Texas healthcare system withering under Gov. Perry

  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    Sep 09, 2011 7:26 PM GMT
    I would like Texans to comment on this.

    http://www.latimes.com/news/nationworld/nation/la-na-perry-healthcare-20110908,0,5504019.story
    When Texas went to court last year to block President Obama's healthcare overhaul, Gov. Rick Perry pledged to do everything in his power to "protect our families, taxpayers and medical providers." Texas, he said, could manage its own healthcare.

    But in the 11 years the Republican presidential hopeful has been in office, working Texans increasingly have been priced out of private healthcare while the state's safety net has withered, leaving millions of state residents without medical care.

    "Texas just hasn't proven it can run a health system," said Dr. C. Bruce Malone III, an orthopedic surgeon and president of the historically conservative Texas Medical Assn.
    ...
    "The question seems to be how little can we fund and still have a system," said Dr. Jane Rider, a past president of the Texas Pediatric Society. "I always thought they would wake up and see, if nothing else, they need a healthy, educated workforce.... Instead, it seems like we're leading the way into a downward spiral."
  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    Sep 09, 2011 8:29 PM GMT
    Texas has the highest number of residents without health insurance in the nation. And the problem keeps worsening. It is becoming a classic case of the have vs. the have nots. The wealthy receive access to excellent health care providers and services, while the poor do without or utilize emergency rooms as primary care providers. In rural areas, people rely on veterinarians to give health care advice and purchase medications. Due to budget cuts, many indigent health care programs and medicaid services are being eliminated. Some funds earmarked to fund medicaid were diverted to help balance the state's budget deficit.

    Health care reform is a god send for the state of Texas. But because it was proposed by Obama (and Texas is a blood Red state), people oppose it because they don't completely understand it. Texans have been brainwashed by the Republican party to believe HCR reform will only raise taxes and make their problems worse. You can't blame them. You can't expect the general population in Texas to think for itself if education in Texas ranks near the bottom nationally.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    Sep 09, 2011 10:38 PM GMT
    "Texas has the highest number of residents without health insurance in the nation."

    Gee, I wonder why!!!!
  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    Sep 09, 2011 11:25 PM GMT
    southbeach1500 said
    mocktwinkie said"Texas has the highest number of residents without health insurance in the nation."

    Gee, I wonder why!!!!


    Why? It couldn't be because it has the highest number of illegal aliens, could it????????????


    Shhh NO WAY. Or how about the now-legal-because-they-were-born-just-over-the-border-but-really-never-should-have-been-part-of-the-statistic-as-a-resident-in-the-first-place.

    But it sounds so much more dramatic when someone leaves it at an ambiguous "the highest number of residents without insurance" though.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    Sep 09, 2011 11:28 PM GMT
    southbeach1500 said
    mocktwinkie said"Texas has the highest number of residents without health insurance in the nation."

    Gee, I wonder why!!!!


    Why? It couldn't be because it has the highest number of illegal aliens, could it????????????
    You'll have to ask perry on that one.. it IS his problem isnt it? Guess the radical right isnt gonna go with Perry.. he likes his illegal immigrants.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    Sep 10, 2011 12:48 AM GMT
    OPWhile some of those seeking care are undocumented immigrants, just a sixth of the uninsured in Texas are in the state illegally, according to the nonprofit Center for Public Policy Priorities. "The reality is that is not the big number," said Republican state Rep. John Zerwas.
  • Menergy_1

    Posts: 737

    Sep 10, 2011 1:36 AM GMT
    And then there's the issue hunger in TX (which leads in many cases to medical and health care issues):

    Hunger Rate Spikes in Rick Perry's Texas, Even as National Rate Holds Steady
    Marie Diamond, ThinkProgress: "A new report by the U.S. Department of Agriculture shows that household hunger remained steady from 2009 to 2010, even though almost 49 million people - a near record number - were affected by food insecurity. Some states even saw their hunger rates decline. But one glaring exception was the state of Texas, which has been hailed by Gov. Rick Perry (R) as a model for the rest of the nation during these tough economic times."
    Read the Article


    Hunger Rate Spikes in Rick Perry’s Texas, Even as National Rate Holds Steady
    Friday 9 September 2011
    by: Marie Diamond, ThinkProgress | Report
    A new report by the U.S. Department of Agriculture shows that household hunger remained steady from 2009 to 2010, even though almost 49 million people — a near record number — were affected by food insecurity. Some states even saw their hunger rates decline.

    But one glaring exception was the state of Texas, which has been hailed by Gov. Rick Perry (R) as a model for the rest of the nation during these tough economic times:

    Built on a measure called “food insecurity,” the study was based on a survey of 45,000 households during the 2010 census, and found 14.5 percent of households had difficulty meeting their food needs — a statistic that was “essentially unchanged” from 2009, according to the agency. Last year saw a decline in the proportion of households with “severe” food insecurity across the country, too.

    In Texas, however, the three-year average food insecurity rate did increase, from 17.4 percent in 2007-2009 to the current rate of 18.8 percent in 2008-2010, according to the Austin-based Center for Public Policy Priorities.

    Mississippi is the only state with a worse food insecurity rate than Texas. The number of people on food stamps in Texas rose 2.8 percent between 2009 and 2010, and is now a staggering 15.6 percent of the state’s population. The increase was one of the highest in the nation.

    Federal officials credit an increase in government food aid for keeping national hunger rates steady. Programs like the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) have grown to meet increased demand during the recession. However, U.S. Agriculture Undersecretary Kevin Concannon notes that Texas hasn’t done as well as other large states like Florida that were hit much harder by the downturn, in part because Texas’ food stamp eligibility determination program has been a mess, “with a backlog of nearly 60,000 unprocessed applications after ‘a very inefficient and ineffective privatization scheme.’”

    Ironically, Perry has recently been highly critical of the very food stamp program that would have helped his state’s poorest residents get enough to eat. At a campaign stop last month, Perry called the size of the food stamp program a “testament to widespread misery” — instead of an essential aid that’s keeping Texan families alive.

    Austin Food Bank’s John Turner says it’s no coincidence that Texas and Mississippi also lead the country in low-wage jobs. For many hard-working Texans, minimum wage jobs just don’t pay enough to stave off hunger. “The vast majority of the 48,000 central Texans this food bank serves every week are employed, hard-working men and women who are just not earning a living wage,” he writes.

    Originally published on ThinkProgress
  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    Sep 10, 2011 3:32 AM GMT
    q1w2e3 said
    OPWhile some of those seeking care are undocumented immigrants, just a sixth of the uninsured in Texas are in the state illegally, according to the nonprofit Center for Public Policy Priorities. "The reality is that is not the big number," said Republican state Rep. John Zerwas.


    The problem is not the illegals themselves, it is their "legal" offspring that is the big burden and the actual amount is almost impossible to determine. The strain on the school districts, etc etc.
  • Menergy_1

    Posts: 737

    Sep 10, 2011 1:47 PM GMT
    mocktwinkie said
    q1w2e3 said
    OPWhile some of those seeking care are undocumented immigrants, just a sixth of the uninsured in Texas are in the state illegally, according to the nonprofit Center for Public Policy Priorities. "The reality is that is not the big number," said Republican state Rep. John Zerwas.


    The problem is not the illegals themselves, it is their "legal" offspring that is the big burden and the actual amount is almost impossible to determine. The strain on the school districts, etc etc.



    I guess it's time for another U.S. constitutional amendment, then.....to correct that pesky original provision for qualifying as citizens just because they're born in the USA. And Perry's slashing education funding isn't a strain on the schools, either......icon_rolleyes.gif.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    Sep 10, 2011 1:56 PM GMT
    Menergy_1 said
    mocktwinkie said
    q1w2e3 said
    OPWhile some of those seeking care are undocumented immigrants, just a sixth of the uninsured in Texas are in the state illegally, according to the nonprofit Center for Public Policy Priorities. "The reality is that is not the big number," said Republican state Rep. John Zerwas.


    The problem is not the illegals themselves, it is their "legal" offspring that is the big burden and the actual amount is almost impossible to determine. The strain on the school districts, etc etc.



    I guess it's time for another U.S. constitutional amendment, then.....to correct that pesky original provision for qualifying as citizens just because they're born in the USA. And Perry's slashing education funding isn't a strain on the schools, either......icon_rolleyes.gif.


    Immigration is probably one of the best drivers for economic growth - particularly when it's legal allowing for better integration. What you do recognize however is that Texas also faces challenges that are somewhat unique. But at the same time, what's also remarkable is that their education system remains one of the better ones despite the fact they spend nowhere near what "blue" states spend.

    What I don't find surprising though is that while there are those only too willing to pin Texas's shortcomings on Perry, he is unwilling to give any credit to him for their economy - which in the end is possibly one of the best forms of insurance - meaning that people are more able to pay for healthcare or insurance on their own and/or there are more private/charitable services available.

    The question re: Texas's healthcare system is also how it compares to neighboring states and also states further away.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    Sep 10, 2011 2:21 PM GMT
    http://www.texmed.org/template.aspx?id=5517Texas workers are less likely to have employment-based health insurance coverage than those in other states. In 2007, Texas ranked 50th in the nation, with only 46.7 percent of Texans having employment-based health insurance coverage. FamilesUSA reports eighty percent of the uninsured have at least one family member who works either full-time or part-time in 2007 to 2008.


    http://thinkprogress.org/health/2011/08/18/298531/7-things-to-know-about-rick-perrys-health-care-record/ 1) With 26 percent of its citizens lacking health insurance, Texas ranks the worst in the nation for health care coverage.

    2) Premiums are well above the national average ($14,526 for employer family coverage in Texas v. $13,871 nationally).

    3) While Perry trumpets the state’s balanced budget, he fails to mention that lawmakers this year cut $805 million from doctors serving Medicaid patients, and that they also postponed $4 billion in Medicaid costs for payment in the next budget cycle.

    4) Meanwhile, the demand for Medicaid is growing. Most of Texas’ new jobs are low income and have been accompanied by a soaring number of Texans who qualify for Medicaid – from 2.1 million in 2001 to 3.5 million today.

    5) But the latest state budget included an 8 percent cut in reimbursement rates to hospitals, which came on top of a 2 percent cut in the last budget, in addition to a 23 percent cut to trauma care funding.

    6) More than 5.2 million Texans already live in areas designated as official health professional shortage areas.

    7) In fact, Texas ranks 48th out of 50 states in the number of physicians per 100,000 residents — that’s only going to get worse. In addition to cutting the loan repayment program, lawmakers this year reduced state support to graduate medical education by almost 40 percent, ensuring that many medical school graduates will leave Texas to other states for residency programs.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    Sep 10, 2011 2:30 PM GMT
    There is some conflicting data here.

    Data from 2007:
    http://www.nytimes.com/2007/10/05/us/05doctors.html

    The increase in doctors — double the rate of the population increase — has raised the state’s ranking in physicians per capita to 42nd in 2005 from 48th in 2001, according to the American Medical Association. It is most likely considerably higher now, according to the medical association, which takes two years to compile the standings. Still, the latest figures show Texas with 194 patient-care physicians per 100,000 population, far below the District of Columbia, which led the nation with 659.


    Thus instead of the picture that is being painted in your original article that in fact doctor growth wasn't due to malpractice reform, it appears that in fact, there were significant changes after malpractice reform attracting a number of doctors but that effect and the migration of doctors did not continue.

    That being said, given that the article that ThinkProgress has cited, does not even bother to cite - with a few conclusions suspect within the ThinkProgress article itself, you should consider finding a better source. That said, the original article also points out the following - which is a bit more complete of a picture:
    http://www.chron.com/news/houston-texas/article/As-Perry-draws-national-scrutiny-Texas-health-2132535.php

    John Hawkins, senior vice president of the Texas Hospital Association, noted that the 8 percent cut to hospitals came on top of a 2 percent cut in the last budget, in addition to a 23 percent cut to trauma care funding. In all, he said, the new state budget will "increase costs to those with health insurance, require higher local taxes and reduce access to health care services in communities statewide."

    Most of Texas' new jobs are low income and have been accompanied by a soaring number of Texans who qualify for Medicaid - from 2.1 million in 2001 to 3.5 million today.

    "We can be sure that everyone who is moving here either does not necessarily have a job or they are possibly forced to take a job where they are under-employed," said Hawkins. "They likely cannot afford health insurance so they put more pressure on state services that are currently underfunded."

    His view was confirmed by Harris County Hospital District's Dr. Bob Trenschel, who has seen an exponential growth in demand for services.


    Have you ever heard though of any public servant in healthcare who claims that their services are sufficiently or overfunded?
  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    Sep 10, 2011 3:01 PM GMT
    http://www.politifact.com/truth-o-meter/statements/2011/aug/25/rick-perry/rick-perry-says-texas-added-21000-doctors-because-/
    politifact%2Fphotos%2FTexas_Docs-1.jpg
    Rated False.
    conclusionThere is no question that tort reform drove down medical malpractice insurance premiums and reduced the number of malpractice suits. And there is no question that most health care providers like the change and say it’s a factor that leads them to practice in the state. But the wholesale transformation that Perry describes is not backed up by the numbers.

    Perry said Texas has 21,000 more doctors thanks to tort reform. That’s flat out wrong. Texas has only about 13,000 more doctors in the state and the historic trends suggest that population growth was the driving factor. We rate his statement False.

    Read the whole thing...the especially interesting part that goes with the OP:
    go where the money is
    Banning said tort reform was more good news for doctors, a sentiment borne out by opinion surveys from the state’s medical association. But he acknowledges that population growth is the biggest force behind the growing ranks of doctors. "It’s like the Willie Sutton rule," Banning said, referring to the famous bank robber. "Go where the money is. From a doctor’s standpoint, you go where the patients are."

    Especially patients who can pay. Banning and other observers in Texas note that most of the new doctors are clustered in the affluent, fast growing suburbs around the state’s biggest cities.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    Sep 10, 2011 3:09 PM GMT
    http://www.texmed.org/template.aspx?id=5427
    Details into why decreasing GME funding is such a bad idea for a big state like Texas.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    Sep 10, 2011 3:22 PM GMT
    q1w2e3 saidhttp://www.politifact.com/truth-o-meter/statements/2011/aug/25/rick-perry/rick-perry-says-texas-added-21000-doctors-because-/
    politifact%2Fphotos%2FTexas_Docs-1.jpg
    Rated False.
    conclusionThere is no question that tort reform drove down medical malpractice insurance premiums and reduced the number of malpractice suits. And there is no question that most health care providers like the change and say it’s a factor that leads them to practice in the state. But the wholesale transformation that Perry describes is not backed up by the numbers.

    Perry said Texas has 21,000 more doctors thanks to tort reform. That’s flat out wrong. Texas has only about 13,000 more doctors in the state and the historic trends suggest that population growth was the driving factor. We rate his statement False.

    Read the whole thing...the especially interesting part that goes with the OP:
    go where the money is
    Banning said tort reform was more good news for doctors, a sentiment borne out by opinion surveys from the state’s medical association. But he acknowledges that population growth is the biggest force behind the growing ranks of doctors. "It’s like the Willie Sutton rule," Banning said, referring to the famous bank robber. "Go where the money is. From a doctor’s standpoint, you go where the patients are."

    Especially patients who can pay. Banning and other observers in Texas note that most of the new doctors are clustered in the affluent, fast growing suburbs around the state’s biggest cities.


    Politifact notes it as false based in part on the technical grounds that the 21000 new doctors is wrong and that historical trends are population growth but look at the leading comment re: population growth and the conclusion Politifact makes rather than the doctor - "But he acknowledges that population growth is the biggest force behind the growing ranks of doctors." Just because you have a larger population, it does not necessarily follow there will be more doctors given that like any educated specialty they tend to have more options for mobility. Further, that's not the conclusion the quote supports - given that Banning has pointed to how much more hospitable a series of reforms have made things for doctors.

    But how does this compare to neighboring states over the same period? You may have a point here, that healthcare has eroded as a result of Perry's policies, but the data here does not show anything resembling causation. I would also wonder why the New York Times got the data so wrong drawing conclusions that are significantly different than Politifact.

    I note as well, that the state has also made the argument that turning Medicare into a blockgrant program would also provide more flexibility in spending and implementation. The problem of course being that Texas does have somewhat unique challenges relative to other states and why it's more important to show not only that if Texas has declined, other states with similar demographics have not seen the same problems arise.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    Sep 10, 2011 3:30 PM GMT
    Summary:

    OP"The philosophy has been the less public expenditure, the better," said Dr. Kenneth Shine, who heads the University of Texas health system. "And some people will just have to make do."
  • rnch

    Posts: 11525

    Sep 10, 2011 3:50 PM GMT
    as the radio commentator Paul Harvey used to say...."the REST of the story"... about perry's (so called) "Texas Miracle".



    icon_rolleyes.gif
  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    Sep 10, 2011 4:57 PM GMT
    southbeach1500 said
    mocktwinkie said"Texas has the highest number of residents without health insurance in the nation."

    Gee, I wonder why!!!!


    Why? It couldn't be because it has the highest number of illegal aliens, could it????????????


    Texas has the highest number of LEGAL residents without health insurance in the nation. Why? Because the republican party has no answer for this issue except tort reform and the ability to purchase health insurance across state lines. Republican solutions do not help if u cant afford health insurance because u are poor or if you have a preexisting condition.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    Sep 10, 2011 5:32 PM GMT
    southbeach1500 said
    catfish5 said
    southbeach1500 said
    mocktwinkie said"Texas has the highest number of residents without health insurance in the nation."

    Gee, I wonder why!!!!


    Why? It couldn't be because it has the highest number of illegal aliens, could it????????????


    Texas has the highest number of LEGAL residents without health insurance in the nation.


    Really? Does that have anything to do with Texas being the second most populous state? I would imagine Texas would rank at or near the top in NUMBER of people who eat turnips as well.


    It has to do with Texas having the highest number of minimum wage jobs without benefits in the nation. And lack of solutions from the republican party except protecting millionaires and billionaires from tax increases. Now Perry wants to eliminate social security. WTF?
  • rnch

    Posts: 11525

    Sep 10, 2011 5:43 PM GMT
    LMAO @ mt & southbeach jane being owned by the fact based replies of catfish.


    icon_lol.gif


    icon_lol.gif