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HEALTHCARE: Facts fall ill in debate

| April 7, 2010 5:25 AM

Mr. Kettle, next time you feel the urge to blast “liberals and the Health Care Bill”, I suggest you get your facts straight first and take the advice from the Editorial of that same day (Wed, Mar 24) to “research reputable, non-partisan sources” to get to the truth instead of paying attention to the ‘spin doctors’ of the day, many of whom don’t seem to have their facts straight, either.

Where, I wonder, does Mr. Kettle get his information when he erroneously states that… there’s a “rationing” on health care, particularly for senior citizens? (We at least cleared up the “death panels” issue, didn’t we?) Further,  he states that illegal immigrants are included in the provisions for “free health care” (not true) and that there are “free abortion services” under the health bill (not true, unless in the case of rape or incest!). 

Mr. Kettle seems to confuse “Health Care Reform” as a right for all citizens with a massive government conspiracy and takeover of our rights, including but not limited to, intrusion of “right to privacy” and “forget protection of unreasonable searches and seizures” (come again?). What this health care reform does provide is additional, not fewer rights for all citizens and less control afforded to the for-profit insurance companies. The right of a person not to be denied health care coverage due to a pre-existing condition. The right of sick children not to be denied health care. The right of a patient not to be kicked out of a health plan if they come down with a disease that takes long term care and the insurer deems the costs being too high.

I agree with Mr. Kettle on one thing: You should not be forced to health care coverage if you feel so inclined. But also please don’t show up at the emergency room years from now because you haven’t been taking care of your health or get involved in any kind of accident because then everyone else’s insurance rates will go up to pay for your emergency care and hospital stay, Mr. Kettle — the same people who decided to be responsible and pay into some kind of a health care plan all along. Wouldn’t it be great if the United States finally can claim that it no longer is the only developed country in the Western hemisphere that does not provide health care coverage as a right to all of its citizens?

ELKE A. HELMUTH

Coeur d’Alene

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