I started the day with a bang this morning–a dentist visit. In my case, that often involves fillings, crowns, etc. Yes, I look very much likethis. Only a lot shorter.
So you would think, wouldn’t you, after my dental insurance people covering filling after filling, crown after crown, root canal after root canal, that maybe–just maybe–they’d be interested in preventing more such procedures?
Ah, silly me. You know better, don’t you? This is health care in America, where the abbreviation POS means exactly what you think it does and where an ounce of prevention equals $560 in out of pocket expenses for me. Because my dental insurance won’t cover a bite guard to keep me from grinding my teeth to dust. (Of course, I probably wouldn’t need this lovely device if it weren’t for the insurance industry…)
Anyway, it was particularly irritating to me to have to listen to April Fulton on NPR this morning (with orange impression-goo in my mouth, trying to breath through my nose, which I couldn’t really do because my insurance won’t cover the one prescription antihistamine that actually works for me.) April was talking about the definition of“public plan” (audio linky) using the analogy of a public airline service. I appreciate April trying to find a way to explain the debate in terms people can understand. The thing is, that analogy is fundamentally flawed, because (among many other things) it doesn’t take into account the fact that there is no such thing in the airline world as preventative care. The airlines don’t say, “Hey, we think you might have a dire need to be in Seattle in May, so we’re going to fly you to Boise now!” Besides which, April, most of us get the problem just fine without cute analogies. (And it would have been nice if there’d been something new in that report. Just sayin’.)
What I’m most interested in seeing in any kind of a public plan is a strong emphasis on preventative care. Maybe that might prompt our health care insurance industry to start providing that service, too.
And I’m sure right after that, they’ll provide bunnies for everyone! (What’s with all the carrots? What do they need such good eyesight for anyway?)