Also, if my primary care physician or the specialist were to charge
significantly more than most doctors (as the example in the article illustrated
a $40,000 treatment with plenty of choices in the $30K or less range) then I
would ask my doctor why he was so much higher. If his answer justified the cost
to me, I would pay the $10K difference. If he wasn't able to justify the
price difference I would ask him to lower his rate or shop around. The ability
to know medical pricing in advance is the critical piece in our health care
system currently missing and I look forward to this change.
@DN Subscriber, you wrote:“Ask yourself, Americans, is your
healthcare better, cheaper and faster now than before Obamacare was
passed?”Yes.Several years ago I needed to have a
“foreign object” removed from my foot. Step 1, visit Primary Care
Physician. Step 2. x-rays Step 3, Specialist visit. Step 4 x-rays because
specialist did not want to use previously obtained x-rays. Step 5 surgery. All
along the way not one medical professional could tell me my out of pocket cost.
End to End time was several weeks while I was using crutches.This
last week I had a piece of glass in my foot that my husband and I could not
remove because it was too deep and too close to the bone. Step 1, Primary Care
Physician - $20. Step 2, x-rays. Step 3, Specialist visit - $40. Surgery
performed in her office to remove the glass. End to End time 1 day.Yes, mandating physicians to share existing medical data electronically saved
me money, saved me time, and saved my insurance company money. This will
ultimately translate to my insurance company making more profit, my employer
saving cost of insurance premiums and me remaining healthy and active.
GaryO,the mental gymnastics you go through to defend the indefensible are
mind-boggling. It must be exhausting and frustrating defending this monstrosity
- and the worst provisions have not yet kicked in.millions more lost
their plans and can no longer see their doctors without paying exorbitant
fees.over 70% of those who signed up on the exchange had insurance
before, so not really that many added to the rolls, and millions still
uncovered. Obamacare was, is and always will be a lie. It is bad for
the nation and its citizens (no apostrophe after "it" when used as a
possessive, only when used as a contraction - glad I could help)but
you got yours, so what does it matter how many other people it hurt?can you liberals and BO apologists spell "rationing"?
DN subscriber -"Ask yourself, Americans, is your healthcare
better, cheaper and faster now than before Obamacare was passed?"No change here. I kept my old health care plan.But millions of
Americans are protected by health care insurance now, who were not before.The ACA is good for the nation and it's citizens.But
"Conservatives" are slow in learning that.
Why do we pay for viagra? We all are forced to contribute money to this drug
when we pay for insurance that covers it for my neighbor. E.D. is not a
terminal illness. Why do we spend endless money on end of life
care? At 90+ years old, someone who is kept on life support for endless days in
a hospital ought to be allowed to pass with dignity. Nobody cheats death, and
life is really all about quality not quantity.Why is it every other
country operating as a western style democracy has better health care results
than do we? We spend endlessly on health care and are sicker. Why
is it necessary that someone makes a profit buck (I am not talking about a fair
salary for the good Dr Welby) from my illness?Why does every other
commercial on TV look like a commercial to get me to buy a new drug? Should not
my medical practitioner know what drug to prescribe? Do I really need to know
what treats weak bladders?Medical care in the US today is about
making a buck for corporate America, not making me healthier.
Some people seem to believe that by demonizing, penalizing and restricting
doctors and hospitals that politicians, bureaucrats and lawyers can make
healthcare more available, cost less and produce better results.Some
people also believe in unicorns, the Tooth Fairy and Easter Bunny. All of whom
are as likely to produce the promised results.Ask yourself,
Americans, is your healthcare better, cheaper and faster now than before
Obamacare was passed? Ask yourself again in a year or so when all the hidden
Obamacare taxes and fees kick in.There is no such thing as a free
lunch, or free healthcare.
@Hutterite@MeckofahessAgree with you both. I think there are
three problems. First, every stage of health care is monetized and
profit driven - at the end of the day, the real "customers" of
hospitals, networks, and insurance companies are the stockholders, not the
patients. We need single payer. Second, we want it all. We want a 79
year old man with severe diabetes, kidney failure, advanced glaucoma and severe
dementia with a sub-40bpm heart rate to have a pace-maker and weeks in ICU with
placement of a feeding tube because "we love him, we can't just let him
die." And there is nobody to put the brakes on - $500,000 in medical
expenses for 90 days of miserable extension of life with no quality. We need to
deal better with death and end-of-life care.Third - and impossible -
we need to back the politics out of it. There is so much money being made, and
politicians are so cheap to buy, that Big Pharma and Big Insurance are not going
to let it change.
"Some experts worry that patients could be surprised with big medical bills
they must pay themselves, undercutting financial protections in the new health
care law. That would happen if patients picked a more expensive hospital"Uh huh" . . . that would happen if patients picked a
more expensive hospital?"Then . . . DON'T pick a more
@ordinaryfolks:You may be right about for profit systems.All property should be regulated by politicians, and perhaps
re-distributed.Look at the equality of healthcare for our
Veterans.We can share equal nothing in a poverty state.Works in Cuba!
This is what to expect when you have a for profit system. Insurance companies
are out to make a buck. Politicians of both parties are going to help out big
business, and aid them in making money. Insurance companies are big
business.Whether we have Obamacare or whatever cockamamie program
that Republicans will endorse, the result will be substantially the same. As
long as there is money to be made in the medical business, then we, the
consumer, are just another source for profit.Maybe, if we did what
most western-style democracies do with health care, we could both reign in
costs, and still provide adequate care to the public. However, neither
Republicans nor Democrats will ever allow this.
And Obama continues destroying Obamacare.
@Hutterite:My friend, we may not agree on everything, but I
certainly do agree with you on this. A single payer system makes a lot of sense
for our healthcare system. That would help to eliminate much costly overhead
and inefficiency in our system which in turn helps to lower costs. As a
healthcare professional, I have watched hospitals gouge patients and insurance
companies for 35 years. I went into healthcare to help people, not to break them
financially. Healthcare has become nothing more than a for profit business
(where hospital administrators and Doctors) make huge profits from helpless sick
human beings who have no choice but to pay their fees or suffer and/or die.
Perhaps this "reference pricing" will help to expose this out of control
and over priced system?
Let's hope, cost control, doesn't mean being on a long waiting list.
You know, a single payer system would prevent this problem, but you can't
bring yourself to endorse what's right in this case.
Hospitals should be required by law to tell patients up-front what the procedure
is going to cost. Then, if it is not within "reference pricing" the
patient can choose to go elsewhere prior to having the procedure performed.
There is something very shady about performing work and then afterwards sending
a bill, with no prior commitment as to what the bill will be.