Monday, February 22, 2010

Health Insurance vs. Cell Phone

Recently an uninsured patient was about to be discharged home. He was admitted for observation from the Emergency Room for abdominal pains. Before leaving he requested to have his medical marijuana prescription refilled. I wondered how he could afford marijuana but didn't have the funds to buy health insurance.

If you look at the typical indigent population, they may not have health insurance but they surely have cell phones or ipods. Some have brought their kids who are playing intently on their Nintendo DS. Before electronics people who did not have enough money for health insurance were out purchasing expensive cigarette and alcohol habits.

All this comes to mind because the health care debate still focuses on people being required to buy health insurance. If they can't afford it the government will give them money to buy it. Where do you think the money will come from? People don't buy insurance not because they can't afford to; they don't because it is a low priority in their lives. They would rather give up health insurance than their nights out to dinner and a rave party, or their cable tv, or their cell phones, or on and on. So the government will in essence subsidize these people's leisure and drug habits while the rest of us face ever higher health premiums. Welcome to Socialist America.

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