A couple of recent posts elsewhere (stemming from timely headlines in the “real” media) remind me of what happens when society assumes that access to social services is a privilege, and not a right. Health insurance, politics, and the free market do not mix– they’re like oil, water, and, uh… rock?
Look, there’s always going to be somebody deciding what procedures are provided to which people. This will involve politics to some extent. But, ya know’, it’d be cool if doctors had some say.
Anyhow, exhibit A:
Folks over at Feministe were discussing birth certificates for transsexual people. In the comments, someone (lets call him piny) pointed out that the cost of transsexual-related medicine (I hate that way of putting it, because it relegates some medical procedures to queer world, while normalizing others) should be irrelevant to whether insurers actually pay for it. And he’s right, of course. Insurers have made the same arguments with regard to mental health and autism, although recent legislation has gotten insured people closer to parity in coverage for mental illness.