A Healthy Blog

Massachusetts health care — wonky, with a healthy dose of reality

Weekend Fun-Link Riot!

Weekend Fun-Link Riot!

August 15, 2009

A mid-August weekend, and there's only so much attention one can pay to the health care world.

We could link you to the insightful editorial in the Taunton Daily Gazette, "Bay State's health reform success story," but the editorial only echoes similar points made by the Globe and Times in the past few weeks, concluding that MA health reform "has shown what progress can be made through a well-balanced approach - and thousands of residents are better off for it."

Or we could direct you to this summary of research on Massachusetts health reform, from Urban Institute researcher Sharon Long. Her conclusion reads a lot like the Taunton editorial:

"Our research at the Urban Institute shows that health reform in Massachusetts has accomplished much of what it set out to do. Nearly everyone in the state has health insurance; more people have access to care; and care has become more affordable. Expanded insurance hasn’t crowded out employer-sponsored insurance coverage—instead, the individual mandate has increased enrollment in employer-sponsored insurance plans. ... The facts from Massachusetts show that comprehensive, bipartisan reform (the law was passed by a Democratic-majority legislature and signed by a Republican governor), is indeed possible, and that state residents are better off because of it."

And if someone really had time to sit through a talking heads discussion, we could point you to this C-Span interview with Karen Ignagni of America's Health Insurance Plans. Ignani says (at around 4:40) that the reason the insurance industry has agreed to go along with most of the insurance reforms in President Obama's proposal is because of the experience under Massachusetts reform. Massachusetts gave them the confidence to support guaranteed issue, no medical underwriting and rating constraints in the context of an individual mandate.

Or we could remind you that if you have a cousin somewhere who thinks their Medicare might disappear, or an old college roommate who thinks national health reform is some plot, you could forward this email from the White House with all the facts and links.

But no. Instead, we did the hard work of wading through this week's Daily Shows and Colbert, and are embedding the best of the health care clips:

Glen Beck was against the American health care system before he was for it:

<td style='padding:2px 1px 0px 5px;' colspan='2'Glenn Beck's Operation

Town halls "Awaken the Sleeping Giant"

<td style='padding:2px 1px 0px 5px;' colspan='2'PR
The Daily Show With Jon Stewart Mon - Thurs 11p / 10c

I can see health care from my window:

<td style='padding:2px 1px 0px 5px;' colspan='2'Healther Skelter
The Daily Show With Jon Stewart Mon - Thurs 11p / 10c

Great Debate:

<td style='padding:2px 1px 0px 5px;' colspan='2'Healther Skelter - Obama Death Panel Debate
The Daily Show With Jon Stewart Mon - Thurs 11p / 10c

And one of our favorite bloggers, Jonathan Cohn, gives a real interview to Colbert:

The Colbert Report Mon - Thurs 11:30pm / 10:30c
Jonathan Cohn

-Brian Rosman