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Just over a week ago a beloved family member collapsed in the middle of the night, was rushed to the hospital in shock and underwent emergency surgery for internal bleeding. Sophie received a post-operative blood transfusion and spent two days in intensive care. Thanks to expert, timely and compassionate care, today she is back home and doing well.
Excellent emergency medical care is the norm in the United States, thank goodness. What stands out from my family’s recent hospital experience is the administrative side.
Consider: while Sophie was being prepped for surgery, the nurse provided us a detailed estimate of the likely cost of her stay, breaking down the clinical variables and associated prices that would determine the final bill. On discharge day the charges came in as forecast. No surprises. No red tape. No Obamacare. We paid by credit card and were on our way.
Our sojourn into market-driven medicine got me thinking: if high-quality, affordable, hassle-free healthcare is readily available for our nine-year-old Portuguese water dog, why isn’t this system an option for the rest of us?
Animal rights advocates posit that human beings are just another species. Nothing special. “A rat is a pig is a dog is a boy,” as PETA founder Ingrid Newkirk puts it. Well, PETA may finally perform a public service by providing U.S. citizens an arguable legal basis for accessing a market-driven alternative to Obamacare: veterinary medicine.
Think about it: The other day, I witnessed vets in our local clinic treating dogs, cats, a chicken with back pain, and a tortoise named Hortense—human beings should be a snap to manage by comparison.
I have seen the future, and it works.