We need a PSY style energy filled attempt at fixing the dismal healthcare system in this country. Obamacare has been a positive step in insuring many who have pre-existing conditions and who couldn’t find a healthcare provider willing to work with them. Bernie has the right idea, of course. In any major systems repair one must determine if a patch fix can do the job and hold, or whether totally revamping is required.
Hillary and her ilk seem to be shills for the medical, insurance, prescription industries. My own recent experience is illustrative. My health requires the use of a machine that my insurance company has authorized. My healthcare insurance company is billed $250 per month for the use of the machine. The machine has a projected life of 3 – 5 years. At one of the retail medical equipment companies I found the machine with a regular price of $558. Not a sale price or discounted, just their regular price. My insurance company is billed 49% of the retail value of the machine per month. That’s 600% per year return over retail! (And who knows how much below retail they pay.) When I questioned this (I admit, a bit angrily) the medical equipment company shrugged and basically said tough, and do you want to return it? My insurance company was also indifferent to my plight and all my objections of overcharging by the medical equipment company.
My insurance company will just pass the cost to me in higher premiums wither next year or the year after. I have Obamacare and my premiums went up about 50% after one year of coverage. Add this to the overpricing of prescription drugs and ridiculous price gouging for medical testing and it should be obvious that Obamacare requires more than a tweak. Neoliberals like Hillary do not really believe that health is something that is a right. If the Hillary types did believe this then they would understand a for profit industry should not be the provider of the American citizenry’s health. This is the way of anything in the social services – profit should not be part of the equation. Whether you or I receive proper medical care should not be a bottom line decision. It’s not that way anywhere in Western Europe. It’s about our citizenry receiving the same benefit.
There are exceptions to price gouging but presently they are considered novelties by the healthcare industry as a whole.
“Health systems and insurers are closely watching Intermountain’s rollout. It has established itself as a leading health system by tracking and analyzing costs and the quality of patient care, allowing it to improve treatments and reduce unnecessary expenses.”
“Intermountain’s plan is “the first innovative thing we’ve seen in a long time,” said Dave Jackson, managing partner for FirstWest Benefit Solutions in Orem, Utah. “Share has got everybody at the table — everybody’s got accountability and got things to do.”
“Intermountain has already saved money by renegotiating the cost of surgical staplers, pitting a cheaper manufacturer against another and saving $235,000 a year. It saved $639,000 a year by ensuring that heart attack patients get into the catheterization lab within 90 minutes of emergency room contact, thereby helping patients recover faster.”
“Some systems might be more likely to reduce services or shrink their money-losing operations if they tried to guarantee a long-term lock on price increases.”
“But a few are heading in a similar direction to Intermountain’s, experimenting with ways that avoid the traditional piecemeal approach of fee-for-service care. The idea of locking in rate increases — Intermountain’s Share program sets the increase at approximately 4 percent — is particularly attractive to employers because coverage then becomes a predictable expense.” http://www.nytimes.com/2016/02/18/business/a-novel-plan-for-health-care-cutting-costs-not-raising-them.html?emc=edit_th_20160218&nl=todaysheadlines&nlid=63667984&_r=0