Monday, May 26, 2014
Another sad time as we learn of the killings in Isla Vista. Anger and sadness precede the grieving of the loss. During that time many things will be said, lost of which will involve gun control and blaming the NRA. Let's stop and go back a few decades. Way back when I was a child we were first taught to treat others as we would like to be treated. There were no caveats about race or creed. Everybody was to follow the Golden Rule. Back then when things went wrong we were encouraged to look inward to find a resolution not at others to place blame. We learned, or many of us learned, life was about personal choices and their consequences. Today it seems the pattern is more to make excuses for bad decisions. While it is fine to sympathize with and look for understanding of a person's motivation after they have committed crimes against innocent people, we should not be making excuses thus somehow raising them to the level they sought in life only after having done the most heinous act against another. That sends the wrong message to others struggling with personal problems. It has often been pointed out you cannot legislate morality. What a waste of time, effort! In the latest instance involving Elliot Roger, the parents had asked police to check on him. They were alarmed by his videos and posts. They also knew of his continuing problems as he has been seeing a therapist. I wonder why the police were unable to do more. I recognize the 4th amendment. However, did the parents' concern along with the posts provide the necessary probable cause to do at least a cursory search? Couldn't the warning or pleas of the parents be enough to have him evaluated and maybe held for a brief period involuntarily. Why didn't one of the officers just ask "Hey dude is it OK if I just look around a bit to reassure your Mom and Dad you're OK?" I can't help but think there WAS something missed in this case. I certainly am not blaming police or joining the cry for gun control. To me, it is easy to second guess actions not taken and blame availability of lethal force for the deaths in Sandy Hook, Isla Vista and Colorado. Since we seem to be losing our right to privacy in many ways perhaps it would be more palatable if the invasion was used to actually help save lives. HIPAA laws started out to protect people's medical history from being public record. There is a line however. Most of the recent killing sprees were committed by people with clear mental health issues. Since police and government officials are protected from being sued why can't we protect mental health professional from suits brought on when they report concerns? I believe if we really wanted to solve the issue, tough choices will have to be made. I go back to starting with young children. Instill in them the principle of treating others as they want to be treated, regardless of any difference in appearance or beliefs. Also make it clear blaming others for choices you make is not acceptable. Many people have been bullied and become successful. Many people have been abused and risen to positions of power. Let young people know there are options out there and consequences to their actions.
Wednesday, May 21, 2014
I have entirely too much personal experience with government fraud against citizens but it seems perhaps now is a good time to sound off again about the problems I've experienced. My Father is a 95 year old, disabled veteran. He finally was permitted into the VA system about 10 years ago for a claim filed in 1945. The excuse given for the delay and need to re-file in 2005 was "the fire in St. Louis" which destroyed records. He began with Primary Home Health Care through the VA. Their records listed him as having high blood pressure. Although the visiting nurse was aware and I called several supervisors to complain, his records were not corrected to state he actually has low blood pressure. This caused an entirely different problem to arise but I won't bother to detail. I do believe it has been corrected. Additionally, Medicare, his supplemental insurance and I have been billed for services provided through the VA. There was an annual visit from various departments, nutrition, PT, etc. Each year I requested a device to assist him with putting on his socks and an amplifier-type device (not a hearing aid) Each year I received a walker. I collected three or four. A psychiatrist (and I use the term loosely) came to the house one day, spent two minutes with a man who can't hear anything (he has 3% hearing in one ear only) and diagnosed him as being batshit crazy, unaware of his surroundings,etc. This was based on him not knowing what day of the week it was. As if he cares. I received a $300 bill from this idiot, Medicare and supplemental insurance also paid him. I thought the VA provided the service through his benefits since they add the dollar amount to the "Paid for by us on your behalf" category. Someone is getting paid twice. Numbers in several agencies are not accurate to say the least. He is now is a Veteran's Nursing home. These services are also being billed and paid for through Medicare and supplemental insurance even though its a VA facility. Apparently the State runs the VA clinic and the Federal government is in charge of the nursing home facility So far that has caused him to loose his primary care physician. After being in the facility for six months I was finally informed of this. I then went through the process of getting him back into the clinic. It remains to be seen if the records will be shared. I too am on Medicare. For the past year I have had problems with Humana and Right Source pharmacy. Right Source made a company decision not to mail controlled substances to Florida do to the problems Florida was having. They also will not reimburse me for the money I pay to acquire the medications from a pharmacy because Medicare wants to penalize people for not using the network pharmacy. They don't seem to care the network pharmacy won't fill them. I am left with over $700 per month in out of pocket expenses. The records provided by Humana and Medicare however state I am only out $5.65 per month. Again, the numbers don't add up. They reflect numbers that make it appear they are actually doing what they have been contracted to do when in fact they don't. Who do they show as paying the difference between the amount charged by the pharmacist and what they reimburse me for? The pharmacy will not accept insurance and is the only place I have found that has medication in stock. Don't believe Obama and Shenseki didn't know. These procedures and policies have been in place for years. It is SOP. To claim anything else is a lie.