October 28, 2023


Mammogram: $15 co-pay
Pap smear: $15 co-pay
Trip to a shrink: $20 co-pay
State regulations: priceless

MasterCard. Visa. Have you ever noticed that most major credit card companies are headquartered in Delaware or South Dakota? Not shocking. These states have the least stringent regulations for credit card companies.

Freedom to choose. This is one of John McCain’s selling points about his healthcare plan. He boasts that we as Americans will have the freedom to go across state lines to choose insurance companies. What he doesn’t tell you, is that this same freedom will also allow insurance companies to close up shop in your state and move to the state with the least insurance industry regulations. If this happens we as consumers will be screwed.

Let me give you an example. I live in Chicago. Illinois is one of 28 states that require insurance companies to cover cervical cancer screenings. If McCain is elected president, my insurance company could create national headquarters in Utah, the only state in the country that does not require insurance companies to cover any women’s health screenings. Even though I live in Chicago, my paps would no longer be covered.

I don’t give a shit what the candidates say in their position papers on cancer that they submitted to the Lance Armstrong Foundation and posted on their own websites. Cancer screening, clinical trials, and access to quality, affordable healthcare saves lives. If insurance companies have the freedom to set up shop in the least regulated state in the country, we as a cancer community will lose.

If you care deeply about reducing cancer deaths and suffering, it is your obligation to do more than buy pink bling, and participate in bike and walk-a-thons. It is your duty to understand the connection between cancer and the candidates, and vote for Obama. The election is one week away. If you or someone you love cares about cancer (or diabetes, or mental health issues, or children’s healthcare) and is considering voting for John McCain, please sit down with them, and kindly and persuasively explain to them how John McCain’s free market system is going to cost lives.

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  1. Kelly Says:
    October 29th, 2008 at 7:39 AM

    Thank you for highlighting this potential ramification of McCain’s plan. I’ve been so focusued on how his plan could change employer coverage that I missed this important point.

  2. aftercancernowwhat Says:
    October 29th, 2008 at 6:25 PM

    You are absolutely right of course but every time that privatization of services comes up no one ever seems to take greed into account. Thank you for the praise on my comments board. I have added I’m too young for this, what an oversight that was. Regarding your book; when you get closer to release let me know. I’d love to be able to read it, write about it or give a copy away. It is a subject that is not covered particularly well in my opinion but that seems to be changing. I will be attending the Network of Strength conference next week and they have a young adult section so we’ll see what they have to say.

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