Monday, August 04, 2008

If Government Ran Health Care . . .

What if the government ran health care . . . the way they do Social Security Disability Income?

With SSDI you must first wait 5 months before you can apply for benefits. The application process is relatively simple.

Qualifying for benefits is not.

According to the AJC, Atlanta has 2 Social Security offices where you can file your claim.

But you must get in line.

The Peachtree office has 9,145 claims ahead of yours and an average wait time of 769 before a decision is rendered.

The Clairmont Road office is worse with 12,497 claims waiting to be adjudicated and an average wait time of 793 days.

In the meanwhile some applicants will file bankruptcy or lose their homes.

Others will die.

If you are awarded an SSDI benefit you also gain access to Medicare. The taxpayer funded health insurance plan for our older citizens and those who qualify for SSDI.

Many who file only to have their claim denied end up hiring an attorney to appeal their case. There is an entire segment of legal practice that is devoted to appealing disability claims.

To qualify for benefits, individuals must prove they can't work for at least a year.

Three of four Georgians who apply will be rejected outright by state workers under contract with Social Security to evaluate and decide claims.

75% rejection rate. Most eventually prevail, but only after a long wait.

"It used to be very uncommon that you would have a claim where someone would die while their appeal was pending," Waitsman said. "Unfortunately, that is becoming much more common. People are dying from what they are complaining of."

Great system, huh?

Even as the number of claims has been steadily rising, Congress has underfunded the Social Security agency for the previous 15 years running, Astrue said.

That's not very comforting.

An estimated 2,600,000 will file claims this year.

Now imagine what would happen if the government ran health care in an attempt to cover the 47,000,000 who currently are without health insurance.

Scary, huh?
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