Moving Forward After SCOTUS Upholds Health Care Law

June 29, 2012 § Leave a comment

The health care act still stands thanks to the Supreme Court, though the conversation about universal care in the U.S. is far from over, so here are a couple of infographics about the state of women’s health in the U.S. and what health care reform is trying to address. Because health care issues = social issues = economic issues, and women’s issues = men’s issues; they’re all people’s issues.

From GOOD:A picture of women’s health.

And from Amnesty International:

U.S. Maternal Health Care Crisis

My junior year in college I took a course on the sociology of illness and medicine. One of the required texts for the course was T. R. Reid’s The Healing of America, which examines the health care systems of other countries and compares them to the U.S. system (this was published in 2010). Although Reid oversimplifies some issues, the takeaway message is that not only is it possible to provide quality health care to everyone, other countries are doing this in a way that costs less than our system. Health care in the U.S. is far from perfect, and although the SCOTUS ruling to uphold “Obamacare” gives me hope that can one day we will have accessible health care for all, there is still room for improvement. Learning and implementing what other countries do well are further steps toward that possibility.

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Politics, Communication, and Therapy

June 25, 2012 § Leave a comment

Communication is clearly an issue in American politics. Politicians must work constantly to make sure they are projecting the message they intend to, and government officials attempting to shape public policy must convince those around them that their position is valid.

Recently, language in politics has been at the forefront of public consciousness. Evidence of the power of language in the political sphere has ranged from the backlash surrounding ignorant and inappropriate name calling earlier this year to the controversy surrounding state congressional (over)reactions to comments that include medical terms two weeks ago.

If the goal of politicians is to guide decisions that affect groups at all levels of society though, a failure to communicate is a fundamental problem that can cripple their ability to do their job. It is disheartening to watch politics play out as just a back and forth between Democrats and Republicans, towing party lines that in many ways are polar opposites by definition, each capitalizing on opportunities to act when they have decision-making power to do so and biding their time for the next power shift when they do not.

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