I’m seeing it everywhere on the planet. All sorts of people are catching a bigger vision in all sorts of arenas. The most personal one I’ve had recently was about health insurance.
A friend left her job for better opportunities. Because her last post was in academia, her insurance lasts till the beginning of this school year. She’s spent a lot of this summer getting all her various physical details checked, measured and serviced before her insurance runs out.
Now I know her employer will offer her a COBRA plan, or she can get another policy through her professional union, or buy insurance on her own, but as we were talking through these various options, I made a comment that gave her pause.
I said, “The thing is, we don’t really need health insurance. What we need is universal health care.”
If you’ve spent any time listening to the stumping of American presidential candidates, you know that Universal Health Care is a rallying cry. Why? Because the health care system in the United States is broken. Calling for insurance reform doesn’t begin to address the problem.
Instead, my suggestion is that we let the health insurance system break down—as a step toward universal peace.
Big, unwieldy systems are breaking all over. I believe the reason for system breakdown is that systems codify rules for individuals. Health care has to be as individual as the individuals requiring it. One step we might consider as persons who participate in the health insurance system is to insist upon having access to our own medical records.
Currently, the health insurance system says that’s proprietary information. Proprietary to whom? If I could take all my own medical records (particularly on a CD) to a new doctor, my whole history would be available. There would not need to be repetition of testing or other information-gathering. Think of the time, money, talent, trees that could be freed up if I were just given a small disc which held my own health history.
Ralph Waldo Emerson wrote that the first wealth is health. Taking responsibility for knowing the history of our own bodies could put the reins back into the hands of the individuals to whom the bodies belong rather than continuing to subject us to the irrationality of a system gone haywire.
I don’t know about you, but even the idea of being responsible for my own health information brings me peace.
Visit Dr. Susan Corso’s website
Originally posted for Ode Magazine