The Common Good
August 1994

To Your Health

by Ed Spivey Jr. | August 1994

We recently changed over to a different health insurance company here at Sojourners.
The new company is less expensive than our previous insurer, and it covers virtually every

We recently changed over to a different health insurance company here at Sojourners. The new company is less expensive than our previous insurer, and it covers virtually every pre-existing medical condition except stuttering.

("No, I swear I never stuttered before I signed up. I just walked in here, and, well, it s-s-s-s-ort of came over me all at once.")

Our new insurance company seems pretty good. At least the application (at right) was only one page long. The only thing I wondered about is a new procedure—called a "group x-ray"—that the staff has to get once a year. Apparently it saves the insurance company a lot of money, but I don’t see how we’re all going to fit on that table at one time.

But seriously, health care is an important concern of all Americans, particularly sick people who wish they lived in virtually any other industrialized nation except ours. Here in the United States of Complicated Health Forms, if you go to a hospital you pray that your insurance is accepted—otherwise you’re put on the "standby stretcher" (the one with rust on the wheels), or you have to share a bed pan with somebody you don’t know.

With all the conflicting opinions about our nation’s health crisis, it’s nice to hear at least one clear voice of integrity. Not surprisingly, it’s from cigarette executives, the people who have the courage to state that their products have absolutely nothing to do with health. In fact, there is very little evidence linking cigarettes to lung cancer, and as soon as that’s shredded and burned there won’t be any at all.

But you have to feel sorry for cigarette executives, after U.S. senators mercilessly accused them of targetting young people with new tobacco products. Indignant company spokespersons denied the charges, claiming that no one could prove the new Barney Menthol 100s were aimed at children. Nor, they insist, is there anything wrong with the new advertising jingle: "I love you, you love me, so let’s go smoke a cigarette."

Wel-Co Insurance, Inc.
The company that says: Don’t get sick. No, really, we’re not kidding...don’t get sick.
Serving healthy people since 1988

The following E-Z questionnaire is designed to give us a general idea of your medical history. Our policy is to insure absolutely everyone who applies, regardless of any pre-existing conditions, unless they're sick.

1. Do you have any germs? __Yes __ No
Please list them:

2. Give a brief description of every time you have ever been sick in your entire life. (Use additional sheets of paper, if necessary).

3. Do you smoke cigarettes? __ Yes __ No

If "yes," are you, like, a moron or something? Please list any other suicidal tendencies you may have:

4. Which of the following foods have you eaten in the last 24 hours?
a. Raw vegetables
b. Oat bran
c. A large bag of Frito-Lard's Deep-Fried Pork Parts

(If you circled "c", please discontinue filling out this form and have someone immediately drive you to a coronary care unit.)

5. Which of the following best describes your exercise regimen?
a. I walk at least five miles a week.
b. I ride a stationary bicycle for 30 minutes a day.
c. I keep my ice cream at a neighbor's house, so I have to walk a lot during commercials.
d. Could you repeat the question? You see, I get these dizzy spells...

6. How many fingers am I holding up? __Two __Three __Yes

7. Do you expect any payments from this insurance company?

__ Of course not. If I get sick or injured, it's probably my fault and I shouldn't expect anybody else to be responsible. That wouldn't be right.

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