Health care fix may lie in loans

Guest Column: J. Scot Comey
While I do not ever profess to having the be all and end all of solutions to major as well as minor social issues, I am never afraid to think outside the box and put my ideas in front of you for what hopefully shall be constructive evaluation and refining. More

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OP-ED

Health care fix may lie in loans

Guest Column: J. Scot Comey
Posted 7/23/12

While I do not ever profess to having the be all and end all of solutions to major as well as minor social issues, I am never afraid to think outside the box and put my ideas in front of you for what hopefully shall be constructive evaluation and refining.

Health care in this country is an absolute mess, I think we can all agree. Even more of a mess is how to humanely care for the sick and those who do not have the means to afford health care.

Presently, as I understand it, anyone who is in need of help may enter a federally subsidized hospital and get treated. While this is good, it does not address the issues of affording medications. I believe I have the seeds to an idea which may grow and possibly address the entire health care issue (with your help).

If a person loses their job or simply cannot afford health care or even has a pre-existing condition and is in need of health care, they shall be issued a type ff credit card, which is assigned by either the state government or a participating hospital or even a forward-thinking insurer. It costs nothing to have the card. If in the event that card-holder needs health care or medications, they simply use the card at the care-giver’s facility or pharmacy. The dollar amount is recorded with the issuer and structured as a 30-year amortized loan at prime + 1.

If the holder cannot afford the monthly payments in full then they make arrangements to pay what they can. The card is based on being a legal resident, of course. This idea shall have an additional benefit of sorts. Now that health care is available and affordable to all legal citizens, the chance of an illegal alien entering a facility for aid shall be that much more apparent.

As I mentioned in my opening statements, these are simply seeds I am planting. I am always concerned for my fellow human beings regardless of their citizenship status, so this particular dimension needs your ideas to assure they get help.

If the nonlegal individual was issued a similar card from their consulate with their country’s equivalent issuer being responsible for the debt-holding, this may be an option. Now the supposedly massive debts being incurred by our country for health care to noncitizens shall possibly be greatly mitigated.

The solutions to serious social issues are never black and white, it seems. This is even more true with the extreme political posturing between immature politicians and over-indulged baby boomers. If we all take the time to approach this health care issue with a heart, not looking for some recompense or personal benefit in return, I believe it shall be solved. •


J. Scot “Scottie” Comey owns an assisted-living facility in Pawtucket.

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