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ObamaCare causing 5-hour ER waits in California

Posted by on Jul. 7, 2014 at 10:43 PM
  • 182 Replies

ObamaCare causing 5-hour ER waits in California

Image Credit: KMPH-TV

Published by: Dan Calabrese on Monday July 7th, 2014

Dan Calabrese

Devastating.

Remember one of the Democrats' leading arguments in favor of ObamaCare - that more people with health insurance would mean fewer people relying on emergency rooms as their primary health care provider? There was always a huge problem with that. ObamaCare also promised to lower premiums, which is a logical impossibility when you consider all the added benefits it was supposed to deliver, so they tried to cut costs by narrowing provider networks.

As a result, access to primary care providers was actually lessened. And guess where that's driving people to: Emergency rooms!

As KMPH-TV reports, emergency rooms in California are seeing five-hour waits as a result. Not potentially at some point in the future. Now. Five hours is now the average ER wait time throughout California:

This was as predictable as the day is long. There is no way you can guarantee universal access to something while causing the money spent on that same thing to go down. And when you try, your inevitably pathetic attempt will result in the people being asked to provide the service either leaving the profession entirely or severely limiting who they will see - and under what circumstances - because the government has made the business of being a health care provider an economic loser.

Reporter Erik Rosales explains the situation perfectly, particularly in his interview with the doctor who explains he has stopped accepting patients with ObamaCare-subsidized insurance plans. Why? Because he charges $80 for an office visit, while his own costs are $48 per visit. That's a decent profit if he sees enough patients. But ObamaCare policies only pay him $47 per visit. If he accepts that, it costs him money to see patients. Even if you wanted to do that, you couldn't. You have to make a living.

So as more doctors refuse ObamaCare-insured patients, they had for the ER, and ER doctors tell Rosales that their activity is on the rise - and a lot more of it is for what they describe as primary-care type stuff rather than true emergency medicine.

The basic, fundamental flaw in the Democrats' thinking was always this: They thought the ideal situation in health care would be for everyone to have fantastic health insurance policies, and they also thought they only reason people didn't have such policies was that the law allowed insurance companies to turn them down. Pass a law mandating acceptance with price controls, and bam, everyone would have insurance, everyone would go see their primary care physicians for preventive care, and health care spending on the whole would go down.

That was wrong. People didn't lack coverage because health insurers were meanies who didn't want to cover them. Insurance companies are like any other business. They want as many customers as they can get. But there are real, often difficult-to-manage costs involved with paying for another person's health care, and those costs become all the more complicated when people expect you to pay for everything rather than merely insuring against risk like most other insurance policies do.

Understanding none of this, the Democrats went ahead and passed ObamaCare, completing ripping up a system that had a lot of flaws but nonetheless saw more than 80 percent of Americans happy with their coverage, and replacing it with a complete disaster whose negative effects are only starting to be seen and understood. And even now they don't understand the damage they've done, because they never understood health care finance in the first place and they still don't.

by on Jul. 7, 2014 at 10:43 PM
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Replies (1-10):
jcribb16
by Primrose Foxglove on Jul. 7, 2014 at 10:57 PM

I have a friend in TX, who, last night, went to ER.  After close to 3 hours and still a long wait ahead, she decided to go home and try to make it until morning, to go to the dr.  However, she wasn't at home long, before she got much worse, and this time had to call the ambulance.  Since they picked her up she got treated quicker.  However, that's not a good thing having to wait as long as she did, and as the ones in CA are doing.  

Pema_Jampa
by 2HotTacoTini on Jul. 7, 2014 at 11:15 PM
14 moms liked this

That was like that before ObamaCare. Try again.

trippyhippy
by Silver Member on Jul. 7, 2014 at 11:23 PM
3 moms liked this

And that's different from the norm for years how?


Sisteract
by Socialist Hippie on Jul. 7, 2014 at 11:29 PM
5 moms liked this

Really- ER waits are notoriously long- well before the ACA-

Did people just fall out of the sky?

Has no one had issues with shitty insurance before the ACA?

I guess we (my hubs and I) have  had the lousiest employers in the country because we have had insurance issues/concerns for years- and I worked in HC for 35 years!!!

DSamuels
by Gold Member on Jul. 8, 2014 at 12:18 AM
2 moms liked this

Maybe some places but the longest we've been in the ER is 2 hours tops before we had been treated and on the way out.

Quoting Pema_Jampa:

That was like that before ObamaCare. Try again.


DSamuels
by Gold Member on Jul. 8, 2014 at 12:21 AM
2 moms liked this

There was a study done on ER use in either Washington or Oregon after they expanded medicaid. The goal was now that people had coverage it would lessen ER use and they'd go to the dr instead. They found that ER usage went UP by 40%. Ooops, guess that didn't work.

littlemum41
by Silver Member on Jul. 8, 2014 at 12:30 AM
7 moms liked this

Oh gee, back  in the 80's when Reagan was President , I took my daughter to an ER . (She had an ovarian cyst; however they didn't even diagnose that then, It took another year and another Doctor  to spot it). But we waited for three hours while they saw little kids with colds . Mommies taking their kiddies to the ER hoping for a prescription for cold meds that would put them to sleep. When they finally got around to seeing my daughter, they asked if she was pregnant! She was a VIRGIN. They apologized and sent her home with pills for menstrual cramps.

Should I blame Ronnie Reagan?

littlelamb303
by Member on Jul. 8, 2014 at 12:32 AM
3 moms liked this

hmmm , I remember long waits like this back in the 70s and 80s.  This is NOTHING new.  As a matter of fact, I choose a certain hospital around here that usually does not have long waits.  Some of the other ERs have had long waits going back decades.

sherry132
by Member on Jul. 8, 2014 at 12:39 AM
3 moms liked this

People can complain when they have to wait 21 or more hours like I did in an Army hospital. Five hours, pshhh, that's a wait in an Army dr office and nothing impressive. 

blondekosmic15
by Blonde on Jul. 8, 2014 at 1:40 AM
2 moms liked this

Very sorry to hear about your friend JC. A preview of Obamacare in America. Predicted and forewarned....

Quoting jcribb16:

I have a friend in TX, who, last night, went to ER.  After close to 3 hours and still a long wait ahead, she decided to go home and try to make it until morning, to go to the dr.  However, she wasn't at home long, before she got much worse, and this time had to call the ambulance.  Since they picked her up she got treated quicker.  However, that's not a good thing having to wait as long as she did, and as the ones in CA are doing.  


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