Showing posts with label health care. Show all posts
Showing posts with label health care. Show all posts

Friday, February 12, 2016


The debate tonight was the best thus far in the presidential campaign, in no small part due to the excellence of Gwen Ifil and Judy Woodruff as moderators and that the sponsor was PBS.  The two asked intelligent, probing questions without venturing into easy gotcha territory.  The contrast between Democratic and Republican debates is stark.  What I saw on the stage were two adults engaged in a civil debate.  I admit that with only two candidates in the race, the appearance of a free-for-all is easier to avoid, but, even if the GOP narrows the field down to two, I doubt we'll see a debate of this caliber.

To me, Clinton looked strong and won the debate, though Sanders got in a few good licks about her vote in favor of the Iraq war and her reference to Henry Kissinger's compliment on how well she ran the State Department.  By now, Clinton probably hopes young people don't know who the hell Kissinger is.

Once again, Sanders answered a number of questions by turning away from the substance of the question to commentary about Wall Street, thus reinforcing the impression of a Johnny One-Note.  Of course, he is not, but, with the Wall Street repetitions, he's beginning to remind me of Young Marco Rubio and his repetitions about President Obama.  Clinton scored with the reference to Sanders' votes on gun regulations and his recent and not-so-recent criticisms of President Obama. Though Sanders often caucused and voted with Democrats, he remains a newly-minted Democrat.

Clinton appeared calm and composed, while Sanders seemed impatient and even agitated at times, waving his hands with his face turning red.  A number of people call Clinton cold, and I understand how calm can translate to cold, but I'm not looking for a BFF for president, and I prefer calm to agitation. When Sanders repeatedly raised his hand as a signal that he wanted to speak, I couldn't help but think, "Teacher, teacher!  Call on me!"

Both candidates favor health care coverage for everyone, but they have different approaches to get there.  Of Sanders' plan for a single payer plan, economist Paul Krugman notes that the numbers don't add up.

Also, while Sanders calls his plan "Medicare for All", it is no such thing because on his campaign website, he says:
As a patient, all you need to do is go to the doctor and show your insurance card. Bernie’s plan means no more copays, no more deductibles and no more fighting with insurance companies when they fail to pay for charges. 
Sounds great, but Sanders' plan is not "Medicare for All".  I know because my health insurance coverage is through Medicare, and I pay deductibles and copays, even with a supplemental insurance policy. So, is it "Medicare for All" or something entirely different?  Also, as Krugman notes, getting a single payer plan through the House of Representatives is likely to be a non-starter, even if Democrats regain a slim majority in the Senate.  The GOP will retain a majority in the House after the election because so many hold safe seats due to gerrymandered districts.

Clinton's health plan takes a more gradual approach, building on Obamacare to universal coverage, rather than replacing it and starting from scratch. Though there is no guarantee that her plan will pass in Congress if Clinton is elected, it seems somewhat more possible and definitely more realistic.

Clinton's closing statement was powerful and served to define her campaign.  A quote is below:
We agree we've got to get unaccountable money out of politics. We agree that Wall Street should never be allowed to wreck main street again.

But here's the point I want to make tonight.  I am not a single-issue candidate and I do not believe we live in a single-issue country. I think that a lot of what we have to overcome to break down the barriers that are holding people back, whether it's poison in the water of the children of Flint or whether it's the poor miners who are being left out and left behind in coal country, or whether it is any other American today who feels somehow put down and depressed by racism, by sexism, by discrimination against the lgbt community against the kind of efforts that need to be made to root out all of these barriers, that's what I want to take on.
Below is a quote from Sanders' closing statement, which also defines his campaign.
This campaign is not just about electing a president. What this campaign is about is creating a process for a political revolution in which millions of Americans, working people who have given up on the political process, they don't think anybody hears their pains or their concerns.
 Young people for whom getting involved in politics is as, you know, it's like going to the moon. It ain't going to happen. Low income people who are not involved in the political process.
 What this campaign is not only about electing someone who has the most progressive agenda, it is about bringing tens of millions of people together to demand that we have a government that represents all of us and not just the 1 percent, who today have so much economic and political power.
Yes, "like going to the moon."  In the real world, the only revolution we're likely to see in the near future is if Republicans take the presidency, the majority in the Senate, and the majority in the House (which is certain), and it will not be pretty.

Keep in mind that when Sanders first entered the race, I favored his candidacy and contributed to his campaign, but, over the course of time, I've come to favor Clinton.  I still believe that having Sanders in the race is a net positive, but I hope the supporters of the two candidates don't tear each other apart before the election.  From my experience, Sanders supporters have been much more intemperate in their criticism of Clinton and her supporters than the other way around, even to the point of declaring that if she is the nominee, they will not vote, or they will vote for Trump.  That, in my opinion, is madness.  The stakes in this election are high, and the country will be in a very bad way with Republicans in control of Congress and the presidency.  Make no mistake: If Sanders is the nominee, he will surely have my vote.

Monday, March 23, 2015


Are doctors and hospital administrators just now noticing lots of "ifs" in Jindal's health care budgets, or is it just now that they are willing to speak out?  I've been waiting.
The Jindal administration’s proposed health care budget relies on more than $500 million in funding that is contingent on several things happening first — and that’s making people in the health care community nervous.

“We have great concerns that it’s really not achievable,” said Paul Salles, who heads the Louisiana Hospital Association, the professional group representing most of the state’s hospitals.

“It’s something on paper,” Salles said, but “it leaves us really exposed to dire straits.”

“To say there are a lot of contingencies would be an understatement,” said Jennifer Marusak, governmental affairs director for the Louisiana State Medical Society, a professional association that represents physicians.
And they're just now getting nervous?  For years Jindal's budgets have relied on bait and switch, use of one-time funds, and contingencies that may not happen to fill the annual budget gap.
“It’s a mess,” said Berkeley Durbin, who heads MedicineLouisiana, a statewide physicians group.

“I don’t think anybody thinks that’s real. I don’t know where we find the money,” Durbin said, adding that he doesn’t consider legislative passage of the tax credit changes to be a sure thing.
I haven't believed Jindal's budgets were real in years.  Where have they been?

Jindal cares not a whit about the people of Louisiana, but only about his overweening ambition to become president of the United States, which we now know is highly unlikely, as Jindal hardly registers in the polls of likely GOP candidates.  He hopes to leave office before a complete and obvious collapse of the state health care system and other institutions and programs, leaving the state in dire straits and the next governor to clean up the mess.

Also, as I have said many times before, Jindal could not have destroyed or damaged institutions and programs in Louisiana single-handedly.  A compliant legislature was necessary to complete the plunder.  Jindal is not the only Louisiana official to sign Grover Norquist's pledge not to raise taxes.
Thirty-two elected officials currently serving in the state and federal government have signed "no new tax" pledges with the group, according to the Americans for Tax Reform website.

Every Republican member of Louisiana's congressional delegation -- except Garret Graves -- has committed to it. Twenty-six members of the Louisiana Legislature have also taken the oath.
How anyone can still be surprised that Jindal's budgets are little more than flimflammery is beyond me, but welcome aboard, doctors and hospital administrators.  Better late than never.

Wednesday, October 8, 2014


A few months ago, Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal traveled to Washington to introduce a new national health care proposal. While there, he arranged to meet privately with a small group of conservative journalists and policy experts at the offices of the Ethics and Public Policy Center think tank. 

Some of the experts engaged Jindal in debate about one of the plan's more arcane provisions. The back-and-forth between Jindal and his questioners went deep into the proposal's details, and it was soon clear that Jindal could dive as far into the health care policy weeds as any of the wonkiest wonks. He knew his stuff.
Never mind Jindal's eloquence in discussing arcane provisions and dives into the policy weeds of health care, did York explore how Bobby's arcane provisions and dives into the policy weeds in Louisiana are working out in real life with the Office of Group Benefits, the health insurance plan for state employees and retirees? Jindal and his appointees to high places are destroying the health insurance plan for 230,000 employees and retirees, so by all means Bobby should go national with his plan. His best bud, Tommy Teepel, says so, "He's an undervalued stock...” Indeed, Jindal is not popular in his home state, with his approval rating at 32%.

For further information on the health plan debacle, read Tom Aswell at Louisiana Voice, who has written article after article on the flimflammery of our absentee governor and the members of his inner circle, especially his Commissioner of Administration, Kristy Nichols, and Secretary of the Department of Health and Hospitals, Kathy Kliebert.  Where does the buck stop?   

Note: Byron York is a conservative columnist for the Washington Examiner and a contributor to Fox News.

Wednesday, September 24, 2014


Tom Aswell, who writes at Louisiana Voice, has done excellent investigative reporting on the Jindal administration time and again, all the while putting big media in Louisiana to shame.
Former Department of Health and Hospitals (DHH) Secretary Bruce Greenstein has been indicted by the Louisiana Attorney General’s Office on nine counts of perjury stemming from a lengthy investigation of his involvement in the awarding of a $183 million contract to a company for which he once worked.

Greenstein is accused in four counts of lying under oath to the Senate and Governmental Affairs Committee during his confirmation hearings of June 8 and June 17, 2011 and five counts of lying to an East Baton Rouge Parish Grand Jury on June 3 of this year.
With all the shenanigans of the Jindal administration, it’s hard for me to believe that nothing illegal took place, and the governor was completely out of the loop. He’s certainly run roughshod over Louisiana law and had to pull back several times when his policies were declared unconstitutional.

Of course, there must be proof of illegal activity (innocent until proven guilty), and justice must take its sometimes slow course, but, if I were Kristy Nichols, Commissioner of Administration, or anyone in Jindal’s inner circle, I’d be a bit worried. If I were Kathy Kliebert, Secretary of The Department of Health and Hospitals, I’d be worried. Since Jindal doesn’t brook disagreement, would he even pay attention to legal advice that was not to his liking?
As legal setbacks begin to mount for Gov. Bobby Jindal with the indictment of a former Jindal cabinet member coupled with an attorney general’s opinion that recently announced changes to state employee group health plans are most probably illegal, one political observer intimated to LouisianaVoice that Jindal’s political career “may be coming unraveled” even as he remains fixated on the White House.

The attorney general’s office on Tuesday (Sept. 23) released a legal opinion that could signal a devastating blow to the administration’s plans to overhaul health benefit plans offered through the Office of Group Benefits (OGB) to some 230,000 state employees, retirees and dependents.
Two stories in the same day, one of alleged criminality by a former member of Jindal's administration and another of possible gross mismanagement of changes to the Office of Group Benefits health plan, which will affect 230,000 state workers and retirees. It's about time the Jindal maladministration was brought up short!  Jindal and his inner circle must be reeling.  Then again, perhaps Jindal is too busy chasing his dream to become president to notice and will leave the troubles to be addressed by his staff.

Voters who prefer Republican governance, might want to have a look at the destruction wreaked by the Jindal maladministration and his enablers in the Louisiana State Legislature to see untrammeled, extremist conservative  governance in practice.  Would you want Jindal to be your president?

Sunday, April 27, 2014


The State of Louisiana can't come up with the cash to fund the Greater New Orleans Community Health Connection program in New Orleans, which provides services to people and families with income that exceeds the limit for eligibility for Medicaid but who do not earn enough to purchase private insurance.
The population covered by GNOCHC falls within the income limits of the Medicaid expansion that is part of the Affordable Care Act, or Obamacare. But that expansion, which would be fully paid for by the federal government in its early years, has been opposed by the Jindal administration, and an effort to get around the governor’s opposition was shot down in a state Senate committee last week.
Neither the governor nor the members of the state legislature care enough about the people who will lose access to health care to fund the program, nor will they allow Medicaid expansion. This policy of exclusion is either madness or group hardheartedness beyond what I can imagine. The so-called "good Christians" in the governor's office and in the legislature need to spend time reading the Gospels in the Holy Bible, which they recently considered making the official state book. Their neglect of the 240,000 citizens who could be helped by Medicaid expansion is shameful and downright immoral.

My nomination for official state book is A Confederacy of Dunces, by John Kennedy Toole, the title of which is also an apt description of the present governor and most, but not all, of the members of the state legislature. 

Wednesday, April 16, 2014


Promoting it as a health care and economic issue, U.S. Sen. Mary Landrieu pushed Tuesday for Louisiana voters to decide the fate of Medicaid expansion.

“The governor has clearly put his political future ahead of the future of the state of Louisiana,” said Landrieu, D-La. “Let the people decide what is fair, whether they want to expand and use over $16 billion” in federal funds.

“It’s kind of our last hope to let the people make the decision. It’s not too much to ask,” Landrieu said.
Bobby Jindal won't allow Medicaid expansion in the State of Louisiana, despite gaping holes in the state budget for health care, so will the Louisiana Legislature have the courage to let the people decide? The lawmakers who worry about any association with Obamacare can then wash their hands of responsibility and blame the expansion on the people of the state.
Landrieu said the proposition makes good economic sense. “In order to have a strong workforce, you need a healthy workforce,” she said. She said the state is rejecting $16 billion available “to strengthen the workforce.”

The Medicaid expansion also would bring 15,600 new health care-related jobs in 2016 and help sustain financially struggling rural hospitals, Landrieu said.
Governor Jindal chooses to put his personal ambitions for national office ahead of the nearly 250,000 citizens of Louisiana who need health insurance, so it's way past time for the legislators to do the job the people of the state elected them to do, for which they're paid salaries with our tax money, and let the people decide.

Louisiana has far too many laws embedded in the state constitution, but, in this instance, there is no way around Bobby Jindal's refusal to help the citizens of the state other than one more constitutional amendment.

UPDATE: The Louisiana Legislature will not let the people decide.
An attempt to go around Gov. Bobby Jindal and put the issue of Medicaid expansion to Louisiana voters failed to clear its first legislative hurdle Wednesday.

After more than four hours of testimony, most of it from supporters, including leading Democratic Party elected officials, the Senate Health and Welfare Committee voted 6-2 to defer action on the proposed constitutional amendment, effectively killing it.

Friday, May 24, 2013


The total operating expense associated with the privatization of nine LSU hospitals will hit $1 billion during the new fiscal year, Commissioner of Administration Kristy Nichols said Thursday.

That’s more than is in the current year’s budget — $955 million — for the state to operate the charity hospitals.

And more than the $626 million Gov. Bobby Jindal proposed for private companies to operate the public hospitals in the fiscal year that begins July 1.

Nichols said the administration would submit amendments to the state Senate Finance Committee to close the funding gap, recommending using some money from hospital leases as well as other state and local revenues.
Kristy Nicholls says that the state will benefit in the long run, but I'll hold my applause until a source outside the Jindal administration breaks down the figures. As you may or may not know, in Jindal's plan to ditch personal and business income taxes and make up the difference in sales taxes, the math did not compute. I'm not sure what method the administration uses, but the numbers don't always pan out as presented.  When Jindal realized that his tax plan was DOA in the Legislature, he withdrew the mess at the last minute.

Further on Medicaid expansion:
Even though governors and lawmakers in five Deep South states oppose a plan to cover more people through Medicaid under the health care overhaul, 62 percent of the people in Alabama, Georgia, Louisiana, Mississippi and South Carolina support expanding the program, according to a new poll.

Read more here:

The level of support for expanding Medicaid – the state and federal health insurance program for the poor and disabled – ranged from a low of 59 percent in Mississippi to a high of 65 percent in South Carolina, according to the poll by the Joint Center for Political and Economic Studies, a leading research and public policy think tank that focuses on African-Americans and other people of color.

But the five states in the poll, all led by Republican governors, have decided not to participate. Ironically, Mississippi and Louisiana rank dead last among all states in the overall health of their residents, according to America’s Health Ranking, an annual report by the United Health Foundation, a nonprofit arm of the insurer UnitedHealth Group.
There you have it.  The voice of the majority does not prevail, and many of the citizens of Louisiana and Mississippi will go without health insurance, because their governors are ideologues who do not put the welfare of the citizens first.  Of course, when the governor has national ambitions, he has to keep one eye on the Tea Party and the other on Grover Norquist, with no third eye to look at the hardships he inflicts on the residents of his own state.

Thanks to Ann for the link to the poll.
Read more here:

Sunday, January 20, 2013


The recent mass killings in Tucson, Aurora and Newtown have sparked public conversations about the deficiencies in state-run mental health systems across the United States. But few states are poised to spend their own money to reverse as much as a decade of budget cutbacks in those areas.

Instead, many of them are counting on an infusion of federal mental-health dollars. Because Medicaid includes mental-health benefits, those states that opt into the Medicaid expansion included in President Obama’s Affordable Care Act will be able to make mental health coverage available to thousands of their citizens who do not now have it.
For the first three years that additional coverage would cost the states nothing: Under terms of the Affordable Care Act, the federal government  will cover 100 percent of the costs of new Medicaid enrollees for the first three years and 90 percent after 2020.
Louisiana is not presently known for its sterling mental health care system.  Nevertheless, our governor, Bobby Jindal, has opted out of the Medicaid expansion which would cover mental health care on conservative principles, but I wonder if he may reconsider.   The majority of the citizens of Louisiana are against any sort of regulation of firearms or ammunition, giving as their reason that it's not guns that kill people, but deranged individuals who manage to get their hands on guns who kill people.  How about it, members of the NRA in Louisiana?  Why not start a campaign to urge the governor to sign on to the expanded Medicaid program that will enable more persons with mental illness to get treatment? 

The mentally ill deserve the same treatment as those with physical illness, because it's the right thing to do, but whatever your motive behind opting into the Medicaid expansion, just do it, Governor.  The Medicaid expansion program would serve a good many people with physical illnesses and offer preventive care.  What's not to like?  If conservative principles prevent you from giving the citizens of Louisiana services they need, then, in the name of simple compassion for the well-being of the people you serve, you should ditch your principles.

Also, Governor, in the event you hadn't noticed, the line of Republican governors who refuse to participate in the Medicaid expansion program is broken.  I expect more Republican governors will decide to adopt the program, so you would not stand alone if you changed your mind.  Perhaps you and your good friend Rick Perry (Tweedledum and Tweedledee?) from Texas might have a conversation about a change in policy. 
Arizona will participate in the expansion of Medicaid, Gov. Jan Brewer said Monday in her State of the State address, making her the third Republican governor to agree to one of the key components of President Barack Obama's health care reform.

Brewer said that if she did not accept the Medicaid funds for Arizona, other states could claim those federal dollars and create jobs that otherwise would be created in Arizona. Fellow Republican governors Susana Martinez of New Mexico and Brian Sandoval of Nevada also plan to expand Medicaid to anyone who earns up to 133 percent of the federal poverty level, which is currently $14,856 for an individual.

But 10 other Republican governors have already decided not to participate. The Supreme Court's 2012 ruling that affirmed Obama's health care law allows states to refuse to take part in the Medicaid expansion.

Wednesday, October 3, 2012


Eric Fehrnstrom, a Romney advisor, admitted that if Obamacare is repealed, those with pre-existing conditions would probably not be able to purchase health insurance.  The individual states would first have to pass laws to prevent insurance companies from excluding the sick from coverage.  Romney's plan would only assure that those who have insurance would continue to be covered.
The admission directly contradicts the GOP candidate’s claim during the debate that “pre-existing conditions are covered under my plan” — a contention Romney has repeated on the trail and that his campaign has repeatedly walked back. 
In other words Romney lies, and even his own campaign staff admit it.

UPDATE: Or as Margaret at Margaret and Helen says:
Well Margaret, once again I am going to say what the media won’t. Mitt Romney is a lying sack of shit and he wouldn’t know a middle class tax cut if it bit him in the middle of his gold plated ass. Evidently the media seems to think that the person who slings the bullshit the farthest wins the debate. Well if that ain’t the damnest thing.

Thursday, September 27, 2012


Romney is now claiming credit once again for the health care bill which he signed into law in Massachusetts after distancing himself from it for quite a while.  Well, kinda, sorta....  With each new day one wonders what will be Romney's position du jour on the various issues.

Thursday, July 19, 2012


Sometime before the election in November, I hope to have not only Bobby Jindal say Obamneycare but Romney himself say Obamneycare.

Thursday, March 29, 2012


 Who ya gonna believe?  I know whom I believe.  When you're ill or injured, the principle of oversized government is NOT your greatest concern.

David Vitter (R)

Dear Friend,
Some things in life get better as time goes by. But today, on the two-year anniversary of Obamacare, we can safely say that President Obama’s health care law is not one of those things.

In fact, the ugly truth is that Obamacare has gotten worse and worse with each passing week. You may recall that when the president and his liberal allies in Congress were forcing the bill through over the objections of the American people, they made the odd claim that creating a massive new entitlement would actually save us money.

Well, I and many others at the time said that was ludicrous, and we were right. Once you add in all the implementation costs, which seem to be growing every day, the law will spend $2.6 trillion over the first decade alone – something we certainly can’t afford with a national debt that’s already at $15 trillion and counting.

And it hits families in Louisiana and across the country just as hard. Even though President Obama promised to lower premiums by $2,500 per family, the Congressional Budget Office estimates that premiums will actually increase by $2,100. Since the President took office, premiums for employer-sponsored coverage have already risen by over $2,200 per family.

I’ve had several town halls and telephone town halls across Louisiana over the last two years, and I’ve yet to hear from a Louisianian whose health insurance has gotten less expensive since Obamacare was signed into law. They tell me exactly the opposite – they’re paying much more.
To make things worse, a recent study found that up to 35 million Americans could lose their employer-sponsored health care under Obamacare, and Louisiana seniors are projected to be the hardest hit Medicare beneficiaries in the country because of the bill’s Medicare Advantage cuts. Our state also stands to be on the hook for an additional $7 billion thanks to the bill’s unfunded Medicaid mandate.
Beyond all the practical reasons that Obamacare is a disaster, there’s a matter of principle. The law further expands an already oversized government, creating over 159 new boards, offices, and panels to concentrate even more control over health care decision-making into Washington bureaucracy. The Obama administration has already cranked out over 12,000 pages of new regulations related to Obamacare. And the individual mandate, which would require every American to purchase health insurance or else pay a fine to the government, is plainly unconstitutional.
That’s why I introduced a bill at the beginning of this Congressional session to fully repeal Obamacare, and it’s why I’m hopeful that as the Supreme Court takes up Obamacare, they will decide once and for all that it violates the Constitution.
Rest assured that this fight is not over, because with each passing day, it’s more and more obvious that Obamacare must be repealed. And rest assured that I’ll continue leading that fight.

David Vitter Signature
David Vitter
United States Senator


Mary Landrieu (D)

Dear friend,

As we mark the second anniversary of the Affordable Care Act, Louisianians of all ages are benefitting from this historic law. Two years ago, the private insurance market was broken and unsustainable, and middle class families were losing coverage at an alarming rate. Something had to be done, and Congress acted.

In the state of Massachusetts, where the framework of this law has been in place for six years, more than 98 percent of the state’s residents are now insured, and the child insurance rate leads the nation at 99.8 percent coverage. From 2006 to 2009, premiums in the individual health insurance market rose by 14 percent nationally, but they fell by 40 percent in Massachusetts over the same period.

Despite the clear and convincing benefits of health reform, there is still a great deal of misinformation and political rhetoric surrounding the issue. However, as time goes on, the benefits of this law will become clearer and clearer, and the dangers of repeal will become even more apparent. Continue reading below for more statistics on how this law is benefitting Louisianians.

All the best,

How the Affordable Care Act is helping Louisiana
  • 52,932 Louisiana seniors on Medicare received a 50 percent discount on their prescription drugs when they fell into the donut hole last year.
  • Louisiana seniors saved an average of $571 per person, for a total savings of more than $30 million across the state. By 2020, the law will close the donut hole.
  • Insurance companies can no longer charge women higher premiums based on only their gender.
  • More than 275,000 Louisiana women can now also receive free mammograms, bone density scans and cervical cancer screenings without a co-pay.
Young adults:
  • 45,000 Louisiana young adults have gained health coverage now that children may remain on their parents’ coverage until they turn 26.
  • No child in Louisiana today can be denied coverage due to arbitrary lifetime dollar limits. To date, 385,000 Louisiana children have benefitted from this provision.
Small businesses:
  • 60,000 small businesses in Louisiana are eligible for tax credits to make employee coverage more affordable.

Monday, August 1, 2011


From TPM:
The Obama administration announced on Monday that health insurance plans must cover birth control with no copays, among other reproductive health care services, as preventative care for women. The requirement will apply to health care plans beginning on or after August 1, 2012. The announcement comes just a month after Health and Human Services released a recommendation that sought to expand preventative services for women under Obama's health care law.

In addition to birth control, the expansion will cover breast pumps for nursing mothers, an annual "well-woman" physical, including screening for the virus that causes cervical cancer, HIV, and gestational diabetes, as well as counseling for domestic violence.
Too bad women have to wait a year for the coverage, but better late than never. These policies should not have had to be mandated by the federal government. If not to provide better health care for women, the insurance companies should have seen these policies as in their own self-interests to reduce overall costs in the long haul. Ah, but few business take the long view these days.

Friday, April 15, 2011


Linda, our missionary who worked in Zambia, passed away yesterday afternoon in her beloved Zambia. We received the news last night at a meeting at church.

When Linda left to return to Zambia she said:
“I’m going back because I can’t get any medical care here,” she said Friday.

But last week, she said she had run out of options. Medicaid had found out about a bank account she set up in Africa to pay for Kunda’s [Linda's adopted daughter] education and said the asset made her ineligible for the program, Lahme said. Lahme refused to tap into the account, opting to return to Zambia and limited medical care rather than compromise Kunda’s future.

“To qualify for Medicaid, I would have to spend all the money I set aside for my daughter’s education,” Lahme said.

There's our health care system for you.
Into your hands, O merciful Savior, we commend your servant Linda. Acknowledge, we humbly beseech you, a sheep of your own fold, a lamb of your own flock, a sinner of your own redeeming. Receive her into the arms of your mercy, into the blessed rest of everlasting peace, and into the glorious company of the saints in light. Amen.

May her soul and the souls of all the departed, through the mercy of God, rest in peace. Amen.

My earlier posts on Linda are here and here.