By David McLanahan, M.D.
The Seattle Times, August 19, 2019
Re: “Murder-suicide is suspected in pair’s deaths” [Aug. 11, B7]:
The news of the elderly couple’s death is another in the litany of tragedies inflicted upon American families by our dysfunctional health-care system.
As the article points out, current Medicare and Medicaid cover only 65% of medical expenses. As well as bearing the discomfort of illness, elderly people face deductibles, co-pays, high-cost medications, other out-of-pocket expenses and oppressive insurance paperwork. They often face the prospect of going bankrupt, losing their life savings, if any, and the prospect of asking family members and friends to help out. We all can understand this couple’s resolution.
The tragic decision facing this family would likely have been averted if they were covered by Improved Medicare for All, such as embodied in Rep. Pramila Jayapal’s H.R. 1384. This legislation would enable all of us to receive the health care we need from birth without any financial worries.
It’s time for all of our representatives — national, state, and local — to follow the lead of their constituents to join us in supporting justice in health care.