Citizens of Upright Moral Character
i never thought I could be so free


Tue Jan 17, 2006

Medicare debacle

I just got off the phone with my dad, who is a pharmacist and small businessman. He manages and is the sole pharmacist in a small town store he owns with 2 employees who work part time.

Seems this medicare switchover that happened on January 1 is more than a little headache. He is spending every available waking hour dealing with medicare - the whole system is so screwed up it's got most people enrolled in medicare baffled, plus the person behind the counter at the drugstore.

For my father what has gone from a demanding job that requires long hours in managing the store, ordering, doing the books, and finally being there as the staff pharmacist (after all, it's a pharmacy and there always has to be a registered pharmacist present in a pharmacy) to now dealing with the medicare switch has turned his normal 10+ hour days into 16 hour days plus both days on weekends to straighten it out. After 40 years working as a pharmacist he is reconsidering - talking about selling the store, something.

I really can't believe it but this was supposed to be a reform. I don't know much about medicare - and I haven't got all the details from my dad about why exactly this is taking so much time, just that what was a fairly simple process before has become a nightmare. The government has help lines, but you can spend an hour on hold, disconnected, or transfered. All for the pharmacist to actually get paid for the medicine he or she dispenses.

As I have read, the new medicare plan is a step on the way to privitization - 'consumer driven'. I read that in New Hampshire there are 41 different plans you could sign up for. I also read that an entire class - barbituates - were cut out under the plan. So just don't plan on getting any seizures if you are on medicare.

Bush's Medicare plan is going to cost 750 billion dollars, and is turning out a nightmare for a small business person. Seniors get out of this plans that are in many cases less comprehensive than what they had before, with the full deductible hitting in the 'doughnut hole' in the plan when you've spent more than $2500 and less than $5000. Hmm.

The weird thing about this is, why? It seems like it's engineered for failure. Did they consult anyone when writing this? Yes, maybe someday there will be an educated populace making good decisions about their choices in healthcare. As I understand that's what this plan is supposed to do - make people make choices about what plan is right for them, and saving the insurance companies lots of money. What do seniors get out of it? Well, just be sure and don't get sick with an illness that is not covered by your plan. And save up for the part in your plan where the full deductible kicks in.

Maybe these kind of bills written by the Republican congress is a big wet kiss to the big Pharmacutical companies and big business, screw the consumer, and screw the small business owner who has to make sense of it.

It would seem to me that the small pharmacy is set in front of a firing squad in an atmosphere that already favors big business in attempting to decode this.

Someone told me Bush said that the elderly who are having problems with the new program should "have their children help them, ask someone at their church to help them or someone at the community center.."

[Followup: I posted more on medicarehere in this post

Moral Citizen: evil-barry on Jan 17, 06 | 10:55 pm | Profile

Category: George W. Bush
[1] Comments (5222 views) |  [2] Trackbacks | [0] Pingbacks | Link | Email Article


Submitted entries will be reviewed for inclusion

Notify me when someone replies to this post?


Mortimer Sneed maintains this web site to enhance public access to information, with help from noble citizens. This is a service that is continually under development. The views and opinions of authors expressed herein do not necessarily state or reflect the opinion of the owner of this website. The documents on this web site contain hypertext pointers to information created and maintained by other public and private organizations. Please be aware that we do not control or guarantee the accuracy, relevance, timeliness, or completeness of this information. Further, the inclusion of pointers to particular items in hypertext is not intended to reflect their importance, nor is it intended to endorse any views expressed by the author of the reference or the organization operating the server on which the reference is maintained. We are not responsible for any physical harm that you may inflict upon yourself. We are not in anyway suggesting that you act on the things presented in this site or any works related to this site. We want you to be happy, really we do. We love you. But let's just say it's a certain kind of 'tough love'.


This site contains copyrighted material the use of which has not always been specifically authorized by the copyright owner. We are making such material available in our efforts to advance understanding of environmental, political, human rights, economic, democracy, scientific, and social justice issues, etc. We believe this constitutes a 'fair use' of any such copyrighted material as provided for in section 107 of the US Copyright Law. In accordance with Title 17 U.S.C. Section 107, the material on this site is distributed without profit to those who have expressed a prior interest in receiving the included information for research and educational purposes. For more information go to: If you wish to use copyrighted material from this site for purposes of your own that go beyond 'fair use', you must obtain permission from the copyright owner.