Senator Tom Harkin was recently quoted in a New York Times article saying, "We don't have a health care system in America. We have a sick care system. If you get sick, you get care. But precious little is spent to keep people healthy in the first place."
More than 10 years ago, a very close loved one told me that he was HIV positive. As you can imagine, it was shocking and devastating news. Shocking, because I never thought that HIV (Human Immunodeficiency Virus) would touch my life. It is much too common to think that it is something that affects only other people. Devastating, because the first words that popped into my mind were “AIDS,” “INCURABLE,” and “FATAL.” Just like that, in really big letters, heavy, painful, dripping in tears.
Father's Day is the time of the year that we celebrate some of the most important men in our lives—and, it's a great time to think about how we keep these men healthy. Women have outlived men for as long as we've been keeping track, and it's not just because we are better than they are at most things.
Since the passage of the health reform law, prevention has become a much talked about issue. We all know that a lot of pain, suffering, and money could be saved with good prevention strategies, but the big question is: Will prevention for women be taken seriously?
Martin Luther King is an American hero who has become a symbol for Americans fighting for social justice. He influenced a generation to rise up and fight against inequality, even when the easier choice would have been to just give up. Most might not think of Dr. King as a health care hero, but when the civil rights movement began to address systematic inequalities in America, health care was one issue that attracted King's attention.
Did you know that African Americans are two times more likely to have diabetes than whites? Or that Latina women diagnosed with lung or breast cancer are diagnosed in later stages and have lower survival rates than white women with the same condition?
These alarming statistics are just a few of the racial and ethnic health disparities that are present in our current health care system. A big chunk of inequity can be attributed to sky-high health care costs and lack of access.
New findings from the Oregon Health Study reaffirm that Medicaid is good health coverage: The study showed that Medicaid beneficiaries were more likely than the uninsured to receive needed health care services (including preventive care), they experienced improved mental health as a result of coverage, and they were more financially secure. These findings, published last week in the New England Journal of Medicine, are part of an ongoing study of Oregon’s state Medicaid program.
What do the national smoking cessation hotline, fresh vegetables for low-income urban neighborhoods, vaccinations for kids without insurance, and new residency positions for badly needed primary care physicians have in common?
If Republicans have their way, these efforts are all about to take a big hit.
Did you know that if you have Medicare, you are now entitled to many preventive screenings and yearly wellness visits with your doctor at no cost to you? That's right. Medicare beneficiaries can now get free screenings for conditions such as cancer and diabetes, as well as free annual check-ups, all thanks to the Affordable Care Act.
These preventive services are designed to ensure early diagnosis and treatment for many chronic conditions, which will improve the health of many Americans and also save money. It's a win-win situation for Medicare beneficiaries.
Finding out that you or a loved one has breast cancer can be one of the scariest moments in your life. Immediately, images of hospitals and doctors flood your mind, along with a million other concerns about treatments, side effects, and what this diagnosis means for the future. With all of that, money should be the last thing on your mind. Unfortunately, for thousands of people across the country, worrying about how to pay for treatment and other medical expenses is at the top of their list.