance that was provided by an employer that was truly terrible. We had to fight for just about every penny. The mantra in the health insurance industry is "We are not denying care, just payment." Unfortunately, denying payment is, in many circumstances, denying care.

Yea, there are going to be horror stories in any healthcare system where someone falls through the cracks.




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Message 719739 - Posted: 29 Feb 2008, 4:41:55 UTC

A trip to a Doc in the Box is about $50.00 in this area, I am sure higher in others. Usually they are open from before normal business hours to 7 to 9 at night. Why do people go to an emergency room for a sore throat? I don't know but I have seen it done. Baby has a fever, etc. 90% of these don't require treatment but you can't tell folks quit wasting resources because of the 10% that do need something done quickly.

why would someone have a cell phone service for 100, cable for another 100 and the latest model car with a payment of $300 instead of buying health insurance?

May be it's a really nice phone with a camera in it. And pay channels are included in the cable bill, and the old car was really shabby. I can't make their choices for them. It's nice to be free to make the choices you want to.

Do I want the goverment to mandate they buy it? It would reduce the costs of those that already have it - spreading the risk over more folks will do that.

Sadly by the time they figure out they can't get by without it, it's due to some medical problem that has made them uninsurable (can't buy fire insurance when you house is already on fire).

We mandate seat belts, baby car seats (in my state until they are old enough to buy beer), motorcycle helmets etc. It would be simple enough to mandate the purchase of health insurance also. However the thought of mandating people to do this or that has a very slippery slope to it. I have a fear that one day we will all be nanny stated to the 1984 that the libs keep telling me I am trying to impose on them.




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Message 719768 - Posted: 29 Feb 2008, 7:35:58 UTC
Last modified: 29 Feb 2008, 7:37:50 UTC

The public health care system here in Canada is being slowly dismantled behind the backs of Canadians by both the Conservative and Liberal Governments on both the Federal and Provincial level in favour of privatized health care. Publicly, they support the public health care system and spout off about all the millions of dollars they are investing into the system to fix the waiting times, etc. etc. According to my wife who works in the medical field, these millions don’t seem to go where they’re needed. Instead the corporate offices are remodeled, nice pay hikes for the big boys and more pencil pushers while the medical staff gets squeezed more and more.

The name of the game is to get the public so feed up with the public health care system that they will opt for privatized health care without a whimper. I would guess the same Neo-Con tactics are being used in other countries like Britain and elsewhere to privatize public heath care. From a PBS program I saw a while back this tactic also seems to apply to the VA Hospitals in the US.

Recently, the Ontario Provincial Government just finished building a huge hospital just north of here in Brampton, ON. The entire complex was financed by private industry and is being leased to the Government on a 40 year lease. The hospital is already a disaster with the entire city’s population furious over the lack of services and available bed spaces. My wife who was there for a couple of days, says that she wouldn’t bring a dog to that hospital for medical care. It seems the Neo-Cons really screwed up on this one. But then again, they will blame it on the fact that it’s still under public health care.
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Message 719824 - Posted: 29 Feb 2008, 11:41:35 UTC - in response to Message 719768.  

But then again, they will blame it on the fact that it’s still under public health care.


Clearly the facts speak for themselves...


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Message 720072 - Posted: 29 Feb 2008, 22:50:35 UTC
Last modified: 29 Feb 2008, 22:55:35 UTC

Neocons are to blame?

Actually naivety is the more likely culprit.

If you guys were smart you would have voted for free haircuts and drycleaning and tried that for ten years before you handed your healthcare to the lowest contract bidder/can't be fired for life bureaucrat.

In fact that is what we should try here in the US before we are in the same boat as you.
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Message 720889 - Posted: 2 Mar 2008, 17:06:18 UTC
Last modified: 2 Mar 2008, 17:08:37 UTC

Neocons are to blame? Actually naivety is the more likely culprit.


Clearly the facts speak for themselves...


Here’s a news article that was on the news last night that may be of interest to both of you regarding your beloved privatized health care system.

Las Vegas clinic accused of reusing syringes

If you Google the issue you will find the practice is wide spread and has been on going for years.

Syringe Reuse Transmits Infection

This is knowingly infecting patients with deadly diseases by Neo-cons for the sake of squeezing that last buck out of the system. Put in another way, it’s premeditated murder for profit. Ignorance is no excuse.
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Message 720892 - Posted: 2 Mar 2008, 17:08:47 UTC - in response to Message 718596.  

I am usually all seriousness and no fun, but I could not resist poking fun at this article on my favorite socialist web site.

We in the states generally poke fun at the UK'ers for having bad teeth. I wonder what things the UK'ers poke fun at us statesiders?

read the article



Well, some of the things that are a source of 'amusement' in the UK, regarding the US, are, the seemingly large number of obese people, 'plastic' surgery and the 'litigation culture'. Unfortunately, they are all becoming more popular here, too!

My own observations on this subject may not be totally neutral, but it may impart some idea of why these things are happening - it may also make you question the 'free market'.

Firstly, I had bad teeth.... some started falling out some time after undergoing Chemo-therapy and Radio-therapy to treat a btain tumour. I think that some hair falling out, a big reduction in weight and loosing some teeth, was a pretty good trade - far better than the alternative. It cost me nothing, to be treated for the brain tumour and also the secondary 'growth' towards the top of the Spinal Column. When it came to 'repairing some of the damage' of the treatment, the bill was hundreds of pounds (100's of £). This was in spite of me having paid National Insurance since the age of 19; I was 42 at the time. In the UK, those in work, pay, both tax and National Insurance. National Insurance is around 8% of your gross pay and is supposed to fund Health-care for everyone, pensions and benefits for the elderly, disabled and the unemployed. Well, that was the theory.

I'm afraid that as far as the dentists are concerned, the majority of them decided to leave the NHS system due to funding issues (they felt they could make more money) and make enough money to buy a Porsche (yuck) rather than a Saab. Whether I used the service or not, I had still paid these same dentists, before they got greedy. Ironically, at the moment, we have GPs (General Practitioners - your local doctor) being paid, apparently, on average, over £100,000 per year - all via the NHS and working less hours than 5 years ago! The dentists could have been similarly funded, if there were more funds in the system.

The real rot had set in (pun intended), when Margaret Thatcher started selling off all the Nationalised companies. Electricity generation and supply, gas/oil supply and exploration, coal, steel, water supply, communications (BT), transport (BA, British Rail etc) and, not forgetting companies like Rolls-Royce (the RB211 development was their crucifix), all gone. All the profits/income that those companies made, were now heading towards 'Investors' pockets, rather than adding to the income of the Treasury. All aspects of what was left of various services to National institutions, had to be tendered for, by private companies to get the "best value", which meant, that seemingly simple things like hospital cleaning were now done by companies who had to make a profit! Inevitably, standards have fallen a long way short of the mark. One is now as likely to die from the results of poor hospital cleanliness as the surgery!

In recent years, my mother has often remarked on the comments I made when Thatcher was elected - "that woman is evil". Even as a once staunch Conservative voter, she has said that, "that woman has done more damage to this country than Hitler"! Oddly enough, I never liked Tony Blair, either, but the late John Smith MP had made the Labour Party, electable and after his untimely death we ended up with Tony Blair as leader of the Labour Party. His election, proved to be more of the same.

Is greed good? Would the citizens/government of the US allow 'strategic supplies' (water, gas, oil and electricity) to be under the control of foreign companies? I don't think so. Some things have no price, and the most precious asset of any nation are it's people - all governments need to realise that.

Well, thats my rant for the year. Happy 'crunching'.



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Message 721364 - Posted: 3 Mar 2008, 11:16:11 UTC - in response to Message 720889.  

Neocons are to blame? Actually naivety is the more likely culprit.


Clearly the facts speak for themselves...


Here’s a news article that was on the news last night that may be of interest to both of you regarding your beloved privatized health care system.

Las Vegas clinic accused of reusing syringes

If you Google the issue you will find the practice is wide spread and has been on going for years.

Syringe Reuse Transmits Infection

This is knowingly infecting patients with deadly diseases by Neo-cons for the sake of squeezing that last buck out of the system. Put in another way, it’s premeditated murder for profit. Ignorance is no excuse.


Some of us already know the government cuts corners...perhaps you should learn the difference between private institutions and publicly funded clinics.

The Southern Nevada Health District is: funded roughly one-third from federal grants, one-third from fees and one-third from local taxes.

http://www.southernnevadahealthdistrict.org/general_information.htm



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