Traverse City Record-Eagle

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October 19, 2013

Letters to the Editor: 10/19/2013

Highly effective service

As a Traverse City native living in the United Kingdom, I read with interest Susan Odgers’ column detailing the impressions of her intern from England. However, there was one inaccuracy by omission, surely accidental, that needs to be corrected. It is not just “everyone under 18 years of age, students, job seekers and people over 65 years” who have free health care in the UK. Everyone does (although dental and optical do cost if you are employed). And I wouldn’t call it “insurance”; provided that you live in the UK, you’re simply cared for, with no co-pay or reimbursement required.

Additionally, although private health care is available in the UK, not many people use it (with the exception of the new baby prince, of course). I have a colleague who needed routine surgery and who had private health insurance through her husband’s company but chose to use the National Health Service instead because the public hospital had a better reputation for follow-up care.

I don’t argue that the UK’s National Health Service is perfect, but it is highly effective and certainly more humane than the current system in the U.S.

Caitlin Prentice

Oxford, England


Follow the money

Where are the modern-day Woodward and Bernstein? Where has fearless investigative journalism gone?

Our government has been shut down. The country will suffer greatly for the decision of members of our House of Representatives who are incapable of intelligent compromise.

But remember the character “Deep Throat” from the movie “All the President's Men” … he suggested, “follow the money.”

It is always about the money.

The Affordable Health Care Act is a good idea that Republicans were willing to hold hostage to the extent that they were willing to shut down the government. Who could possibly influence our representatives with amazing riches and promise to the point of ownership of them?

Where are the relentless researchers and the fearless reporters?

John Billette

Traverse City

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