#1 2013-09-03 22:17:24

Disco3
Member
Registered: 2011-08-08
Posts: 476
Website

Healthcare in America

Every single fucking time I ask "how much is this going to cost me", whether I mean it as "how much are you billing my insurance" or "how much will I owe out of pocket for this procedure", the answers always come back vague and mildly implicate someone else.

Por ejemplo:

"Well I can't tell you how much we will charge because THEY will have to create a separate invoice and billiable amount for the procedure THEY might need to complete. And I can't even begin to give you an estimate until after THEY send us THEIR bill."

So, I ask, "who is they?". I get a name. I call up, get a quote, call the original doctor back.

"So, I know how much THEY will charge. Now how much will YOU charge?!"

"Well that depends on the results that THEY give us."

WELL GODDAMNIT HOW MUCH WILL YOU CHARGE ME TO LOOK AT THE FUCKING MRI RESULTS IN ORDER TO FIGURE OUT HOW MUCH YOU'RE GOING TO CHARGE ME FOR SURGERY?!

"Oh, a standard office visit runs $275, but could change if blah blah blah..."

Don't even get me started on how annoying it is that a problem with my TMJ (SOMETHING THAT IS NOT IN MY MOUTH FOR FUCK'S SAKE) is somehow "dental" and not "medical" so, while the diagnosis of my problem is covered by my (very expensive) health insurance, the actual corrective procedures for this problem are not.

Hence why I want to know how much all of this will fucking cost - I'm not going broke fixing something I can self-medicate with pain pills. Can I float this on my credit cards? Do I need to take out a loan? Should I try to borrow money from my father? HOW MUCH SHOULD I PLAN FOR?!

Jesus fucking Christ.


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#2 2013-09-04 01:38:44

2na
Member
Registered: 2003-02-18
Posts: 14

Re: Healthcare in America

That sucks brother.


I hope you like me and I fit in with your life.

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#3 2013-09-04 02:48:28

Inky
is a pie
From: Norway
Registered: 2003-05-24
Posts: 1,247

Re: Healthcare in America

You should move to Canada, and step into a slim jim. Oh yeaaah.

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#4 2013-09-04 02:57:46

deeepthroatgta6
Member
Registered: 2012-07-05
Posts: 447

Re: Healthcare in America

My customers never have to go through this. I could have extended my service to you but you aren't in India.

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#5 2013-09-05 00:22:49

2na
Member
Registered: 2003-02-18
Posts: 14

Re: Healthcare in America

I really don't know how all that stuff works in the Americas in my experience every doctor visit in my life has been free, oh you have to pay for the drugs but if you use your Medicare card you can get that money back, but why fuss over 40 dollars to get you healthy?

Wasn't America going to have a vote over the health care issue, always strange hearing how people DON'T want free health care.

Not trying to shit-stir hmm


I hope you like me and I fit in with your life.

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#6 2013-09-05 06:09:28

Maindrian
Second Place Gaymo
Registered: 2003-02-18
Posts: 3,066

Re: Healthcare in America

No, it's baffling. Completely and totally baffling. We take it for granted that we live in a country where we could well fall down the stairs and break every bone in our bodies, or come down with some horrid, life destroying disease and don't wind up penniless for it. Offer the same to a supposed first world country and you're a socialist. Whatever the fuck that means.

Shit's crazy. Bear in mind, America is a country that, under it's dumb, shallow facade is actually turning out a majorly intelligent populace of scientists and computer boffins at this moment in time.

I read that somewhere.

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#7 2013-09-07 14:44:32

[deleted]
Still MOD-elect
From: ur mom xD
Registered: 2013-09-07
Posts: 390
Website

Re: Healthcare in America

While I won't argue that our current healthcare system needs reform, I voted strongly against Obamacare.

At the end of the day, America was founded on capitalism. What's more capitalist than a for-profit health sector? What's more American than driving innovation and world-changing healthcare practices with billions in sweet, free-market cheddar?

Obamacare is poised to hurt the income of countless doctors, hospitals and medical research universities. It's going to be bad overall for the industry.

Where my issue lies is with the health insurance companies themselves.

Automobile insurance is a lot more closely regulated than health insurance is. What was once a state-handled regulation was overturned about fifteen years ago when Congress enacted a bill which sets out certain minimum standards that state insurance laws and regulations were required to meet. This did two things. 1 - it significantly raised the cost of automobile insurance and 2 - it opened the door for more governing bodies in the state to handle regulatory affairs of the business of insurance (google 'TDLR' for a good example).

Anyway, this led to things like 'equal opportunity' for insurance so, in the states, it's not very hard to get car insurance (though the 'uninsurable' are usually shied away with higher-than-average premiums) and, no matter how inexpensive your policy is, you can reasonably expect that whichever company you do business with will pay out a set minimum amount in the event of a liability.

NOW, in health insurance, it's totally different. There's regulation to the point that a certain policy must be insured for an amount exceeding your total policy benefits by some percentage set by the gov't, but there isn't a whole lot of regulation to make it 'equal'. In other words, it's REALLY HARD to get health insurance unless you're highly subsidized by a big corporation.

I'm not. I'm self-employed and I pay a ton of money for my health insurance.

The reason it's so expensive (and it's a business, so it's kind-of forgivable) is because there's absolutely no regulations on what the health insurance is expected to pay for a certain procedure. So doctors and insurance companies (most largely Medicare, oddly enough) set price structures based off 'codes'.

Let's say performing procedure X has an average out-of-pocket cost of $5 to make it profitable for the doctor. An insurance company might code that procedure in three different ways - one for $5, one for $25 (for people with health insurance) and one for $50 (for people with no health insurance and no means to pay).

Say that $50 gets coded out for a patient in an emergency. Then I come along. I've got health insurance. So the doctor, who claimed a loss on this $50, then negotiates with MY insurance company (as I'm left out of the loop in the price bit - simply because there's no regulation to allow me to choose, like with car insurance) for a price of $75. I'll pay a $50 co-pay to cover the difference as my insurance policy only approved the price at the $25 code. They then try to hide this by being as vague as possible when you ask about price.

It's business. I understand. It's not so infuriating that the people who are working to preserve my health are working for-profit - I WANT the best and most highly-skilled doctor working on me because he can make more money here than in Canada. I want that level of professionalism and skill that come with highly paid and highly motivated individuals.

But I think healthcare should be regulated like car insurance. Federal minimums, FOIA, transparency and 'equal opportunity'. But not socialized healthcare. That's just asking for trouble.

Even if my insurance premiums went up, it would be worth it to not have to fight over costs all the time.


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