SUBMITTED BY DAVID BEAVER

 

The Senate races are heating up across the country and the state of Pennsylvania is no exception. With soon to be former Congressman Lou Barletta taking on the incumbent, Senator Bob Casey many are unaware that there's a third candidate in the race. Senatorial candidate Dale Kerns plans to change that as he runs for the seat with the Libertarian Party of Pennsylvania. A former businessman and Eddystone borough councilman he is not what you would describe as a typical career politician and has stated that if elected he will only serve one term.

 

“...I will not accept a pension, will not take the healthcare, and will only run for one term. I am not part of DC and will not allow myself to be either. I am asking for one term to get some work done, and take back the seat in DC owned by Pennsylvanians and hi-jacked by the two-party system.” he said in a recent interview. While acknowledging the struggles of running with a third party, especially in fundraising, he is very optimistic about his chances of winning. “Being that our team is volunteer-based, and we are fiscally responsible, we do not need millions to win, but we do need to raise more.

 

With opponents like Lou Barletta are fighting it out over wedge issues like immigration Dale Kerns has placed individual liberties and the values of small government at the forefront of his campaign. He also taken on controversial issues, hosting town halls across the state discussing the opioid crisis and proposing unique solutions. He believes in allowing the free market to provide addiction treatments and in treating drug use as a medical issue rather than as a matter of criminal justice. His proposed bill, Addiction is Not a Crime would in effect accomplish these goals, and he has been busy advocating for it around the state. In addition to providing treatment for addicts in lieu of prison sentences he has also supported a controversial measure in which clinics around the country would off maintenance levels of heroin for addicts who reject treatment, citing its success in Portugal who has seen a drop as high as 90% in drug-related HIV infections and a rate of drug-induced deaths that has fallen to a stunning five times lower than the European Union average as a result of its more lenient and care-based policies.

 

In addition to shrinking the size and scope of federal government, and enforcing constitutional restrictions on its authority Kerns has stated a number other goals in running.

 

“I want to show everyone that a Libertarian can be elected and that they want more Libertarians. I want them to know they don't have to choose the lesser of two evils anymore - we are here to free them from that burden.”

 

A loving husband and father of two he also expressed a more personal goal in his pursuit of the Senate seat:

 

“I now have two young girls that cannot know the world we live in, and the world we are headed towards. I owe them the best life, a life of freedom.”

 

You can find out more about Dale Kerns and his candidacy for the U.S Senate as well as how to get involved in his campaign by visiting his website

 

 

www.dalekerns.com

0
0
0
s2sdefault

SUBMITTED BY DAVID BEAVER

 

CONTINUED FROM PART 2 

 

  1. Self-Care and Prevention

Dr. Mimi Guarneri once relayed in a lecture how she had been seeing a new patient of hers who struggled with serious blood pressure concerns. Even though the man lived a very healthy lifestyle of a balanced diet and high levels of physical activity he simply couldn't seem to lower his blood pressure to a healthy level. The man was on not one or two but several blood pressure medication prescriptions, but none of them even all together seemed to have any effect. Dr. Guernerri, as with all her new patients had a long discussion examining not just his medications and medical history but his overall lifestyle. Everything seemed to check out, except that he consumed excessive quantities of a certain high sodium sports drink. After her recommendation of discontinuing the consumption of this sports beverages his blood pressure levels returned to normal and he was able to discontinue the use of all of the prescriptions he had recently received for them.

 

More doctors and patients need to take a closer look at the over all lifestyles that contribute to the state of their health. We mustn't simply treat symptoms and diseases while responding to catastrophes arise and expect won't decrease the quality of our health while increasing the cost of our care. These factors include diet, stress factors, physical activity, lifestyle choices, and many other issues that contribute to our daily health. Even down to how much red meat we consume, for example, can contribute to whether or not we develop various forms of cancer. In preventing these problems before the arise by making adjustments to our daily choices we can greatly reduce healthcare costs and problems. It would behoove more doctors to make this practice a habit in their professions. It will make their jobs easier and their patients lives healthier and their bank accounts larger. The result will be more insurance companies being able to afford to lower their premiums, and it would be prudent for them to do so to remain competitive and to attract a healthier customer base.

 

 

  1. Be More open to Controversial Medicine
    There are a few alternatives to a vast array of medications that in some cases work better and are even safer than their prescription alternatives, and yet find themselves shunned by the medical community and the government that applies strict regulations on it. Take for example a controversial drug used across the country and throughout the Asian continent, Kratom. Kratom received some backlash during the opiate crisis even the though the deaths documented from it were very few and even many of them, critics say, were associated with the use of other, harder drugs. There is a great deal of documentation in the use of kratom to successfully treat pain, PTSD and various conditions as an alternative to more dangerous opiate prescriptions. In some countries, it has also been used to successfully treat alcoholism. Kratom can be purchased online for a lower price than many prescription medications and may be safer, but just as effective.


Medical marijuana has also caught on in many states but has still failed to see fruition in others and remains a Stage 1 Narcotic according to the DEA. Despite this, there has been a great deal of research and even application for the use of marijuana and the cannabis plant for various ailments. Cannabis and CBD oil, for example, have been used with stunning success in the treatment of joint pains and may even have applications in the treatment of cancerous tumors according to an article in the Huffington Post during the early days of legalization. It has also been used in the prevention of seizures, in treating anxiety and depression, bipolar disorder, and a number of other ailments both mental and physical.

 

 

As long as we ignore these facts derived from research and real-life application we are shutting down treatment options for diseases and disorders that may be treated more safely and effectively and at a lower cost. Introducing effective treatments early may also prevent future complications from arising and the problem from worsening, which will also lead to increased costs. It is, of course, important to practice caution in the application of medicine, however, we should not ignore potentially effective and groundbreaking treatments because they carry the name of drugs we are uncomfortable with like "Kratom" or "Pot" 

0
0
0
s2sdefault

SUBMITTED BY DAVID BEAVER

 

CONTINUED FROM PART 1

 

  1. Restructure the System of Insurance and Healthcare Services

One possible way to reduce to the cost of health insurance is to reform the business structure itself. In the simplest sense, you could say that health insurance should be more like car insurance. For starts, full coverage health insurance should only be offered in the case of catastrophic events. In forcing companies to pay for the ongoing care we are not really buying health insurance so much as a free for all health warranty. Everyone pays the same no matter the cost and risk they incur and companies are forced to pay out regularly, thus forcing them to collect regularly. Naturally, they will raise their premiums across the board to keep up with the demand. You could also make the industry more competitive by offering sales across state lines. There seems to be little benefit in the federal government standing the way of this practice and thus limiting the pool of competition.

Health insurance companies could also adopt a fairer system by rewarding healthy customers in the same way the Auto Insurance companies reward safe drivers to provide incentives that would incur lower future costs.

Finally, when you visit a medical clinic for a regular check-up or to discuss a regular medical issue, how often do you actually see a doctor. In recent times during a visit, you are more likely to see a Physicians Assistant or a Nurse. Indeed there are many medical questions that can be answered and basic medical procedures that can be provided even just by a nurse. So why can't they start their own private practices to provide basic healthcare without the expense of a doctor? A doctor is usually only seen as a more serious issue or to make a referral. By separating these structures we could see new systems come into play with less administrative costs. Imagine an ongoing healthcare clinic that provided basic services on the basis of a membership, similar to a gym.

 

 

  1. Give Alternative Medicine a Chance

Dr. Mimi Guarneri has been an award-winning cardiologist and medical professor for many years. She has also been a supporter of incorporating more alternative to medicine into our system. One advantage of western medicine, she points out, is that it is strong in its interventionist approach. In other words, western medicine is good when a problem or catastrophe already exists. It specializes, as she says, in "Taking a hold of physiology" It is not, however, strong in the area of prevention nor does it addresses overall health. It often attacks the symptoms of a disease before trying to cure or prevent it. Alternative and foreign systems like Ayurvedic and Tradition Chinese Medicine tend to take a more holistic approach.

 

Contrary to popular belief these are not programs in which you can earn a certificate online for a hundred bucks. On the contrary, these disciplines of medicine are complex and exhaustive and often take just as much time and effort to complete as comparable fields in western medicine. When most people hear the word "holistic" they often hear a dirty word. People often conjure up images of energy healers burning incense and placing a quartz crystal on the forehead of the patient while reciting a prayer to the goddess of nature. The truth is "holistic" simply means you are looking at the overall health and lifestyle of a patient rather than at specific medical conditions. This approach has been proven to be more effective and prevention and would thus dramatically drive down costs.

 

This could also lead to cheaper alternatives to expensive medications that may also carry unhealthy side effects. Someone suffering from anxiety or sleep problems may enjoy a St. John's Wort supplement or a cup of valerian tea as an herbal alternative to a dangerous sleeping pill, or antidepressants like Zoloft and Prozac, which have brought dangerous side-effects and have even caused suicide in patients prescribed them.

 

This is simply to say a one-size-fits-all approach to medicine is inferior to one with a multi-faceted approach that is executed on a patient-by-patient basis. The latter would improve the lives of patients and reduce the costs their healthcare needs incur. 

 

CONTINUED IN PART 3

 

 

 

0
0
0
s2sdefault

SUBMITTED BY DAVID BEAVER

 

How To Reduce Healthcare Costs Without the Government

 

It goes without saying that the healthcare issue is always on the minds of Americans these days. Despite everything the government has tried to do, the cost of care and with it the cost of insurance continues to rise. Families continue to struggle and despite rising costs care options grow more limited. So how can we succeed where various government programs leading up to the Affordable Care Act and beyond, have failed? Where the government has failed us there are still a number of ways we can reduce costs. They do not involve an overnight solution and the approach would have to be a multi-faceted one. In other words, we need more than just one big solution. There will be many steps. Nonetheless here we will discuss just a few possible measures that may help alleviate the crisis and allow the system to operate more efficiently.

 

  1. Reduce Barriers to Generic and Alternative Prescriptions

There are two major barriers that stand in the way of generic and alternative prescription medications. The first and foremost barrier is the FDA. Most people cringe at the very idea phasing out or even simply reducing the size and scope of the FDA.

Think of our safety!" they say. "Think of our children!" they say. However, there is a great deal of debate on just how safe and healthy the FDA keeps us.

Did you know according to FDA guidelines a 3.5 ounce can of canned mushrooms is allowed to contain up to nineteen maggots in a single can? Granted, mushrooms don't keep very well and buying them canned may not be the healthiest choice to begin with, but do these regulations make you feel safe? Not only that but every medication that has ever been recalled by the FDA was once approved by this government organization and said to be "proven to be safe and effective" Some of these FDA regrets included Fenfluramine, Suprofen, Benoxaprofen, and a number of others. Not only this but we have heard a lot of fuss recently over the so-called "opiate crisis" and yet according to the CDC most opiate-related deaths have taken place as a result of prescription opiates. These were opiate-derived medications the FDA approved.
Alternatives to the FDA could exist in the form of voluntary consumer protection organizations similar to Consumer Labs, the Natural Products Association. Meanwhile being able to forego the exhaustive requirements, regulations and excessive waiting periods associated with the bureaucracy of the FDA would free up cheaper and competitive alternatives to expensive prescription medications, all of which will drive up the price of the insurance that covers them.

The second major barrier, particularly to generic prescriptions exists in the form of extensive patent laws. With patents on prescription medications lasting as long 40 years this means a cheaper alternative to life-saving medications. This means that the patent-holder will own a proverbial monopoly on their medication and will be allowed unhindered to charge whatever they want, especially since insurance will always cover the cost. A cheaper and competitive alternative then, will likely not exist in your lifetime or in mine, or if it does we won't much time left to enjoy it. By then, I surmise many of us will be on fixed incomes if we are even able to retire.

CONTINUED IN PART 2

0
0
0
s2sdefault