We all love our freedoms. We created civil societies by giving up some of those freedoms for the overall well-being of us all. Society creates a degree of order. We must pay taxes to build roads, maintain a military, protect our environment and much more.
While there will always be a fight about how much taxes we want to pay, how much military we really need, healthcare is a no-brainer. We want a very controlled healthcare system because many diseases are very difficult to control.
The current Ebola hysteria must be placed into context. Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital is a private hospital. Had that hospital emergency room behaved like a hospital concerned with healthcare as opposed to the bottom line, Thomas Eric Duncan would likely be alive and two nurses would likely not have been infected. Mr. Duncan had a 103+ degree fever with headaches but no insurance. Texas did not accept the Medicaid Expansion to Obamacare and as such their hospitals are struggling and are less likely to give the indigent a humane level of care. Thomas Eric Duncan’s family was well aware of said poor treatment and spoke about it.
This hospital for its incompetence could have unleashed a minor epidemic. This is not just an Ebola issue. There are many other communicable diseases that exhibits Ebola like symptoms that could have been unleashed by the bad medicine practiced by that hospital. So while the concern is about Ebola it should be much deeper. It should be of concern to every American.
Many of those hyperventilating about the Ebola crisis bear direct responsibility giving the governmental cuts they demanded and imposed. According to the Huffington Post, Dr. Francis Collins, the head of the National Institutes of Health,
“NIH has been working on Ebola vaccines since 2001. It’s not like we suddenly woke up and thought, ‘Oh my gosh, we should have something ready here,'” Collins told The Huffington Post on Friday. “Frankly, if we had not gone through our 10-year slide in research support, we probably would have had a vaccine in time for this that would’ve gone through clinical trials and would have been ready.”
It’s not just the production of a vaccine that has been hampered by money shortfalls. Collins also said that some therapeutics to fight Ebola “were on a slower track than would’ve been ideal, or that would have happened if we had been on a stable research support trajectory.”
“We would have been a year or two ahead of where we are, which would have made all the difference,” he said.
Many lied when they said Obamacare was a government takeover of healthcare. Many said that Obamacare would institute too many regulations and fought to loosen them. What is ironic is that the same folks who said many of those things now want to know why the government, CDC, did not have better controls, better regulations.
Many claim the private sector is more efficient and more reliable. This minor Ebola scare proves otherwise. Private hospitals’ fiduciary responsibilities are to the shareholders. It is to maximize profits at all cost legally. A system run by we the people has the interest of the people first and foremost. A connected system can track the occurrences of diseases throughout the system An unregulated private system fails to protect society at large.
The Affordable Care Act, Obamacare, was a great start to bring affordable healthcare. It must evolve into a real single payer public system that has the interest of society and not the profit of shareholders as its ulterior motive. Absent this, the Ebola scare is just the beginning in a very connected world where diseases know no borders, class, or nationalities.