Michael Moore's Sicko

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    Jul 28, 2009 5:54 AM GMT
    If you haven't already seen it, "Sicko", is on "The Movie Channel" right now.

    Mike's movie reflects about the the racket that is health care in The United States and the 50 million folks who are uninsured nationwide.

    If you have HBO, Bill Maher, last week reflected upon "medicine for profit."

    Please feel free to reflect.
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    Jul 28, 2009 3:50 PM GMT
    I've seen most of "Sicko." It makes very valid points, but Michael Moore is known to slant his films to support his views.
    Still, I tend to agree with most of his points, particularly the fact that scare tactics are used when referring to Canada's quite successful health-care system. We should be so lucky in the U.S.
    Too many powerful interests are opposing real change in this country, including HMOs, PPOs, physicians and insurance companies, all with a vested interest in seeing things stay the same, even if it means millions of Americans go without health insurance. Oh, and don't forget the politicians in Washington who are lining their pockets with money right now in order to keep the status quo.
  • outdoorjunkie

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    Jul 28, 2009 3:56 PM GMT
    chuckystud saidIf you haven't already seen it, "Sicko", is on "The Movie Channel" right now.

    Mike's movie reflects about the the racket that is health care in The United States and the 50 million folks who are uninsured nationwide.

    If you have HBO, Bill Maher, last week reflected upon "medicine for profit."

    Please feel free to reflect.


    I remember watching this movie and silently crying throughout almost all of it. I have two friends in Europe right now that have families, were laid off, and while it would be nice for them to have some extra cash, they have their mortgage taken care of, full health care for their family, and are able (since they're not working) to spend some quality time with their kids. They even took a trip to the Southern coast of France with some savings.

    Similarly, my brother who has a kid lives here with his wife. He recently lost his job, is about to lose his house, and has no way to pay for medical care for his child. Until this happened, he was one of those "don't you dare take taxes from me and give 'em to people that don't deserve it!!" types. Funny how your opinion changes regarding "those who deserve it" when you're the one in need...
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    Jul 28, 2009 5:29 PM GMT
    I saw it about a year ago. It terrified the hell out of me (that this could happen in not only a first world country, but in the most powerful nation on the planet), and made me even more appreciative of what I have here.

    As a Canadian born in the late 60's, I have never known a time that hasn't had universal health care (it was enacted nationally in 196icon_cool.gif. It is a wonderful feeling to know that no one in this country will be turned away from an emergency room or lose their home because they don't have money to pay for treatment. There are even provincial plans in place to subsidize medication that is too expensive pay for (in Ontario, it's called "Trillium", named after our provincial flower, and uses and individual's previous year's income to customize quarterly "premiums" that you pay towards your medicine -- and the province pays the rest of the cost).

    That having been said, it doesn't always work as wonderfully as one might think. Not everything is covered or is only partially covered (usually cosmetic, and occasionally elective, things), and for certain things are frequency limitations. There are often long waiting lists for certain types of exams (ie. MRI), and patients who can afford to pay for it travel across the border to get the work done. Furthermore, there is a doctor shortage in the country, especially in rural/isolated areas, as many doctors are lured by more money that can be made in the States (here doctors bill by procedure according to a provincially-regulated fee guide, and extra billing on top of that fee is not allowed). And doctors who do come here to work often have to wait years to work in the province of their choice (namely Ontario or British Columbia), as they must complete qualifying exams to be able to work there.

    Even with all of this, I STILL would rather be here than in the States. I can't imagine the financial & emotional stress people go through over health issues when their healthcare system is a "for-profit" industry.


    As an aside, universal health care in Canada was advocated and established by Kiefer Sutherland's maternal grandfather, Tommy Douglas. Just a bit of Canadian trivia for you.
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    Jul 28, 2009 6:04 PM GMT
    Canadians always have some interesting trivia to share icon_cool.gif

    The system is such a mess. People being dumped on the side of the road by hospitals, and in a nation that boasts about how great it is? People have so much to stress about here and it only deteriorates people's health mentally and physically.
    It's about profit. Most that argue against universal healthcare are usually making a living off of it in some form and are afraid of losing what they have. Those in power are greedy bastards. They won't listen to any new ideas.
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    Jul 28, 2009 6:13 PM GMT
    What gets me is that we are not striving for Universal Health Care like Canada, even in Obama's plan. You STILL have to pay monthly premiums. And does he really think that HMO's are going to pass the savings along that they get from better IT and record keeping to their customers? NO. You cannot trust private industry to do the right thing.

    I want some of my 35% taxes to go to this, like in Canada.

    Loved SICKO.
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    Jul 28, 2009 6:35 PM GMT
    flex89 / Logan, a type 1 diabetic, and I, watched "Sicko" last night. A month ago, I tore my right bicep, after 34 years of lifting. I wasn't careless. It happened. I can't get a specialist to see me without a bunch of money up front. We talking serious cash, too.

    I live in Texas US Congress district #26 (Congressman Burgess) and I spent about a hour on the phone with his office (right up the road from me) this morning. Congressman Burgess is also a M.D. When I mentioned the Canadian health care system, the congressman's aide said, "yes, but, you won't be able to get in for six months." Now, I played hockey with Cannucks for a number of years, and I've spoken with them about health care a number of times. Not ONCE did I hear a complaint. In fact, quite the opposite, yet, I have the congressman's office telling me if I was in Canada I couldn't see a doctor for six months. I think that's rubbish.

    "Sicko" really made us talk about leaving the country. Logan needs insulin and regular checkups. He, of course, has a "pre-existing" condition and can't get private insurance. There's The Texas Risk Pool, but, it's still a lot of money (around $300 monthly) to insure him. We also looked at a business policy for the two of us, but, we simply can't meet our other bills, and have a $500 a month bill on top of that. We're frugal, but, can't cover that right now. So...in a nutshell, we're fucked. If Logan gets sick, or I was to break a leg...it would mean being saddled with debt, or not getting care.

    My arm probably should have a screw put in it. Fortunately, it's just a partial tear, but, it's not getting treated, and we've been treated like scum, because we're "self-pay." We saw a GP, and the doctor literally laughed us out of his office when we asked for a referral.."lol lol You're not gonna' find anyone to help you without insurance. lol lol. Good luck."

    Sicko made me feel sick. Sick about what we've become.
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    Jul 28, 2009 6:39 PM GMT
    wrestlervic saidWhat gets me is that we are not striving for Universal Health Care like Canada, even in Obama's plan. You STILL have to pay monthly premiums. And does he really think that HMO's are going to pass the savings along that they get from better IT and record keeping to their customers? NO. You cannot trust private industry to do the right thing.

    I want some of my 35% taxes to go to this, like in Canada.

    Loved SICKO.


    Obama is on tv as I write this in a "town hall" meeting. Note that he says "affordable health care" in a silver-tongued effort to promote a wee bit of change, but, mostly it amounts to more of the same: medicine on the backs of sick and hurt people for HUGE PROFIT. In the U.S. we aren't going to end up with "universal health care" but more profit taking for the share holders. It's sickening, literally.

    I thought it was interesting that even Cuba has universal health care, and that they U.S. is still the only greed-driven system. It's strange that we like to think we're better in so many areas. We're not. Europe has had UNIVERSAL health care for 60 YEARS.
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    Jul 28, 2009 6:46 PM GMT
    The United Health folks have a saturation ad campaign / scared propaganda / misinformation campaign running the last few weeks. It's about maximum return to share holders in ANY for profit business. That IS capitalism.

    Now, those scare tactics have been effective, too, with the Clinton's, getting into Iraq, and so on. I think it's deplorable, but, it's the games the "haves" play against the "have not". Fear.

    We have socialism in our fire departments, schools, libraries, police, and probably should with health care too.

    Medicare Plan D is nothing other than an open checkbook to Big Pharm. E.g. Humalog Insulin U-100 is $38 USD in Canada, and over the counter. Here in the U.S., you have to have a script, and it's $118 USD at Wally World. That's obscene. Insulin is algae poop. Humilin-R, the older, harder to manage insulin, is over the counter here, and is $23 at Wally World. Big Pharm wants the good stuff to stay a perscription drug here, because they are milking it for everything its worth. I find that level of greed beyond sickening.

    Some of the doctors in our country should be ashamed of themselves and their level of profit taking.
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    Jul 28, 2009 7:07 PM GMT
    My health care is neither public of private

    I pay private health premiums towards a HMO which is actually owned by the government.

    It's a simple system

    under my public health tax funded care plan (as a standard middle class citizen)

    $150 ER fee... or a referral from my Doctor who charges $75
    $100 a day public hospital fee up to $1000 per year
    $100 monthly excess on prescription drugs


    My private heath-care cost $500 a year

    Pays for my GP/dentist/physio/ophthalmologist etc for general treatment after a $20 excess, up to 7 times a year
    Operates private urgent care facilities(with a max 1 hour wait) subject to a $50 fee, or pays $100 of the admittance fee to ER in a public hospital (up to 2 visits per year)
    Covers the cost of private facilities of public hospitals, and semi private in private hospitals. Except for two elite private hospitals where if I needed complex surgery it covers 50-75%)