My mother-in-law’s older sister was Aunt Eva. I don’t know a lot of the background of this woman. She was raised in a rural community, graduated from the St. Elizabeth Nursing School. She worked as a nurse for one General practitioner doctor all of her life.
What I remember the most about Aunt Eva was Christmas time. She would be the last person to arrive at the McGill Christmas Eve party. Bags of “stuff” in her arms, and she would rush into to the bed room, her two sisters would follow helping wrap Aunt Eva’s gifts. Not just one or two gifts, but Aunt Eva’s gifts to EVERYONE. It would be no surprise to find your gift was the book, she had just finished reading 3 hours before! I’m certain Aunt Eva created re-gifting. Wait, can it even be called re-gifting, if you bought something for yourself, used it and THEN gifted to someone?
Aunt Eva, was an “old maid” as the term was used in those days. She apparently had been engaged to be married at some point in her life…..but the marriage never took place. It’s a story never to have been divulged, and has gone to her grave.
I used to have a good friend whose distant cousin visited the United States from New Zealand. He actually had prearranged to come to this county for some medical tests. His comment was that our medical community was so much better than the socialized medicine in his home country.
I worked with another friend whose half-brother visited here from Zimbabwe. Without divulging to anyone, he came here sick and was treated for TB and Aides. After a 14 day hospital stay, upon release he required follow-up doctor visits, morning visits by a nurse to administer the “cocktail” medicine and bus fare from the county for appointments. In Zimbabwe, hospitals require CASH UPFRONT, before you receive treatment. Here the treatment was freely given, and the American Taxpayer pickup the cost.
We have some friends that recently retired and decided to purchase a winter place in Largo, Fla. Central Florida seemed inundated with mobile home parks–Wait, back up, I think I was chastised for that, THEY (the residents of the mobile home parks) prefer the nomenclature of Coaches. (It’s all double wide trailers to me!) A vast number of people residing in these “parks” are from Canada. Canadians are Enjoying the warmer weather and medical facilities. It seems the Floridian-Canadians prefer the American Medical Community to that of the Canada’s Socialized Medicine, so I was told. And so the Canadian Socialized (Medicare) Plan has put the brakes on Florida. The Canadian Health Plan appears to have gotten tired of paying American prices. It sounded like Canadians reaching the age of 70, had to sell their “Coaches” or endure a monthly medical premium astronomically higher than pre-70 age, IF THEY ARE NOT LIVING IN CANADA.
So with the Presidential elections at hand, there has been lots of rhetoric about “Obama Care”, which means I’ve had Aunt Eva on my mind recently. My wife recalls that in the 1960’s, Aunt Eva was predicting Socialized Medicine coming to the United States–and “God Help Us!!” she would say. As I’m trying to sort this medical thing out, I come up with lots of opinions, they fall on BOTH sides of the issue, and are not anywhere as emphatic as the media implies.
1. health insurance premiums are too expensive;
2. health insurance executives make too much money;
3. health insurance companies get discounted charges on patient billings;
4. providers have to over charge to make up for insurance discounts;
5. uninsured patient don’t receive discounts;
6. too many people use Emergency Services because they can’t afford or don’t have insurance;
7. too many of us, already paying for our own medical, also have to pay for the uninsured
One of my concerns, is that a law was passed that left the “nitty-gritty”, the administration and definitions to a “to be written later at the Agency Level”, group of federal employees, whose job doesn’t necessarily depend upon my vote.
The new law states if you’re not “signed up” for the coverage, you will pay a penalty on your tax returns; a. If you can’t afford premiums, how can you afford any more tax, b. If you don’t file a return there is no penalty (but you still get coverage?), c. if by 2014 you don’t have insurance your penalty is about $2100 d. nobody has yet said what the premiums will be for those mandated policies.
I just have a BAD Feeling about this, must be why so many people are “up in the air” on this. I know, I know the blogs in Canada, say EVERYONE loves their plan….then why are so many Canadians “having” to give up their U.S. winter residences at age 70?
Ok.. Aunt Eva, I’ll climb off the soap box, you gave me….and “try” to go back to “lighter” topics……I just don’t want a life time of HMO’s for my children’s children.