Military Healthcare SystemPosted: July 6, 2013
since the “neutered military” post received so much attention, and since a few readers asked me to post on it- i figured i’d give you guys what you asked for. this is going to simply be a post about what i’ve witnessed over the last 20 years. i’ve worked in healthcare my entire career. i’m just here to tell you what i’ve experienced.
the military health care system (MHCS) is basically a perfect example of socialized medicine. all HC is free to active duty and thier dependents.
the military has a vested interest in keeping all active duty in prime heath. so we get access 24-7. i can go to sick call 365 days a year and be seen. i’m sure that makes perfect sense to anyone. however, if i need to been seen by a specialty service (internal med, ortho, etc) then i become another cow in the herd. in 1994 (when i came in) if you needed to make an appointment, if you called in on a monday you could usually get seen before the week ended. now…..2 week wait MINIMUM.
i’m currently being seen by internal med for hypertension, if i need to schedule an appointment, i have a 3-4 week wait. i’m not complaining. well imagine if you’re a mother trying to schedule an appt for a child- 2 week wait. what’s a mom to do? well, do what everyone else does…..GO TO THE ER!!!!!! i have wroked in ER’s and in conjunction with ER’s for 90% of my career. i can say with complete honesty that 95% of the cases that come into the ER are NOT accute issues (as in symptoms have manifested in the last 48 hours). very few patients come in with “emergent issues”.
you read that right. the ER is now simply a 24 hour family practice clinic. ER visits (and i’m only talking navy) have increased by 600% in the last 10 years. this is a fact. and what’s the common thought process of the average patient coming in to the ER (regardless of age or gender)- “well, it’s free; so why not go.” i swear to God. i’ve heard THOUSANDS of patients utter those very words after simply stubbing their toe.
secondly. doctors practice what we call “defensive medicine”. NH jacksonville has had multiple cases where they were sued for malpractice. you can google it to prove i’m right. because of the possibility of litigation, more and more doctors are ordering procedures unneccassarily to avoid the possibility of litigation. got a headache, you’ll probably get a head CT to rule out a bleed despite lacking ANY nuerological deficiencies. i’ve witnessed CT’s, xrays, and ultrasounds ordered on ONE pt. why- to cover the Dr’s ass and……because it’s free.
and the fraud. don’t get me started. there are people that have aunts, uncles, and grandparents, in-law, parents put on their page 2 (show’s who your dependents are) so they can get free health care. yup.
now, this is simply among the 4 services. most of whom are working. take this dynamic and plug into the current entitlement minded sheeple. where 47% don’t even pay income taxes. got a bit of a chest cold, TRY and get an appointment since, you know….it’s free. and if you can’t get an appointment, just go to the ER for your 3 day chest cold. i mean…they legally can’t turn you away and you’re entitled to it. besides IT’S FREE!!!!
and if you’re over 60…..good luck. you’re at the back of the line within the HCS. i’ve lived in spain and italy. my gf’s “nonno” had cancer- they gave him pain meds. i asked if he were going to get chemo. my gf said no. i was shocked. when i asked why she said, lui e’ vecchio. stai cosi”- he’s old, that’s just how it is. this was 1998 btw. lived in spain from 2007-2009, and it was the same story. the quality of the HCS is abysmal. so, those “death panels” that won’t happen. LIE.
oh, and doctors, MANY doctors are walking away from practicing. what do you think THAT will do to the HCS?
and remember, these changes only happened within the last 10 years or so within the military. i’d predict this will implode in less than 5 years if/when it gets implemented. when people ask me for advice on what to do when ACA (affordable care act) get’s enacted, i tell them the same thing.
“don’t get sick”.
one thing i’m happy about is after spending 20 years as a Corpsman, there is very little i can’t treat on my own. 90% of the shit people get can easily be treated at home with OTC meds. they just don’t realize some sickness have a 4-6 week run time. usually a week to manifest, then 4-5 weeks for it to run it’s course.
again, this is just what i’ve observed working within the MHS. i leave it up to you to decide what road we’re heading down. and while you’re at it, go ahead and pontificate on the health issues in ‘MURICAH- especially obesity and a sedentary lifestyle.