I posted on our messed up healthcare system and the total lack of leadership to do anything about it and got a lot of responses reaffirming how pissed off people are about this country. A lot of you said that Bush and the Republicans were to blame and I couldn't agree more. I mean, Bush has got a pretty good insurance plan. In fact he has his own personal doctor. Is this an ENTITLEMENT? And for the Republicans, getting sick has become equivalent to moral weakness or lack of patriotism. How messed up is that?
You have may have seen Michael More's film Sicko and remember the guy doing handstands in England who dislocated his shoulder and got free and excellent healthcare in England. Well his name is Eric Turnbow and I actually went to High School with him in Olympia, Washington. And amazingly enough I had an almost identical experience in Denmark.
You see after giving a lecture in Aarhus, Denmark, I was walking down one of the streets of the city and my attention was caught by a pretty Danish girl across the street (thank goodness my wife doesn't read this blog, please don't tell) and tripped over a scaffolding on the sidewalk. After getting back to my hotel room I pulled up my pant leg and was freaked out when I saw a huge gash cutting through to the bone. What was my first thought? You guessed it: how much is this going to cost me in a country that doesn't take Blue Cross/Blue Shield?
Well I dragged my sorry ass over to the medical school where I was to attend a dinner in my honor and there was an ER conveniently located across the street. There I was attended by an attractive and very professional Danish doctor who neatly sewed me up. Afterward I stood up and asked the inevitable question.
"How much do I owe?"
"Nothing," she said. "We have National Healthcare here."
"Even if I am a foreigner?" I asked, incredulous.
"Nothing at all," she said.
Well I couldn't believe it, I didn't even have to fill out any paperwork.
Afterward as I limped across the street I wondered, do we really have the best healthcare in the country?
Hmmm. Probably not. And definitely not the prettiest doctors.