Women’s Health Care

April 28, 2012 § Leave a comment

I don’t think many people realize how bad our health care system really is. The essay “Health Care Reform-A Woman’s Issue” by Catherine DeLory really opened my eyes to a system that I was very (unfortunately) unfamiliar with. Women make up 52% of the population in the United States. Also, women are the major consumers of health care services.. In return, women have higher health care expenses as well at $2,453. Men pay about $2,316. Women also spend more out of pocket at about 19% and men at 16% (pg 603).

The book offers many solutions to women’s health care such as universal access to quality health care, comprehensive health benefits for all women (employed or not), access to health services from a variety of providers, access to health services provided a variety of settings, systems accountable to women and other consumers, and complete information for women to use to make their own health care decisions (pg 605).

As a woman myself, I know that I go to the doctor whenever I begin to feel ill. The last few times I went, my co pay was $20. My fee just for going was over $100. I have pretty good health insurance through my dad’s union, and yet I’m paying ridiculous amounts to just pick up some amoxicillin for a sore throat. Like we talked about in class, women tend to utilize the doctor much more than men do. Women ultimately pay more than men just because they are women. In my opinion, women should be rewarded for actually going to the doctor instead of being penalized. If that is not possible, then there are other solutions to this problem. Firstly, I think it would be reasonable to even out the payments. Men should have to pay just as much as women. This does not necessarily mean that insurance companies will lose money. The fee’s can just be even dispersed between the two. Or an even better plan would be to just make insurance more affordable. They are ridiculously high and usually just for profit. We should not have to pay so much money for health care.

ESSAY 34: CONTEMPORARY CHALLENGES TO BLACK WOMEN’S REPRODUCTIVE RIGHTS

April 27, 2012 § Leave a comment

Jeanne Flavin’s essay “Contemporary Challenges to Black Women’s Reproductive Rights” shares facts about many different reproductive laws in the United States. Reading about these actually really annoyed me because I am tired of hearing how the government treats lower class black women. The US needs to stop acting like they are not racist when they clearly are. Putting a family cap on welfare recipients is just like slavery. If the government wants less irresponsibly born children, then they should give the funding to help low class citizens get birth control or abortions. It is ridiculous to not only blame the mass black/poor population for this problem, and it is especially obnoxious that they say women have babies for more money. There is no way that having a baby would earn money because the government does not even give enough money on welfare to support a baby. Children should not be made out to be burdens in our country and racism should not be a key part in who gets welfare or family caps.

Who’s Free?

April 27, 2012 § 1 Comment

It appears as though by any form or another, institutions will constantly attempt to oppress women the right to their own choice, to “guide” them in the right direction, and construct clear differences between types of women. It’s disturbing  and a shame to see that Black women are always stereotyped or portrayed for either being poor,  a drug addict, a video vixen, a woman with lots of children, a woman who gets pregnant just to receive a check, senseless and ignorant, irresponsible, promiscuous, and as lower than any other race. Growing up around the South side of Chicago, I familiarized myself with the people and would speak with them about ordinary topics. Yes, many women are single and have at least two children, but they work hard in order to provide for their family. They aren’t as scary or dumb as people think. I even remember telling someone that I grew up on the South side and will never forget their face when they said, “Are you serious??” As if it were a joke or horror movie, but, that’s a discussion for another time…

I love how the author brought up the fact that women’s children or child-bearing ability in slavery times were viewed as economic value. If we look back in time, Black people in general were used for the sole purpose of wealth, so why would we be surprised to learn that their children were also used as an assured way of getting that money? America has always been greedy for money regardless of the consequences, so now that there are too many underrepresented single mothers on welfare and too many mouths to feed, the cost to “support” and “help” goes up, and who’s the first to be effected by this continuous money-hungry, capitalist game? The poor, single underrepresented mothers, of course. How does this make any sense? And as I’ve stated over and over again this semester… why are people so oblivious to this? To tear a child away from his/her mother on the basis of a stereotype or assumption makes me sick and really makes me question the whole “America: Land of the Free” idea. She surely didn’t get this land or build upon it for free, so who’s really free other than the small percentage of high-class?

Essay 65: The Language Barrier

April 27, 2012 § 2 Comments

Connie Chan brings up an important issue in her essay on reproductive issues. She focuses on the plight of Asian-American women specifically, bring up issues that relate to the availability of abortion information to Asian women who may not be as well-versed in English as their health care providers are. It shows the woman who is scared and faced with the extremely loud activism of those who are pro-life, which isn’t necessarily a bad thing, but doesn’t allow the women to have some sort of understanding of what it is that they are being projected at in terms of the angry mob’s wrath.

But Chen’s essay brings up more than just the Asian-American woman’s infringement of rights. The language barrier that exists within the United States when it comes to medical attention spreads beyond one particular language. Already in the United States exists the barrier between women and their access to reproductive rights; the addition of a language barrier merely intensifies the problems that are being faced by these women.

Essay 64: Reformation Necessary

April 26, 2012 § Leave a comment

DeLorey’s essay on health care reformation is an issue that most all college students should hold some interest. According to the statistics in DeLorey’s essay, women have much less of a chance in getting insured privately than men do. Along with that, the women who are uninsured have a shorter life span than the men who are uninsured. As is, just on the basis of not having a phallic organ, women are much less likely to have a good run with the health insurance world. Adding to that basic biological aspect of life, there are already numerous factors that can influence premiums and general acceptance of clients. Considering this is America and there is a high obesity problem in the United States, the chances of having a high premium or being rejected as a potential client of an insurance company is even higher. In general, those who are considered obese will spend roughly $1000 more on health insurance than those who are considered average or even underweight.

Obama’s latest attempt at reforming legislation on health insurance is a good step in a more equal direction. A truly great thing that the legislation would do is that those with pre-existing conditions cannot be denied health insurance based on those conditions. For many people, being obese or having high risk for heart disease or even being a woman wouldn’t have as great of an influence on the premiums that people would have to pay. It would be, without question, such a better thing.

So let’s do this 2014.

Essay 34: Racially Controlling the Body

April 26, 2012 § Leave a comment

Flavin’s essay on the current challenges presented against African-American women’s rights presented a view on current legislation that completely irritates me. The concept of regulatory practices on birth control and funding based on the amount of children a woman has is… Unnerving, to say the least.

The focus on low-income women–with a more direct focus on African-American women stereotypes–makes the laws more incredulous. In the current day and age, however, it doesn’t come as much of a surprise to me. The trend in the past few years has been incredibly unfriendly to women across the board, especially when concerning reproductive rights. Despite the few attempts that have littered our legislative history to promote more autonomy for the woman when it comes to her body, there have been so many more against it. In 2003 the Partial-Birth Abortion Ban Act passed with made intact dilation and extraction (IDX) abortions illegal in the States. While, yes, this abortion is controversial because of how developed the fetus is, it’s actually one of the safer forms of abortion for women. It results in the fewest amount of complications for the woman, but the issue is the “fetal life”. (I’d apologize for how pro-choice I am and my views on “fetal life”, but, you know).

Another things that has popped up in recent history is the whole South Dakota trying to make abortion illegal and go against federal law. Crazy.

So yeah, the idea of laws regulating the reproductive rights of woman by making federal funding they receive be set at a particular limit regardless of the amount of children they actually have, doesn’t surprise me. It’s irritating, but not surprising.

Women Need Reproductive Choice

April 25, 2012 § 2 Comments

“Contemporary Challenges To Black Women’s Reproductive Rights” by Jeanne Flavin discusses an added level to challenges women face dealing with their reproductive rights: race. As we’ve talked about since the beginning of this course, minorities face discrimination in different ways and at different levels of each other. This essay discusses black women and their reproductive rights. What I found most interesting is the idea of “family caps”, the idea to limit the number of children allowed in a family. It is sad to think that black women were seen as “undesirable” and thus were sterilized in different ways. There were sterilization against these women’s will, sterilization of perceived “genetically inferior”, used under the claim to “cut welfare costs”, and then for women on welfare or faced with drug charges. This forced sterilization reminds me quite frankly of the Nazis in World War II. Yes, they were much different scenarios but sterilizing “undesirables” and “genetically inferior” women reminds me of Hitler’s talk of a master race. It is disappointing to think that this blatant racism existed in America while we were supposedly being a global policeman of freedoms.

Welfare programs have added “family caps” in the hopes that it will deter women from having children to make more money, yet there is no evidence to support that women do this. This idea portrays the stereotype of the “welfare queen” we discussed in conjunction to women’s work. It is damaging and only hurts a program that was first designed to help families take care of their children. A major problem I see in this issue is that as American’s we believe in pulling ourselves up by our own bootstraps (a part of masculinity, especially in “Taking It” by Leonard Kriegel) and welfare seems to contradict this fact. Instead we see recipients as lazy and questionable characters. It also feeds into our perceptions of needing to control women’s reproductive rights, to stop the poor from growing in numbers in a way that we think is best. Instead we are only trampling over women’s (black women in this case) rights. Sterilizing is wrong, and on a different level, so is the idea of women having children to make more money on welfare and therefore needing “family caps”.  Instead of limiting women’s autonomy of her reproductive rights, we need to enhance it. By providing women with education and resources they would be able to make and control their reproductive choices in a way that best fits them.

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