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The insurance companies do not just pay what is billed, they have set amounts they will pay for various things. That is why some doctors/hospitals accept some insurers and not others. Everyone is automatically billed the highest rate. People without insurance often end up in bankruptcy over medical bills that are inflated to play the insane pricing game with insurance companies.
Bozette is right as I saw some paperwork for when I was in the hospital a few years back and saw what I was billed and what the insurance company was billed. Almost twice as much to the insurance company than what I was told I had to pay.
The whole damn thing is a big money making scam.
Luckily? I have a good Ins. plan now and I hardly pay anything. But they try to rape the shit out of Medicare when they can!
They really can't rape Medicare because it has flat rates that it pays hospitals and doctors and won't pay a penny more. Insurance companies negotiate rates with the hospitals and pay more than Medicare, but less than an individual without insurance would pay. Those who have to pay full price are basically subsidizing Medicare and insurance companies and pay for those who have no insurance at all and cannot pay.
What I don't understand is why Medicare is not negotiating prices with the pharmaceutical companies. Medicare is the largest consumer of medications, yet it pays top prices. The VA negotiates and as a result, prescriptions filled through the VA are about 1/3 the cost.
What would happen is that hospitals would go bankrupt and close.
What Linn said. Also there is another reason we pay a bundle at the hospital. If I go in for an operation and have both money as well as insurance, the hospital is going to get both from me. If an illegal or uninsured person goes in and has the same operation and claims they have no insurance or money, the hospital is still obligated under law to do the surgery and eat the cost. Someone has to make up those losses to the hospital and staff. That means my surgery is bumped up from 20K to 40K and my out of pocket expenses goes form $500 to $2000. There is no such thing as free. Someone always gets stuck with the bill.
Not quite true.
While Emergency Rooms are required by law to stabilize a patient, there is no law requiring hospitals to give free surgeries.
This is why some hospitals do not have Emergency departments.
It is also why some hospital Emergency departments will turn away people who do not have true emergencies.
According to the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services, 55% of U.S. emergency care now goes uncompensated. When medical bills go unpaid, health care providers must either shift the costs onto those who can pay or go uncompensated. In the first decade of EMTALA, such cost-shifting amounted to a hidden tax levied by providers. For example, it has been estimated that this cost shifting amounted to $455 per individual or $1,186 per family in California each year.
All that you've pointed out is also true in my area - thank you for bringing that to light.
Well for starters, my middle daughter would die. But I get your point and I agree wholeheartedly. We in the U.S. pay more for health care than other comparable Western nations, and yet oftentimes we get the same or worse outcomes.
There is a lot of money being made, and a lot of it goes to getting the Congress to come to heel (no pun intended).
Not quite true.
We pay more directly to insurance or the provider ... but lower taxes.
Other nations pay higher personal taxes, which covers their "universal medical care".
So the question is ... are you willing to pay dramatically higher taxes rather than purchasing insurance? Most Americans are not. They want low taxes and low medical bills, which I can't find in ANY other country.
Public spending on health care amounted to $4,197 per capita in the U.S. in 2013, more than in any other country except Norway ($4,981) and the Netherlands ($4,495), despite the fact that the U.S. was the only country studied that did not have a universal health care system.
I'm a big Dan Carlin fan. I like his history podcasts over his political podcasts, but I'll include this link as well. This particular podcast is based on the the same source as the previous link.
I have a friend who is a surgeon at Cedars in Los Angeles. He gets paid a whopping $140 from medicare for removing an appendix. I pay my gardener more than that.
As a Northern Euorpean, this is both a shitshow and then again, not a problem at all. We have certain limits to the medical bills, which we are accountable for with ourselves, but as a Finn, if I went for having a major medical surgery in USA, all of the costs of the procedure would be covered by the state. I might have to pay a minor cost, which would still be counted in hundreds of Euros, instead of thousands or millions and I would have the chance to pick a proper plan for backing it up. It wouldn't matter, if the surgery costs millions in USD, I would have a country backing me up. That's how medical stuff happens in civilized countries, unlike completely **-up, ** first and pay-me-in-advance countries such as semi-civilized United States of Medical Crappiness.
I'd comment with the little clapping fellow if i could.....
Shit, I misspelled European, like it was the most difficult word in the world.
Kind of like then instead of than;)
Using "then" is a grammar flaw.
Misspelling something is misspelling something. It has nothing to do with grammar, you silly old duck.
EDIT: Forgot the smiley: ;o)
Are you still trying to tell me you're not interested, just because you're into girls and not stupid Finns? Come on, give a gibbon a chance.
Im not interested in brilliant finns, if they are packing.....
I take that back...you interest me, im just not interested...
Zonkey, I have a real question that I don't know the answer to. If I was in Finland illegally and went to the hospital for a 100K operation, and said I couldn't afford t pay for any of it, would they just do it for me?
Let me ask you a question, jim.
If a person really cannot pay for a needed operation, should they die because they are poor?
Of course not Carla. I think it has a lot to do with priorities though. I've seen people who drive new cars and had the latest iphones who said they can't afford health insurance. If an American citizen is truly destitute, and trying, it is up to society to help him, to a point. If a person who has nothing, and needs a bad tooth fixed, it needs to be fixed. If he wants braces and a new "grill", I'd say earn the money and buy one. Hospitals are full of people without insurance in the emergency room with colds, or the flu, when they could have gone to an emergicare, where it is a lot cheaper.
The medical clinics here charge up front. Those in dire straights have to go to the er to get treatment.
I agree with you regarding priorities. I live in a sparcely populated area. Poor people are poor. Lucky to have any vehicle, much less a new one.
A destitute person who is trying should be helped to what point?
Our system is very flawed. I cant pretend to know the answers. But...the wrong people get very, very wealthy off the backs of people who are ill.
When it comes to destitute people, so many of them willingly have adopted it as a lifestyle. (Not all) I don't mind giving a hand up, but I am tired of the "hand outs". I'm a firm believer that if an able bodied person is living off of society, they should be doing mandated public service 40 hours a week while they are on welfare, and actively looking for a job... any job. I've seen people who refused jobs claiming the job is beneath them, but taking other peoples hard earned money for doing nothing, is not. I believe that most people, if forced to actually work for a living, will eventually do what needs to be done to better their situation. It used to be shameful to be "on relief". Now it is just another lifestyle.
Well, uhmm... Actually, probably so, unless you had some ID on you, confirming your nationality and health care policy to certain extant. We don't usually put unknown people out for the wolves to deal with the corpse. This is a question I had not seen beforehand, which is unsual for such a clever **** that I tend to prepose.
I have no ID on me and I can't even speak the language there. I just walked in the door demanding care.
The reason I asked, is that we have 12 million of them demanding free healthcare here. A society can only handle taking a loss in small numbers. Doing the math and comparing the numbers, that would be like your healthcare system taking on 240,000 new patients who were illegals and not paying into your system. How long do you think your current form of healthcare could survive?
Plus, they would be demanding other services, such as housing, food, money, etc, and not paying any taxes.
Oh yeah.... I'm also going to demand you accommodate me in my native language. :)
We are civilized.
Nobody should die, just because of the lack of the cash at hand. That's the difference between real societies and those, that even since 1776 just tend to present to be one. Take a wild guess, Jim. Land of the free to take a guess, I guess.
We all want to say we are civilized Zonkey.... but what happens when the teat runs dry? Our government is 20 Trillion dollars in debt.
Do you realize that what Illegals cost American taxpayers annually is almost 1/2 of the entire annual GDP of Finland?
They drive your taxis, they clean your laundry, they garden your gardens... No taxes needed to pay for an illegal... What's the harm? They work the same, you just ignore the feds...
Your government is more than 20 trillion dollars in debt. I have seen a black sheet. That was nine years ago and it hasn't got any smaller numbers on it, that much I can tell you. It's closer to 400+ trillion, by now, but all of that "what congress won't see, they wouldn't dare to ask about" money goes to the silly projects, that are covered with projects, that are covered with other projects. The list goes on. I just had a quick view at the sheet, by accident, and didn't even realize what I had seen until later. That's how daft I am. Take an ordinary American, how confused would he/she be?
Charity sounds good but eventually the bill comes due. What are the plans? To sell Oregon and Washington State to China?
We'd sell it to Finland if you took the residents along with it... :)
It's all about status. After Vietnam, you guys didn't really seem that much of a threat, but since even Finland gets both the planes (F-18) and choppers (NH90) from the States, your overall image has changed. Image is the word for the new world. Image. You have it. Therefore, you have more credit than anyone, just because of the one silly word. Image (or Imago).
Now, to be completely honest and blunt... China is going to **** you up. Mark my words. It's twenty years and there will be only one superpower on this silly planet. It will not be USA or Russia, for that matter.
Maybe. It’s been long known that China has been testing EMP weapons. It’s slso well known that it is the worlds most uncontrollable population expansionist. Though I would not put it past the US nor Russia to have a few aces up their sleeves. The most advanced weapons and defense systems that the World actually knows about were cooked up in Skunkwork Projects at both Los Alamos and Livermore long before the turn of the last century. God only knows what they have come up with since then. Some reported DARPA projects will turn the harshest of US opponents white with fear. Russia has also been putting quite a bit of development into R&D when it comes to warfare experiments. My guess is that a true version of WW3 would look like something beyond any campy sci fi flick.
Here in Wales everyone gets their prescriptions for free.Also in Scotland.Thanks to the NHS I will get a new knee for free as well.The American system is crazy.
This sounds horrible, health services are so expensive in the US and people who dont have enough money could be sentenced to death by poverty. Why is it so bad?
The "Why" is simple to answer.
Because the vast majority of Americans don't want to pay the high taxes necessary to maintain our infrastructure ... let alone pay for universal healthcare and education.
They will complain when those things aren't available, but when given the choice to vote on higher taxes to pay for it they always answer "No".
I kinda get that but in reality everyone paying a bit of what they make makes it better for all, for developed countries this works very well, it doesn't cost much to train young people in elite and valuable professions and you dont have to sell your house when you get very ill just because some greedy insurance company doesn't want to pay to save your life, I disgusts me to the core to know that people are at the mercy of how much those companies are willing to do for you despite taking your money.
Jesus, I will keep quiet about my country then.
What would happen is they would lobby Congress and make it a law that you MUST have insurance and if you don't, you'd pay a fine. Hmmm, why does this sound familiar?
The problem with that portion of the ACA is that it is less expensive for people to pay the fine, than it is for them to buy the insurance. So of course young, healthy people are going to choose not to buy insurance.
The problem is that citizens were forced by the government to buy a product.
Though is that the only example? Gun locks, safes,catalytic converters. Car chips. Yes these are all supplements to other products. But still forced to buy by law.
Car insurance required by government.
Homeowners insurance required for some government-insured loans.
The government requires you to purchase garbage service ... and controls who you can buy it from.
Car insurance is on a state by state basis. Rhode Island does not require car insurance which explains why Massachusetts car insurance rates are through the roof.
My point was that there is legal precedent for the government to require you to purchase products ... and even to tell you who you have to purchase it from.
Is it over-reaching? Yes.
But to "whine" about it regarding the ACA, ignores the decades of legal precedent leading up to it.
If it was so **** great, why are Congress and so many exempted from being forced to get it?
For the same reason Congress exempts itself from things like "truth in advertising" laws. Because they view themselves as soooo much better than the peon citizenry ... and the vast majority of Americans don't participate in their own government.
Well the whole system would fail. Prices would go up to get back lost profits.
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