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Isn’t Florida Lucky …

That we have a governor who came from the health care industry to help the state through the changes that are coming. He obviously knows a lot about Medicare and Medicaid to have had the largest fines in the history of the programs levied against his corporation for fraud.

It is possible that he turned down the Medicaid expansion, to avoid having any Florida plan rejected because of his history with the program.

Of course it would be nice if he and his minions would stop doing stupid things like this:

JACKSONVILLE —The CDC officer had a serious warning for Florida health officials in April: A tuberculosis outbreak in Jacksonville was one of the worst his group had investigated in 20 years. Linked to 13 deaths and 99 illnesses, including six children, it would require concerted action to stop.

That report had been penned on April 5, exactly nine days after Florida Gov. Rick Scott signed the bill that shrank the Department of Health and required the closure of the A.G. Holley State Hospital in Lantana, where tough tuberculosis cases have been treated for more than 60 years.

I’m sure the Fraudster-in-chief is already looking for a for-profit hospital to take over the TB care for no more than three times what it would have cost at the state hospital, because everyone knows how much more efficient the private sector is than the public sector … 😈

7 comments

1 Badtux { 07.10.12 at 11:59 pm }

I’d point to my long-running series “The Coming Epidemic” and mention the one mutation for virulence that is between us and an incurable killer TB epidemic that will kill a quarter of the world’s population quickly and most of the rest slowly, a mutation that becomes far more likely with a cesspool of untreated or, worse yet, badly-treated TB like we have today, but it’s kind of depressing to see how close I’m calling this one :(.

2 Bryan { 07.11.12 at 12:16 am }

Two of my great grandparents died of TB. My great grandfather contracted it while serving in Asia as part of the Spanish American War. He got the slow version, but my great grandmother caught the fast version while caring for him.

I remember being tested for TB multiple times during my childhood, especially when we went overseas and returned, but also as part of the standard testing before going to school down here. I’m fairly certain that they don’t do that anymore. It went away like the smallpox vaccination.

Republicans don’t want to ‘waste money’ on preventative maintenance of the infrastructure, nor on preventative health services. They obviously don’t understand that ‘an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure’.

The US keeps going backwards, and the politicians don’t give a damn. This is going to be just like AIDS – it only affects the underclasses, so there is no need to doing anything about it. They just don’t care.

3 Badtux { 07.11.12 at 1:20 am }

Thing is, I never met a germ that queried someone as to whether they were a Republican or not, or whether you were rich or not. If TB mutates for virulence, then things will go bad *quickly*, for rich as well as poor. Right now what we have is a large pool of sick people who get just barely enough treatment to keep them from dying but not enough treatment to cure them, and it’s incubating superbugs for diseases that are starting to spread like we haven’t seen for sixty years or more. It’s like they’re *trying* to breed diseases that will kill the majority of the human race…. thing is, how are they going to stop *themselves* from dying, if that’s the case?!

– Badtux the Healthcare Penguin

4 Steve Bates { 07.11.12 at 10:36 am }

I knew a lot of professors at the UT School of Public Health when I worked there. I’m trying in vain to remember any Republicans among them.

The past century has seen the development of the public health field, and only the past three decades have seen the rise to power of people who want to ignore the most basic principles of public health. Some of them argue cost savings: to those, I can only remind them of the small, now defunct coffee house chain, Diedrich, which we all pronounced in the obvious way, and suggest to them that that is where their penny-wisdom regarding public health issues will leave them sooner or later.

5 Bryan { 07.11.12 at 3:22 pm }

The US Public Health Service goes back to 1798, and they have the power of quarantine if they feel it is necessary. I doubt the Fraudster-in-chief or Duval County / Jacksonville politicians would like to see the yellow flags of quarantine encircling the area, but if they don’t do something about the problem, that is a possibility.

If the port is shut down, and the Navy withdraws, they will discover the true cost of the ‘cure’.

TB [consumption] has certainly not avoided the famous or wealthy throughout the years, and taking a half-dozen antibiotics every day for months is not inexpensive, so it would be stupid to ignore the problem and increase the costs of stopping it. The Republicans are just being ‘conservative’, i.e. brain-dead and anti-science in their approach to public health. They apparently believe that anything that might benefit anyone who isn’t in the 1% is socialism, which must be condemned at all costs, including dead Floridians.

6 Badtux { 07.12.12 at 12:53 am }

But Bryan, TB hospitals weren’t mentioned in the Constitution, so clearly our founding fathers didn’t intend for government to run such things. Rather, the proper solution is vigorous wand-waving by the Free Market Fairy, which will solve the problem by sticking his (her?) up the rear orifice of the taxpayers and injecting magical Free Market Fairy Dust, which feels an aweful lot like service as defined by “a stallion servicing a mare”.

The sheer stupidity literally astounds me, leaves me agape with astonishment that someone could be so stupid and shortsighted. And Bryan, the way things are going, they’re going to manage to breed a strain of TB that *no* antibiotics will kill no matter how much of a combination you hit it with, and if that mutation happens to be of one of the more virulent strains… (SHUDDER). Anybody who took a freshman level biology course in college and actually paid attention (big if, I know) can figure that one out, if they’re willing to simply apply what they learned. Only an ideologue willing to ignore reality in pursuit of his ideology could say that this is a good idea, breeding superbugs that is. I remember another nation that put ideology above reality… hmm… my friend who spent time as an engineer at Baikonur might have something to say about how well that worked. Hint: The nation he worked for doesn’t exist anymore. And it looks like the USA is spiraling down that death tube the same way… 🙁

7 Bryan { 07.12.12 at 11:59 am }

Most of the states that are following these stupid policies didn’t exist when the Constitution was approved, so maybe we should just return them to their former owners and go back to the original 13. Florida will pretty much disappear when the sea level rises because nothing is being done to halt climate change, so it won’t be a major loss in the long run.

Since they have tagged the Jacksonville strain, the other states that encounter it should send the bills to the Florida governor, he’s the one that let it spread.

This should be a great boost to tourism – Visit Florida (after you get your TB vaccination). 😈