Saturday, March 28, 2009

Why Universal Health Insurance is a Moral Imperative

One of Andrew Sullivan's readers offers a glimpse into the world of the uninsured that is frightening and, frankly, makes me ashamed of this country's choices:

I'm an infectious disease specialist. Today I saw a patient with a horrible foot ulcer from diabetes. She likely has infection in her bone, will need weeks of treatment, and may lose her foot. She cried with guilt, regret, and disbelief at her condition. She had been an excellent patient. She saw her doctor, managed the complicated treatment of her diabetes, saw her foot specialist.

Until her husband lost his job and insurance. She couldn't afford her insulin pump supplies, started stretching her doctor visits. Paid cash when she could. And ignored...pushed away her pain. Tried to hide the smell coming from her foot. For 4 months. Now it may be too late.

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