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May-27-2009 06:59TweetFollow @OregonNews
Op Ed: Healthcare Professionals Demand Remedy For 'Broken System'
Henry Clay Ruark for Salem-News.com
The California Nurses Association is an example of the numerous healthcare provider groups behind reforming the current system in the U.S. that leaves millions without coverage. Courtesy: calnurses.org
(EUGENE, Ore.) - National organizations representing every part and facet of the entire professional spectrum serving our nation have made that demand crystal-clear --NOW.
They are NOW strongly working to bring about widespread change to guarantee every American can -- and WILL NOW-- receive high quality healthcare.
Every statement, by every group, considers this system as “broken, costly, ineffective”: i.e., threatening our remaining democracy by fully unsustainable costs, and by desperately increasing inequalities based on employment and income.
In a clear statement by Oregon-based specialist physicians published in a leading Oregon newspaper, we learn that every leading professional healthcare group is now on public record seeking “rapid change”. (See Reader’s Note for full documentation.)
Similar reports are being published nationwide by healthcare professionals, speaking from their ongoing experiences to offset and rebut heavy flow of distorted information from strongly-active billionaire-funded “noise machine” sources, we are informed.
From some groups, the private-profit/shaped setup broadly NOW blamed for the desperate, despairing plight of some FIFTY MILLION of our fellow citizens is facing strong professional demand for “radical change”.
Others seek IMMEDIATE “sensitive and sensible” actions to remedy and broaden the whole range of essential services for all; while remediating the deeply damaging impacts of healthcare costs; NOW widely perceived as “out of control”, “clearly unsustainable” and “demanding immediate action.” Many healthcare professionals in all groups report struggling with costs for their own employees!
BUT ALL are determined --and becoming strongly vocal and demonstrative-- about the brute facts now forcing brutal reshaping of American lifestyle for our deprived FIFTY MILLION fellow citizens.
There is near-unanimous support for the principle that healthcare s a human right and should be fully accessible at reasonable cost for every citizen. Nine in ten physicians agree that all Americans should receive needed medical care regardless of ability to pay.
Highly respected public tv pundit Bill Moyers just reported in his widely-viewed investigative program: “So why bother with the charm offensive on Pennsylvania Avenue?" Could it be, as some critics suggest, a Trojan horse, getting the health industry a place at the table so they can leap up at the right moment and again knife to death any real reform? Wheelers and dealers from the health sector aren’t waiting for that moment.
According to the non-partisan Center for Responsive Politics, they’ve spent more than $134 million on lobbying in the first quarter of 2009 alone. And some already are shelling out big bucks for a publicity blitz and ads attacking any health care reform that threatens to reduce the profits from sickness and disease.
One very striking surprise is that many healthcare professionals, long exposed to managed care by way of private insurance coverage. now believe strongly that the private-profit system is “overbearing, impersonal, and laden with administrative burden” mirroring fears of government control “without the redeeming benefit of universal coverage. Something has to change and soon.”
124,000 American College of Physicians members, internists and internal medicine specialists, have come out unequivocally for single-payer national health insurance.
“Every other national primary care organization likewise now favors universal healthcare coverage”, our reporting Oregon physicians state.
Many doctors and specialists are already NOW supplying their professional services and, often, essential medicines and other supplies as their own personal contributions to the inescapable current catastrophic situation. They report that despite deep satisfaction by so doing, it is clearly “unsustainable” --and has become one more solid reason for rapid Congressional action.
More than four/fifths of physicians agree NOW our system needs fundamental changes or should be rebuilt completely. 94,000 family doctors, members of the American Academy of Family Physicians, in 2001 (!), proposed “A national health system with a basic set of benefits offered to all individuals.” The American Academy of Pediatrics, 60,000-strong nationwide, states that “quality health insurance should be a right, regardless of income...ultimately for all individuals.”
52.000 in the American College of Obstetrics and Gynecology issued a detailed plan for healthcare reform, concluding that “...our fragmented health care system impedes progress toward the quality and safety goals on which we all agree. Everyone’s health security is at risk.” It is strikingly clear that, as the Oregon doctors report, “the momentum is clearly towards radical reform and universal coverage.”
A particularly strong standard operating principle for long-proven American success in every complex field has always been: “ASK and LEARN from those who MUST DO and have found out HOW.” What better national resource should we now consult to guide our own momentum for bringing about the absolutely essential action by Congress and our national leaders at every level?
The final statement by our insightful Oregon physicians is: “ America’s health care system is sick and in immediate need of intensive care. No less urgently than everyone else, America’s physicians are calling for an ambulance.” You pays your nickel here by time and attention to share and learn.
The other side of that same coin --driven by some cogitation on YOUR part-- is what action YOU take, or DO NOT Take, on every issue we explore. What YOU NOW DO is strictly up to YOU. Let YOUR voice be heard.
Reader’s Note: “Doctors, Too, Are Ready for Change” was published in Commentary, REGISTER-GUARD, Eugene, Oregon, on SUnday May 24, 2oo9. It was written by Dr. Todd Huffman, pediatrist, and Dr. Richard Barnhart, hospitalist. The entire content is available at www.registergurd.com; the link to Physicians for a National Health Progam is www.pnhp.org. More than 20 other Internet sites were explored for this “informed” (!) Op Ed;another 30 books, reference sources, magazines, journals and writer’s files were also consulted. Quotes are summarized, shortened, combined and some verbatim. All sources available on request with full ID and telephone number to Editor Tim.
At 21, Henry Clay Ruark was Aroostook Editor for the Bango, Maine DAILY NEWS, covering upper 1/4 of the state. In the ‘40s, he was Staff Correspondent, then New England Wires Editor at United Press-Boston; later Editor for the Burlington, Vermont 3-daily group owned by Wm. Loeb, later notorious at Manchester, New Hampshire UNION LEADER for attacks on Democratic Presidential candidates.
Hank returned to Oregon to complete M. Ed degree at OSU, went on to Indiana University for Ed.D. (abd) and special other course-work; was selected as first Information Director for NAVA in Washington, D.C.; helped write sections of NDEA, first Act to supply math, science, foreign language consultants to state depts. of education; joined Oregon Dept. of Education as NDEA administrator/Learning Media Consultant for tenyears.
He joined Dr. Amo DeBernardis at PCC, helping establish, extend programs, facilities, Oregon/national public relations; moved to Chicago as Editor/Publisher of oldest educational-AV journal, reformed as AV GUIDE Magazine; then established and operated Learning Media Associates as general communications consultant group. Due to wife’s illness, he returned to Oregon in 1981, semi-retired, and has continued writing intermittently ever since, joining S-N in 2004. His Op Eds now total over 560 written since then.