The key point here is the words here are the words “guaranteed government health and dental coverage”. No, there should not be legislation in place to “guarantee” anything other than what is “guaranteed” by the Constitution of the United States. Not prisoners, children, adults or aliens.
We, as a nation, need to understand that it is the responsibility of all Americans and in the case of children, their parents, to cover all costs associated with parenting of their children. That includes medical care. Governmental intrusion into the dynamics of the family in any way, other than to enforce the physical protection of a child, is unconstitutional. Parents need to be responsible for the care of their children to the greatest extent possible.
Prisoners are a captive audience and as such, can not seek employment to earn the money related to any care they receive. However, I don’t even think that prisoners should get a free ride in the health care respect and am not opposed to them exchanging work for health care credits. I am fully aware of the health care given in the prisons across this country and to say that you want your children to have equality to it, is ignorance at best. I am not sympathetic to offenders but I have seen what is promoted as health care delivery in prisons. It is pathetic to say the least. Would you want your child to wait for a year with an abscessed tooth before it was hauled? I think that emergency and urgent care and care for debilitating chronic illness needs to be the only treatment a prisoner receives. Let’s dispense with the high profile cases that show a rampant waste such as sex change operations and treatment, cosmetic and vanity surgeries and tooth whitening. Those cases lead one to believe that it is a system wide issue and I assure it is not. Most correctional systems do not have enough money to pay guards a decent wage to walk through the door.
If a person can not afford healthcare, there is a system in place to provide for that already. You can get care through 1000’s of non-government entities. Pharmaceutical companies offer free drug programs for people with middle income and less. There are clinics that provide fee scales for reduced payments. There are emergency rooms for those situations when nothing is available. To “guarantee” health care to all children will no doubt include children from families that have sufficient income and insurance to pay for those costs.
I think a better option is to reform a system that works well enough for most of us. Placing time limits on pattens that drug companies file would save billions in the development of new drugs. Make it illegal for emergency rooms/hospitals to transfer losses created by illegal aliens to those with insurance. Until this is done we can not see the true impact of illegals in the health care system. Then send that bill to the illegal aliens home country. Place recovery limits in litigation cases and end frivolous law suits. Make it illegal to deny coverage to anyone for pre-existing conditions. Build group co-ops/exchanges for persons who are self-employed, under-employed or very small business owners, so that they may buy insurance collectively and across state lines. Send the bills that Medicaid incurs from children utilizing Medicaid, to absent parents and then enforce the law with this regard. If the absent parent is incarcerated, make him/her participate in a work program and send earnings to the government and when he/she is on probation, make it part of his probation/parole order to be responsible. Let people pick the level of coverage needed. I know for one, I do not need any coverage related to pregnancy, so why should I pay for it? These are fixes that would make it possible for all of us to take care of our own costs for health care.
Let me restate my argument. Guarantees are entitlements that exempt one from taking responsibility for themselves and in this case, their own health care costs. We need to reaffirm that we are capable of making changes to the system without creating greater dependency on it.