No Country for
Sick Old Men
Doc Compares Obamacare with Trumpcare; Differences Are Concerning
BY DR. RICHARD WEINER
Patients are coming to my clinic with worries. That’s nothing new: people have chest pain, or a cough that won’t go away, or a mole that gets bigger, and they go to the doctor. What’s new is that they worry won’t be able to afford the trip.
Patients are now treating me as a type of insurance agent, one who can divine the future and tell them whether to buy health coverage, and how much.
Call my patient Mike. Mike has been smoking at least a pack of cigarettes a day since he graduated from high school forty years ago. He’s overweight, doesn’t exercise much, and is headed toward diabetes. His blood pressure could be better.
Mike wants me to peer into my crystal ball and tell him what his chances of a heart attack are. Here’s a crystal ball: http://www.calculators.org/health/heart.php
Most of the tools listed there will give you an answer in the same ballpark, and there’s little mystery involved. Mike should quit smoking this afternoon, lose thirty or forty pounds, eat more sensibly and take his blood pressure medicine. (A prescription, by the way that’s free at some grocery story pharmacies and only $4.00 a month at Walmart. The national economy is safe.)
But Mike wants more that. He wants me to specify the date on which he will have a heart attack, so he can buy really good health insurance that year. I tell Mike (more…)
African American Suicide
Why a 15-year-old Girl’s Death Should Raise Alarm Bells Among Black Parents
BY KIM WHITING
14-year-old Marcie Gerald was an honor roll student at Homewood-Flossmoor High School School in Chicago’s south suburbs, a typical young teen who liked to change up her hairstyles and paint her nails in colorful shades. She was into health food, liked shopping for natural soaps and skin care products, and followed the glamorous lives of models.
Her mom, Elizabeth Gerald, says, “She was a little sophisticated for her age. She was involved in organizations that empowered young women and focused on community service.” Elizabeth says Marcie had dreams of attending Harvard Law School one day.
Yet three years ago, violence turned Marcie’s life tragically (more…)