Dear Fellow Americans,
Among the many fears people are expressing about the Affordable Care Act is the supposed extra hours it will force people to spend if they have the misfortune of having to go to hospital emergency rooms.
Critics claim that those enrolled in “Obamacare” (a term I personally dislike but have to use, or else the commoners out there won’t know what I’m speaking about) will be forced to sit even longer
in hospital emergency care rooms due to doctors being forced out of the profession, thereby leaving emergency rooms understaffed, and so forcing people to overwhelm them with minor ailments, compounding insurance companies with tons of more red tape that will cause them to reject patients to regular doctors’ and specialists’ offices much more than ever. And don’t forget the people now forced or choosing to join Medicaid that should never be on it, which will clog up emergency rooms, as the E.R.s will become as common to them as visiting their pharmacies for a simple cold.
Naysayers claim the ACA will turn our nation’s emergency rooms into those similar to Europe’s, where people can sit all day in understaffed hospitals as they wait to get their feverish illnesses addressed, or their broken limbs fixed, their convulsions stopped, that knife removed from their skulls, or their fingers reattached.
I doubt such dire fears will ever come true here. But for argument’s sake let us presume I am wrong (which I never am) and that ''Obamacare'' will force Americans to wait in emergency rooms longer than they already do. In that case, has it ever occurred to people the great new friends that can be made while waiting for hours in abject misery alongside others also in abject pain and misery?
Think about it, America: you’re wallowing in your local emergency room, vomiting your guts out from that tainted sushi you ate the night before, and next to you is some person crying over their left ankle that somehow got broken and now has their left foot facing backwards instead of frontwards –wouldn’t that be the perfect time to be like, “Hi, there, sir or ma’am! What’s your name? Want to be friends?”
Better yet, let’s say that suffering person next to you is that new neighbor of yours you have yet to meet and get to know, and you’re both in the E.R. from that power line that came down in the previous night’s violent storm and electrocuted you both as you were cleaning up your yards that morning —what a better time to bond? I can’t think of anything better to bring neighbors together than sharing their feelings over mutually charred limbs and fluttering heartbeats.
And for you singles out there: what could not be a better way to discover that “special someone” while you’re sitting with all those shards of glass jammed in your face after your car accident, and that swollen, cute little blonde next to you who’s going through anaphylactic shock after her run-in with a nest of killer African honey bees (no offense to African-Americans, by the way)? You two could bond, exchange numbers, and be on a date the next week, granted that her throat doesn’t close up and she suffocates to death in the meantime.
Or for you more rough guys out there: let’s say you’re in a bar fight and have taken a pool stick upside the head. Wouldn’t be nice to at least make the offer to the girl beside you with the broken bone sticking out of her arm, “Hey, baby, who needs doctors? You wanna help reinsert my dangling eyeball for me?”
Dear America, all I am saying here is look at the upside if all these grim predictions about the longer waits in emergency rooms caused by Obamacare come to pass (which of course they will not). An E.R. is a stressful, emotional environment, naturally ripe for people to let the emotions loose and bond over their ailments. It’s a natural breeding ground for new friends to be made, romances to spark, neighbors to get to better know neighbors, and communities to bond together like never before.
I’m only trying to turn some current frowns upside-down here, with all these fears of the waits in E.R.s Obamacare will cause running rampant throughout the country… which will never happen under the ACA, of course.
It’s been my pleasure here to help people realize the benefits of these rumors if they ever come true, no matter how untrue they undoubtedly are. Thank you, America. It’s been a pleasure correcting you and bringing you some hope today!
Minority Speaker, U.S. House of Representatives