Monday, August 09, 2004

Doctors out there?

Hmmm. Something's smelly about this article by Robert Pear in the NY Times. (Note: need to register for NY Times online for this.) Basically he says in the first paragraph.
The federal government is offering $1 billion to hospitals that provide emergency care to undocumented immigrants. But to get the money, hospitals would have to ask patients about their immigration status, a prospect that alarms hospitals and advocates for immigrants.

I can understand the need of the federal government to restrict illegal immigrants. This is not because of the Republican reasons about taking jobs and destroying the economy which I believe are a little stupid - obviously, more people means more jobs. More people means more work - the people need food, someone needs to sell it. I believe this because it takes time for the economy to adjust to the influx of people. Yeah, more people means more jobs, but it takes time for the jobs to appear.

I think this is SO the wrong way to go about it though. Hospitals and other groups seem to agree:

Hospital executives and immigrant rights groups said the questioning would deter undocumented immigrants from seeking hospital care when they need it, and some hospitals said compliance might cost them more than they would receive in federal aid.

Now you might be thinking, so a few Mexicans don't get medical care. They didn't pay for it. This is true. But taking care of them is also for our own protection. What if they get Flesh Eating Disease, don't go to a hospital, and the next thing you know all of California is bloody and runny? I do NOT intend to look like Freddy Kreuger at my time of life.

Plus it's gonna cost hospitals more money, when they already don't have it.


to make things worse for Deaf people, guess what? They're "not supposed to" but come on! They're gonna check on the people who don't speak or sound like they speak good English. So us little Deaf people with our funny voices? They're gonna mess around with us. Trust me, enough people ask me if I'm French or Spanish each week to make me wonder if I was born south of El Paso. We already get harrassed by police. And right now, with the unemployment rate so high, especially among the disabled, and Deaf people at the bottom of the list for potential hirees (like we always are) we're even more fucked. I don't want to have to worry about being marked for an immigrant next time i break something.

One more thing:

When such families hear about the questions asked by hospital employees, Ms. Urrutia said, "it's likely that the undocumented immigrant parents will be terrified to seek care for their children, let alone themselves.''

So we're gonna wind up with broke hospitals, fresh flesh eating disease, and dead children.

Plus I really feel bad about doctors being forced to break or bend that little oath they made, to help and heal people.

No comments: