Conservatives in Arizona and other states are mouth-frothing mad over the expansion of Medicaid for those who can’t afford health insurance. They claim that it’s a matter of personal responsibility; that the current system is fine; that people should simply go without healthcare if they can’t afford it.
The people saying that consist mostly of the Bible-thumping, church-going crowd. You know, the good “Christians” who claim to follow the guy who once said something like, “What you do unto the least of these, you do unto me.”
What these people don’t understand, in addition to the Bible they claim to study, is that even people without money deserve healthcare. In fact, our federal government came to that realization years ago. That’s why hospitals are mandated to treat those in need, even if they can’t afford to pay for the treatment. As a result, most of the working poor (people below or near the poverty line are already eligible for Medicaid) delay medical care as long as possible. When their conditions have reached a point where they are more difficult to treat, they go to the Emergency Room where treatment costs many times more than care at a doctor’s office.
Who pays for their treatment? The very people who are whining and bitching about expanding Medicaid to cover more of the working poor. As a result, the whiners pay considerably more than they would if everyone had health insurance…even government-paid health insurance.
So the question is this: How would you like to pay for your brothers’ and sisters’ healthcare? Through the efficiently-run Medicaid system? Or through the many times more expensive E.R.?