The high price of health care in U.S.

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Health care costs don't seem to be based on any reality. Wowsers.

  • Profile picture of the author seasoned
    Actually, it IS illegal! Traditional business rules, and a lot of LAWS, say that you MUST state the cost UP FRONT! Since this is impossible for many services, such as hospitals, they state that you most give a good faith ESTIMATE! HECK, I went to a dentist, and there were THREE paths they coud have taken based on two outcomes. They explained that to me, and listed all costs. I go to a hospital for a STANDARD service, where costs are KNOWN, and they REFUSED to give me a quote!!!!!!!!!!!

    Anyway, this makes "ACA" aka Obamacare WORSE! Did you see how charges INCREASED after 2009?

    Anyway, the doctor implied some things that AREN'T true and some that may NOT be true!

    1. Apparently there MIGHT be a law, but I know this is common with insurance companies, that they can NOT prescribe drugs in more than 90 day increments. So that 365 day purchase may not be possible.
    2. MANY doctors check the box "dispense as written". The pharmacies are then FORBIDDEN to offer generics to replace the prescribed ones!
    3. Some drug companies CLAIM that their drugs are released differently than generics.
    4. The ACA DEMANDS that the total ratio be between TWO ranges! If it is too low, they say it is substandard! WHY? Because it supposedly doesn't meet the criteria, because it paid too little, and you are expected to get a lower plan, that would have better fit that circumstance! If it pays TOO MUCH, it is considered substandard! WHY? Because it supposedly doesn't meet the criteria, because it paid too much, it is considered substandard! WHY? Because it supposedly doesn't meet the criteria, because it paid too much, and you are expected to get a higher plan, that would have better fit the circumstance. If an insurance plan can't have a plan fit this narrow margin, they are to get rid of it. THAT is where the single payer plan steps in!

    AH, Single payer. Let me tell you about this! My father got a ling a while back. His doctor friend told him he COULD write the standard prescription, and the product would cost thousands of dollars! OR he could, as my father did, get the SAME thing WITHOUT a prescription for like $20! A while back, 20/20, or was it 60 minutes, did a show on companies offering effectively the "dr scholls" type orthotics: Like these: Dr. Scholls Fit Inserts for Women 3/4 Length, Size 6-10 - CVS.com WHY? Because medicare was paying a LOT more than the retail price! I recently had a provider switch me to a company that was going to BILK ME! LUCKILY, they tired of me asking WHY they were going to charge me over $500/year MORE for NOTHING, and said they did NOT set the prices!!!!!!! HOW were the prices figured? They told me! The prices were what the INSURANCE COMPANY WOULD PAY IF I WERE COVERED! You see, I would NOT be covered, because the deductible is STILL too high! So I go direct to the other company, and save the money.

    And WHAT incentive do they have to check costs? HOW CAN THEY? I mean a given product, like a suture kit, might have a markup for preparation, etc... Such a markup IS reasonable and justified.

    And YEAH, I have something that looks like JUNK in me that cost $20,000! I know the original cost was probably less than $19, but who knows how much is costs after approval, taxes, tests, etc...ONE thing is for sure. ACA said they were planning on charging an EXTRA $600(3% tax) for it to "lower healthcare costs". HOW do you lower costs by increasing them? Can SOMEONE PLEASE EXPLAIN THAT!?!?!?!?!? Bear in mind that the government ALREADY charges a HUGE TAX! They charge federal, state, local tax, various taxes for hospital entities, business, approval, registration, insurance, etc.... That is MILLIONS of dollars per year! So WHY charge someone like me an EXTRA $600 merely because I have to pay a chunk of a years income for a chance at survival? I lost TWO MONTHS of revenue, and they want me to pay tax on it?

    Steve
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  • Profile picture of the author ThomM
    Another problem is Certificate of Need laws that many states have.
    Basically it prevents new hospitals and doctor run hospitals from being built if the state determines there isn't a need for one.
    In a nutshell the state will determine how many hospital beds or MRI machines is needed per 100,000 people and if an area already has that amount a new hospital can't be built. In my town we went from four hospitals (one a charity hospital) to two hospitals both of which are owned by the same corporation. In fact in this region including all three of the major cities there are 7 hospitals and all but two are owned by the same corporation and one of those not owned by them is the V.A. hospital the other is a maternity hospital.
    Just like anything else when you have competition between businesses prices tend to go down, when you have a monopoly they go up .
    Like the doctor in the video talked about (I didn't watch the whole video) having heath insurance for things like medications keep prices artificially inflated instead of lowering costs.
    When you look at things that aren't covered bu insurance where the market dictates price, costs go down and the quality goes up.
    Things like laser eye surgery, contact lenses, and even dentures have all seen improvements while their costs have gone down.http://reason.com/archives/2015/06/1...e-of-need-laws
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  • Profile picture of the author Kay King
    When we talk about health care - the topic is so complex we end up focusing on one part of it. If anyone remembers when HMO's began to appear - when the term "managed care" became to seem 'logical'...you might remember the dire warnings some people were issuing about the changes in insurance (approved providers) and in medical care options.

    It might not have gotten as bad had insurance companies not made so much money in the 90's and early 2000s. Many of the large companies invested heavily in real estate - and lost big when the markets crashed. Didn't make the news much...but...they've been allowed to recoup their losses and all they have to say is "cost of research"....
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  • Profile picture of the author TLTheLiberator
    Yea, there are lots of moving parts to the U.S. healthcare problem.

    I'm glad lots more people are covered, the federal gov's costs for HC are lower, Americans have a new set of HC benefits we've never had before and jobs in the field are being generated.

    The already high cost of HC is still high but at least the cost growth has been slowed. It's also high time to bring big pharma to heel. And I'm sure there's a bunch of other stuff that needs to be done to improve the situation.
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    • Profile picture of the author seasoned
      Originally Posted by TLTheLiberator View Post

      Yea, there are lots of moving parts to the U.S. healthcare problem.

      I'm glad lots more people are covered, the federal gov's cost are lower, Americans have a new set of HC benefits we've never had before and jobs in the field are being generated.

      The already high cost of HC is still high but at least the cost growth has been slowed. It's also high time to bring big pharma to heel. And I'm there's a bunch of other stuff that needs to be done to improve the situation.
      I guess you didn't watch the video, huh? And did you hear the deductible, percentages, and exclusions? Some of the "ACAs" are WORSE!

      Steve

      ANOTHER THING! The ACA FORBIDS some increases in costs! At the SAME time, they greatly reduced service while increasing internal costs, so real costs skyrocketed, even if reported costs may have seemed to go down. REMEMBER, you are trying to compare a horse(a real KNOWN creature with valid research and history) to a minotaur(a mythical creature that can only be imagined, and has NO known.research or history). How much have MINE gone up? Well, it used to be as little as $0, and now it STARTS at almost $9600/year, but that gets me NOTHING unless I face a VIOLENTLY catostrophic thing, like the one event I already had, that nearly killed me over a decade ago. AGAIN, I KNOW how things ended up THEN, I can't be sure NOW! Even if I changed hospitals, which I probably will eventually, it will cause trouble, and wouldn't have prevented some of the costs I have had. Stupid nonsense laws mean that I will have to practically switch everything over before I find out if many other changes could be avoided. My insurance, hospital, doctor, and provider would ALL have to agree before I would know. This year, outside of the $9600 I will have to pay, I ALREADY paid $6600, and have to pay another $3000. So that is $19,200 so far this year. JUST on health insurance related items, and a garbage plan that doesn't cover any of the other items. I'm HOPING medicare will be better, but I have seen a few places that say they don't take THAT either, and I am still too young.

      Steve
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      • Profile picture of the author TLTheLiberator
        Originally Posted by seasoned View Post

        I guess you didn't watch the video, huh? And did you hear the deductible, percentages, and exclusions? Some of the "ACAs" are WORSE!

        Steve
        The situation is not anywhere as bad as it was and the law is still not the disaster you'd like it to be for the country and the vast majority of Americans. I'm spending a lot of time on twitter now so the WF is all yours.
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    • Profile picture of the author ThomM
      Originally Posted by TLTheLiberator View Post

      Yea, there are lots of moving parts to the U.S. healthcare problem.

      I'm glad lots more people are covered, the federal gov's costs for HC are lower, Americans have a new set of HC benefits we've never had before and jobs in the field are being generated.

      The already high cost of HC is still high but at least the cost growth has been slowed. It's also high time to bring big pharma to heel. And I'm sure there's a bunch of other stuff that needs to be done to improve the situation.
      What's happened is the aca put more people on medicaid with the promise to doctors that medicaid payments would match medicare payments. Then the government lower medicare payments creating a net loss to the doctors and hospitals causing more doctors to opt out of the program. The doctors left in the program now have to see more patients which reduces the time and care each patient receives. How Medicaid's bait and switch fooled doctors
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      • Profile picture of the author TLTheLiberator
        Originally Posted by ThomM View Post

        What's happened is the aca put more people on medicaid with the promise to doctors that medicaid payments would match medicare payments. Then the government lower medicare payments creating a net loss to the doctors and hospitals causing more doctors to opt out of the program. The doctors left in the program now have to see more patients which reduces the time and care each patient receives. How Medicaid's bait and switch fooled doctors
        The mortal threat to Medicaid -- and how to fix it:

        This article says the problem could easily be fixed with money congress can find in its sofa cushions.

        Meanwhile I'll continue to see this situation as half-full instead of half-empty. The ACA isn't perfect but I'm confident the population is much better off with it than without it.

        Having said that and with no desire to go round and round on the subject, this will be my last post in this thread.

        The mortal threat to Medicaid -- and how to fix it - LA Times
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        • Profile picture of the author seasoned
          Originally Posted by TLTheLiberator View Post

          The mortal threat to Medicaid -- and how to fix it:

          This article says the problem could easily be fixed with money congress can find in its sofa cushions.

          Meanwhile I'll continue to see this situation as half-full instead of half-empty. The ACA isn't perfect but I'm confident the population is much better off with it than without it.

          Having said that and with no desire to go round and round on the subject, this will be my last post in this thread.

          The mortal threat to Medicaid -- and how to fix it - LA Times
          OK, you say you have FAR FAR FAR FAR more than that amount, so why don't YOU fix it?

          ACA is FAR worse! That is a fact that USERS, insurance companies, unions(in private and policy), and politicians(in privacy and policy), and doctors and hospitals ADMIT! Sorry if you keep wearing some mask to avoid seeing it.

          Steve
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          • Profile picture of the author Claude Whitacre
            Originally Posted by seasoned View Post

            OK, you say you have FAR FAR FAR FAR more than that amount, so why don't YOU fix it?

            ACA is FAR worse! That is a fact that USERS, insurance companies, unions(in private and policy), and politicians(in privacy and policy), and doctors and hospitals ADMIT! Sorry if you keep wearing some mask to avoid seeing it.

            Steve
            I signed up for Obamacare about a year ago. Low deductible, low cost, great coverage.

            Never a problem.
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            • Profile picture of the author seasoned
              Originally Posted by Claude Whitacre View Post

              I signed up for Obamacare about a year ago. Low deductible, low cost, great coverage.

              Never a problem.
              WOW! I ended up on "obama care". I had to STRUGGLE to find a "low deductible". It is HIGH cost. As for coverage? There is ONE hospital that supposedly takes it here. They couldn't talk about specifics until next week. I'll let you know how THAT goes, but there are maybe 12 variables to discuss. If ******ONE****** is out of place, they won't cover it.

              ODD that the US government, several hospitals, providers, and doctors, and one of the largest suppliers in the country, that supplied to most if not all hospitals within 50 miles of here said things were one way and now this hospital claims it isn't that way. Of course they ALSO recommended that I switch to a less demanding drug until I reminded them for like the 8th time that I had an artificial valve. WHO SAYS that is important? Only doctors, the manufacturers commercials, hospitals, and the FDA! So WHAT ELSE did they miss?

              BTW the new hospital ALSO uses the same provider I am currently using, and that provider does NOT accept my insurance! As I said earlier, they said they could switch me to another biller that would then raise the cost substantially meaning that my cost would be the same, and the insurance would pay almost as much. So I figured I would just stick with my current biller, even though none of that would count towards my deductible.

              After going through all of this garbage, if things are a success, for me, I will still pay about the same, but it would go to my deductible, and maybe go there only 1/4 as often. But that is NEXT WEEK. For some reason, they couldn't do it this week.

              Of course about 100% of all the happy people I see NOW are ones that never actually used the insurance.

              Steve
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  • Profile picture of the author seasoned
    Good points! HMOs have ALSO allowed insurance plans to obfuscate some things. And the low number of machines, like CT and MRI increase problems like longlines and higher costs.

    OH, And I ASSUME there are STANDARDs in testing and communication. If THAT is the case,WHY does the government apparently REQUIRE a prescription and allow for collusion? I should be able to
    1. Go to a PRIVATE scanning place. (Apparently the law FORBIDS it without a prescription!)
    2. Get the semi professional advice of the place (This expertise is DEMANDED by any place scanning or communicating, in order to do their job, but apparently not allowed by law to go to a "lay person").
    3. Present that to an expert for a better, or second opinion and treatment. (Apparently they will NOT accept it unless they approved and prescribed that copy).

    So the law creates many monopolies and actually INCREASES cost, INCREASES need, and/or DECREASES quality!

    If the government mandated that they allow these three things, in my ONE area, the private providers would see more business, the hospitals might see more business, costs would drop, wait times would drop, and the speed and quality of care would go UP! A MINOR change, that costs ******NOTHING******, and BANG! Would it help in YOUR areas? MAYBE! I just KNOW it would help in MINE, because I KNOW the hospitals do a lot of UNNEEDED tests! I KNOW the hospitals are backed up! Things can be delayed by HOURS! I KNOW there is a private scanning place only BLOCKS AWAY! I KNOW the scanning place will NOT treat the patient as a customer. The patient PAYS, but sees NOTHING, and gets NO advice! The patient ALSO has NO ability to start the process, or move it. The DOCTOR must start it, and THEY handle the movement.

    I ALSO know that only the absolute DUMBEST of MORONS would allow a person to take ANY kind of picture, or transmit any kind of detail, without their being able to spot it and notice differences. An MRI or CT scan must be aligned and could fail, and THEY must instantly be able to determine that. If they fail to, it can delay things by HOURS or DAYS at each attempt. I have had this happen with me a few times, and they generally determine all is fine well within 20 minutes. A retake could take only a few minutes more. So the scanner operators CLEARLY know about this, and MY problem is, luckily, with one of the biggest and most obvious parts in the body, and certainly the biggest as far as blood vessels go. They ALL refuse to even show me the picture though.

    Steve
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  • Profile picture of the author Faisal Qureshi
    Have you tried selling health care products on Amazon and see the response of buyers on it?
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  • Profile picture of the author SnackMemory
    its capitalism and cronyism.
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  • Profile picture of the author whateverpedia
    The whole problem with the US healthcare system as I see it, is that healthcare is considered to be a commodity that corporations can profit from. As the legal obligation for corporations is purely to make a profit for their shareholders, and to increase the profits over time, it's always going to cost a lot.

    Healthcare costs are lower in countries that have a single payer/universal system because healthcare is considered to be a right, not a commodity. People can opt in to a private system if they choose to do so, but there is no obligation. The system is paid for through the tax system by individuals. People deem this to be a fair use for the taxes they pay. Far better than endless military misadventures anyway.

    Before anyone says they don't want the government to provide healthcare, they don't. The government pays the bills for healthcare. You can still see whatever doctor you want.

    To give you an example of how this system works (in Australia at least, however it's similar in other countries).

    As many of you know I recently had to have cataracts removed from both eyes.

    My doctor booked me in for surgery. I went to the hospital, showed the admissions clerk my Medicare card and they recorded the details. I had the surgery, and the hospital sent the bill to the government. Quick and painless, both physically and financially. No bills that would bankrupt me, and no out of pockets. All paid for by the Medicare Levy which everyone pays through the income tax system.

    Had I gone through the private system, I would have paid the Medicare Levy, insurance premiums, AND been charged $1500 by the hospital. Private health insurance only covers a proportion of the total bill.

    Furthermore, through the private system, I would've gone to the same hospital at the same time, and had surgery performed by the same team as I did through the public system. I'd have shelled out far more money and got no benefit at all from it.

    Healthcare is a right, not a commodity.
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    • Profile picture of the author ThomM
      Originally Posted by whateverpedia View Post

      The whole problem with the US healthcare system as I see it, is that healthcare is considered to be a commodity that corporations can profit from. As the legal obligation for corporations is purely to make a profit for their shareholders, and to increase the profits over time, it's always going to cost a lot.

      Healthcare costs are lower in countries that have a single payer/universal system because healthcare is considered to be a right, not a commodity. People can opt in to a private system if they choose to do so, but there is no obligation. The system is paid for through the tax system by individuals. People deem this to be a fair use for the taxes they pay. Far better than endless military misadventures anyway.

      Before anyone says they don't want the government to provide healthcare, they don't. The government pays the bills for healthcare. You can still see whatever doctor you want.

      To give you an example of how this system works (in Australia at least, however it's similar in other countries).

      As many of you know I recently had to have cataracts removed from both eyes.

      My doctor booked me in for surgery. I went to the hospital, showed the admissions clerk my Medicare card and they recorded the details. I had the surgery, and the hospital sent the bill to the government. Quick and painless, both physically and financially. No bills that would bankrupt me, and no out of pockets. All paid for by the Medicare Levy which everyone pays through the income tax system.

      Had I gone through the private system, I would have paid the Medicare Levy, insurance premiums, AND been charged $1500 by the hospital. Private health insurance only covers a proportion of the total bill.

      Furthermore, through the private system, I would've gone to the same hospital at the same time, and had surgery performed by the same team as I did through the public system. I'd have shelled out far more money and got no benefit at all from it.

      Healthcare is a right, not a commodity.
      I don't agree that health care is a right, but I do agree it's treated like a commodity.
      Like I showed above two of the problems we have here are the C.o.N laws many states have and the way medicaid and medicare payments are made. With our medicare the govt. has reduced what it pays doctors and hospitals for services rendered, Naturally this causes costs to raise for those not on medicare and also raises the out of pocket costs for those on medicare. There's other problems these cause for example with the C.o.D. law here in New York we lost hospitals and those that where left where bought out to cover the extra costs of dealing with the loses medicare patients give the hospitals and doctors. So now in my city instead of having four separate hospitals , one being a charity hospital, there are now two and both are part of the Seton Health group. Even the smaller doctor groups have been bought out for the same reasons. By the way the high cost of doctors insurance also plays into it a little. It's gotten so bad that many doctors and hospitals are opting out of medicare and guess what their costs have gone down. Many doctors and labs will also give you a much lower cost if you don't have insurance. Heck the cardiologist I saw a few years ago lowered his fee from 375 to 150 when I told him I didn't have insurance.
      As for the health care is a right, nothing that you have to receive from someone else is a right, especially when you have to pay for it. It's actually a privilege. Even if the government pays your bill you are exchanging something you have for something someone else has.
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    • Profile picture of the author Ron Lafuddy
      Originally Posted by whateverpedia View Post

      Healthcare is a right, not a commodity.
      Yes, Everything is a "Right" these days, as long as someone else is paying for it.

      I know exactly where You are coming from, and I couldn't disagree more.

      Your kind of thinking turns us all into Slaves. Relieved of whatever income we have
      struggled to earn, at the point of a gun, to pay for whatever social programs you deem
      to be a "Right".
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      • Profile picture of the author whateverpedia
        Originally Posted by Ron Lafuddy View Post

        Yes, Everything is a "Right" these days, as long as someone else is paying for it.
        I pay for it.
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        • Profile picture of the author ThomM
          Originally Posted by whateverpedia View Post

          I pay for it.
          Which makes it a privilege and not a right. The only difference in health care provided by anyone and other commodities or products is (where you live) prices are set by the government. No difference from bringing your car to a mechanic which every car owner has a "right" to do.
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          • Profile picture of the author kilgore
            Originally Posted by ThomM View Post

            Originally Posted by whateverpedia View Post

            I pay for it.
            Which makes it a privilege and not a right. The only difference in health care provided by anyone and other commodities or products is (where you live) prices are set by the government. No difference from bringing your car to a mechanic which every car owner has a "right" to do.
            So since a portion of my income tax goes to the military, national security is a privilege, not a right? And since I pay property tax to support schools, education is a privilege and not a right? I also pay taxes that pay stipends to juries and fund the courts -- does this mean that trial by jury and having speedy access to a trial are also privileges and not rights? Taxes also go to purchase voting machines, staff to count ballots, etc. Is voting not a right anymore?

            I think reasonable people can disagree about whether they think health care is a right. But if your legal theory about what constitutes a right excludes anything you pay for, I wonder what would be left that you would consider a right.
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          • Profile picture of the author whateverpedia
            Originally Posted by ThomM View Post

            Which makes it a privilege and not a right. The only difference in health care provided by anyone and other commodities or products is (where you live) prices are set by the government. No difference from bringing your car to a mechanic which every car owner has a "right" to do.
            Australians (along with Europeans, Canadians, Kiwis and many other nationalities) consider healthcare to be a "right" because of the social contract the governments have with the people of these countries.

            They take tax out of our income, and in return we get healthcare when we need it. I've been paying the Medicare Levy now since it was introduced 33 years ago. I've never had a need to call on it, until my recent eye operation.

            During that time millions of others have received healthcare from the money I and everyone else put into the system, and I don't begrudge them that. That's because I know that if, and when I ever needed it, the same system was there to cover me.

            Ultimately, the Medicare system in Australia is a form of insurance except it's raison d'etre is to actually cover the cost of healthcare rather than to make a profit for its shareholders.

            Let's be honest though, I appreciate how difficult it is for Americans to understand how other countries operate, in the same way people from other countries find it hard to understand the American system.

            Our system, like yours and every other system around the world, isn't perfect. People here are happy with it and it performs its intended purpose. Ultimately, that's all that matters.

            There is a certain peace of mind knowing that if something major happens to me, like a heart attack, I'll be given world class treatment and I won't end up bankrupt afterwards.
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            • Profile picture of the author ThomM
              Originally Posted by whateverpedia View Post

              Australians (along with Europeans, Canadians, Kiwis and many other nationalities) consider healthcare to be a "right" because of the social contract the governments have with the people of these countries.

              They take tax out of our income, and in return we get healthcare when we need it. I've been paying the Medicare Levy now since it was introduced 33 years ago. I've never had a need to call on it, until my recent eye operation.

              During that time millions of others have received healthcare from the money I and everyone else put into the system, and I don't begrudge them that. That's because I know that if, and when I ever needed it, the same system was there to cover me.

              Ultimately, the Medicare system in Australia is a form of insurance except it's raison d'etre is to actually cover the cost of healthcare rather than to make a profit for its shareholders.

              Let's be honest though, I appreciate how difficult it is for Americans to understand how other countries operate, in the same way people from other countries find it hard to understand the American system.

              Our system, like yours and every other system around the world, isn't perfect. People here are happy with it and it performs its intended purpose. Ultimately, that's all that matters.

              There is a certain peace of mind knowing that if something major happens to me, like a heart attack, I'll be given world class treatment and I won't end up bankrupt afterwards.
              Exactly. It's not a right but a social contract you pay for. To break it down further you buy health insurance from the government.
              Personally here I'd like to see a lightly regulated free market approach tried. Don't allow insurance to be denied for preexisting conditions and give control of what treatments and medications are necessary to the physicians. Encourage competition between insurance companies. Then you can shift the focus to actual health care instead of sick care like we have now.
              We have one health insurance company here in my state that shifted to actual health care. They have their own fitness programs and offer discounts to members that use them or use other fitness programs. They focus more on healthy eating, exercise and healthy life styles and reward their members that do those things. Because of that they can offer lower rates for insurance because they are promoting and rewarding people who end up using the insurance less frequently.
              They are now one of the largest insurance providers in the state and other companies are starting to follow their lead.
              They are also not much different from other insurance companies in other areas. Car insurance for example is required for anyone owning a car. The state only sets a min. amount of insurance required. That means the insurance companies have to compete for customers that want more then the min. The result of which is companies offer things like save driver discounts, accident forgiveness, multi vehicle discounts, and even replacing a vehicle with a comparable vehicle if your car is totaled.
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              • Profile picture of the author seasoned
                Originally Posted by ThomM View Post

                Exactly. It's not a right but a social contract you pay for. To break it down further you buy health insurance from the government.
                Personally here I'd like to see a lightly regulated free market approach tried. Don't allow insurance to be denied for preexisting conditions and give control of what treatments and medications are necessary to the physicians. Encourage competition between insurance companies. Then you can shift the focus to actual health care instead of sick care like we have now.
                The government could do a LOT to save people a LOT WITHOUT causing hospitals losses, and WITHOUT spending a PENNY! I spoke earlier about how giving me, and the many MILLIONS like me, LICENSES for the drugs we are REQUIRED to take that are practically harmless, and allowing US to test OURSELVES could increase our productivity by OVER 24 hours a year, and save THOUSANDS of dollars! Hospitals and workers would also have shorter lines, etc...

                When my mother got alzheimers, they LITERALLY had her sign her LIFE over, INCLUDING ALL SOCIAL SECURITY, and they wanted MORE! And for WHAT? LOW END accommodations, and a baby sitting service! They had FEW "NURSES" who weren't really nurses! MOST nurses today are NOT really nurses, though they PRETEND to be. And they had a doctor make a visit like once a week. WHOPIEE! As for nurses, MOST are UNLICENSED(CNA at best, with as little as 1 month training), with very little training! MOST of the remainder are on a RESTRICTED license with minimal training(LPN/LVN). They are expected to have a REAL nurse(RN) as a SUPERVISOR. ALL may be called nurses, even at the hospital. For most general care/advice, etc... the person should be an RN. In a setting like my mother had, even a CNA could be effectively a supervisor.

                BTW They seemed to be locked up like fort knox but my mother, EVEN with GREATLY impaired ability, managed to use "social engineering" to not only get out, but have a complete stranger drive her tens of miles for FREE! So their "baby sitting" service isn't even all that great! Anyway, WHY do they charge so much?

                And for AMBULANCES, why don't they do what taxis do? Did YOU know that TAXIS, at least in SOME areas, are REQUIRED BY LAW to provide special accommodations for some people, like vans that have wheelchair lifts? That means the vehicles cost more, the drivers may have to know more, etc... HOW do they manage this? They obviously expect you to tell them. They can NOT charge you, since it is ILLEGAL to do so for disabled people, but often charge a fee if you request the accommodations and aren't qualified.

                The startup cost for a taxi is generally LESS than $1.50! For an ambulance it is over 2 HUNDRED TIMES as much! Per mile on taxis is less than $5, EVEN including tip! On an ambulance, it is over FIFTEEN TIMES as much! And must ambulances probably don't do much more than those taxi drivers for each mile. HERE'S a thought! Why don't they charge say $15/mile? That would cover the cost of the vehicle, equipment, AND the EMTs! If there is any underage, the $300 or so from the startup cost should more than cover it. That schedule would have saved me over $1200 just on the 2 ambulance rides I have had.

                It would be nice if ambulances had lower end vehicles if they had trouble with licensing or expenses, that they could use for predictable cases. The idea that they have to charge like $75 a mile, ON TOP OF a HUGE initial cost is WAY too much.

                But MAN, the WASTE of time and money is INCREDIBLE!

                We have one health insurance company here in my state that shifted to actual health care. They have their own fitness programs and offer discounts to members that use them or use other fitness programs. They focus more on healthy eating, exercise and healthy life styles and reward their members that do those things. Because of that they can offer lower rates for insurance because they are promoting and rewarding people who end up using the insurance less frequently.
                They are now one of the largest insurance providers in the state and other companies are starting to follow their lead.
                They are also not much different from other insurance companies in other areas. Car insurance for example is required for anyone owning a car. The state only sets a min. amount of insurance required. That means the insurance companies have to compete for customers that want more then the min. The result of which is companies offer things like save driver discounts, accident forgiveness, multi vehicle discounts, and even replacing a vehicle with a comparable vehicle if your car is totaled.
                Car insurance, to be fair, IS a bit different. Car insurance is more like buying a potential loan, and a lawyer.

                With car insurance, it seems like you generally get like a 3 year loan of up to the maximum amount you purchase as the insurance. For liability, the lawyers come into play and try to settle the case for as little as possible. If YOU are found complicit, they basically try to get some money back in those 3 years by raising your premium. It seems like after that, they will not require you to pay more. If YOU are not the actual owner of the car, but were the driver, they may do all that but THEN, if you don't have "full insurance", they will then go after the OWNER of the car. At least that is how it works with a lease. OH, and they ALWAYS try to pay as little as possible, but may pay a larger amount if you paid for that.

                And full insurance is apparently defined by state. In California, it at least WAS $300K. Apparently it is about 1 million in Indiana. These aren't minimums, but having the minimum may not fully protect you. LUCKILY MOST damage is likely less than $3000(Generally BELOW minimum coverage), and most totals are probably less than $40,000(A bit above many minimums, but the minimums aren't THAT bad.).

                Steve
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            • Profile picture of the author TLTheLiberator
              Originally Posted by whateverpedia View Post

              Australians (along with Europeans, Canadians, Kiwis and many other nationalities) consider healthcare to be a "right" because of the social contract the governments have with the people of these countries.

              They take tax out of our income, and in return we get healthcare when we need it. I've been paying the Medicare Levy now since it was introduced 33 years ago. I've never had a need to call on it, until my recent eye operation.

              During that time millions of others have received healthcare from the money I and everyone else put into the system, and I don't begrudge them that. That's because I know that if, and when I ever needed it, the same system was there to cover me.

              Ultimately, the Medicare system in Australia is a form of insurance except it's raison d'etre is to actually cover the cost of healthcare rather than to make a profit for its shareholders.

              Let's be honest though, I appreciate how difficult it is for Americans to understand how other countries operate, in the same way people from other countries find it hard to understand the American system.

              Our system, like yours and every other system around the world, isn't perfect. People here are happy with it and it performs its intended purpose. Ultimately, that's all that matters.

              There is a certain peace of mind knowing that if something major happens to me, like a heart attack, I'll be given world class treatment and I won't end up bankrupt afterwards.
              It seems to me that you are buying health care from HC providers via a government program and not buying it from the government.

              The people of your country who can contribute do contribute to a fund via taxes and whenever anyone in the country has a problem etc., they go see the HC provider and the HC provider submits a bill to your government agency who then pays the bill.

              Settle a question for me.

              In your opinion, are you buying health care from the government or are the people of your country simply using the combined power of the group and a federal government run program to address their health care needs?


              Another question?

              What about the folks who have no income to contribute? Do they get the same level of care as you do as someone who has paid the Medicare levy for 33 years?


              Another question?


              How much is that Medicare Levy?


              Thanks!

              TL
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              • Profile picture of the author whateverpedia
                Originally Posted by TLTheLiberator View Post

                In your opinion, are you buying health care from the government or are the people of your country simply using the combined power of the group and a federal government run program to address their health care needs?
                I'm not quite sure I understand that question, however it's probably the latter. Everyone has the Medicare Levy deducted from their pay at the same time as income tax is deducted. That goes into a huge pool of funds, and when people receive care, the provider sends the bill to the government who then pays the provider (doctor, hospital, etc.)


                Originally Posted by TLTheLiberator View Post

                Another question?

                What about the folks who have no income to contribute? Do they get the same level of care as you do as someone who has paid the Medicare levy for 33 years?
                It doesn't matter how long someone has been contributing the Levy, everyone has access to the same benefits. People with no, or low income get the same coverage if they've been issued with a Medicare Card, or in the case of children, are listed on their parent's card. Cards can be issued to individuals, couples or families as per the photo below.


                (a mock-up card covering a family of four)

                Self employed people, or those who live off their investments pay the levy when they fill out their tax returns at the end of the financial year (June 30). There are provisions for people in these two groups to pay both tax and the levy during the year, but I'm trying to keep my answer as simple as possible.

                Originally Posted by TLTheLiberator View Post

                Another question?


                How much is that Medicare Levy?
                2% of taxable income for most people. Singles who "earn" less than $18,200 pay nothing, whereas those earning over $90,000 for singles or $180,000 for families can be hit with a surcharge of up to 1.5% extra (see this table) unless they take out private health insurance as well. High income earners are deemed to be able to either a) pay for care out of their own pocket, or b) be able to afford private health insurance.


                Originally Posted by TLTheLiberator View Post

                Thanks!

                TL[/QUOTE]

                You're welcome.
                Signature
                Arguing with an idiot is like playing chess with a pigeon.
                It'll just knock over all the pieces, poop on the board, and strut about like it's won anyway.
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                • Profile picture of the author TLTheLiberator
                  Originally Posted by whateverpedia View Post

                  I'm not quite sure I understand that question, however it's probably the latter. Everyone has the Medicare Levy deducted from their pay at the same time as income tax is deducted. That goes into a huge pool of funds, and when people receive care, the provider sends the bill to the government who then pays the provider (doctor, hospital, etc.)




                  It doesn't matter how long someone has been contributing the Levy, everyone has access to the same benefits. People with no, or low income get the same coverage if they've been issued with a Medicare Card, or in the case of children, are listed on their parent's card. Cards can be issued to individuals, couples or families as per the photo below.


                  (a mock-up card covering a family of four)

                  Self employed people, or those who live off their investments pay the levy when they fill out their tax returns at the end of the financial year (June 30).

                  There are provisions for people in these two groups to pay both tax and the levy during the year, but I'm trying to keep my answer as simple as possible.



                  2% of taxable income for most people. Singles who "earn" less than $18,200 pay nothing, whereas those earning over $90,000 for singles or $180,000 for families can be hit with a surcharge of up to 1.5% extra (see this table) unless they take out private health insurance as well. High income earners are deemed to be able to either a) pay for care out of their own pocket, or b) be able to afford private health insurance.





                  TL
                  You're welcome.[/QUOTE]


                  Thanks for taking the time to answer my questions. I really appreciate it.

                  The first one was long winded but I was simply wondering if you felt that via your Medicare program, you actually buy your health care FROM your government or not - because some folks seem to think you are and I didn't agree, so I wanted some clarification from you.

                  It seems to me that you folks are simply pooling your resources to get maximum bang for your buck, while the government sets rules, regulations etc., and also makes the payments to providers for you - out of your pooled resources.

                  So, I think you are saying that you do not believe you are buying health care FROM your government. Is that correct?

                  Also, I am blown away that folks are taxed only 2% - on average, of their pay to use the system and I'm very impressed that you folks have everyone covered.

                  I say very well done to you folks down under for deftly handling one of life's biggest challenges.
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                  • Profile picture of the author whateverpedia
                    Originally Posted by TLTheLiberator View Post

                    Thanks for taking the time to answer my questions. I really appreciate it.

                    The first one was long winded but I was simply wondering if you felt that via your Medicare program, you actually buy your health care FROM your government or not - because some folks seem to think you are and I didn't agree, so I wanted some clarification from you.

                    It seems to me that you folks are simply pooling your resources to get maximum bang for your buck, while the government sets rules, regulations etc., and also makes the payments to providers for you - out of your pooled resources.

                    So, I think you are saying that you do not believe you are buying health care FROM your government. Is that correct?
                    OK, I understand now. Yep, we're just contributing to a big pot of money, from which the costs are paid out of.

                    Originally Posted by TLTheLiberator View Post

                    I say very well done to you folks down under for deftly handling one of life's biggest challenges.
                    As I said above, it's not perfect, however we're proud of it. It's become a "third rail" of Australian politics - you touch it, you die.
                    Signature
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                    It'll just knock over all the pieces, poop on the board, and strut about like it's won anyway.
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                    • Profile picture of the author ThomM
                      Originally Posted by whateverpedia View Post

                      OK, I understand now. Yep, we're just contributing to a big pot of money, from which the costs are paid out of.



                      As I said above, it's not perfect, however we're proud of it. It's become a "third rail" of Australian politics - you touch it, you die.
                      Which is one way of saying you give money to your government through the tax levy and then the government covers your medical cost with that money through medicare. I also noticed in your other comment that private health insurance is still available.
                      Some other things I've notice looking over your tax system is you have a 30% flat rate tax on corporations and a progressive tax rate on individuals. I also noticed you have a different tax rate for youths under 18 which can be up to 45%, and your low income tax offset is 450 for people making less then 37,000
                      You also have a higher min. income tax then we do with yours at around 18,000 and ours around 12,000.
                      Your medicare tax levy went from 1.5% to 2% just two years ago.

                      I'm glad it works for you guys and it's good to see those that are on the lower end of the income scale get help.
                      One reason it won't work here is every plan that's presented thinks that higher taxes on corporations will pay the bill. They also seem to think that capitalism is evil. They don't understand that without capitalism socialism can't work.
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                      • Profile picture of the author whateverpedia
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                        • Profile picture of the author ThomM
                          Originally Posted by whateverpedia View Post

                          The 45% tax rate for youths doesn't apply to people under 18 earning their own money. It was brought in to stop wealthy parents transferring their income to their kids to reduce their own tax liability. If a 16 or 17 year old has a part time, or even full time job, they pay tax at the normal rates.

                          The levy rose a couple of years ago because the range of coverage has been increased to now cover disabilities and associated care.

                          Socialism minus Capitalism = Communism
                          Capitalism minus Socialism = Fascism
                          I was wondering about that 45% for teens . It seemed strange that it would jump from "normal" tax to that.
                          Now I'm wondering how you figure Capitalism equates to a way of organizing a society in which a government ruled by a dictator controls the lives of the people and in which people are not allowed to disagree with the government.
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                          • Profile picture of the author whateverpedia
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                            • Profile picture of the author ThomM
                              That's interesting coming from a man who was the poster boy for the Fascism I described. Hmm seems your post disappeared.
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                        • Profile picture of the author seasoned
                          Originally Posted by whateverpedia View Post

                          The 45% tax rate for youths doesn't apply to people under 18 earning their own money. It was brought in to stop wealthy parents transferring their income to their kids to reduce their own tax liability. If a 16 or 17 year old has a part time, or even full time job, they pay tax at the normal rates.

                          The levy rose a couple of years ago because the range of coverage has been increased to now cover disabilities and associated care.

                          Socialism minus Capitalism = Communism
                          Capitalism minus Socialism = Fascism
                          EVEN COMMUNISM requires capitalism! It is just that the income goes straight to the "country". In a way, you could consider socialism capitalism where the government tells you WHERE to spend the money, and who to sell to. Communism is capitalism where the state owns everything, and acts like it. Since watching is so difficult, and the country DOESN'T CARE about the consumer, quality and availability DROPS! That is ESPECIALLY true since NO workers are supposed to get better treatment.

                          If you think about it, with things like art and sports in international circles is DIFFERENT. The country can NO LONGER DICTATE STANDARDS, since the WORLD does. So THAT explains why places like Russia have such BAD cars and good athletes. Communist MIGS are also good planes and good weapons, but NOT comfortable. Comfort DOES help in war, since it allows pilots to fight longer at the same level.

                          BESIDES! I even heard a few others say that left and right were different in Europe. THE FIRST country people think of when thinking about fascism was SOCIALIST, and proud of it. They had lots of free stuff, including free healthcare and education.

                          Merriam Webster defines fascism as:



                          Simple Definition of fascism

                          1

                          : a way of organizing a society in which a government ruled by a dictator controls the lives of the people and in which people are not allowed to disagree with the government


                          2

                          : very harsh control or authority


                          OK, #1 and #2 DO define that other "fascist" country, and CUBA and NORTH KOREA! NOW, replace dictator with "dictator or oligarchy", or remove it, and it ALSO applies to china, and communist Russia!

                          As for the wealthy parents and kids? The US does this by simply limiting the money. I believe there is a lifetime cap, but there is also a yearly maximum. And one guy in the US got VERY rich because of a little quirk in the US tax code! WHAT was the quirk? A person inheriting a lot of tangible assets in the US can suddenly become very POOR, because they owe taxes on it. If you inherit an office desk worth $10,000, you now owe $4,000. Do you have it? If not, you may be willing to sell it for $6,000 just to pay the tax, and you get $2,000, and the buyer saved $4,000! The government gets $4,000! So if you are CASH rich, you can buy them out for a song. Of course only the RICH are likely to ever have that ability. It is almost like those lotteries, where the winners spend all the money and end up having to pay more in taxes to the US government than they have ever paid.

                          Anyway, a HUGE tax on gifts seems silly. It DISCOURAGES passing a business on, and helping out your children. A modest cap accomplishes the same thing while not really discouraging what a socialist should WANT! Then again, I guess some socialists dislike that sam waltons great grand kids may get so much. He had a BIG direct family, and they ARE rich, but not nearly as rich as he was. I imagine the great grand kids may do ok but may end up still having to work.

                          Steve
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        • Profile picture of the author Ron Lafuddy
          As many of you know I recently had to have cataracts removed from both eyes.

          My doctor booked me in for surgery. I went to the hospital, showed the admissions clerk my Medicare card and they recorded the details. I had the surgery, and the hospital sent the bill to the government. Quick and painless, both physically and financially. No bills that would bankrupt me, and no out of pockets. All paid for by the Medicare Levy which everyone pays through the income tax system.

          Had I gone through the private system, I would have paid the Medicare Levy, insurance premiums, AND been charged $1500 by the hospital. Private health insurance only covers a proportion of the total bill.

          Furthermore, through the private system, I would've gone to the same hospital at the same time, and had surgery performed by the same team as I did through the public system. I'd have shelled out far more money and got no benefit at all from it.

          By your own words, you did not "pay for it".

          Your neighbors paid for it. You took what
          belonged to someone else, to pay for your
          eye surgery.

          Government produces Nothing of value.
          It doesn't earn the money, that it uses to
          pay for healthcare.

          The money that government uses, it takes
          from citizens, corporate or otherwise.
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  • Profile picture of the author rondo
    Ron regardless of who actually paid for Whatever's eye surgery on the day, his treatment cost far less under our universal healthcare system than it would under yours.

    So I don't understand why you disregard cheaper health care systems and seem to want to pay more than is necessary.

    Andrew

    P.S. I hear the average deductible for insurance in the US is $5000! Is that true?
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  • Profile picture of the author TLTheLiberator
    What is a privilege?

    According to the internet...


    noun
    1.
    a special right, advantage, or immunity granted or available only to a particular person or group of people.

    "education is a right, not a privilege"

    synonyms: advantage, benefit; More

    verb formal
    1.
    grant a privilege or privileges to.

    "English inheritance law privileged the eldest son"


    What is a right?

    According to the internet...


    morally good, justified, or acceptable.

    "I hope we're doing the right thing"

    synonyms: just, fair, proper, good, upright, righteous, virtuous, moral, ethical, honorable, honest;


    It seems to me that particular actions should be undertaken in a civilized modern day society and access to health care is one of them.

    In America today, one group of people not totally paying for their HC are those who receive medicaid, or medicaid expansion and most of those folks have made some type of contribution into the kitty during their life.

    As far as the ACA is concerned the ACA raises revenue from high income earners circa $250K plus with a .90% tax on that which is above $250K and about 20 other taxes...

    (that for the most part have nothing to do with those earning lower than $250K)... and funds the expansion etc.

    The ACA also uses those raised revenues to subsidize people who work etc., but can't afford to pay ALL of the cost of a policy. The ACA may subsidize the cost of those policies and It may be as high as 75% - I don't have that number and IMHO it doesn't even matter.

    Those folk are the only two groups not paying fulling for their insurance and most of them have paid something at one time or another.

    Oh, I forgot those who have no insurance and stumble into emergency rooms etc.

    But vets paid, medicare folks paid, and everyday people who have jobs are now paying. 90% of the people who will receive care are paying or have paid something.

    So IMHO, those bitching and moaning about someone getting something for free are only bitching and moaning about 10 maybe 15% of the people in this entire country.

    Are they even aware of that?

    If they are aware of who they are bad mouthing, I say they are some of the pettiest folks alive that in this modern day civilized society they can't even see the economic wisdom let alone the moral implications...

    ... & are not interested in finding a way to help 10-15% of the population while helping ourselves since the normal paying folks are also getting a set of benefits related to health care that they never had before - along with the newfound understanding that a HC problem won't financially destroy their lives.

    That's where the American HC system is headed for the vast majority of people in this country and IMHO that is a beautiful thing unless it gets hijacked by reactionary forces which historically have not been all that helpful towards the improvement of the lives of Americans.

    So is it a right or privilege?

    Among some of the peoples of this planet it may be a privilege - because it's unavailable, but for the peoples of a modern, civilized society IMHO it is a right because...

    ... it is in those types of societies, who can actually deliver a set of modern day rights, it is incumbent upon them to do so, because it's the right and smart thing to do.

    Since there are numerous examples on this planet regarding how this right is being decently delivered,...

    ... I'd really love to know what is so just, fair, proper, good, upright, righteous, virtuous, moral, ethical, honorable, ...

    ... about fighting against that right being delivered to every corner of a modern day civilized society - as much as possible - by the citizens of the society via some type of gov program?

    Let the nitpicking begin.

    Oh yea, but what about this? What about that? Meeh, meeh, meeh...


    Thanks LOL!!!
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    • Profile picture of the author ThomM
      Originally Posted by TLTheLiberator View Post

      What is a privilege?

      According to the internet...


      noun
      1.
      a special right, advantage, or immunity granted or available only to a particular person or group of people.

      "education is a right, not a privilege"

      synonyms: advantage, benefit; More

      verb formal
      1.
      grant a privilege or privileges to.

      "English inheritance law privileged the eldest son"


      What is a right?

      According to the internet...


      morally good, justified, or acceptable.

      "I hope we're doing the right thing"

      synonyms: just, fair, proper, good, upright, righteous, virtuous, moral, ethical, honorable, honest;


      It seems to me that particular actions should be undertaken in a civilized modern day society and access to health care is one of them.

      In America today, one group of people not totally paying for their HC are those who receive medicaid, or medicaid expansion and most of those folks have made some type of contribution into the kitty during their life.

      As far as the ACA is concerned the ACA raises revenue from high income earners circa $250K plus with a .90% tax on that which is above $250K and about 20 other taxes...

      (that for the most part have nothing to do with those earning lower than $250K)... and funds the expansion etc.

      The ACA also uses those raised revenues to subsidize people who work etc., but can't afford to pay ALL of the cost of a policy. The ACA may subsidize the cost of those policies and It may be as high as 75% - I don't have that number and IMHO it doesn't even matter.

      Those folk are the only two groups not paying fulling for their insurance and most of them have paid something at one time or another.

      Oh, I forgot those who have no insurance and stumble into emergency rooms etc.

      But vets paid, medicare folks paid, and everyday people who have jobs are now paying. 90% of the people who will receive care are paying or have paid something.

      So IMHO, those bitching and moaning about someone getting something for free are only bitching and moaning about 10 maybe 15% of the people in this entire country.

      Are they even aware of that?

      If they are aware of who they are bad mouthing, I say they are some of the pettiest folks alive that in this modern day civilized society they can't even see the economic wisdom let alone the moral implications...

      ... & are not interested in finding a way to help 10-15% of the population while helping ourselves since the normal paying folks are also getting a set of benefits related to health care that they never had before - along with the newfound understanding that a HC problem won't financially destroy their lives.

      That's where the American HC system is headed for the vast majority of people in this country and IMHO that is a beautiful thing unless it gets hijacked by reactionary forces which historically have not been all that helpful towards the improvement of the lives of Americans.

      So is it a right or privilege?

      Among some of the peoples of this planet it may be a privilege - because it's unavailable, but for the peoples of a modern, civilized society IMHO it is a right because...

      ... it is in those types of societies, who can actually deliver a set of modern day rights, it is incumbent upon them to do so, because it's the right and smart thing to do.

      Since there are numerous examples on this planet regarding how this right is being decently delivered,...

      ... I'd really love to know what is so just, fair, proper, good, upright, righteous, virtuous, moral, ethical, honorable, ...

      ... about fighting against that right being delivered to every corner of a modern day civilized society - as much as possible - by the citizens of the society via some type of gov program?

      Let the nitpicking begin.

      Oh yea, but what about this? What about that? Meeh, meeh, meeh...


      Thanks LOL!!!
      We must be using different internets.
      Ultimately, a right is the ability to decide for one's self; to make a choice. Exercising a right is always a choice. Choosing to not exercise it is still a choice; a decision based upon thought. And that is the core of all inalienable rights. This is what fundamentally distinguishes a Right from a Privilege. Whereas a right is something that can be done because it originates commonly within all individuals, a privilege is something that cannot be done without permission.
      To put that in simpler terms. You have a right to health care as in you have the right to take care of your own health. When you have to purchase health insurance regardless of weather it's from a company or government it can only be done with the permission of that company or government making it a privilege.
      When the government has one group pay for the benefit of another group then it's an entitlement, or government scheme benefiting members of a particular group.
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      Getting old ain't for sissy's
      As you are I was, as I am you will be
      You can't fix stupid, but you can always out smart it.

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      • Profile picture of the author TLTheLiberator
        Originally Posted by ThomM View Post

        We must be using different internets.


        To put that in simpler terms. You have a right to health care as in you have the right to take care of your own health. When you have to purchase health insurance regardless of weather it's from a company or government it can only be done with the permission of that company or government making it a privilege.


        When the government has one group pay for the benefit of another group then it's an entitlement, or government scheme benefiting members of a particular group.
        Yea, you seem to have a big problem with the gov being involved.

        And with anyone paying anything for anyone else in any manner for anything even if those paying could one day be those in need of that same benefit arrangement or that fact someone they care about will probably need it.

        I think you also have a problem with the concept of shared responsibility and understanding that slickly designed and financed programs created to address certain huge life probs are the best way to addressing those huge life probs.
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        • Profile picture of the author ThomM
          Originally Posted by TLTheLiberator View Post

          Yea, you seem to have a big problem with the gov being involved.

          And with anyone paying anything for anyone else in any manner for anything even if those paying could one day be those in need of that same benefit arrangement or that fact someone they care about will probably need it.

          I think you also have a problem with the concept of shared responsibility and understanding that slickly designed and financed programs created to address certain huge life probs are the best way to addressing those huge life probs.
          Nope, I just understand what rights, privileges, and entitlements actually are. I also understand that what you call health care is actually health insurance and there is a big difference.
          The rest of your post is really just you trying to make me out as someone who doesn't care about others because I don't agree with what you think constitutes caring.
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          • Profile picture of the author TLTheLiberator
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            • Profile picture of the author ThomM
              Originally Posted by TLTheLiberator View Post

              And I'll add that your understanding of caring, rights, etc., ipso facto would only lead to a society in which the few have everything and the vast majority of folks are seriously struggling financially and in every other way even when the society as a whole has plenty of abundance & resources.

              And as I have established in the past, you are very cool with that.
              Well all you're doing now is showing that you have very little understanding at all of understanding me or what I think.
              I presented an idea earlier that I believe would make health insurance more affordable for everyone and even add that the government should subsidize the insurance for anyone that couldn't afford it.
              Now if that's your idea of "a few have everything" leaving the vast majority out, then that's on you.
              You've never established I was cool with leaving people out except in your own mind.
              Signature

              Life: Nature's way of keeping meat fresh
              Getting old ain't for sissy's
              As you are I was, as I am you will be
              You can't fix stupid, but you can always out smart it.

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  • Profile picture of the author seasoned
    Well, I am surprised how it never dawned on people here how we have like 5 main plans for insurance:

    1. VA -- ONLY for veterans and maybe families or politicians. It has gotten a lot of bad press though.
    2. Medicare Advantage -- A lot of people loved this hybrid, but again, it is only for SOME. It is being attacked though, partially to get money for the "ACA".
    3. Medicare -- A lot of people are ok with this, though it is hard to tell because some "MC" people REALLY have "MCA" and don't realize it! But STILL, this is only for SOME! This is a FEDERAL program, AROUND FOR OVER 50 years!!! This is around for older people.
    4. Medicaid -- This is a STATE program, AROUND FOR OVER 50 years!!! Only for low income people.
    5. "private". The private WAS generally ok. People willing to pay more could get more.

    Along comes ACA. They took money away from 2, and maybe 1, and used it to pay for a new "insurance" that replaced #5. The requirements for 3 and 4 were broadened to allow for what, last I heard, was the ONLY meaningful "success" that ACA ever had. Laws often change by DICTATE, though the law demands that that invalidates this bill, and dictate is unconstitutional. And the website at least WAS a JOKE. Did they EVER get it fixed?

    8 months in: Forbes Welcome

    They projected at that point it was going to cost over $2.2 BILLION dollars for the website!

    A few months ago:

    HealthCare.gov 'passive' on heading off fraud | PBS NewsHour

    YEP, they NEVER got it to work! The back end STILL fails, and that was SUPPOSED TO BE, and SHOULD BE, the FIRST PART!!!!!!!

    The way it SHOULD work is you put in your information, it goes through a simple back end that should have been created almost 20 YEARS ago(For taxes), gets your info, figures out your circumstances, etc... offers YOUR options, and gives you a simple choice. It should even say to the penny what your monthly cost will be, after it goes through another back end routine to actually purchase your choice. Apparently NEITHER piece works yet. GEE, this is perhaps the most expensive site of its kind ever created in history. It might even be the most expensive website ever created. I heard amazon started with $300K.

    The Amazon website was obviously a very small piece. And the kernel of Amazons site is actually VERY close to what healthcare.gov should be doing. Like healthcare.gov, it checks various stats, etc... NOW, for example, that includes prime. It changes the display of options based on what you and others have bought, and what it finds out about things like prime. After you make the purchase, it may notify sellers. And how many sellers does AMAZON deal with? HUNDREDS? THOUSANDS? Maybe more? And what percentage of business is external?

    I wonder! What would BEZOS have said if someone told him the website would cost $10BILLION? I mean if HC.G cost over 2 BILLION as of 2 years ago, Amazons current site would CLEARLY cost well over $10 billion. And AMAZON'S site works pretty well.

    Steve
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  • Profile picture of the author ForumGuru
    Banned
    High deductible, high cost, and relatively poor coverage...that's my personal experience with the ACA. And of course when I tried to see what was available on the exchange, it took several days to see what was available because the signup system kept crashing and then became completely unavailable.

    I know first hand that the ACA options in my state are very poor for middle income, middle aged individuals --> it's so bad it's almost a joke.

    The vast majority of real folks benefiting from ACA are the people that are subsidized by the tax payers (low incomers), peeps with preexisting conditions, and kids that can stay on their parents policy until age 26.

    For most of the rest of America, ACA coverage for the most part is; overpriced, services are not awesome, and deductibles are way too high.

    When do I get to keep my old policy and doctor? Oh yeah, that was a big fat lie to get ACA passed. And yeah, it's true that no elected senator or congressman read the damn thing before they passed it.

    Pass it first, read it later, that's how the ACA got through...

    Bogus.

    -don

    PS. Put it like this... Consider a person that is healthy and has not needed to see a doctor for years. If they do not purchase a qualifying ACA policy for 2015, they are forced to pay a $2000 or more mandatory minimum fine next year to the US. Gov at tax time.

    A $2000+ fine for being American, being healthy, not taking money out of the system, and not purchasing overpriced government mandated insurance.

    That's truly unamerican and I don't care what any United States justice, court, or politician says.

    Can it get worse? Yup! The top D wants to extend free health care to all illegals! Are you kidding me? A healthy American citizen that has not needed to see a a doctor in years pays a $2000 fine for not having (or needing) health care coverage for the year, and the illegals that break into our country would get health care for free. What a joke.

    Houston, we have a problem.


    .
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    • Profile picture of the author longrobnc
      Originally Posted by ForumGuru View Post

      High deductible, high cost, and relatively poor coverage...that's my personal experience with the ACA. And of course when I tried to see what was available on the exchange, it took several days to see what was available because the signup system kept crashing and then became completely unavailable.

      I know first hand that the ACA options in my state are very poor for middle income, middle aged individuals --> it's so bad it's almost a joke.

      The vast majority of real folks benefiting from ACA are the people that are subsidized by the tax payers (low incomers), peeps with preexisting conditions, and kids that can stay on their parents policy until age 26.

      For most of the rest of America, ACA coverage for the most part is; overpriced, services are not awesome, and deductibles are way too high.

      When do I get to keep my old policy and doctor? Oh yeah, that was a big fat lie to get ACA passed. And yeah, it's true that no elected senator or congressman read the damn thing before they passed it.

      Pass it first, read it later, that's how the ACA got through...

      Bogus.

      -don

      PS. Put it like this... Consider a person that is healthy and has not needed to see a doctor for years. If they do not purchase a qualifying ACA policy for 2015, they are forced to pay a $2000 or more mandatory minimum fine next year to the US. Gov at tax time.

      A $2000+ fine for being American, being healthy, not taking money out of the system, and not purchasing overpriced government mandated insurance.

      That's truly unamerican and I don't care what any United States justice, court, or politician says.

      Can it get worse? Yup! The top D wants to extend free health care to all illegals! Are you kidding me? A healthy American citizen that has not needed to see a a doctor in years pays a $2000 fine for not having (or needing) health care coverage for the year, and the illegals that break into our country would get health care for free. What a joke.

      Houston, we have a problem.


      .
      What's the plan for that healthy person if they become severely ill and end up with $1MM in medical bills and they have $5K in the bank and they will be out of work for an extended period of time? I'll tell you, they will start to rely on the social programs and the goodness of others to provide them the care that they can't pay for.

      Let's put it this way, you may be an awesome driver, but does it make sense for you to drive around on roads with no car insurance? Just because there has never been a homeowners policy claim at your home doesn't mean that it doesn't make sense to carry insurance.

      Some of the coverage on the Obamacare site has low deductibles and good coverage. I have one of those policies. Other policies have very high deductibles. Those policies are really to safeguard against catastrophe. It's a backstop in case you get seriously hurt or ill. Just because you aren't sick now does not mean that it won't happen later. Why leave the system holding the tab for people that don't plan ahead?
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  • Profile picture of the author seasoned
    ANOTHER THING! The "ACA" CLAIMED to be to give all the SAME good coverage, etc.... That is absolutely IMPOSSIBLE, and THEY KNEW IT AND PLANNED FOR IT! WHY? Remember when I said there were FIVE insurance types? I only qualify for ONE! My FATHER still feels ok with HIS insurance. He THINKS he has option #3, but that isn't totally true. He has option #2! In order to have option #2, you HAVE to have option #3. I don't qualify for EITHER.

    So do YOU have option #5 or NOT? THAT is the "option" I have! Based on forumgurus last post, that is the "option" HE likely has.

    If you are less than 65yo and have over a certain amount of income, or is it assets, are not getting disability, and haven't been in the military, that is your ONLY "legitimate" option here.

    Steve
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  • Profile picture of the author ForumGuru
    Banned
    Again,

    #1 It's un-American to fine me for not purchasing health insurance.

    #2 It's un-American to give illegals that break into the United States free health care when we Americans that pay taxes have to pay for the coverage, or pay a big fine we don't. You have seen the proposals for illegals, correct?

    A great many things could be done to improve the health care system in the U.S., unfortunately the ACA is not one of them.

    The "system" holding the tab? Who do you think pays for all of the people that are subsidized on ACA? Yes, the tab is being paid by actual taxpayers, as usual.

    None of the coverage afforded me in my state under the ACA would I consider to be "low deductible with good coverage". If one of those plans was available, I would not be voicing my opinion here.

    The coverage I had previously was affordable, comprehensive, and I did not buy it under the threat of a $2000+ annual fine. Unfortunately in my situation, when the ACA kicked in, shortly thereafter my previous insurance was lost (covered by my spouse's employer) when the company could no longer to afford to cover the both of us with similar policies.

    My wife left that company after almost 18 years and went to work for a new company...and ...the premiums are way to high for the both of us to be covered.

    I've been self-employed since 1996, so I have no other real choice but to purchase insurance individually, and on the exchange, in this state, nothing affordable with a reasonable deductible and decent premium currently exists that will cover me..

    IMO the ACA is a terrible way to try to "fix" health care in the United States.

    If you are going to make me pay large fine every year because I don't use insurance --> at least let that money go into my own health savings account. We know that won't work though, because almost everyone on the plan needs my fine money to pay for their ACA premiums.

    ACA is basically an extension of welfare benefits, call it what it is.

    As of March 10, 2015

    WASHINGTON — The Obama administration said Tuesday that 11.7 million Americans now have private health insurance through federal and state marketplaces, with 86 percent of them receiving financial assistance from the federal government to help pay premiums.
    86% of all ACA policy holders were receiving subsides from the feds...yes, that means only 14% of people were/are paying full price for a policy on the exchanges. That means over 10 million of those policies are at least partially paid for by someone other than the person receiving the coverage.

    This IS NOT the way to decrease the costs of heath care in America.

    Nope, no subsidies offered to me or my wife, just an overpriced policy with overbearing conditions and a deductible that is too high....or pay the fine.

    The fix? Get rid of ACA and start addressing the high costs of health care piece by piece. Pharma, over-billing, middlemen, competition, catastrophic coverage, policy diversification etc. etc. etc.

    Cheers

    -don

    PS. Homeowners insurance? Got it, it's dirt cheap for a decent policy. Car insurance? Full coverage for not much over $50 a month...got it. Is it required in my state? Nope...not compulsory here.
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    • Profile picture of the author seasoned
      Originally Posted by ForumGuru View Post

      PS. Homeowners insurance? Got it, it's dirt cheap for a decent policy. Car insurance? Full coverage for not much over $50 a month...got it. Is it required in my state? Nope...not compulsory here.
      Homeowners insurance? CHEAP! HEY, there IS a high deductible, etc... and I have had to pay about $20,000 out of my own pocket(ABOUT $1,000 a year), that is NOT towards my deductible, but it is cheap enough that it isn't a big deal.

      Car insurance? To say I have full coverage is an understatement, but it is CHEAP! The chance of my needing it all is about ZERO! Most is as a blanket policy, so it doesn't just cover the car.

      OH, SORRY! Did I say I have home insurance? Well, that IS what they call it, but they made FULL insurance ILLEGAL in many, or all, areas some time ago! So the government said that such insurance must be bought from THEM! YEP, the GOVERNMENT AGAIN!!!!

      https://www.floodsmart.gov/floodsmar...od%20insurance

      Well, I am buying THAT insurance ALSO, even though people LAUGH at the likelihood of my needing it. You would THINK it is CHEAP! Actually, it costs almost as much as my homeowners insurance, though it does NOT cover what the homeowners insurance covers, and only covers a specific natural disaster that the other insurance wouldn't.

      STILL, with all of that, my health "insurance" costs more than ALL of that COMBINED! AGAIN, it is almost worthless. Which reminds me, I have to check at that hospital tomorrow.

      Steve
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