Saturday, June 8, 2013

Back In Business
    First, heartfelt thanks to the hordes of you who wished me luck and a rapid recoup. I've had my fair share of the first and I'm now taking the second to heart.
                         May 10, the day after                                                                            
Bed goes up, bed goes down” was Homer Simpson’s delighted observation on the American health care system. I like that part, too. There are other things I like about it as well.  For one, people who work in hospitals want to help other humans more than those in the hedge fund and drone trades. And that makes them nicer to get to know.
    I marvel at their learning and skill--at the fact that cardiac bypass, such as I experienced, is both routine and revolutionary with new tools and techniques coming along all the time. I’m alive because of all that.
    Unfortunately, all those smart and good people only partially make up for an institution in big, bad trouble. A quote in the NY Times tells it the way it is:
    "The "system" [meaning health] we have is not a system at all but a morass, a mess and a mind-boggling maze of incomprehensible fees and charges that no one can untangle without changing the "’system’" itself.”
    That reminded me of the fat manila envelope I have at home stuffed with forms filled with numbers that make no sense.  These are from Medicare’s private contractor and the only important thing on them is the box that says: Patient Responsibility. You always want that to be filled with zeros.
      We dearly need a world class health care system to match the world class care that a few of us lucky ones manage to get despite our broken system. That’s something we should all be working towards.