October 8, 2012 by Zee
Let’s talk about AARP, let’s talk about Social security, lets talk about all the good things, and the bad HMO’s can be, lets talk about…
Healthcare Coverage and Insurance!
I’m sure you can imagine I’m quite popular at cocktail parties; just kidding I’m the one in the corner wrapping hordourves in a napkin so I can try to recreate the recipe at home with Trader Joe’s ingredients.
I know we all have some questions (aside from why my purse smells like prosciutto wrapped shrimp).
What’s this whole deal about Universal Healthcare Vs. Premium Healthcare?
Since I don’t think anyone under 55 read past the line about me stashing appetizers in my bag it’s safe to say the answers to these questions will affect you or your kids.
Do we like the idea of everyone receiving a standard minimum for care or do we want to take a voucher and decide our own option?
Then you have to take the question out of theory and into practice;
Doctors and medical facilities no matter how they are reimbursed are held to certain standards and levels in care quality. “obamacare as it has been dubbed” mandates that EVERYONE have access to at least a minimum standard of care is this tantamount to socialism as some rightwingers might assert?
Private facilities charge more and may have access to more cutting edge equipment, or experimental treatment but a minimum standard for best practice has already been set. Additional costs tend to be administrative and account for higher salaried employees and fancier facilities. The voucher system would allow individuals to take money out of the public system and place in it private facilities to receive the benefit of experimental and alternative treatments or more modernized facilities. Nice in theory but it only benefits those who already have other options.
Because these private facilities charge more, the voucher becomes more like a discount coupon for designer healthcare, rather than a viable alternative for the everyday American.
The fact of the matter is healthcare costs are inflated drastically. As a healthy 20-something my entanglement with the healthcare system has been limited, but even this small exposure with being uninsured really hit home.
I sprained my ankle getting onto a subway quite a few years back and had to go to the hospital for x-rays. It sucked and made college difficult by crutching around campus; and work impossible because I was a newly hired waitress at a 24 hour diner.
Not only was I fired after less than a week, but then the hospital bill came! The dr ‘visit’ was like $300, the er fee was like $1000, the x-rays were something like $500, the crutches and pads were maybe $700. I could be totally wrong, but I do remember seeing an aspirin on the bill for $5!!!!One aspirin was FIVE dollars. I can get like 100 at the dollar store! The bill was over $4000. I lie to you not.
Even after the old victimizing standbys of oh medical malpractice is up so the drs pay more insurance costs, or this is a teaching facility and we subsidize the university, and many people default so we must offset costs… that’s some bull.
Pharmaceuticals can go suck an egg too. I know a guy who makes more spraying rooms down with disenfectant for a big name drug company than i make working fulltime with a 4 year degree! Good for my friend, but what is really valued here? I know research and innovation labs require lots of permits, interns, and professors with specialized degrees, but after you make a million of the same kind of pill can’t you lower the cost by sheer economies of scale? Don’t hospitals get a wholesale price for ibuprofen and stuff? Not at five bucks a pill, I don’t see it. So who is absorbing that profit?