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Here’s a secret. If you have an emergency situation (and pretty anything is an emergency) you can get treatment. It’s not as if you can’t get healthcare in the United States.

Here's a symptom. If you find a lump in your breast, they won't treat you in an emergency room. They'll refer you to a radiologist and an oncologist, neither of whom will see you unless you have insurance.

Of course, once the cancer spreads and there's sufficient pain, they'll treat you in the emergency room. For the pain. They won't be able to save your life at that point, of course, but, hey! What's your life worth, anyway? Bupkis. Right?

If you get diabetes, they won't provide you with treatment at the emergency room. They'll refer you to someone who won't see you without insurance. Of course, if the diabetes gets severe enough and you present in need of a leg amputation to save your life, they'll probably do that for you, but they'll charge you in the tens of thousands of dollars for it and if you can't pay, they'll come after whatever they can squeeze out of you, till you're dry.

There are lots of things an emergency room won't do -- procedures without which you'll die. And, if you don't have insurance, there are damned few doctors or hospitals who will provide the procedures emergency rooms don't perform. You might get lucky and be picked up by some charitable organization, or your state might have a fund from which you can obtain aid, but the truth is that thousands of people die each year from treatable diseases because they simply can neither afford the health care premiums or the treatment.

That's the price "we" pay for freedom, though, right?

Oh, and by the way -- emergency rooms nationwide are closing their doors because they've been providing care to people who can't pay, no matter how hard the hospital squeezes. The "responsible" financial solution for the hospital is to close the money-pit emergency rooms. So, if you -- well insured though you may be -- find yourself as an auto accident victim in many places in this country needing transport to the "nearest" emergency room for life-saving treatment, that "nearest" emergency room may be an hour and a half's drive away.

But that's okay. At least you didn't have to pay higher taxes to support health care access for deadbeats.

It's a myth that we don't need universal coverage because emergency rooms pick up the slack.

And the more people are forced to rely on emergency rooms, the more emergency rooms will vanish into memory, and even the rich will have difficulty getting timely treatment in true medical emergencies.

And this doesn't even take into consideration the fact that we're treating flu symptoms at emergency rooms at about twenty times the cost of treating it in a doctor's office.

What the HELL is the matter with people? People in this country are so ignorant I'm beginning to think they deserve what they get. Willingly conned by the media, politicians and industry shills, they'll all wake up one day and find themselves dead because the insurance with which they're so "satisfied" has denied their request for life-saving surgery.

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