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First name: J******
Last name: T********** MD
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I am enjoying your articles. I just wanted to remark that the biggest cost in Medicare/Medicaid is among those who have never worked and never intend to so do. As an ER doc we see all kinds of folks slurping from the public trough and taking methamphetamines and cocaine. Even among the non-working smokers we can see that their rate of aging and affiliated health problems are much greater than among those who lead productive lives. Bottom line: limit benefits for those who do not contribute. THere are more people collecting disability in their 20s than those in their 40s, despite that there are more people in their 40s!! Many parents raise their kids to get on "disability" so that they will be taken care of with out the stress of having to work. These are the factors which ar really destroying the health care system. I also see that about 30% of all high school kids have either diabetes or hypertension! When I was in high school in the 70s I went to a high school with nearly 4000 kids and NO ONE had those roblems. THe average high school kid now is like a person in their 50s was in the 1970s.


Hi Dr. Wong-

In that same article you mentioned American's "fear of dying" and the
high cost incurred in the last six months of life. One thing to keep in
mind is that if you look at the class of patients who get BOTH Medicare
and Medicaid, the family members of the particular sick patient have
ALOT of money to lose if the patient dies. Naturally, they always want
"everything" done. This often means placing a patient with terminal
lung cancer on a ventilator. The bottom line is that the family members
are collecting the patient's government check. The longer we keep the
patient alive, the longer the family collects the check. Many of these
checks -- for people who have never worked - are in excess of $2,000 a
month. (I have heard of checks as large as $8,000 a month tax free!)
One of the strangest things I see as an ER doctor is when I tell a
family after an unsuccessful code that the patient has passed away is
that one of the family members will ask me if they will be receiving
"the check" for the month.

The first and fairest way to save the taxpayers money is to take
everyone off government health programs who use cocaine,
methamphetamines, or smoke. (You test for cigarrette smoking by a blood
cotinine level.) In the ER we see that about 80% of the people under age
SIXTY who get government checks are on coke or meth and about 95% of
persons of all ages who get government checks smoke. They shouldn't get
free heatlh care at the local ER either. The way we see it is if they
have money to smoke and take recreational drugs, then they have money
to pay health insurance.

Best regards, Dr. J....T....


Hi Again:

AMEN to your plan! I agree with it completely!!! Now to convince a political party to support it - that will be impossible, they would lose too many votes and be called heartless and uncaring etc, etc, etc. Unfortunately it will take some great upheaval or collapse to change things round for the better. There was a good term used in the 70's for terrorists thats fits these folks very well "oxygen wasters".

Be well and God bless,
Dr. Wong

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