RUSH: UK Daily Mail. It's an amazing story. "Hospital staff in Northern Virginia are turning away sick people on a frigid Thursday morning because they can't determine whether their Obamacare insurance plans are in effect. Patients in a close-in DC suburb who think they've signed up for new insurance plans are struggling to show their December enrollments are in force, and health care administrators aren't taking their word for it." They've got no proof.
So people thought they were signing up for Obamacare, but somehow there's not an enrollment card or an ID card or a membership card or any kind of evidentiary proof that you are enrolled. But people went to the hospital anyway. Maybe there are some scammers in here, probably are, but still some people who thought they signed up for Obamacare are now showing up at the hospital at the ER and they're being turned away.
"In place of quick service and painless billing, these Virginians are now facing the threat of sticker-shock that comes with bills they can't afford. 'They had no idea if my insurance was active or not!' a coughing Maria Galvez told MailOnline outside the Inova Healthplex facility in the town of Springfield. She was leaving the building without getting a needed chest x-ray. 'The people in there told me that since I didn't have an insurance card, I would be billed for the whole cost of the x-ray,' Galvez said, her young daughter in tow. 'It's not fair -- you know, I signed up last week like I was supposed to,'" and they're not treating her, and she's got no proof.
What a mess.
What an absolute, total mess.
RUSH: We gonna go to Sullivan, Wisconsin, because this is a transition to where I was headed anyway. Ken, great to have you on Open Line Friday. Hello, sir.
CALLER: Rush, it's been many years. We appreciate you out here.
RUSH: What do you mean, it's been many years? Many years of the program, many years since you last called, many years...? What do you mean, many years?
CALLER: Well, I've been listening forever, and I'm usually busy during the day. I'm off today. It's the first time I ever called and I got through. I can't believe it.
RUSH: Okay. So it's been many years that you have been trying and wanting to appear on the program, and here it is, you've made it?
CALLER: On my first call, and again we appreciate you out here.
RUSH: Thank you very much. I appreciate. I really do.
CALLER: Well, my first thought as I sat here today was here with everything going south as far as Obamacare and with the country in supposedly a slow recovery, which we all know is no recovery at all, our president is in Hawaii, and they're doing photo shoots of him getting lattes and hitting golf balls. If George W. Bush had put his signature -- something he actually put his name on and then disappeared at the beginning of its inception and was having a vacation while all the sites were crashing, can you imagine? Can you imagine what people would be saying in the media right now? Did you hear anything about Obama, though?
RUSH: Yeah, I totally understand it. But I want to focus on just one half of that. I don't care what the media would be saying about what Bush is doing. What matters more to me is what Obama is actually doing. His "signature program" is a total lie. His signature program, he lied to people. "You can keep your plan, you can keep your doctor if you like it." People can't even now get insurance. People who thought that they were insured aren't and can't get treated.
They are going untreated, going into hospitals and they don't have insurance; they think they've signed up. It is an absolute disaster, and he's snorkeling in Hawaii. Forget what the media is saying about it, which is nothing. We all know that if it were George W. Bush the media would be taking the occasion to drum up hatred, downward approval numbers and everything else on Bush to run him out of office. But my point is, let's just forget the media for a second, folks, and let's just look at the man, Barack Obama.
Ken's exactly right. This program has his name on it. He lied to people for three years about this program. People trusted him. People believed what he told them. They believed that he was going to improve the health care system in this country. They believed it was going to get cheaper. They believed it was going to get more affordable. They believed it was going to become more plentiful. They believed that everybody was going to have insurance. They believed Obama.
That's why he was elected. They believed he was a different politician. They believed he was messianic. They bought into that. They believed Obama and the Democrat Party and everybody in it when they made these promises about a new panacea and utopia in health care. This is an absolute national disaster, and the man who gave this program to people is snorkeling in Hawaii. He's out there for 17 days.
I'm reading about the burdens of the office, traveling with the president wherever he goes. "The burdens of the office are such the president is never on vacation." This man is. This man is on vacation even when he's in Washington. This is outrageous. In addition to people going to the hospital and being turned away -- by the way, that story is in the British media. You don't find that in domestic US media.
The UK Mail online "spoke with patients who were told they would have to pay their bills in full if they couldn't prove they had insurance." That's not what Obama told them was gonna happen. Obama told 'em they were gonna get cheaper premiums, cheaper deductibles, cheaper co-pays, and that if they liked what they had they could keep it. So people, the ones who did sign up now may not have actually signed up because after three years this bunch can't even do a simple log-in registration website.
The man who gave us this doesn't appear to care. He doesn't care enough to even come back and use the power of his office as boss over every in charge of this and insist that it get done right. Instead, he's at Nobu on Waikiki beach at night. Instead, he's snorkeling. Instead, he's out hitting golf balls. Instead, he's reading books on the beach or whatever he's doing. Yeah, it's true, the media would be hammering George W. Bush. But we know the media isn't gonna hammer Barack Obama no matter what.
They are Barack Obama. The more important thing here is just what kind of man would do this? What kind of man could appear so cavalier? He knew that January 2nd was D-Day for this plan to go into effect. He knew that. And where is he? He's as far away from Washington as you can be and still be in the country, with absolutely not a care in the world -- and yet, he is a Democrat. I've heard all my life, "They're the ones who really care about people.
"They're the ones who really have compassion. They're the ones who really care about the little guy." Why is it the little guy keeps getting the shaft when these people are in charge? Why is it the very people who believe Obama, the very people who elected him get the shaft? "One was faced with a $3,000 hospital room charge and opted to leave the hospital after experiencing chest pains," because she couldn't pay the three grand.
Well, who could? They thought they were insured. They signed up at HealthCare.gov. "Another, coughing in the cold, walked out without receiving a needed chest x-ray. Consumers face sticker-shock from medical costs under the new Obamacare system, made worse if they can't prove they're insured." How? You show up at HealthCare.gov, you give 'em all your data, you sign up, you follow the law, and they don't know you've been there?
Even if you have signed up and for some reason can't prove it, there ought to be some record of you having signed up in their database. Why isn't there? And if there is, why can't anybody find it? This is a disgrace, folks. These are real people. These are human beings who probably don't have a lot and have been talked into depending on the government for this kind of thing. They've been talked into depending on other people.
They've been talked into believing that powerful forces are arrayed against them and are ready to screw 'em at each and every turn. "Let us handle it for you," the Democrats say, and where are they? "As many as one-third of new enrollees' applications have seen problems when the government transmits them to insurance companies." Here's a companion story. This is from AP, out of Chicago. "The new year brought relief to some Illinois patients newly insured under [Obamacare].
"Others still weren't sure whether they were covered, despite their best efforts to navigate the often-balky new system. The major benefits of President Barack Obama's health care overhaul took effect Wednesday, the first day of 2014. By Thursday, the first business day of the new insurance system, it became clear that snags in the rollout of [Obamacare] still remained." Where this story is ultimately headed is a story about a doctor's office spending two hours on hold with a health insurer for a patient's surgery authorization and finally hanging up in frustration after not getting it."
Here's the way the AP details that: "[E]arly problems with the federal HealthCare.gov website led many people to wait until last week to sign up... Paperwork problems almost delayed suburban Chicago resident Sheri Zajcew's scheduled surgery Thursday, but Dr. John Venetos decided to operate without a routine go-ahead from the insurance company. That was after Venetos' office manager spent two hours on hold with the insurer Thursday, trying to get an answer about whether the patient needed prior authorization for the surgery.
"The office manager finally gave up. 'I'm not a happy camper,' said Nate Zajcew, the patient's husband. The couple signed up for a Blue Cross Blue Shield bronze plan through the federal HealthCare.gov site on Dec. 16. 'I understand it's just a matter of paperwork and yesterday was a holiday. I can be an SOB, too, at times, but since they're going on with the procedure, it's OK.'" Now, it wasn't that long ago where this patient can go to the doctor and the doctor woul dsay, "You know what? You need surgery."
They'd schedule it, do the surgery, and whatever happens, happens. It wasn't that long ago. You didn't have to call three or four people for authorization, for permission, for documentation to make sure papers were in order. Because the doctor in this case happened to be a decent human being, he went had and did what was medically necessary despite there being no authorization from "the authorities."
He will be dealt with later, make no mistake about this, because this is making Obamacare look bad. He will be dealt with later, but he did his job. The doctor in this case is the one who had compassion. The doctor is the one who did what he would have normally done anyway, but almost didn't do because of the involvement of two third parties: An insurance company and the Obama administration. If the first day...
They've had three years to gear up, three years ago to get this going, three years to get this ready. So what are we learning here on January 3rd? People are being turned away. People are not being treated in emergency rooms. People who've signed up have no evidence of it and are being turned away because there is no evidence they've signed up, but they maintain they have -- and people may not get needed surgery because the authorities on the other end of the phone wherever they are in the Regime aren't picking up.
Yeah. It's entirely possible this doctor who performed this surgery may pay for it himself. It's entirely possible he won't be paid, if the Regime, the Obama official or the insurance company denies permission after the fact. If they say, "Well, you know, you shouldn't have done the surgery because we weren't gonna authorize that," and doctor says, "I have no choice. I have a patient here who needs this surgery," the Regime will say, "Well, that's fine and dandy, but you're not being reimbursed."
This is why doctors are leaving Medicare/Medicaid.
It's an absolute disaster, and I don't care what the media is saying about it. What matters is that we've got a chief executive who doesn't care. This business about the burdens of the office follow the president everywhere? This president is disproving that daily.
RUSH: I have somebody who wants to react to the doctor story in Chicago. This is Jay in Orlando. Jay, it's great to have you on Open Line Friday. Hello, sir.
CALLER: It's an honor to talk to you, sir. I've been listening since they had Rush Rooms in 1989 here in Orlando.
RUSH: Hey. Yes, yes. I remember those.
CALLER: I wanted to expand on what you were talking about because it touches a point that people aren't realizing. It used to be with an insurance company if you had a problem with them, you could call the state commission, the government, and ask them to arbitrate, ask them to try to correct the situation. Now with Obamacare, you don't have anyone above them. Their ruling is final. There's no arbitrator. There's no person to go to to challenge a ruling.
RUSH: There wasn't even a ruling here, though. There wasn't even a ruling here. They couldn't even get the ruling.
CALLER: In the past, though, you could call the state commission and say, "We can't get through. These people aren't responding," and the state commission would fine the insurance companies.
RUSH: Oh, yeah, yeah. Well, there's nowhere else you can go other than Obama. That's true.
CALLER: Exactly. You have taken the police and turned them into the business that you have to deal with, and there's no police above them. So I hope people realize they've lost the ability now to challenge insurance rulings to try to get better or fairer treatment, and that's gone now. That's gone.
RUSH: I actually think... I don't know this. There is no empirical data on this, but people who are experiencing this, whatever these problems are -- either being turned away at the ER, at the hospital, or being delayed surgical procedures or what have you, or people have signed up and nobody can prove it, there's no evidence of it -- at some point... The polling data has always shown that the majority of people never wanted Obamacare, and I think there's a greater bubbling up or effervescence of anger out there over this than people realize because that's not being reported, either.
I mean the stories are being reported in almost a sterile way, as though these aren't real people. "Ah, some people showed up with chest pains. They might not be treated. They'll get sent away," and then there's some reference to Obamacare, and how these are natural snafus to unveil a program or what have you. But health care matters most to a lot of people. It's the most important thing. The Democrat Party has seen to that.
It's now being dealt with in this cavalier, laissez-faire manner that I think people are becoming very outraged and angered by, particularly these early adopters who apparently were all-in for this and thought this was an improvement. They believed what they were told. But it's just a disaster, just in a straight human sense. It is an absolute disaster. These things are being reported as anecdotes, little single items, but they're not anecdotes. These are things happening. Real people are being hurt.