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The real problem is the price of health care and drugs compared to anywhere else. Unfortunately Medicare and insurers have increased the spread of prices from real costs because they don't pay the bills as presented to individuals. The profit motive will keep prices reasonable only if there is true competition which is lacking in health care and drugs. Medicare is touted as an example of "single payer" ,but it has actually increased prices for everybody else and is still subsidized so I'm not convinced single payer is a valid solution. We do need more efficient ,better care with fewer mistakes and hospital infections etc. no matter how care is paid for.
In Response to Re: Paying Till It Hurts': Why American Health Care Is So Pricey:
It seems that it's just the "for profit" motive that costs Americans so much. My brother, who has worked in a hospital for 35 years, says that it's the fee for service rather than a flat rate fee. He works as an X-Ray tech, but is paid hourly and not by how many patients he brings into the ER as he works at night. After years of seeing this insurance based system failing, he's beginning to see that we need a single payer system as most people coming into the ER don't have any insurance or other means to pay.
He sees one of the main problems are the elderly who often can be charged almost a million $$$ for the last year of their lives. They go from the ER, to surgery, to Intensive Care and a long stay in a hospital or rehab facility. A lot of it is done to get as much money as possible from Medicare.
Most Americans really have no knowledge about medical procedures or the costs as their only concern is how to recover their health.Why should they be burdened with a list of options for treatment as though they're bringing in a car for repairs? They say that Americans aren't healthy as a nation, but look at how other nations partake of fatty foods, alcohol, drugs and tobacco. What about all the mass shootings in the US that result in huge costs for ER. surgery and rehab? No one ever mentions this as it costs taxpayers probably billions of $$$ a year.
We just need a health care system where people can buy into something like Medicare for all. For those who aren't employed, increase taxes to pay for Medicaid rather than trying to defund it.. A lot of Medicaid expenses go for people who are in nursing homes, the most disabled and frail among us.
Posted by intersan