Excuse me are you listening? 7-20
Sunday, October 26, 2008

Dear Readers,

I was recently reading an article on Black PR Wire and recalled an interview that I had with a reporter at the “State of Our Health: Through the Voices of Our People” symposium.  The reporter asked me which Presidential candidate, John McCain or Barack Obama had the best health care plan.  I said neither because we need a health care plan now to deal with issues that are escaping the politicians.  I don’t understand why Congress isn’t working harder to deal with these issues.  Readers, if you’re in a job and uninsured   or even if you’re in a job and insured by a third party, please note the best thing that you can do is to vote.  Readers, if you’re paying a large portion of your paycheck to a hospital because you waited too long to go to the doctor, please vote. 

We need to begin to re-educate minds about taking care of ourselves and when to go to the hospital, urgent care and/or the doctor. Your doctor knows you best.  Time and money is spent when the emergency room is your  only option because you didn’t respond to a medical issue in a timely manner. 

The article is below, please take care of yourselves.   There are people who love you and who depend on you.


Rina Risper


Every candidate in the coming year’s presidential race is sure to have a “health care plan.” A well thought out strategy for overhauling the failing and flailing American health care conundrum that gives too little too late to sick people and simply ignores millions of uninsured individuals every year. Yet how did we get here and why is healthcare now so sub-par in the “richest” nation on earth?

It has been common over the past five or six decades for Americans of working age to receive their health insurance from employers. Prior to World War II, however, according to the Employee Benefit Research Institute (EBRI) few Americans had health insurance and most policies covered only hospital room and board. In the midst of World War II employers began to offer workers healthcare benefits to maneuver around government wage controls. Furthermore, worker’s health benefits were not subject to income tax or Social Security payroll taxes, as were cash wages.

The statistics vary on the number of African Americans and other ethnicities living without health insurance at any point in time throughout the year. Numbers taken from the year 2000 onwards, however, indicate a downward spiral. The number of uninsured grows larger each year. What follows is common sense, the more Americans in general living without health insurance, the higher the premiums for those companies and employees receiving health benefits.

So what is the solution? Lawmakers and candidates on both sides of the bipartisan divide intend to overhaul the current system to ensure that all American citizens have health insurance. Many are even lobbying to allow tax breaks to individuals purchasing their own healthcare plans for themselves and family members.

The question remains which system will provide the best care for the majority of people? If benefits are taken out of the employers hands will that make it easier for employees to manage and monitor their own benefits and to switch jobs while maintaining the same insurance plan? Will employers have an easier time as well? This is an issue we’ll all need to become involved with in the coming year to insure that the healthcare system is improved for all people, especially children.


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