Skip to main content

Just talked to my cousin. The one with cancer. The one with supposedly good insurance. The one whose insurance won't pay for one of her chemo drugs.

When I had cancer, this cousin drove me to some of my treatments. I had just moved to the Bay Area, and didn't know a lot of people. Before I moved to the Bay Area, I had seen her maybe half a dozen times, in my life. But she kept calling and telling me that if I needed a ride to that week's treatment, she'd drive. And the driving time alone, from her home to mine to the hospital and back, was at least a couple hours. And she was squeamish about medical stuff. In other words, she was a saint. Just because. She is a saint. Just because.

Her prognosis now is fairly good. But her insurance wouldn't pay for one of her chemo drugs. The Republicans talk lies about death panels. The Republicans talk lies about government bureaucrats making medical decisions. The truth is that the private insurance industry already makes medical decisions. The truth is that the private insurance industry often turns out to be the real death panel.

My cousin is lucky, in that she can pay for the drug out of pocket. She's a single mom, and doesn't have a lot of wiggle room, but this is something for which she will find room. But she shouldn't have to. And if she couldn't- barely- afford to, she'd suffer for it. Maybe die for it. Leaving two small children without their mom.

Denial of treatment is and will remain the dirty deadly secret about health care reform. Insurance is not health care. Mandating that people buy insurance is not providing them with health care. A lot of people still don't understand that.

Once this bill becomes law, it will require a lot of fixes. The Republicans and some Conservadems and Blue Dogs will try to prevent any fixes. They also will try to repeal the entire bill. We need to work even harder, in the days, weeks, months, and years ahead. We need to keep moving forward, even as the Republicans and some Conservadems and Blue Dogs try to move us backward. Addressing denial of treatment will be one of the most important issues. Passing a public option would help. But the first step should be repealing ERISA Section 514.

People are dying from denial of treatment, and the current bill won't do enough to stop that from happening. Pass the bill, and then let's get on with fixing it.

Originally posted to Laurence Lewis on Sat Mar 20, 2010 at 12:49 PM PDT.

EMAIL TO A FRIEND X
Your Email has been sent.
You must add at least one tag to this diary before publishing it.

Add keywords that describe this diary. Separate multiple keywords with commas.
Tagging tips - Search For Tags - Browse For Tags

?

More Tagging tips:

A tag is a way to search for this diary. If someone is searching for "Barack Obama," is this a diary they'd be trying to find?

Use a person's full name, without any title. Senator Obama may become President Obama, and Michelle Obama might run for office.

If your diary covers an election or elected official, use election tags, which are generally the state abbreviation followed by the office. CA-01 is the first district House seat. CA-Sen covers both senate races. NY-GOV covers the New York governor's race.

Tags do not compound: that is, "education reform" is a completely different tag from "education". A tag like "reform" alone is probably not meaningful.

Consider if one or more of these tags fits your diary: Civil Rights, Community, Congress, Culture, Economy, Education, Elections, Energy, Environment, Health Care, International, Labor, Law, Media, Meta, National Security, Science, Transportation, or White House. If your diary is specific to a state, consider adding the state (California, Texas, etc). Keep in mind, though, that there are many wonderful and important diaries that don't fit in any of these tags. Don't worry if yours doesn't.

You can add a private note to this diary when hotlisting it:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary from your hotlist?
Are you sure you want to remove your recommendation? You can only recommend a diary once, so you will not be able to re-recommend it afterwards.
Rescue this diary, and add a note:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary from Rescue?
Choose where to republish this diary. The diary will be added to the queue for that group. Publish it from the queue to make it appear.

You must be a member of a group to use this feature.

Add a quick update to your diary without changing the diary itself:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary?
(The diary will be removed from the site and returned to your drafts for further editing.)
(The diary will be removed.)
Are you sure you want to save these changes to the published diary?

Comment Preferences

jbou, clyde, claude, bink, Renee, JekyllnHyde, paradox, cdreid, buffalo soldier, vicki, Alma, Terri, TXdem, keirdubois, LeislerNYC, kevin lyda, ssmt, Chi, Phoenix Woman, thinkdouble, murphy, debcoop, eleming, Rayne, SarahLee, alyosha, teacherken, Trendar, dfarrah, Joan McCarter, tiggers thotful spot, demnomore, pHunbalanced, saraswati, mimi, mattman, PeterHug, MikeHickerson, sacrelicious, tnichlsn, bosdcla14, tommurphy, Shockwave, SanJoseLady, KateG, akeitz, eeff, suswa, devtob, mataliandy, bookbear, Creosote, kissfan, Dumbo, rasbobbo, srbaxley, TheMomCat, bronte17, JSCram3254, conchita, BlackSheep1, Shadan7, mbayrob, annrose, nyceve, sfgb, maxschell, DaleA, pattym922, CoolOnion, stevej, mkfarkus, marchmoon, Aquarius40, roses, michelle, JuliaAnn, pollbuster, Ignacio Magaloni, Larry Bailey, wishingwell, nargel, Decih, Torta, jalbert, enough already, antirove, wader, Redfire, Texknight, IM, ammaloy, danthrax, TexDem, mrkvica, jlynne, 2laneIA, ranger995, gmb, grannyhelen, cosette, yet another liberal, desmoinesdem, churchylafemme, BMarshall, niteskolar, flatford39, Chirons apprentice, On The Bus, Catte Nappe, AbsurdEyes, Timbuk3, lcrp, Pohjola, Brian82, barbwires, DMiller, Oaktown Girl, econlibVA, zerelda, WV Democrat, side pocket, Kitsap River, kfred, NapaJulie, CanYouBeAngryAndStillDream, Steven D, xyz, DarkSyde, lyvwyr101, bablhous, valadon, vacantlook, wezelboy, The Gryffin, murrayewv, jeffwtux, greeseyparrot, nailbender, madaprn, Fabian, Recovering Southern Baptist, chumley, tovan, maybeeso in michigan, bloomer 101, historys mysteries, marina, 3goldens, ManOnTheBench, Kewalo, NoMoreLies, snstara, deepfish, baccaruda, CTPatriot, Tonedevil, Militarytracy, offred, willibro, Melody Townsel, kuvasz, ccasas, clammyc, Simplify, basquebob, TN yellow dog, Brooke In Seattle, YucatanMan, oyka1, ratzo, Annalize5, majcmb1, SaraBeth, Pam from Calif, jimstaro, Sara R, EvilPaula, LABobsterofAnaheim, ladybug53, Burned, lotlizard, Ice Blue, bmaples, PinHole, exmearden, Island Expat, SBandini, WisePiper, Shotput8, Big Nit Attack, FindingMyVoice, Tex Kosmaniac Dem Lady, Pluto, dsteffen, Cory Bantic, Rogneid, Ekaterin, noweasels, xaxnar, Jim P, Abacab, debedb, reddbierd, Philpm, RiaD, alrdouglas, SoulCatcher, Mother Mags, Showman, hlee1169, BachFan, Do Tell, Patriot Daily News Clearinghouse, Keone Michaels, Kingsmeg, ej25, RustyBrown, Clytemnestra, Junkyard Dem, emeraldmaiden, tonyahky, Gorette, borkitekt, seefleur, koNko, martyc35, kestrel9000, ruleoflaw, KenBee, fromer, Magnifico, mango, arlene, mcartri, fou, kck, greenearth, blueoasis, Alexandra Lynch, Blue Wind, DarkestHour, triv33, tecampbell, global citizen, 4Freedom, Libby Shaw, imabluemerkin, JVolvo, NearlyNormal, Frank Cocozzelli, bleeding heart, Preston S, ZombyWoof, ER Doc, MBNYC, llbear, Timothy J, Clive all hat no horse Rodeo, means are the ends, Dreaming of Better Days, kurt, PhilW, Picot verde, Friend of the court, Temmoku, blueintheface, Nulwee, ZenTrainer, Joelarama, BentLiberal, DBunn, ammasdarling, bigchin, Drama Queen, One Pissed Off Liberal, Noor B, pgm 01, out of left field, BeninSC, asilomar, donnamarie, khereva, Loudoun County Dem, Cottagerose, possum, Dartagnan, gloriana, terryhallinan, yoduuuh do or do not, edsbrooklyn, FishOutofWater, DvCM, rgjdmls, terabytes, ilex, DWG, aliasalias, St Louis Woman, Strabo, bnasley, jayden, Templar, vbdietz, Uberbah, SeaTurtle, jnhobbs, millwood, Moderation, jhop7, carpunder, owl06, pioneer111, Got a Grip, Dar Nirron, JML9999, cloudbustingkid, sable, willb48, Terra Mystica, LynneK, Empower Ink, Niniane, jgilhousen, msblucow, alkalinesky, Michael91, rogerdaddy, seriously70, mconvente, browse, dsnodgrass, ScottyUrb, OleHippieChick, mamamedusa, rikyrah, elwior, theunreasonableHUman, filby, lineatus, VL Baker, jamess, Lujane, royce, pamelabrown, Cassandra Waites, hwmnbn, Wek, geomoo, pademocrat, DanK Is Back, MsWings, ShempLugosi, mofembot, Seamus D, Gemina13, pragprogress, Horsefeathers, glendaw271, petulans, Jacques, luckylizard, xysea, DixieDishrag, A Man Called Gloom, allie123, priceman, Mayfly, Mike Taylor, shortgirl, CIndyCasella, ZhenRen, etlingjm, LaFeminista, 207wickedgood, cameoanne, Bule Betawi, smellybeast, J M F, MTmarilyn, Rick Aucoin, aufklaerer, ARS, emboyo, snackdoodle, greengemini, divineorder, not a cent, output, TheOtherJimM, Shhs, CanyonWren, Methinks They Lie, FinchJ, notrouble, Partisan Progressive, velvet blasphemy, CamillesDad1, JesseCW, DefendOurConstitution, Daily Activist, GreenMtnState, goldnata, prgsvmama26, BDsTrinity, marzook, DClark4129, soms, COwoman, Shelley99, Joeytj, blueocean, stevenwag, sfarkash, notksanymore, mdmslle, PoliticalJunkessa, fernan47, nancat357, schnecke21, Enrika, deviant24x, Former Chicagoan Now Angeleno, catilinus, Larsstephens, YellerDog, BrighidG, commutergirl, littlezen, loper2008, rb137, jethrock, Rustbelt Dem, BonnieSchlitz, Garfnobl, puffmeister, pixxer, Lady Libertine, elginblt, paradise50, ClearBuzz, ThirtyFiveUp, sluggahjells, Johnny Q, Weaselina, Nada Lemming, Loose Fur, Ilikepie, soaglow, stevenaxelrod, cherylm, slice, no way lack of brain, Onomastic, Jasel, Colorado is the Shiznit, annominous, StateofEuphoria, mpointer, ems97007, Fletcher Christensen, slowbutsure, dietcokehead98, La Gitane, BlackQueen40, FarWestGirl, Situational Lefty, Sand Hill Crane, page394, princesspat, Engaged, Lorikeet, phillygirl64, burana, majii, theone718, gokinsmen, tardis10, LSmith, corvaire, pensivelady, whaddaya, littlebird33, hands in clay USA, mfprtoo, lincoln deschain, daveusf, OtterQueen, SteelerGrrl, bluck, rscopes, zenox, RLMiller, ChiTownDenny, Georgianna Darcy, Eposter, ParkRanger, MichaelNY, ArtemisBSG, Rejoinder, Tentwenty, James Robinson, KiB, Just Keep it Simple Stupid, CuriousBoston, Flying Goat, Hookah, efraker, docrocktex, Aussie Jo, Eric Nelson, elshizzo

Subscribe or Donate to support Daily Kos.

Click here for the mobile view of the site