-scale=1.0,maximum-scale=1.0" : "width=1100"' name='viewport'/> Plum Street Chili: A Vast Wasteland May Be Soon Upon Us

Friday, May 2, 2014

A Vast Wasteland May Be Soon Upon Us

UPDATE: I wrote the original essay below in October 2013. I so hate to be right.

Antibiotic resistance now 'global threat', WHO warns
By Pippa Stephens

We need the Affordable Care Act. Why is the government shut down to prevent us from having health care? I have nothing funny, happy or partisan to say about this debacle. I say this:
CDC Threat Report: ‘We Will Soon Be in a Post-Antibiotic Era’
    The agency’s overall — and, it stressed, conservative — assessment of the problem:
  • Each year, in the U.S., 2,049,442 illnesses caused by bacteria and fungi that are resistant to at least some classes of antibiotics;
  • Each year, out of those illnesses, 23,000 deaths;
  • Because of those illnesses and deaths, $20 billion each year in additional healthcare spending;
  • And beyond the direct healthcare costs, an additional $35 billion lost to society in foregone productivity.
“If we are not careful, we will soon be in a post-antibiotic era,” Dr. Tom Frieden, the CDC’s director, said in a media briefing. “And for some patients and for some microbes, we are already there.”
WPA Poster

We are in bad shape. We are 37th in health care outcomes among all the nations. And we pay the most for health care. That is bad, it is true. It is worse than folks think. Some Governors are resisting the ACA. Their solutions to these serious disease issues are, for example:
1. Defund women's health clinics which diagnose and treat men and women for STDs;
2. Close the only public tuberculosis hospital in the state and house the contagious patients in an old motel in a large city.

This creates active disease vectors in major population areas. These diseases will bubble upward from the poor, who cannot get medical treatment, to the rich and privileged. Disease is no respecter of gated communities, security guards, or wealth. Everyone has heard of Typhoid Mary, right? As ye sow, so shall ye reap. Do we really want to go back to 1940s? Those who do not remember and learn from history are doomed to repeat it.

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