In countries where the health care system is government run, the amount of time a patient has to wait for surgery to treat life-threatening conditions obviously has similar life and death consequences. For those waiting for that treatment and their families, this is obviously very personal.
In addition to the physical life and death consequences at issue in health care reform, Star Parker and others have recently pointed out the very personal moral issue that has reemerged as a result of the health care debate.
Parker recently wrote, “Subsidized health care delivered through a proposed government insurance plan would inevitably mean abortion funding in the standard benefits package. The only way around this would be explicit language to prohibit it. Attempts by Republicans in three House committees to insert such language were defeated, despite a handful of conservative Democrats joining them.”
The implications of the current health care debate on the issue of what pro-choice groups refer to as “reproductive health care” has served to mobilize many pro-life organizations to fight against any legislation that would permit new funding of abortion.
Abortion is a moral, as well as a life and death, issue. In addition to the physical and moral implications of health care reform, the topic receiving the most discussion in the current health care debate in Congress is economic in nature.
The amount various health care plans will cost the American government (funded, of course, by American taxpayers) is being vigorously argued, but there are also very personal costs that will be determined by any reform plan that is passed. The reason Americans are willing to even consider sweeping government health care reform is economic. The problem is not the quality of health care available in the United States, but rather what access to that care costs individuals.
When an individual has to give up things they are used to enjoying in order to pay for their prescription drugs, it is personal. When a family declares bankruptcy because they could never afford to pay the medical bills for a family member’s extended illness it is personal.
The outcome of the current attempt at health care reform is yet to be determined, but it is evident that Americans are now paying close attention to the issue, and for very good reason. This time it’s personal.