Category Archives: Health Care

No health insurance in 2015? Get ready to pay up to the IRS

Thanks to the LIVs, those who want free stuff, and the RINOs, we’ve all been Gruberized.


We’ve covered the many horror stories with Obamacare here.

In August, I reported how Obamacare rates are expected to rise in Oklahoma for next year. Ditto for those in Oregon. Last December I reported how Obamacare has increased non-group premiums in nearly all states. In February, I reported on a woman who was shocked when she was forced to pay back her Obamacare subsidy on her taxes.

Well, get ready to bend over even more for the IRS next year if you don’t have a qualified Obamacare health plan.


CBS reports that because of Obamacare everyone is required to be covered under a health insurance plan or pay a penalty. And the IRS is excited: that penalty is set to rise steeply this year.

If you were covered by an employer’s plan for most of 2015, you are in luck and can avoid the penalty. If you enrolled in an Obamacare-compliant plan no later than February 2015, you are lucky, too. Enrolling now won’t help you avoid the penalty one bit – too little too late. To avoid the penalty for 2016, if you won’t be covered under an employer’s plan, you’ll need to enroll in a health plan on an exchange in the first two months of 2016.

If you don’t meet the above criteria: get ready for a shocker when you do your taxes for 2015.  You will have to pay a fine (also known as your “shared responsibility) when you file your 2015 tax return. The government has two ways of calculating what you’ll owe in 2015. That’s the greater of $325 for each adult and $162.50 for each child, not to exceed $975, or 2 percent of your family’s adjusted gross income. The most you can be fined is capped at the national average cost of a bronze-level health plan available on the exchanges. For 2015, that’s $2,570 for singles and $5,140 for families.

According to this calculator, the penalty in 2015 for a single individual whose adjusted gross income is $75,000 would be $1,294. The penalty for a married couple (no kids) with 2015 income of $100,000 would be $1,588.

Note that some people are exempt. This includes those who’ve been uninsured for three months or less in 2015 or lived abroad for more than a year. Here’s a complete list of these exemptions.

Also, some people can qualify for a hardship exemption. This includes those who are homeless, filed for bankruptcy, experienced a natural disaster that damaged your home or who’ve experienced the death of a family member.



The full context of what Ben Carson said about Terri Schiavo

Ben Carson is in another controversy.

This time it’s over what he said about the tragic case of Terri Schiavo — the woman who died in 2005 from dehydration and starvation, after years of legal and political battles, and 15 years after slipping into a coma that doctors later called a persistent vegetative state.

Terri Schiavo

On Nov. 14, 2015, Adam C. Smith of the Tampa Bay Times reported that Carson disagreed with then-Florida governor Jeb Bush’ attempt to bypass court rulings to force the re-insertion of feeding tubes for Schiavo, and referred to the Terri Schiavo case as “much ado about nothing.”

Consistent with his reaction in previous controversies, Carson insisted in an exclusive to LifeSiteNews on Nov. 18 that his remarks had been “taken out of context and misinterpreted.” He said: “When I used the term ‘much ado about nothing,’ my point was that the media tried to create the impression that the pro-life community was nutty and going way overboard with the support of the patient.”

Ben Johnson reports for LifeSiteNews, Nov. 19, 2015, that some pro-life leaders remained uneasy after hearing Carson’s explanation, and numerous LifeSiteNews readers said they wished they could know “the context” via a full recording of the exchange between the Tampa Bay Times (TBT) reporter and Ben Carson.

The same day, Nov. 19, TBT reporter Adam C. Smith posted a full transcript of the exchange with Carson during the Florida GOP’s Sunshine Summit conference:

Times: Dr. Carson, a few years ago when Gov. Bush was in charge of the state, he and the Florida Legislature moved to overturn the court decision on Terri Schiavo to force the feeding tube to be reinserted. What was your view of that as a doctor at the time?

Carson: Well, I said at the time, “We face those kinds of issues all the time and while I don’t believe in euthanasia, you have to recognize that people that are in that condition do have a series of medical problems that occur that will take them out. And your job is to keep them comfortable throughout that process and not to treat everything that comes up.”

Times: Did you think it was appropriate for Congress and the Legislature to

Carson: I don’t think it needed to get to that level. I think it was much ado about nothing. Those things are taken care of every single day just the way I described.

From the transcript above, by “much ado about nothing,” Carson clearly was referring to the efforts by then Florida governor Jeb Bush to intervene in the Schiavo case in order to save her life.

Schiavo’s brother, Bobby Schindler, who leads the Terri Schiavo Life & Hope Network and has praised Governor Bush’s handling of his sister’s case, said in a column that Carson’s followup comments are not reassuring. Schindler wrote in TBT‘s Buzz blog:

“I have deep respect for the accomplishments and commitment Dr. Carson has shown for life. But our family remains deeply troubled that in seeking to clarify his remarks, he has not unequivocally condemned what happened to my sister. In fact, his suggestion that simple ‘consensus’ among family members and health care providers could justify what happened to my sister is problematic. If I had agreed with Michael Schiavo (Terri’s husband) to starve and dehydrate my sister to death, would that have made it right?”

Orlando lawyer, John Stemberger, one of Florida’s most prominent social conservative activists, said Carson’s Schiavo comments have seriously damaged his appeal to many voters:

“I like Ben Carson a lot, but it is very disappointing that he does not even understand the basic pro-life principle that life begins at conception and ends at natural death. Terri was never in an active dying process. She was a severely disabled person who was killed through the brutal and painful process of starvation and dehydration. While Ben Carson may think this is ‘much to do about nothing,’ for most pro-life voters, it morally disqualifies him as a candidate. He is not thinking clearly about this matter and should reconsider his careless comments.”

Ben Carson has a painting in his home of himself in the foreground, with Jesus standing behind him.

Painting of young Carson and Jesus in hallway

Painting of young Carson and Jesus in hallway

Would our Lord Jesus Christ call Bush’s and others’ efforts to rescue Terri Schiavo “much ado about nothing”?

There are also important policy reasons for conservatives to be skeptical about Ben Carson, see Kelleigh Nelson’s article in NewsWithViews.


Charlie Sheen may face criminal prosecution, 8 years in prison

Charlie Sheen, 50, in early 2015

Charlie Sheen, 50, in early 2015

On Tuesday (Nov. 17), having already been outed by the National Enquirer as the promiscuous “superstar” rumored to be infected with HIV, Charlie Sheen, 50, went on NBC’s “Today” and admitted he has the virus that causes the deadly AIDS.

Almost immediately, women began lining up to sue him. A “prominent Los Angeles lawyer” told TMZ that 6 women had contacted him on Monday, and he had appointments with four more. Many more lawsuits are expected because according to “someone close to Sheen,” he’s had “at least” 200 sex partners in the last 2 years although he had received his HIV diagnosis some 4 years ago in 2011.

But lawsuits are the least of Sheen’s troubles.

He may be criminally prosecuted for not disclosing his HIV to his sex partners and, if convicted, may be imprisoned for as many as 8 years.

A source in the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office told Radar Online, “If an alleged victim comes forward claiming Charlie Sheen had unprotected sex with them, without notifying that person about his HIV status, it will be completely and fully investigated. The victim doesn’t need to contract HIV for prosecution to take place. These cases are taken very, very seriously and any alleged victims identity will be protected.”

The punishment for a guilty conviction is a minimum of 3 years to a maximum of 8 years in state prison.

Under California law, it’s a felony for anyone with HIV to engage in unprotected sexual activity (anal or vaginal intercourse without a condom) when the infected person knew at the time of the unprotected sex that he or she is infected with HIV but did not disclose the infection, thereby acted with the specific intent to infect the other person with HIV. Criminal defense attorney Tony Brooklier told The National Enquirer that “It’s the act of not informing them ahead of time that matters.”

National Enquirer got their scoop when “almost a dozen” of the 5,000 women with whom Sheen has boasted of “sleeping” divulged his infection to the magazine. The Enquirer put the women informants under intense scrutinizing, including lie detector tests administered by an independent polygrapher.

Some other details on Sheen’s wanton debauchery:

According to 2013 financial reports for Sheen’s production company 9th Step — prepared nearly two years after he says he found out he was infected — he spent $1,629,507 on hookers (labeled “friendly entertainment”) in just one year. That was $582,507 more than the $1,047,000 he spent that year on child support for his twin sons (with Brooke Mueller) and 2 daughters (with Denise Richards).

“Multiple sources” told RadarOnline that Sheen regularly forked out tens of thousands of dollars for sex with “sex swap escorts” and gay men. A source said, “Charlie is secretly bisexual. He’s had sex partners of all kind,” including pre-op transsexual hookers, that is, “transgender” men who still have their genitalia. That confirms my suspicion that some men have sex with transgenders because they are get bored with normal, ordinary sex and look for new thrills to titillate their jaded but never-satiated appetites. (See “The dark side of the push for transgenderism: Sex with she-males“)

Sheen and ex-wife Brooke Mueller had multiple sex partners together in the short time that they were married. One source said the two share as many as 10 partners, males and females: “It’s more twisted than anyone knows or has suspected. It’s crazy.”

In December 2013, production of Sheen’s post-2½ Men sitcom, Anger Management, was abruptly halted at his request to conceal his physical deterioration from HIV: “because he had marks and wasting on his face, and many people on set thought it was from HIV.” In October 2014, filming was stopped again for about a week because Sheen had a facial wound that he claimed was from him having accidentally dove into the shallow end of his pool. People infected with HIV are susceptible to many kinds of skin lesions and infections because the virus weakens the immune system. FX network cancelled Anger Management two months later in December 2014 after 100 episodes. Sheen has not filmed any major projects since. (RadarOnline)

For what HIV does to the human body, go here.


Navy vet’s death blamed on contaminated VA medical scopes

Wonder if anyone at this VA facility received a bonus for their “talent“?


The following will come as no surprise given the scandals accumulated by the VA under the Obama administration. See examples of the mishandling of our veterans’ health care here, here, here and here.

The mistreatment of our veterans is also occurring in Seattle. In early October I reported on how dozens of West Coast military veterans incorrectly received letters indicating they’d lose unemployment benefits after an overworked Department of Veterans Affairs office in Seattle lost track of records the veterans had submitted.

In May of this year, the Seattle VA hospital stranded a veteran outside the emergency room. Donald Siefken drove up to the Seattle VA with a broken foot and all he asked for was a little help getting inside. Instead, a hospital employee who answered Siefken’s cellphone call told him to call 911 himself, then hung up on him, Siefken said.

Chief Petty Officer William Piersawl/Photo Courtesy Samantha Armenta

Chief Petty Officer William Piersawl/Photo Courtesy Samantha Armenta

Now comes news of how the VA Puget Sound Health Care System may have contributed to the death of veteran William Piersawl. This may have been attributed to the a deadly infection he obtained with ties to dirty medical scopes and to scope-washing machines ordered recalled last week by U.S. regulators because of increased risk to patients.

That’s according to an amended lawsuit awaiting approval Monday in U.S. District Court in Western Washington, which raises new questions about ongoing problems with so-called “superbug” outbreaks in Seattle and across the nation.

William Piersawl, 60, was a 25-year Navy veteran and died in February 2013 of Gram-negative pneumonia, an infection resistant to most available antibiotics. Secondary causes included sepsis and lung cancer, his death certificate showed. His widow, Carolyn Piersawl filed a complaint earlier this year claiming that the VA Puget Sound Health Care System contributed to his death by failing to properly sterilize bronchoscopes, medical devices used to examine the lungs.

During his treatment from 2009 to 2012, Piersawl received at least two exams with bronchoscopes that had not been disinfected according to manufacturers’ instructions, leaving them “dirty after supposed sterilization,” potentially contaminated with bacteria that could have led to the infection that caused his death, according to the complaint. His widow said, “He didn’t deserve this”. The couple were married for 34 years and have three children and two grandchildren.

There was a whistleblower at the Puget Sound VA who reported on the filthy procedures being practiced at the VA facility. Barbara Deymonaz, 63, a registered nurse who worked as a nurse educator in the sterile processing unit at the Puget Sound VA from 2012 to 2013, said she complained multiple times to federal officials about lapses in procedure that put patients at risk. “Every rock you turned over, it was just a mess,” she said.

Of course, VA officials have denied all allegations in the Piersawl lawsuit. VA spokesman Ndidi Mojay said the agency cannot comment on pending litigation. A 2013 investigation by the VA Office of the Inspector General didn’t find any problems that left instruments unsterile or placed patients at risk.

But Piersawl’s case underscores concerns about deadly infections potentially transmitted by improperly cleaned medical scopes. Last year, an outbreak of multidrug-resistant infections tied to contaminated duodenoscopes — devices used to examine the gut — was linked to 39 patients at Seattle’s Virginia Mason Medical Center. Eighteen patients affected by the outbreak died, although the role the infections played isn’t clear. The outbreak prompted the hospital to overhaul the way it cleans and tests the devices, resulting in no further infections, a hospital spokesman said.

In August, VA officials released results of an investigation that found that superbug infections may have occurred at VA sites across the nation, although the risk was very low. The analysis of 40,000 patient records concluded “any transmission appears highly unlikely.” But problems with duodenoscopes at hospitals across the nation prompted the FDA to issue new guidelines for cleaning the devices — and new warnings about potential problems with other types of scopes as well.

Between January 2010 and June 2015, the agency received 109 reports concerning infections or device contamination related to the bronchoscopes. No deaths were reported. The agency emphasized that proper “reprocessing” or cleaning of such devices is crucial.

It’s not clear what specific bacteria caused Piersawl’s Gram-negative pneumonia, which was listed as his primary cause of death. No culture results were reported in his records and the scopes used to treat him weren’t cultured, either. The lawsuit is set for trial next summer, said Jessica Holman Duthie, a Tacoma lawyer who filed the complaint.

Read the whole story at the Seattle Times here.


Sandy Hook School Shooting: A Medical Practitioner Analyzes the Official Report’s Errors and Anomalies

Dr. Eowyn:

A meticulous and well-documented analysis of Sandy Hook by a medical professional (respiratory therapist) with over 25 years of experience, showing how the proper procedures were not followed by the first responders at the scene. Here’s a pull quote:

“Because the school had been declared safe enough to be evacuated and to allow 3 paramedics and other officers to enter into the school, there is no logical reason that other EMS personnel shouldn’t also have been allowed in, to provide assessment and possible care. Knowing this, if more people were available to provide care, equipment and supplies (including assessment and resuscitation equipment) there would have been no reason to continue on with the Triage protocol of declaring a child dead without effort at resuscitation….

To close, in my opinion, certain sections of this document prove that, at the minimum, a new investigation MUST be opened, not only into the shooting and its aftermath, but also into the investigative team, including Newtown Police Department, Connecticut State Police, and any state and federal agencies, who responded to this event. The medical aspects are only one small part of all the inconsistencies, improbabilities and conflicting statements in the official report.”

Originally posted on Memory Hole:

Submitted by Diane Jakopovic

(PDF: Medical-Aspects-of-the-Shooting-at-Sandy-Hook-School-Final)

Sandy_Hook_Elementary_School-400x254Having worked as a Registered Respiratory Therapist (RRT) in a pediatric hospital for over twenty years, over 10 years of which were in exclusively in the intensive care units, and 5 years working as a Registered Polysomnography Technician (RPSGT) in the Neuro/Sleep Lab, I felt qualified to address some of what was written in the official report of the Sandy Hook School massacre. I am also certified as a Specialist in Pediatric/Neonatal Respiratory Care. However, I am not a physician, a nurse, an emergency responder, and I don’t live in Connecticut, so I felt it necessary to defer my logic and opinions to what their guidelines and protocols were, prior to the Sandy Hook shooting. Unfortunately, I was not able to find information to fit the exact circumstances at Sandy Hook (pediatric mass casualty) other than their Triage algorithm. I also found information that…

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Charlie Sheen admits he has HIV; women lining up to sue

Charlie Sheen, 50, in early 2015

Charlie Sheen, 50, in early 2015

Bringing an end to public rumors and speculations as to the identity of the wantonly promiscuous HIV-infected”superstar” actor who is said to favor sex with prostitutes and porn stars, as well as transsexuals, Charlie Sheen admitted on NBC’s “Today” this morning that he has HIV.

Frazier Moore reports for the AP that Sheen said he tested positive for the virus that causes AIDS about four years ago. But when asked by “Today” co-host Matt Lauer if he had transmitted the disease to others, he declared, “Impossible. Impossible.”

He said one reason for going public with his condition was to put a stop to shakedowns from prostitutes and others who threatened to out him. He said he had paid “enough to bring it into the millions” – perhaps as much as $10 million – to buy their silence and now was seeking to “put a stop to this barrage of attacks and sub-truths.”

He said one prostitute took a photo of the HIV-related drugs in his medicine cabinet and threatened to sell it to the tabloids.

Lauer asked Sheen if he’s still “paying these people.” Sheen replied, “Not after today I’m not.”

Sheen said that by going public, he hopes to reduce the stigma still felt by some diagnosed with HIV: “I have a responsibility now to better myself and to help a lot of other people. And hopefully with what we’re doing today, others may come forward and say, ‘Thanks, Charlie, for kicking the door open.'”

The disclosure was only the latest chapter in Sheen’s headline-seizing behavior.

He once revealed that he had spent more than $50,000 as a client of “Hollywood Madam” Heidi Fleiss’ prostitution ring. In 2011, Sheen’s drug and alcohol use led to his being fired from CBS’ “Two and a Half Men” — which made him one of TV’s highest-paid actors and at its peak was TV’s most-watched sitcom — after an explosive meltdown that included calling the show’s producer “a contaminated little maggot.”

Sheen has been married and divorced three times — to model Donna Peele, actress Denise Richards with whom he has two daughters, and obscure actress and real estate investor Brooke Mueller, with whom he has two sons.

A FOTM reader remarked that HIV is “just a chronic medical condition” and should not have a “stigma” attached. This is my response:

“Just a chronic medical condition”?

You make HIV, the precursor to AIDS, sound like a seasonal allergy to pollen, also “a chronic medical condition”. The stigma attached to HIV/AIDS is well-deserved because HIV infection is:

  1. Serious business: It means the body’s entire immune system is now compromised, which means T-cells — the body’s natural immune-fighters — no longer work as they are designed by our Creator.
  2. A transmitted disease, usually via sexual intercourse. If the U.S. were a sane rational country, people with a transmissible disease would be monitored and knowingly transmitting such diseases would be a crime.

There are 3 stages of HIV infection. Here’s the CDC’s description of stage one, Acute HIV Infection Stage:

Within 2-4 weeks after HIV infection, many, but not all, people develop flu-like symptoms, often described as “the worst flu ever.” Symptoms can include fever, swollen glands, sore throat, rash, muscle and joint aches and pains, and headache. This is called “acute retroviral syndrome” (ARS) or “primary HIV infection,” and it’s the body’s natural response to the HIV infection. During this early period of infection, large amounts of virus are being produced in your body. The virus uses CD4 count to replicate and destroys them in the process. Because of this, your CD4 cells can fall rapidly. Eventually your immune response will begin to bring the level of virus in your body back down to a level called a viral set point, which is a relatively stable level of virus in your body. At this point, your CD4 count begins to increase, but it may not return to pre-infection levels. It may be particularly beneficial to your health to begin ART during this stage. During the acute HIV infection stage, you are at high risk of transmitting HIV to your sexual or drug using partners because the levels of HIV in your blood stream are very high. For this reason, it is very important to take steps to reduce your risk of transmission.

Note: CD4 refers to the glycoprotein found on the surface of our body’s immune cells such as T helper cells, monocytes, macrophages, and dendritic cells.

Here are the physical changes to the body of the HIV-infected:

1. Body Fat Changes: Some medications taken to control HIV cause changes in the way your body produces, uses, and stores fat. These changes are called lipodystrophy. This condition causes you to gain or lose fat in particular parts of your body.

You can get extra fat in the following places: abdomen, neck, breasts (both men and women), face. In addition, you can also develop small deposits of fat, called lipomas, elsewhere on your body. Other changes can occur when the fat under your skin (called subcutaneous fat) is lost. This can occur in your face, arms, legs, buttocks. It is important to note that these changes in the way your body handles fat can also coincide with changes in cholesterol, an increase in triglycerides, increases in blood sugar, and lowered sensitivity to insulin, which may lead to diabetes.

2. Wasting Syndrome: The involuntary loss of more than 10% of your body weight, in addition to more than 30 days of either diarrhea or weakness and fever. Wasting refers to a loss of muscle mass, although part of the weight loss may also be due to loss of fat. HIV-associated wasting syndrome is considered an AIDS-defining condition. While this is often a sign of late stage disease, wasting syndrome can be treated by proper diet, medications to stimulate appetite, medications to control diarrhea, hormonal therapy to build muscle.

The body changes of an HIV-infected person would explain why Charlie Sheen, only 50 years old and even with cosmetic help like makeup and hair dye, looks so dreadful — changes to his appearance that are noticeable beginning about 2-3 years ago.

See also “Public Health Ignored as HIV Spreads” for how LGBT activists are responsible for the continuing HIV epidemic.


To no one’s surprise, at least six women have lawyered up in the last 24 hours and plan to sue Charlie Sheen for intentional infliction of emotional distress, fraud, sexual battery … and more are on the way. A prominent Los Angeles lawyer tells TMZ, the 6 women contacted him Monday, and he has appointments with 4 more today.

The women claim they had both protected and unprotected sex with Sheen, as recently as last month, and he did not disclose his HIV status.

A source directly connected with Sheen says in the last 2 years, Sheen has had at least 200 partners, so the number of women who either will sue or plan to sue will almost certainly grow exponentially.

Reportedly, Sheen was diagnosed with HIV 4 years ago. (TMZ)

H/t FOTM’s MomOfIV

UPDATE (Nov. 19, 2015):

Charlie Sheen may face criminal prosecution, 8 years in prison


Charlie Sheen outed as the “superstar” with HIV

Charlie Sheen, 50, in early 2015

Charlie Sheen, 50, in early 2015

3 days ago, I published a post on a Hollywood actor, described as a world-famous “superstar,” being infected with HIV that will lead to AIDS. (See “Who is the HIV-infected promiscuous “superstar” who’s had Hollywood in a panic?“)

Give the public health implications of this actor’s promiscuity, it was only a matter of time before he is outed.

This morning, National Enquirer has outed Charlie Sheen as the actor:

Decades of debauchery have finally caught up to Charlie Sheen.

In a bombshell world exclusive, The National ENQUIRER can reveal that the bad boy actor has been hiding an explosive secret from the world: He is HIV positive.

In our next issue — to hit newsstands nationwide on November 18 — The ENQUIRER blows wide open the scandal we first revealed last month.

The ENQUIRER exposed how a notorious Hollywood womanizer was hiding a deadly health crisis.

Our story –– headlined “Hollywood Superstar’s Desperate Battle With Aids!” –– did not reveal Sheen’s name.

Instead, it created a firestorm of speculation over his identity.

Now, The ENQUIRER will publish the shocking full story of a multi-million dollar cover-up that will rock Tinseltown.

It’s the culmination of a dogged 18-month investigation that has uncovered how television’s one-time highest paid star potentially spread the devastating virus to dozens of unsuspecting women.

Sheen, 50, has already begun a regimen of medication meant to counteract the effects of the disease, sources said.

“Charlie’s outlook is positive,” said one informant.

More than 1.2 million people in the U.S. are living with HIV or AIDS. If you are worried about HIV, get in touch with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Now that he is outed, Page Six reports that 50-year-old Charlie Sheen is scheduled to sit down with Matt Lauer for a live interview on tomorrow’s “Today” show, in which he would be making a “revealing personal announcement,” according to NBC.

The network declined to set a time for when the interview will air, but “Today” regularly broadcasts from 7 to 11 a.m. EST.

Since his most recent show, “Anger Management,” went off the air last year, Sheen has mostly been out of the news, with the exception of a few personal incidents. Most recently, he was reportedly hauled out of a Los Angeles-area bar in a headlock.

I’m saddened by the news. I like Sheen as an actor, but I continue to be utterly baffled by why anyone, man or woman, could find satisfying a life of wanton debauchery on his order of magnitude — drugs (cocaine) and sex with actresses, porn “stars,” prostitutes, and transsexuals, who number in the hundreds.

This is Charlie Sheen’s rubicon moment. I pray that he repents, makes restitution to the women whose health and life he’s endangered, and asks for the forgiveness of God who had given him so many gifts that were squandered.

H/t FOTM’s DCG for the Page Six tip.