A 24-year-old Cincinnati father died from a tooth infection this week because he couldn't afford his medication, offering a sobering reminder of the importance of oral health and the number of people without access to dental or health care.But I'm sure his 6-year-old daughter is happy that the Tea Party were able to maintain their ideological purity and ensure that the free market be kept free so her father could die. There were no "death panels" involved in his demise. He died of his own freewill. He and his family were not subject to the horrors of socialized medicine or even the mostly-socialist single-payer healthcare system. No, we're free to die of preventable illnesses and diseases. America! Fuck yeah!
When his face started swelling and his head began to ache, Willis went to the emergency room, where he received prescriptions for antibiotics and pain medications. Willis couldn't afford both, so he chose the pain medications.Wow, he got to chose his medication like a good, rational free market actor. Pain or healing? What to pick? He chose not to be in pain. I believe he chose poorly. But this was, most importantly, his choice. His choice to live pain-free and then die. Thanks, Tea Party for giving him the ability, nay the obligation to make a choice!!! And I'm sure his orphaned daughter thanks you too!
The tooth infection spread, causing his brain to swell. He died Tuesday.
"When people are unemployed or don't have insurance, where do they go? What do they do?" Silverstein said. "People end up dying, and these are the most treatable, preventable diseases in the world."
Getting access to dental care is particularly tough for low-income adults and children, and it's getting tougher as the economy worsens. In April, the Kaiser Family Foundation reported that 33 percent of people surveyed skipped dental care or dental checkups because they couldn't afford them. A 2003 report by the U.S. Surgeon General found that 108 million Americans had no dental insurance, nearly 2.5 times the number who had no health insurance.