Las Vegas Sun

June 19, 2018

Currently: 75° — Complete forecast

One Man’s View:

Current path won’t fix health care


Tim O’Callaghan

Most everyone in the United States knows health-care reform is needed. However, each may have his own idea of what reform should be. To me, it's quite obvious there are at least two points to consider.

The first is the cost of actual medical care and the second is medical coverage, or the mechanism to pay for the rising cost of medical care.

My personal experience from this past week has made this even clearer than ever before.

It started with a weekend at Lake Mohave two weeks ago, where we met up with some of our Orange County clan. While frolicking and jumping off rocks into the lake, our youngest must have picked up some bacteria in her ear. She returned to OC with the clan, where her ear exploded with ooze and became so inflamed it closed up.

Donna and I had gone up to Pioche in Lincoln County for a couple of days when the drama began to unfold, leaving any urgent care decision to our relative, Sharon. After they made a trip to the urgent care facility, then a second one and finally a trip to the ER without any results, we made a quick change of plans and immediately headed to Southern California. When we arrived, we made a call to Dr. Dushman, the family pediatrician, and explained everything that had occurred. To us, it seemed desperate after four doctors and eight different prescriptions with no improvement. He said she needed an ear wick to get the antibiotics into the ear. We had an appointment with a ear specialist, who confirmed what our pediatrician had told us over the phone.

All turned out well, although it leaves me wondering why it took so many doctors and prescriptions. We had to pay the deductibles, and the insurance company must cover the rest.

Even though the first four doctors didn't get it right, we don't recover our deductibles, and the insurance company still has to pay.

We can't return the unused meds to the pharmacy and, again, the insurance company still has to pay.

So what kind of health-care reform are we looking for?

The issue has become quite convoluted. But one thing is for sure: The bill proposed by the House of Representatives is flawed in many ways. It has the backs of the insurance industry, the medical community and average Americans up against the wall.

The Senate needs to listen to the American people and come up with reform that makes sense and is written in concise language that can be understood.

We need reform that is fair and provides coverage for every citizen that doesn't impede upon ability of Americans to have a choice in coverage.

The rhetoric is running deep and fast in the public debate, making it hard to decipher what is true and what is not.

The stakes are high with all sides skewing the truth.

The rhetoric needs to stop, solutions need to be created and reform needs to begin.

In my opinion, it should start with legislation that is less complicated than what is proposed by Congress.

Tim O’Callaghan, co-publisher of the Home News, can be reached at 990-2656 or [email protected]. He writes a regular blog at

Join the Discussion:

Check this out for a full explanation of our conversion to the LiveFyre commenting system and instructions on how to sign up for an account.

Full comments policy