-Submitted by David Drumm (Nal), Guest Blogger
Without a hint of satire, The Wall Street Journal decided to let Suzanne Somers write an article on the Affordable Care Act on their blog “The Experts.” Somers “expertise” comes from her celebrity access to doctors, scientists, and medical professionals in the “alternative and integrative” health-care world. Somers has been on Oprah pushing her concept of wellness which involves taking 60 pills a day and injecting hormones into her vagina.
The CAM (Complementary and Alternative Medicine) health-care world is waging an all out attack against science-based medicine and health care. As Dr. Steven Novella puts it:
The later terms, “complementary” and “integrative,” are deceptions meant to distract from the fact the CAM (as much as general statements can be made about such a loose category) is anti-science, and therefore cannot be integrated into science.
Somers claims that affordable health care is socialized medicine. Princeton University economist Uwe E. Reinhardt notes: “Socialized medicine refers to systems that couple social health insurance with government-owned and operated health care facilities.” Reinhardt uses the Veterans Affairs health system as an example of socialized medicine. When health insurance is coupled with purely private health care delivery systems, it is understood as “social health insurance,” for example in Canada.
Somers provides anecdotal evidence of a long wait time to see a doctor for her sister-in-law. Somers does not mention the wait times for 48 million Americans who can’t go to a doctor at all because they don’t have insurance.
Somers talks about her Canadian cousins who, after becoming doctors, came the U.S. to “reap financial rewards.” Somers doesn’t mention that Canada spends 11.4% of it GDP on health expenditures while the U.S. spends 17.4%.
Somers notes that it’s good that affordable care will cover pre-existing conditions. Everybody loves the coverage of pre-existing conditions. It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to understand that the extra cost of that coverage isn’t going to be borne by the insurance companies.
Somers mentions that the news she listens to is all about the increases in insurance premiums. Had Somers examined the stories more closely, she would have found out that most just don’t hold water. Some people have such pitiful, and cheap, insurance policies that they don’t meet the ACA’s guidelines. Insurance companies have no incentive to get the customer the cheapest policy that meets those guidelines. It’s like a car salesman telling a customer their 2010 Toyota Camry needs to be replaced and sending them a bill for a 2013 Toyota Avalon when a 2013 Camry will meet their needs.
Somers is just another woo peddler whose celebrity has faded.