Blake Snow

content advisor, recognized journalist, bodacious writer-for-hire

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Tagged healthcare

Spinal fusion: 10 things I learned surviving a scary-sounding and life-altering surgery

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Frankenstein back with 28 staples (credit: Lindsey Snow)

Life isn’t fair.

I was born with an 80 year-old back. Not exactly 80, but old. It first broke when I was 29. After surgery, it worked again, but only for another six years. It teetered and failed again late this summer in the same spot — a re-ruptured L4/5 disc. The thing was so decrepit, my surgeon had to remove the remains and fuse my spine.

Now I’m resigned to a life of low impact and light lifting. I can’t even hold my youngest brown-eyed boy in his final months of baby-dom, let alone lift a gallon of milk for a month. I can’t return to full activity for six months until the vertebrae fully fuse. And after that, I’m advised to give up running, basketball, soccer, and maybe wake boarding or else.

It sucks.

But it’s not all bad. In fact, I’ve got a heck of a lot to look forward to—a lot more to live for. While having my body deteriorate ahead of schedule and the long recovery are both humbling, I also feel inspired by the experience. Here are 10 things I learned post surgery:  Continue reading…

Dr. Reichman of Provo, Utah: Thank you

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Dr. Howard Reichman,

Five years ago, you sliced me up, exposed my spine, and were centimeters away from paralyzing me. All standard procedure for a neurological discectomy, of course. But I appreciate your steady hand and medical confidence as much today as I did then.

After you fixed my ruptured disc, I ran two marathons, got myself in the best shape of my life, reared more children, become a better husband, and picked up a lot of new adventurous hobbies. No longer am I the boring, unbalanced, and self-centered work-a-holic I used to be.

I couldn’t have done much of that without a healthy back.

Thank you.

Americans react to congressional passage of unpopular healthcare bill

_imageDemocrats in the House of Representatives last night approved a controversial healthcare bill, written and approved by Senate democrats in December. The president is expected to sign the bill into law on Tuesday, “then hit the road to sell it to a reluctant public,” reports the Associated Press. Here’s how those in favor of reform have responded to the unpopular bill:

  • Why would any damage control be necessary if this bill is so good and will do so many good things? Why did it take a year to pass and why was it passed without any Republican input or votes? How come the people in the party that crafted it needed to be bribed and bought off to vote for it?
  • This bill should have been broken into smaller single elements, each being its own bill, then voted on.
  • I want reform, but smart reform. Not this.
  • The reason we think Washington is dysfunctional is not that nothing gets done, it is because Washington does not listen to those who put them there. Had they scrapped the bill and fixed the things that are broken, no damage control would be needed.
  • And how does passing this make Washington functional? They passed it when nobody wanted it (in its form that passed). Wouldn’t that make it dysfunctional?????
  • It’s amazing the arrogance of the House to force this atrocious legislation through despite all the public resistance to it. Anyone who voted for it has no business even being elected again.
  • Congress ignored the people and now must suffer their wrath in November elections.

Of course, many Americans are elated with the bill, even though most agree it’s “imperfect.” And the bill is a step in the right direction on reigning in ridiculous health insurance policies. But it’s frustrating to see our politicians pass imperfect legislation just to get something passed. Why not wait until we get reform right before passing something? It boggles the mind. Good thing legislation isn’t reversible.

Five reasons I support universal healthcare in America

The US healthcare system is broken. That is unless you work for an opulent healthcare or pharmaceutical provider. In that case, US healthcare works like a charm (from a for-profit perspective).

But let me put my business degree away for a minute. As a citizen and patient, I now believe in universal healthcare in America just like I believe in socialized libraries, policemen, firemen, public schools, and highways. Here are five reasons why: Continue reading…