There was a time when a good old-fashioned bout of vomiting was a sign that you were having a good, no, an awesome night. That time was called college. Unfortunately, that is clearly no longer true for me.
Yesterday and for a good portion of today, I've been pretty sick in the stomach. Things came out of my stomach that I thought had been put away days ago.
All this while, there have been two things that came to mind. One, I am very lucky to have a loving girlfriend that was willing to take care of me.
Second, I am also extremely fortunate to have health care, courtesy of my employer. The US is currently the only developed nation to not have a universal health care system. This puts us behind many countries that we typically consider to be mildly retarded/backwards, including Canada, Russia, New Zealand, China, Poland, Mexico, and Argentina. Our system currently leaves an estimated 17% of the population uninsured. That translates to roughly 50m people without coverage. While I'm in no position to go off on a discussion of the pros and cons of our current health care system, I will say a few things.
One, health care costs have been going up at about 7% a year. That means that they'll double in a little over a decade, leaving people without health insurance doubly screwed.
Two, I think it would be incredibly frightening to be in a position where you feel deathly ill, aren't sure if your appendix is about to explode, but feel incapable of calling a doctor because you know you won't be able to afford it.
Lastly, according to the Kaiser Foundation, it would cost about $110 billion to provide health care coverage for those that currently are not being covered. The war in Iraq has currently cost us $360 billion and is projected to hit $1-2 trillion before we are done.
So, yeah. That's about it.
 The estimate is actually $69 billion, but I've scaled the number up to account for the 7% growth in expense and the growing number of people that are uninsured.
Labels: health care