Jesse Jackson may be onto something. In a news conference Tuesday the venerable civil rights leader suggested that Ebola victim Thomas Duncan did not get fair treatment when he first walked into that Dallas hospital because he was African and did not have health insurance.
Jackson put forth the facts this way, “When he got sick he went to the hospital poor, African and without insurance. He was given a cursory examination. No signs of Ebola was evident. Without heath insurance, he was sent back into the community. That hospital sent Ebola back into the community.”
If that was the case, that hospital in Dallas is not alone. Health care in America is a ‘for profit’ business. The resistance to the Affordable Care Act and the outright refusal to treat patients without means could derail and cast doubts on a nation that potentially has the resources to avert a national health crisis brought on by either Ebola or the Enterovirus.
Our ‘do-nothing’ congress would be hard pressed to come up with bill and vote funding on emergency measures to directly combat the health risks we face today, especially if it involved beefing up the Affordable Care Act. It could very well be that a virus, plague or pandemic could race out of control before the first vote is taken in Washington to provide resources in a timely manner.
Before we take stock in the federal narrative that says anyone showing up with Ebola will be detected and helped, consider the history of being poor and without resources when it comes to proper health care. That just might be America’s fatal flaw.