Today, in an interview with the Columbus Dispatch, Romney repeated the stupid claim he made in a 60 Minutes interview last month that sick people won’t die — they’ll just go to the ER.
“‘No, you go to the hospital, you get treated, you get care, and it’s paid for, either by charity, the government or by the hospital. We don’t have people that become ill, who die in their apartment because they don’t have insurance.'”
I can’t with this guy.
[read full post at ABLC]
poor? have cancer? get your chemo in the ER!
Good thing the hospital pays for ER expenses out of a giant Bag of Holding instead of raising the price of all other hospital services to cover it.
He’s doubling down, ABL. I’d like to hear Obama call him out in the next debate on this (among other issues).
I always said that half of American voters are dumb no matter who wins. If Obama wins this time it will be Jeb Bush next time and we are still fucked.
Nate Silver has some bad news today so don’t go there if you don’t want to get bummed. However, todays polls are looking like they will move his needle significantly further in Obama’s direction as the Rmoney bump subsides. Hopefully Nate updates things tonight.
Doesn’t any journalist follow up with this guy on this point? doesn’t anyone say, “Excuse me, Mr. Romney, are you advocating that poor families take their children to the emergency room when they have an ear infection or asthma? Are you advocating that poor adults go to the emergency room to get prescriptions for blood pressure medication?”
As someone who often provides care in said Emergency Rooms I have a message for Mittens (after I stop pounding my head on my desk). SHUT UP YOU IMBECILE.
I wonder how Lady Ann Romney would be doing with her breast CA and MS if all she had was emergency access to an ED.
Worth reading and taking very seriously, even though I dislike HuffPo intensely.
I wonder if mittshit owns any part of any healthcare anything. If he did would he be telling people to screw him out of anything? I don’t think so.
So, Romney is advocating mooching?
Why would anyone get insurance if they could get a free ride?
Belafon (formerly anonevent)
@Patricia Kayden: That’ll be a little hard unless he can tie it in to foreign policy somehow.
Culture of Truth
It’s not even a question of compassion, it’s being penny wise and pound foolish – which is why Republicans embraced an insurance requirement until a Democrat proposed it and then it was all woot ER bitches
I have personal experience with this because I have a college-age sibling who passed away recently after being diagnosed with cancer a year ago with obvious inability to pay (she was actually diagnosed after an ER visit). It turns out, if you’re just old enough that your parents are not responsible for the costs of care, and too young to have any significant assets, county services and medicare will basically pay for the cost of treatment.
The issue is…this is sort of a double-edged sword. Because there’s simultaneously so much pressure on these programs to save money, they often choose services in an unintelligent way to cut–i.e. they tend to reject services that bill high for an individual usage regardless of how essential it was. Penny-wise and pound foolish.
So while basically the entire costs of her chemotherapy and supplementary medications to manage the side effects (quite expensive!) were covered, her oncologist had trouble getting authorization to have frequent enough PET scans–which are the only way to actually judge the progress and success of the treatments! The end result being that they paid for a lot of ineffective chemo because they didn’t get a frequent enough scan to judge the progress…AND that by the point they got the scan the cancer had progressed enough that she needed even MORE expensive treatment (stem-cell transplant).
This is not to mention the quandary she would have faced had she survived, where she wouldn’t have been able to acquire health insurance except through a state high-risk pool, due to the lifelong problems that tend to result from chemotherapy.
As long as the pressure on these programs is to control costs rather than produce effective outcomes, things are going to be this way. I”m not convinced it would’ve been dramatically better with a private insurance company. And I don’t see how we switch the debate from cost to value without a more socialized system.
Well, that’s kinda interesting. If this is the way he feels, why did he pass Romneycare?
How do the questions for tow halls get picked? Can I ever hope to dream of some valiant person standing up and just calingl this fucker an asshole to his face.
Quaker in a Basement
“…and it’s paid for, either by charity, the government or by the hospital…
And they get their money from where again? Just one more step, Mitt, and you’ll have your finger on the problem.
Why won’t you die?!
The Other Chuck
Right, because the ER is free, and one visit won’t wipe someone out financially or anything. But hey at least you’ll get treatment when the pneumonia you’ll develop while living under that bridge becomes acute.
Look, I know this is armchair and I’m not a qualified campaign manager, but seriously Democrats, POUND MITT ON THIS EVERY SINGLE FUCKING DAY.
@g: Yeah, but the ER does not and will not give you a prescription of blood pressure meds. The most they might do is give you a saline drip that day and maybe a pill for that day. But they don’t do 30-day or whatever prescriptions.
The Snarxist Formerly Known as Kryptik
I’ve come to understand that conservatism is all about short term instant gratification. You see it in their approach to business (profits now, invest later, all that matters is the next quarterly report!). You see it in their approaches to social issues (who cares if gays can be good soldiers in the long term?! They’re icky NOW!). And this is one example how they only think in the short term regarding health (if you’re not dying now, you don’t need health care! If you are, just go to the ER! Preventative care? That’s psycho-hippie talk!).
@Patricia Kayden: The next “debate” is a town hall style meeting. It will depend on the questions people ask them.
Wow, so he’s condescending and wrong. The hospitals don’t just pay for ER care for the indigent; they aggressively go after people for their bills. Someone who doesn’t have insurance can pass out on the sidewalk and wake up in the hospital with enough medical bills to put them into bankruptcy. Free Market, bitches!
@PurpleGirl: And this is central to my point, as they say on the Intertoobz.
when my son was 9 months old, he aspirated a piece of debris into his lung. all we knew was that he had a cough. For a month he failed to thrive, failed to gain weight. If I had not had insurance so that I could take him to his primary care doctor, repeatedly for weeks during that long winter, his condition would not have been diagnosed. turns out that over 2/3 of one lung was completely blocked. We were able to have surgery to remove the blockage, and follow up surgery a couple months later to remove scar tissue.
he’s now 24 and very healthy. No ER visit would have diagnosed this. and I also believe that it was diagnosed only because we had a consistemt primary care doctor who follwed the history of his condition.
Let Romney tell my family that everything would be fine, just go to the ER.
Villago Delenda Est
This is so FUCKING STUPID!
If you give the poor preventative care, if you catch this shit before it becomes critical and chronic, you’ll save money in the long run. Not to mention reduce their stress and as a result, give them a better attitude, and possibly make them more attractive to employers as a result.
This is just fucking stupid. It makes absolutely no economic sense to treat people at the last minute in an ER.
Unless economics have nothing at all to do with it, and it’s moral scold bullshit from pious assholes who need to be tossed, immediately, into an arena filled with mechanical lions who are programmed to be endlessly hungry.
The Snarxist Formerly Known as Kryptik
@Villago Delenda Est:
But real, good, God-fearing bootstrappin’ Americans have the good sense to not get sick if they can’t afford it. Preventative care is just more hippie talk for Commiecare!
“Many can’t go there; and many would rather die.”
“If they would rather die,” said Scrooge, “they had better do it, and decrease the surplus population.”
@YoohooCthulhu: I”m sorry about the loss of your sister. This is why ObamaCare is so important. Why we need to protect it now and then build on it in the future.
Mitt: “who die in their apartment”
That is because people in houses have health insurance, or else they are forced to sell their homes to pay for healthcare and wind up in an apartment.
At least Mitt didn’t say “apartment, shack, or cardboard box”.
pseudonymous in nc
Romney’s one of the few people in America who doesn’t have to fear financial ruin from illness. You can have a handful of millions in your bank account and that fear doesn’t entirely go away. A quarter-billion puts you over the threshold.
I don’t know why there wasn’t more beating of the drum on the emergency care issue, repeating over and over that WE ARE ALREADY PAYING FOR THIS. It’s indirect, when the hospital charges $4 for an aspirin in order to recoup those costs, and direct in funding for public hospitals.
Then again I don’t know why we didn’t get the same thing about how we’ve always rationed health care – we just want to stop doing it based on whether you have a job or are wealthy. So nobody seems interested in my messaging strategy.
It’s too complicated to make it past the sound bytes, but it’s particularly sad that nobody talks about what those indigent are asked to pay for their emergency care. Part of the reason that nobody knows what their care costs is that they’re charged based on the discounts their insurance company negotiated off the base rate… which only the uninsured are ever asked to pay.
So when your appendix bursts and you have emergency surgery those dunning notices that will follow you into bankruptcy are based on a cost that would never be assessed against someone with insurance. It’s doubly nuts.
I just don’t see how anyone could say Romney is out of touch.
Does Ann go to the ER for her MS treatments?
And this asshole is a businessman? How in hell did he ever make any money? Everyone knows if you catch something before it becomes chronic or overwhelming it is cheaper to treat.
I really have to question his business acumen since he obviously does not understand basic economic principles.
I gotta believe that Americans are smart enough to see the light and not let these foxes in the hen house. I just gotta!
ERs are NOT FREE! Someone needs to pound this into this man’s stupid head. Patients are billed for treatment. If they don’t pay up in full at the first request for payment, even if they are making payments, the payment demands get progressively uglier and more strident.
And there aren’t, say… people who have no sick leave and need notes from a doctor so they can avoid getting fired because they got sick, but they’re afraid to go to the doctor because they owe the clinic money for all the previous times they got sick that they can’t pay because they have no health insurance.
Romney knows this is bullshit. He’s said so himself, yet he cannot admit it. It won’t stop him from striking down the ACA, either. And his “plan” is economically disastrous into the bargain.
This asshole is leading in the national polls.
That’s where we currently stand.
At the end of the day, this entire election feels like a referendum on our ability, as a country, to make a semi-informed decision. Can we, as a nation, be hoodwinked by a slick salesman who says whatever we want to hear?
If the answer is, yes, we can then we have serious, serious issues that go far, far beyond the shitty place Romney will take us.
Obviously, people who think they’re entitled to anything more than ER health care are never going to vote for Mitt Romney. It’s not his job to worry about them; he’s never going to be able to get them to take responsibility.
You know, in my younger days I had a horrible job working for a collection agency. (I was not a collector, I just did the paperwork.) One of our clients was a nationally known hospital center. I routinely heard collectors harassing people for money they owed the hospital for an emergency room visit. Do hospitals just write those charges off now? That would surprise me quite a lot.
@The Snarxist Formerly Known as Kryptik:
Thinking long term takes what again? Oh that’s right it takes actual thought. It takes planing. It takes weighing the good against the bad, weighing the profit to the total cost. To be done right it even takes empathy about who it might hurt.
Are any of these things in the conservative handbook? Not in measurable quantity.
There is a weird article of faith by Republicans that anyone can walk into any doctor’s office and be treated for free. I have no idea where this comes from, but my parents (for one) believe it 100 percent.
And this asshole is a businessman? How in hell did he ever make any money?
Legally? He got someone to agree to give it to him.
Morally? He fucking stole it. Along with the lives that it was attached to.
Any guesses on how long even the ER mandate would survive a Smiler presidency, with the ZEGS at VP at Cantor as House Majority leader?
Policy, economics & common sense aside, does he truly belive they don’t ASK YOU FOR MONEY & BILL THE SH*T OUT OF YOU??? I mean, truly, is he that stupid? If you go to the ER, unless you are in all out cardiac arrest or bleeding to death, you are asked up front for insurance or a deposit. If you can’t pay before you leave, you get a visit from “financing” & set up a payment plan. If you can’t afford that, tough shit, they will hound you for it, call in collection agencies, drive you into bankruptcy. I mean, yes, you’ll get care for your urgent problem, but you’ll be dunned mercilessly for it.
And, as so many have said; get a “condition” like MS or cancer? Might as well die, unless you have a hell of a network for bake sales.
As an uninsured person, please, Mitt, DIAF.
@hep kitty: He didn’t. The State Leg bullied him into signing it.
@Gravie: I wound up in the ER with a massive blood pressure blow out from my nose. Like, horrible bleeding. I had insurance, was told the bill would be out of pocket $200. My insurance company paid more than the deductible, I paid $330 months later (got fired as they let my slavedriver boss into the room where I was being treated, thanks guys). 2 years later I was being hounded by creditors for a balance of $3k remaining. 6 hours in the ER-no surgery or anything, nearly $5k paid by insurers and I still had a bill. They tried again 3 years ago. Romney is a motherfucking liar and any poor ass who has to sit in an ER to get care deserves the destruction he or she will get for voting for him.
The Moar You Know
Worse. He’s that craven. Even his supporters know that he is just bullsh#tting here.
Even reporters realize that there is no point in calling him on this. What would be the point of fact checking something that is so obviously nonsense.
I understand the old “compassionate conservative” argument that churches and charities would pick up the tabs for all indigent sick people, the notion that hospitals would just say “bygones” is nuts.
But Romney is starring in a show in his own head, “Sh#t my Mitts Sez,” and just smiles his imperious smile and moves on past any contradictions.
As has been said man times, but bears repeating because is shows what a lying, immoral sack of garbage Mitt has become: ERs do not treat chronic illnesses.
Like the one his wife has.
For FSMs sake.
It would have been nice, since this is a widely used argument against the PPACA,, if Obama had spent some time explaining why the ER does not provide “health care.” It provides emergency care and it will never be a consistent source of preventive or timely on-going care. Hospitals and emergency rooms are simply not equipped to provide that care, especially not at affordable prices.
I’ve taken the few minutes necessary to explain the difference to a couple of people who made the standard GOP ER claim to me and it only took those few minutes and a few examples to get them to realize that what they’d been saying was pure bunk. The Obama Administration could have done the same.
EMTALA is a way to dress up a lousy, immoral health care system so that it appears — but only very superficially — to care about the health of American citizens. One way to lower our overall health care costs is to place much greater emphasis on preventive and on-going care (and patient education), something EMTALA fans would have us believe are unnecessary.
Note: Sebelius should have taken this on as a continuing task throughout her tenure, and while she is a pretty boring speaker (from what I’ve seen and heard), this effort requires a relatively short time period to explain, and then periodic reinforcement. That means she wouldn’t have to hold her audience rapt through her inspirational speaking skills. They could have hired Robert Reich to do a cute cartoon explanation.