Let’s Review

Health Care: The administration has amended or delayed ObamaCare 19 times. Unions are screaming about the harm it will cause. The exchanges are in disarray. Yet it’s Republicans who are out of touch for wanting to stop it?

After all, the solution to many Democrats is Single Payer, even MORE government intervention.

Recently, Rep. Chris Van Hollen, D-Md., accused the GOP of having “a fetish about trying to kill ObamaCare.” Guess he has a point. After all, just look at some of the terrible things Republicans have been saying about it in recent weeks:

• It will “destroy the foundation of the 40-hour workweek that is the backbone of the American middle class.”

• It will “end up forcing millions out of multi-employer plans.”

• It “creates unstoppable incentives for employers to reduce weekly hours for workers.”

• Its “perverse incentives are already creating nightmare scenarios.”

• “In its rush to achieve its passage, many of the act’s provisions were not fully conceived.”

• And, repealing ObamaCare would “protect our employers, our industry and our most important asset: our members and their families.”

Oh, wait! It wasn’t Republicans saying those things. Every one of those complaints was lodged by top union officials who, despite backing the law, now see its dark side.

Democrats such as Van Hollen also conveniently overlook the fact that Obama has already signed 14 bills into law that changed or killed parts of ObamaCare and delayed another five key pieces that proved unworkable, according to a new Congressional Research Service report.

The CRS also found that the administration missed half of the deadlines set in the law. And an inspector general report found it well behind schedule ensuring the ObamaCare data hub is secure.

Then there’s the fact that, just weeks before the exchanges are supposed to open, “not a single state appears to be completely ready.” That’s what Leavitt Partners’ W. Brett Graham told a congressional panel this week, adding that many states have “only recently begun to test their systems” to verify eligibility and subsidy requests.

So, let’s review.

We have a law that unions say will seriously harm middle-class families, that’s already required multiple fixes and delays, that relies on exchanges that won’t be ready, and that poses serious privacy risks.

Seems to us the real question that needs asking isn’t why the GOP is so obsessed with stopping ObamaCare, but why Democrats are so determined to let this disaster roll down the tracks.

THE AGENDA IS THE AGENDA!!! They aren’t going to be denied now!

If you think the Obama health law is only for the uninsured and you won’t be affected, you’re in for a surprise next time you go to the doctor. Be prepared for questions unrelated to why you are seeking medical help — questions that you don’t want to answer.

Whether you’re at the dermatologist or the cardiologist, you’ll likely be asked: “Are you sexually active? If so, with one partner, multiple partners or same-sex partners?”

Doctors are being turned into government agents, pressured financially to ask questions they consider inappropriate and unnecessary, and to violate their Hippocratic Oath to keep patients’ records confidential.

Going to the doctor can be embarrassing. But for your own good, you confide things to a doctor you wouldn’t tell anyone else. What is happening here is different.

“This is nasty business,” says Dr. Adam Budzikowski, a New York cardiologist, who called the sex question “insensitive, stupid, and very intrusive.” He could not think of an occasion when a cardiologist would need such information.

Doctors and hospitals that don’t comply with the federal government’s electronic health records requirements forgo incentive payments now and face financial penalties from Medicare and Medicaid starting in 2015. The Department of Health and Human Services has already paid out over $12.7 billion in incentives to doctors and hospitals.

Dr. Richard Amerling, a nephrologist and Albert Einstein Medical College associate professor of medicine, explains that medical record should be “a story created by you and your doctor solely for your treatment and benefit.” But the administration’s electronic record requirements are turning it “into an interrogation, and the data will not be confidential.”

Lack of confidentiality is what concerned the New York Civil Liberties Union in a 2012 report. Electronic medical records have enormous benefits, but with one click of a mouse every piece of information in a patient’s record, including social history, is transmitted, disclosing too much.

The social history questions also include whether you’ve ever used drugs, including intravenous drugs. As the NYCLU cautioned, revealing a patient’s past drug problem, even if it was a decade ago, risks stigma.

On the other end of the political spectrum is the Goldwater Institute, a free-market think tank. It argues that by requiring everyone to have health insurance and then imposing penalties on insurers, doctors, hospitals who don’t use the one-click electronic system, you are violating Americans’ medical privacy.

Protests from these privacy advocates are largely ignored. On Jan. 17, HHS announced that if patients want to keep something out of their electronic record, they should pay cash. That’s impractical for most people.

In 2010, when Congress was drafting ObamaCare, the National Rifle Association demanded a protection that became Section 2716 of the final law. It bars the federal government from compelling doctors and hospitals to ask you if you own a firearm. That’s the only question they can’t be told to ask you.

Where are the women’s rights groups that went to the barricades in the 1980s and 1990s to prevent the federal government from accessing a woman’s health records? Hypocritically, they are silent now.

Patients need to defend their privacy by refusing to answer the intrusive “social history” questions. If you need to confide something relating to your treatment, ask your doctor about keeping two sets of books so that your secrets stay in the office. Doctors take their oath seriously and won’t be offended.

Are such precautions paranoid? Hardly. We’re only starting to see the data collection ambitions of the executive branch.

On Sept. 6, the New York Times reported that Edward Snowden’s revelations show that the National Security Agency has “broadly compromised the guarantees that Internet companies have given consumers to reassure them that their communications, on line bank and medical records, would be undecipherable to criminals or governments.”

Be cautious about sharing your medical secrets with Uncle Sam. (IBD)

He wants to know everything about you…and so do the hackers.

And drink more water, Mama Government, Michelle Obama Said so…

“I really care about your health like I care about my kids’ health,” she told the crowd. “That’s why I’ve devoted so much of my energy into making sure that your generation is as healthy as you can be.  We’ve been talking about how you got to move and keep active and eat right.

“But as we were thinking about this, we were thinking, what is the one thing that we can have you guys do that ensures good health? And it’s really pretty simple. It’s drink more water. Just drink up. Because truly — as I’ve said before — water is the first and best energy drink.” (IBD)