Let's say you came into the hospital with a massive heart attack that almost killed you. Let's say your doctors and nurses brought you back from the brink of death brought on by the consequences of self inflicted destructive lifestyle choices. Let's say it's time to discharge you back to the community for recovery and recuperation. Thanks to the magic of generic $4 Walmart drugs, many heart saving cardiac medications are nearly free. The cocktail of nearly free heart medications can often by obtained for less than $20 a month at your local big box Walmart or competing pharmacy. But, what happens when the patient looks you straight in the eye and says they can't afford their necessary medications and they want you to give them to you for free and they call you Satan when you say you can't do that.
I can understand the anxiety of the unknown. Many folks can't afford their medications. Many folks have to make critical decisions between feeding their family or filling their prescriptions or canceling their unlimited cell phone data plan. What about the smokers? What is our social solidarity obligation to smoking patients who claim poverty for their medications yet smoke 2, 3 or 4 packs per day at a cost of thousands of dollars a year? How aggressive should hospitals and doctors be in securing free medications we know can save their lives? I don't know. Maybe, instead, we should charge them with the crime of wasting our time. At least they'll get all the free health care they need in jail. Unfortunately, most jails don't allow smoking anywhere. I guess that's a trade off some smokers will have to make. This pharmacy someecard explains it: