Romney is Wrong; 45,000 Die Per Year Without Health Insurance

"We don’t have people that become ill, who die in their apartment because they don’t have insurance.” -Mitt Romney to the Columbus Dispatch

This simply isn't correct.

According to a 2009 study conducted by Harvard Medical School, approximately 45,000 people die each year because they do not have insurance.

Study co-author Dr. Steffie Woolhandler said the findings show that without proper care, uninsured people are more likely to die from complications associated with preventable diseases such as diabetes and heart disease.

When Romney originally made the claim several weeks ago that we "don't have people who die" because they don't have insurance, he also cited people who live in apartments.

Does Romney really believe only people who live in apartments lack health insurance? What about people with homes? What about the homeless?

The existence of emergency rooms seems to be Romney's justification for bringing back pre-existing conditions, but as we've discussed before, and as Mitt Romney himself has discussed before, emergency rooms are the most expensive form of care and are a drain on the system.

At the 1:12 minute mark:

We say that citizens making three times federal poverty or more, that's $54,000 a year in our state for a family of four, you have to buy a policy that you can afford. And no more showing up at the hospital expecting someone else to pay your way.

For people earning less than three times federal poverty we the state will subsidize their purchase of a policy. They choose the policy they want. We subsidize its purchase. And that way we get everybody insured.

[Question] And that doesn't cost any additional dollars?

The answer is no because we've been spending in our state about $1.3 billion a year giving money to hospitals that give out free care. So we were spending about $1.3 billion. That money came from taxes, it came from assessments on hospitals and insurance companies, it came from the federal government, it came from all of the above. And we said, okay, look, instead of paying money to the hospitals to give out free care, why don't we subsidize the purchase of insurance?

Romney's entire campaign is a contradiction of his previous self.

  • The Reader

    Every 14 minutes, a person is killed by prescription drugs — and unlike most other causes of preventable death, which have been on the decline for years, medication-induced deaths are on the upswing across the US. According to a recent analysis conducted by the Los Angeles Times (LA Times), drug-induced deaths have become so prevalent that their average yearly total now exceeds the number of deaths caused by traffic accidents-and they have the best health care in the world. That is 38,000 slightly less than the others who don’t have health care.
    The article was written by:
    The Harvard study, funded by a federal research grant, was published in the online edition of the American Journal of Public Health. It was released by Physicians for a National Health Program, which favors government-backed or “single-payer” health insurance.

    Also the article by Harvard stated that most of these diseases are preventable, as in diabetes-since when did diabetes become a contagious disease? it isn’t.
    While the liberals and the medical society blames cigarettes for oh so many problems. The same could be said for the type two diabetes patients–it is their own fault.

    Obamacare is not about health-it is not about care–it is about medicating the masses.

    • JMAshby

      And vaccines cause autism and retardation? amiritie!?

      • The Reader

        According to lawsuits won in Italy. Yes vaccines cause autism.

        Vaccines are big money. I do believe that people in general who have vaccines are putting themselves at risk. Remember when the flu shot killed all those people because the government told them they all should get one? They tried that also with the made up pandemic when Obama took office.

        • nicole

          Vaccines do not cause autism. It has been disproven, and the guy who started that crap, completely ruined.

          Now, run along and play with Jenny McCarthy……maybe you can learn something from each other. (although I sincerely doubt it)


          • The Reader

            The FDA said that agent orange wasn’t a problem either until…wait for it-until almost all have died from its exposure.

          • nicole

            oh go away you freaking ignoramus conspiracy freak.

          • D_C_Wilson

            You really don’t have any concept of what is considered actual proof, do you?

        • D_C_Wilson

          You do know that lawsuits are not considered scientific proof, right?

        • bphoon

          You may need another layer of aluminum foil for your hat…

    • BuffaloBuckeye

      So, there’s the quandry; go with universal health care and save 45,000 people or have no health care and save 38,000 OD’s.

      “Also the article by Harvard stated that most of these diseases are preventable, as in diabetes-since when did diabetes become a contagious disease? it isn’t”

      How in the hell are you confusing ‘preventable’ with ‘contagious’?

      • D_C_Wilson

        It’s not even a quandary. Without the ACA, 45,000 will die annually because they lack health coverage, but that doesn’t mean 38,000 will OD WITH the ACA.

        The_Reader forgot to mention if there was any causal connection between the 38,000 ODs and the passage of “Obamacare”. You’ll notice he didn’t bother to include a link to this study? There’s a reason for that.

        “Of the 36,450 overdose deaths in the United States in 2008, 20,044 involved a prescription drug, more than all illicit drugs combined. ”

        So, while prescription drug overdoses are on the rise, the number of deaths isn’t 38,000/year. That’s the total number of deaths from all drug overdoses. The number of prescription drug-related deaths is more like 20,000. So, right off the bat, he was being dishonest with his numbers.

        But then will still have the problem that there is no causal relationship between “Obamacare” and prescription drug deaths. Notice the date from the NY Times article: 2008. Before the passage of “Obamacare”; before Obama even became president. Prescription drug deaths have been rising for years and it has nothing at all to do with “Obamacare”.

        • JMAshby

          This is why I keep you guys around. I rather prefer to just mock trolls.

        • The Reader

          Every year in the US there are:

          12,000 deaths from unnecessary surgeries;

          7,000 deaths from medication errors in hospitals;

          20,000 deaths from other errors in hospitals;

          80,000 deaths from infections acquired in hospitals;

          106,000 deaths from FDA-approved correctly prescribed medicines.

          The total of medically-caused deaths in the US every year is 225,000.

          This makes the medical system the third leading cause of death in the US, behind heart disease and cancer.

          The Starfield study is the most disturbing revelation about modern healthcare in America ever published. The credentials of its author and the journal in which it appeared are, within the highest medical circles, impeccable.

          • D_C_Wilson

            And none of that has anything to do with “Obamacare”.

    • D_C_Wilson

      Obamacare, as you call it, is not about deciding what medications you should be taking. It’s about making health coverage more accessible to the “masses” that you so causually disdain. You’re confusing paying for health care with deciding what care is appropriate.

      • bphoon

        Typical conflation of the right. See: Death Panels.

  • Brutlyhonest

    Everyone knows that only “those people” live in apartments.

  • Jay T. Goodwin

    “That’s not the way the world really works anymore,” he continued. “We’re an empire now, and when we act, we create our own reality. And while you’re studying that reality—judiciously, as you will—we’ll act again, creating other new realities, which you can study too, and that’s how things will sort out. We’re history’s actors…and you, all of you, will be left to just study what we do.”