Call to take action

After reading the Sun Journal article regarding job losses at CMHC as a result of unpaid Mainecare debt, I felt I couldn't, in good conscience, keep quiet on the issue.

It is my opinion that Mainecare is in need of major reform, without delay.

While I feel it is inappropriate to rail against a program as oft-abused as Mainecare, injecting my own personal bias in the process, as an EMS professional, I know what I personally have seen and continue to see every day. The picture is not as rosy nor as equitable as those politically motivated to preserve Mainecare in its current form would have the general public believe.

Mainecare, like many other well-meaning social programs in this state, is the object of rampant abuse and fraud. In place of a long-winded list of specific examples from personal experience, I urge the general public to take action.

I challenge the ever-decreasing number of working people, upon whose shoulders rests the entitlement of those who would not do for themselves, to put personal politics aside and do their homework.

People cannot be content with being angry; they have to figure out for themselves what is really wrong. People need to talk to the staff at the hospital; hit the streets and fix the fraud.

Maine is in trouble. Jobs are at stake, and there is really no one to blame but ourselves and our failure to act.

Kyle Baker, Manchester

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 's picture

250 word limit

I expect that Kyle is the victim of the 250 word limit SJ puts on LTTEs. It would be impossible with a 250 word limit for him to provide what you would like, specific examples of abuse. I expect he will do what many LTTE writers do these days. Write your 250 word limit LTTE, wait for it to be printed then go on line and post the rest of the story with no word limit. SJ needs to amend the 250 limit it is rediculous and only stiffles transmission of information.

 's picture

Hang on, look deeper.

Before you scrap Mainecare, look deeper at the reimbursement rates to hospitals. Part of the reason that reimbursement rates are low, and the state has trouble paying hospitals for all they bill, is that the hospitals in some cases are passing along ridiculous fees for services. Miles Memorial Hospital on the coast for example has a very high rate of Medicare and Maine Care patients, they also have a high number of people in the area that can't or don't pay their bills. To make up for that they have some of the highest fees in the state, perhaps in the country!
Just one example, a basic blood test, full screening for lipids cholesterol etc, nearly $400! Insurance companies won't pay it, and if CMCC and other Maine hospitals put forth similar charges then I can see why they are behind on reimbursements, and I can see why the state can't keep up!

 's picture

he didn't say to scrap

he didn't say to scrap mainecare. he said to take personal responsibility for ourselves, try to find ways to prevent fraud which does occur with so many clients and so few checks and balances. in reality, we will reach a point were there will be more people receiving then giving and the whole system will implode. where will that leave the needy then? you are right that hospitals bill very high because even if someone can't pay they must be given emergency care, that care costs real money in personell and supplies which must be reimbersed (nurses don't normally work for free), and that ends up getting passed on. so it comes down to people not paying their bills, both at the state and personal levels, which drives up cost. sounds like he was right, we do need to take responsiblity for our actions.


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