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InFullBloom Archives


Speaking Engagements

Predict and Prepare sponsored by Workday 12/16

The Bill Kutik Radio Show® #171, 2/15
The Bill Kutik Radio Show® #160, 8/14
The Bill Kutik Radio Show® #145, 1/14
Workday Predict and Prepare Webinar, 12/10/2013
The Bill Kutik Radio Show® #134, 8/13
CXOTalk: Naomi Bloom, Nenshad Bardoliwalla, and Michael Krigsman, 3/15/2013
Drive Thru HR, 12/17/12
The Bill Kutik Radio Show® #110, 8/12
Webinar Sponsored by Workday: "Follow the Yellow Brick Road to Business Value," 5/3/12 Audio/Whitepaper
Webinar Sponsored by Workday: "Predict and Prepare," 12/7/11
HR Happy Hour - Episode 118 - 'Work and the Future of Work', 9/23/11
The Bill Kutik Radio Show® #87, 9/11
Keynote, Connections Ultimate Partner Forum, 3/9-12/11
"Convergence in Bloom" Webcast and accompanying white paper, sponsored by ADP, 9/21/10
The Bill Kutik Radio Show® #63, 9/10
Keynote for Workforce Management's first ever virtual HR technology conference, 6/8/10
Knowledge Infusion Webinar, 6/3/10
Webinar Sponsored by Workday: "Predict and Prepare," 12/8/09
Webinar Sponsored by Workday: "Preparing to Lead the Recovery," 11/19/09 Audio/Powerpoint
"Enterprise unplugged: Riffing on failure and performance," a Michael Krigsman podcast 11/9/09
The Bill Kutik Radio Show® #39, 10/09
Workday SOR Webinar, 8/25/09
The Bill Kutik Radio Show® #15, 10/08

Keynote, HR Tech Europe, Amsterdam, 10/25-26/12
Master Panel, HR Technology, Chicago, 10/9/012
Keynote, Workforce Magazine HR Tech Week, 6/6/12
Webcast Sponsored by Workday: "Building a Solid Business Case for HR Technology Change," 5/31/12
Keynote, Saba Global Summit, Miami, 3/19-22/12
Workday Rising, Las Vegas, 10/24-27/11
HR Technology, Las Vegas 10/3-5/11
HR Florida, Orlando 8/29-31/11
Boussias Communications HR Effectiveness Forum, Athens, Greece 6/16-17/11
HR Demo Show, Las Vegas 5/24-26/11
Workday Rising, 10/11/10
HRO Summit, 10/22/09
HR Technology, Keynote and Panel, 10/2/09

Adventures of Bloom & Wallace

a work in progress

Reflections On The Health Care “Debate”

Long before there was COBRA, long before family coverage included adult children, long before graduate school tuition included basic health care, and long before auto insurance provided adequate medical coverage, I had a small fender bender auto accident in Boston, where I was working days and getting my MBA at night.  I was between jobs because of a layoff/termination for cause; there was most often cause in those days to avoid unemployment payouts, but I also had the bad habit (for those times ?) of questioning the user rather than just automating in place.  When I was refused medical treatment — yes, refused! — I had no choice but to ask my parents for financial help, the first and last time after finishing college, for which I paid most of the bill by running a typing service (another quaint custom of that era was that very few students knew how to type or had a typewriter).  My parents lent me the $700 I needed to prepay/as a deposit on some needed tests.

From the comfort of now having the best possible health care coverage via Ron’s NASA career and being able to afford without sacrifice the out-of-pockets, I’m on the healing side of rotator cuff surgery this Christmas weekend.  But as the Senate’s health care bill (far from perfect but an important step toward universal coverage) was being denounced as the end of civilization as we know it by legislators and pundits who have NEVER worried about their own health care costs or access or quality, I viewed the debate through the prism of that long ago but never very far away experience of health care rationing (if you can afford it, you get it) and financial ruin.  It took me two years to repay my parent’s loan, two years during which I couldn’t have afforded my graduate school tuition without the great good fortune to land a job at Polaroid with its tuition assistance program and working nights/weekends when school was out at the corner gas station. 

Do I hate some of the likely final plan’s provisions?  Of course I do.  Do I recoil at the bribery, yes bribery needed to get Nelson and Lieberman and others on board?  Absolutely.  But the birth agonies of COBRA, which has saved the health care coverage of so many during this recession, are now long forgotten as are those of every progressive step our country has taken since ending slavery.  If I’m fortunate enough to have a Cadillac health care plan, I can certainly give up a little of my peace of mind and pocketbook in order to cover those who have nothing.  And if 2010 is a banner earnings year — once I’ve made a full recovery from my recent shoulder surgery — then I can certainly pay a little more in taxes to help those for whom 2010 is just another in a long string of tough years. 

I know that we don’t have enough primary care physicians, let alone nurses, to handle millions of newly covered Americans.  I know that we’re drowning the next generation in deficits.  I know that there are honest insurance and pharmaceutical execs who are being subjected to unpleasant scrutiny.  But I also know that it’s long past time for our health care problems to have been solved solely by market forces, and I say bravo to the Democrats for taking the political risk of action rather than giving way to the very loud voices of the status quo.

10 comments to Reflections On The Health Care “Debate”

  • These are great thoughts. I don’t believe that any plan would be agreeable to any group yet, as your snail image within this post suggest, slow for some will never be slow enough. A progressive plan that gradually re-work the system is better then the state we find ourselves in now. Thanks and glad I could come across your thoughts!

    Twitter: @BenjaminMcCall
    Website: &

  • Naomi, once again you personalize an interesting topic and make it real for us. I have been in the similar position of being out of college and working somewhere I did not have health benefits. While I didn’t have anything go “wrong” like a car accident, I did have to pay for my own healthcare costs which back then were $150 per month as I recall. Doesn’t seem like much now, but as a 22 year old making $7.50/hr it was a ton- and I was living in Southern California so everything was expensive. Appreciate your perspective, as always.

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  • Naomi Bloom

    Thank you all for your feedback on this. I so wish the bill that’s likely to be passed were a lot better, but the politics has been brutal just getting this far.

  • Great job putting a human story on this debate Naomi.

  • Dee Wallace

    I agree to all you say, but we must find a way to uncorrupt(?) our United States Congress. We cannot wait for some sort of attrition to clean them out.
    there should be some device to get rid of the bastards without long legislation.

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  • Bill Kutik

    Debbie: Of course health insurance varies state by state. One of its maddening features. But your self-employed family member undoubtedly files tax Schedule C, which if it includes a company name, makes him/her a company and therefore eligible as a business, even as a group of one, in some states. And all groups are subject to less stringent underwriting than individuals. Good luck.

  • Debbie

    Bravo! I have a family member who is self employed and yet uninsurable as 1) earns a bit too much for Medicaid and 2)has a preexisting med. Condition. The options are unafordable and maddening. One surgery would put them out on the street. Watching the entire process has been difficult. Moving forward is necessary. Everyone involved needs to participate in the solution.

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