We are going to pay dearly for being the only major country on Earth to not have universal healthcare when the next pandemic hits. If we somehow dodge the covid19 bullet, another pandemic, perhaps of a much more deadly disease, will hit in most of our lifetimes. We will pay even more dearly because we are living in the only 1 of the world’s 22 richest countries that does not require employers to provide at least some paid sick time (https://cepr.net/documents/publications/psd-summary.pdf).
Donald Trump promises that a test for covid19 will be available for anyone who wants it. And that it’s a beautiful test, whatever that means. VP Pence told reporters that insurance will (probably) cover it. Then he walked away as the press tried to ask about the 30 million Americans who are uninsured.
For the next 22 days, I’m one of them.
Why? Because I changed jobs. I took a pay cut to have the chance to do a job that I think I am absolutely going to love and that will give back to the community. But you have to wait for the 1st of the month after you start working for the insurance to kick in. And my old insurance is ended. I’m not old and I’m in decent health so having a gap of a few weeks, especially when I’m stocked up on 90 days supplies of the only medication I need doesn’t seem like a big deal. Unless…
Okay so maybe you don’t feel sorry for me.
What about the 30 million people who are uninsured all the damn time? Maybe you don’t have any compassion and don’t care about them either.
Well what about yourself?
That’s 10% of the population who might forego getting tested for the virus. Might forego treatment. Might walk around carrying the virus and giving it to you. And what about the people who get sick and have no paid sick time? Those people who can’t afford to stay home will be out there stocking the shelves with your groceries. Serving your food. Driving your Ubers and Lyfts. Even if they had some savings, will