We Americans are a cantankerous lot who find it hard to agree on anything other then the virtues of motherhood and apple pie. However, one thing we do agree on is medical delivery in the United States. We think it stinks. It is utterly chaotic.
If you are very rich or very poor you have no problem. The very rich simply write a cheque and get the best medical care in the world. The poor simply go on welfare and let the government pay the bill. As to the middle class, well those folks get screwed. They can lose their life savings in one week in the hospital.
Barack Obama is talking tough. He made a most impressive speech the other morning (2am our time) about how he would 'not allow my reform to fail'. Wow, how many times have we heard that one before. I hope he is successful, but that is not where the big money will be bet. As I learned early on as a cop in Los Angeles, tough talk is the cheapest and the most plentiful thing in town. It is the delivery that counts.
I dislike socialism for all the usual reasons. However, I make an exception for socialized medicine. That is what we have here in the United Kingdom and it is wonderful. I have had one major surgery and two minor ones, plus the occasional treatment for a bad cold. The care has been terrific and has not cost me one dime. Beat that.
Here the system is ordered which is to say it is quick and simple. I did not have to wait to get into the hospital and I can check into the local surgery (doctors' office) any time.
We have one other very big advantage here in Broadway. One of the doctors, Neil Townsend, has a hot air balloon and has promised to take me up for a ride soon. That experience will likely be the topic of my next article.
Good luck and stay well.
Walter plus Charlie