Archive | February, 2017

Healthcare in the United States — Ha, ha!

12 Feb

Wow, what a topic! It’s an anomaly the way our healthcare system is broken into thousands of parts with many more thousands of players — not counting the consumers of healthcare. Think of all the HMOs and PPOs and other healthcare insurance entities. In order to be seen by a doctor or dentist, one has to pay a middleman insurance entity because otherwise one can’t afford to go. Then what about this litigious society which raises up healthcare costs by requiring medical professionals to carry expensive malpractice insurance? The insurance and pharmaceutical industries are the real winners in today’s economy.
But we all know that. It just seems that, as hard workers in this society, there is little time to be civically involved. It’s all we can do to provide for our families and try to raise our children to become responsible citizens like ourselves!
If you’re reading this blog and want to reach out to our new President and our Congress, get in touch. I think one of the first steps I would take would be to provide dental insurance for our seniors. Many people of working age do not realize that they will not have dental insurance when they retire. And right now the dental profession has no leash to keep it in check. The “gold standard” of Medicare (which sets the prices for all other procedures performed on patients with commercial insurance) does not cover dental care. Just think of it: A vital piece of your healthcare is missing. Medicare also, by the way, provides no help in purchasing hearing aids.
To follow my thoughts on the necessity of including dental care in Medicare: May I remind you that the teeth are the first step in the digestive process before the food actually reaches the gut. The gums are another extremely sensitive part of the body which affect a person’s overall health. It makes sense to consider how we as a society can provide affordable dental care for our citizens. Let’s start with getting it on the books for Medicare recipients.
In other societies, the elders are respected and cherished. Their wisdom is actually taken to heart. In the United States, however, our workforce is literally chewed up and spit out. Many people look forward to a retirement which never materializes because they have not received the proper healthcare (including nutrition and exercise education) during their working lives. I look at it as scandalous in a country which prides itself on being the most advanced in the world!

Parenting and Electronic Devices

6 Feb

It’s probably harder to parent your children than it was for your parents or your grandparents to parent their young children! I’ll tell you why I think so: There are so many more choices and a much higher probability that they (or you!) will get hooked on some of the choices made.
Let’s assume you want to provide well for your children. (Most parents do, even going back to the Bible when Jesus was reported to have asked “Who among you would give your child a stone to eat rather than a piece of bread” (paraphrased by Jean Eva).
However, some of this “giving” may have ulterior motives, such as the TV babysitter in the old days and now the IPad babysitter. Like almost everything, electronic devices can be used or misused. When anyone spends enormous amounts of time interacting with a game on an electronic device, that person is missing out on other dimensions in life. Some of those dimensions might be

talking and listening to others
enjoying the natural world
enjoying sports and physical activity
enjoying cultural venues such as museums
playing a musical instrument or engaging in a hobby

It is sad when we enter a restaurant, a place where presumably one can enjoy good food and good company, and we see each member of the family on an electronic device hidden away in their own little world.

If you are just about to buy your child an IPhone or an IPad, think about how you will set the guidelines for its use. Think also about your own practice of gaming on your device. Have that family meeting and plan the agenda. Don’t forget to ask for input from the kids also. Hopefully some fun topics will come up — like the next vacation in the out of doors!