US Health Policy Cited as Major Shortcoming

During the lead-up to the election of US President Barack Obama, the administrative campaign was hailed as being one of the most marvelous to be conducted in the country’s history. Health care has been one of the most greatly discussed topics and most important issues for the President and his administration in recent months, with scores of people focusing their attention on changing the often inadequate and overly expensive system currently in place in the US. While the government’s efforts to address this problem have been lauded by some, others have begun to sound off about the administration’s treatment of the issue in terms of creating dialog with the public.

Principally, the matter of using what The Huffington Post refers to as “PolicySpeak” has been an offending action, as it is suggested that the real implications and consequences of important policy decisions are shrouded in language that obscures the basic points of information associated with new rules and structures. Though a website has been created to encourage discussion about the topic and to bring new information to the public in a clear and accessible way, some report that the site and other similar efforts are disconnected from the reality of basic facts, promoting confusion about the issues and ultimately leading towards a lack of public involvement in the change.

As budgets tighten despite growing numbers of those reporting experiencing mental health issues, the implications for mental health care services throughout the country may be substantial. Though many professionals remain confident in the current administration’s positive intentions to create a better, more accessible, and less expensive health care system, others are concerned that real change will fail to materialize in the place of an overabundance of empty words and a lack of public alternatives to insurance companies. The issue is sure to bring a greater number of therapists into social and political action in the times to come.

© Copyright 2009 by By John Smith, therapist in Bellingham, Washington. All Rights Reserved. Permission to publish granted to

The preceding article was solely written by the author named above. Any views and opinions expressed are not necessarily shared by Questions or concerns about the preceding article can be directed to the author or posted as a comment below.

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  • James


    September 4th, 2009 at 5:55 PM

    Public health should be the number one priority for any government or organization…without a proper public health-care system there would not be anything else…you cannot have sick people working and running the economy of the country,are you? we just need to hope that the President and his team are reading this and do something to address this issue…and soon!

  • Amy


    September 5th, 2009 at 8:30 AM

    We are all just so confused and like the article states here, it is because so much of what we are hearing does feel more like policy speak instead of breaking it down and really giving the American people the real info that we all want and need to hear. I, like so many other people know that there need to be changes made to the current health care system but sometimes the proposals make no sense when I read about them and hear Obama talking about them. Just get to the meat of the issue- tell us who is going to be paying for what and how you are going to make things more affordable for everyone. That is what so many of us really want to know!

  • CraigH.


    September 5th, 2009 at 1:42 PM

    You expect the government to be open, honest and clear when it comes to policy changes? Never going to happen. Governments never have. The people need to shout their questions loud enough that they cannot be ignored. Write to your Congressman, ask him the same questions and make him work for his money!

  • Stacia


    September 7th, 2009 at 1:08 PM

    There is never going to be a lot of involvement from the people until we all make that push forward that is going to need to happen to make a real change. People are as lazy and apathetic about healthcare as they are about so many other issues facing this nation- when it does not affect them directly they are unwilling to get up off their butts and do anything about it. What they do not realize is that what may not pertain to them today could make a whole lot of diffrence to them tomorrow, but by then the time for change may have passed them by.

  • Quinn


    September 8th, 2009 at 12:25 PM

    You know what? I do expect the govt to be open and honest with me about changes that they are gonna make. Aren’t they supposed to be representing me and my voice in Washington? I do not make it a habit to keep my head in the clouds but I think that the way to get this done and done right is to get the people with the opinions that are closest to your own in power. One person does not necessarily make a difference but with the right people working together you most certainly can. Right now I think that there is a lot of confusion and misguided anger. People are too afraid that they are going to be told what to do by the government and that is not true. It is just that it is time to start taking care of our own again and looking out for more than number one.

  • Sally


    September 10th, 2009 at 1:58 PM

    I am sorry but there are still too many unanswered questions for me to be 100% behind a government run health care system. Seems like a little too much goverenment interference in an area where they have no business being.

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