Saturday, February 11, 2012


Yeah, still a very hot topic in the States right now. 
Last year, I visited my own boss who had an accident. His insurance put him in a room with 4 other people. (he's better now) He checked himself out a day later preferring to heal up at home. I thought: "This is my boss! Why did they stick him into this public ward???"

This year, I visited an uncle in LA who had a stroke. He's in a room with one other dude who can't stop coughing. You feel like you're getting sicker as you stand there, unwilling to breathe.
The nurses are too few and are always tired (understandably). There is a smell of feces in the air as you go through certain parts of the place. The hospital chlorine smell is overpowering.

My grand aunt in the Philippines is in the hospital. I visited her recently. 
The room is air conditioned, private, has its own toilet and shower stall. How much is something like this, I asked. It cost 1,300 pesos per night --$30. Place is well ventilated and there are enough nurses that each visit, I see 4 of them come in and out of the place (not to mention they're all young and pretty).

Staff's all pro. They are after all, the same nurses that staff US hospitals. 
It's really bad when you compare it like that.
Even if you pay the doctor out of pocket, a stay like that is cost effective and affordable.
Not to mention the medicines are cheaper as well. Same company. Pfizer provides cheap meds in the Philippines while US consumers has its dick in their ass.

I lived in Australia for close to a year. My former girlfriend is an Australian doctor who does the roving medical service (if you are too sick to go to the hospital or prefer to be treated at home, you can call the medical people over). We drive about the place treating rich and poor alike. The service is standard and the same for all. For those paying more into the system, they get extra frills. The car we drive about in is like a cop car but with different decals. It was quite an experience. This just tells me those who say universal healthcare is like the Soviet Union 1960 have never left the country and have never gone anywhere else in the world. 

I get to compare our supposedly best medical system against another first world country and a third world country. From the standpoint of a working man like me, both of them have better amenities and more timely and adequate staffing. One gets paid through people's taxes and the other is out of pocket (the US model) but is cheaper and better.
Sure, there's first class amenities in the US no doubt. But what does it cost? 
When people say we have the best healthcare, they are talking about the healthcare that only the rich can afford.

I post this here because as travelers and those who live nomadically, this is our issue.
Luckily, because we travel far and wide, we can compare and contrast.
The cheapest way I heard for most is to go up to Canada and marry a Canadian. 

But currently for me, this is my best healthcare model.
I go to the Philippines to get my annual medical and dental needs taken care of.

It is cheaper and with less hassles. It is out of pocket, but neither will it destroy your finances. 
And because it's the Philippines, let's admit it... Just like any other tourist destination like Thailand or Vietnam, there's tons of cool places to go to as long as you have money.

For the price of a plane flight, you get to take care of your pressing needs... and get a little vacation in while you're at it. Of course, it helps if you know people so you can just couch surf on over. 


  1. I worry about health insurance quite often well because I have none. I do go the clinic which charges me a whole 15 bucks when I go. My problem is I hate doctors. LOL Glad you found a way to get around it. Obama(spelled right?)promises us free helth care. HHmmm I will beleive when it happens.

  2. Thanks for sharing, Michelle. We all have to come up with our own solutions to this problem. Well, government healthcare isn't really free. This is the first thing the British told its citizens when they adopted the NHS. It comes from our collective taxes. It is an affordable system for all the reasons I cite above --no more excess overhead or paying dividends to shareholders. It's like the police and fire department and dialing 911. We pay for those through taxation. I personally have never been robbed or had a fire. Yet some people will need these services at some point in their lives. I don't begrudge or grumble about it. If and when I need police and firemen, they will also be there for me.

    The healthcare debacle isn't really Obama's fault. He can't order it done like a monarch although we all wish it were so. Unfortunately, Congress dragged its feet and when voting came to the fore, some right leaning Democrats actually sabotaged it. This is why the lost the midterms. People actually got mad and threw them out. The unfortunate thing is, because of that, there is now a Republican majority which will not do anything right now... they're just running the clock out till election day. Without any new legislation coming out of Congress, the President has nothing to sign into law or veto. It'll be a stalemate till Obama leaves office unless more progressive Dems get elected again and vote en masse this time to pass a more comprehensive bill...
    This is why before I even think about clobbering guys like LImbaugh or Beck, I will reserve my full wrath on Democrats like Ben Nelson who sabotaged the healthcare bill. Guys like him killed it when they could have rammed it through without a single Republican vote.