Solving the problems with the US Health Care System
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25-05-2012, 10:01 AM
Solving the problems with the US Health Care System
Thought I'd start a thread on this subject. This is a very difficult problem to address, as its woes are like a multi headed hydra.

Here, you hospitals and billing departments charging horrendous amounts of money for even basic services, doctors who do a lot of unnecessary tests for fear of being sued, hospitals and private practices which have to take out large malpractice insurance policies. Then there's the lab companies which charge a small fortune for testing.

And that's just the side of the medical practitioners! With the insurance agencies you have insurance companies who won't issue or pull policies for patients who have pre-existing conditions, charge a small fortune for premiums while skimping on coverage and hoardes of loopholes in their policies which allow them to refuse payment on medical procedure. Now the lawyers. Add into the mix a litigious culture which has an irrational demand to have a zero risk life and sues healthcare providers with frivolous lawsuits, not to mention the lawyers which clog the courts with these kinds of cases and cost the healthcare system millions every year.

But it gets worse. Next are the drug companies. Selling chemicals and preying on America's false belief that every one of their woes can be medicated, the push high priced pharmaceuticals for everything from heartburn to thicker eyelashes. All with horrible sounding side effects; You watch these stupid TV ads with an elderly couple slowly riding bicycles down a sunlit country lane while an announcer reads off side effects like bloody mucous coming out of your asshole.

And none of this goes off without the consumer. Americans are some of the most unhealthy people on the planet. Waddling, obese, stuffing their faces with junk food, drinking, smoking, using drugs and then wonder why they have a heart attack or get diabetes at age 40. Ignorant, uneducated consumers who are not inquiring on the costs of medical procedures and whether they are really needed cost millions every year. People go to the ER for minor medical problems and pay $2,200 when they could have only paid $250 at a 24-hour clinic. Also, people are living much longer and are virtually dependent on expensive health care procedures at the end of their lives, which is bankrupting the nation, considering what we're paying annually for MediCare. And top this off with the general public demanding they get all of these services without having to pay one more cent in tax for them.

But perhaps the most despicable group here throwing a monkeywrench in the US healthcare system are the congressional lobbyists who tell you that ANY change in the existing system will kill you. I mean it. These people are the lowest forms of life, scaring old ladies and the sick like that.

So yeah, that's my rant on this. The solutions to all these problems together are not going to be simple or easy. I have been skeptical about having a full scale healthcare system administered by the government, not because I think the government can't or shouldn't, but because I fear that, if we instate said system without addressing all the problems mentioned above, we'll bankrupt the country doing so. All of these problems must be addressed in order to solve the overall medical problem.

Feel free to contribute your thoughts and solutions for this matter.

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27-05-2012, 01:58 AM
RE: Solving the problems with the US Health Care System
The American FDA is corrupt as hell too. The FDA regulations are part of the reason why US medication costs are artificially inflated. They are the reason why it's often cheaper to buy your drugs from overseas pharmacies. It's amusing in a sick and twisted knife in your gut way.
FDA is also becoming more and more of a boat anchor to progress.

The American heath insurance system is a joke too. If it keeps going the way it is now Americans will be flying overseas in droves to get medical treatment and it will work out much cheaper with an equivalent or better standard of care (though it depends on where you go).

Probably be best for America if it was universal and everyone agreed to chip in rather than having a little of everything and completely screwing it up. Lets face it... Everyone needs varying amounts of medical treatment throughout their lives and it mostly comes down to dumb luck. American's wont go for this cos they are scared it will turn them into communists. Rolleyes
Universal healthcare will work out cheaper than what people are currently paying for unreliable private health insurance.

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27-05-2012, 02:36 AM
RE: Solving the problems with the US Health Care System
(27-05-2012 01:58 AM)DeepThought Wrote:  The American FDA is corrupt as hell too. The FDA regulations are part of the reason why US medication costs are artificially inflated. They are the reason why it's often cheaper to buy your drugs from overseas pharmacies. It's amusing in a sick and twisted knife in your gut way.
FDA is also becoming more and more of a boat anchor to progress.

The American heath insurance system is a joke too. If it keeps going the way it is now Americans will be flying overseas in droves to get medical treatment and it will work out much cheaper with an equivalent or better standard of care (though it depends on where you go).

Probably be best for America if it was universal and everyone agreed to chip in rather than having a little of everything and completely screwing it up. Lets face it... Everyone needs varying amounts of medical treatment throughout their lives and it mostly comes down to dumb luck. American's wont go for this cos they are scared it will turn them into communists. Rolleyes
Universal healthcare will work out cheaper than what people are currently paying for unreliable private health insurance.
Actually the Americans who don't want free health care provided by the masses and for the masses are probably full blown retards or corrupt assholes, or people hired to say stupid shit by corrupt assholes. Like Jeremy Irons in his video on why murderers and rapists should live. I have never known a man who sold his soul for cash until then.
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27-05-2012, 03:17 PM
RE: Solving the problems with the US Health Care System
I too wish for universal coverage. But we are going to have to make some difficult choices about what will and will not be covered. When your resources are limited (and they always are), you can only increase efficiencies so much - there is no way to fund everything for everybody.

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27-05-2012, 05:55 PM (This post was last modified: 27-05-2012 11:09 PM by Bucky Ball.)
RE: Solving the problems with the US Health Care System
(27-05-2012 03:17 PM)Debzilla Wrote:  I too wish for universal coverage. But we are going to have to make some difficult choices about what will and will not be covered. When your resources are limited (and they always are), you can only increase efficiencies so much - there is no way to fund everything for everybody.


As the technologies improve, but cost hundreds of thousands, and some get repeat transplants, while some kids can't get shots, and MOST of Medicare's funds are spent in the LAST few weeks of life, (some on people who supposedly believe they are "about to go to heaven", but cling to life as if they didn't), what Deb said IS what is coming. Should we pay for repeat Angioplasty for the smoker who goes home and is too lazy to take their Plavix ? We can't afford to do everything for everyone. It ain't gonna be pretty.

A couple years ago, I was waiting for my dad to finish rounds, and there was a famous heart surgeon from Paris, who was teaching dad how to do a certain valve repair without using an artificial device with us , up in the large 16 bed circular ICU. He looked around, and somewhat surprised, said to me, "you know, this would not be happening in Europe". I looked at him, and said, "this ?" He said "this", (and pointed around). "Every one of your patients in here is over 82", (I think they were all over 85). Then he said, "we let people die, when it's time to die".

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27-05-2012, 07:10 PM
RE: Solving the problems with the US Health Care System
Solution is to semi-nationalize the insurance companies - treat them just as you do public utilities. Companies can remain private, but rate hikes must be approved by the legislature. As a public utility, all have access to coverage.

Never happen, but it is a solution...

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28-05-2012, 07:33 AM
RE: Solving the problems with the US Health Care System
There was a piece on NPR this morning on this subject.

http://www.npr.org/player/v2/mediaPlayer...05-28-2012

Also, did you know if you have an ICD, you can't see your data !! Amazing.

http://www.npr.org/blogs/health/2012/05/...evice-data

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18-06-2012, 03:17 AM
RE: Solving the problems with the US Health Care System
(25-05-2012 10:01 AM)Carlo_The_Bugsmasher_Driver Wrote:  Here, you hospitals and billing departments charging horrendous amounts of money for even basic services, doctors who do a lot of unnecessary tests for fear of being sued, hospitals and private practices which have to take out large malpractice insurance policies. Then there's the lab companies which charge a small fortune for testing.

Doctors are overpaid, the money goes to 20 specialists, 5 secretaries, and 2 people who have to deal with insurance (made up numbers to make a point). Single-payer/socialized health care gets rid the people dealing with insurance.
Most of the reason why malpractice costs so much is because it has to cover future medical costs. Because medical costs are expensive, malpractice is expensive. Because malpractice is expensive, malpractice insurance is expensive. Because of that, medical costs have to increase to cover it. The cycle continues. Single-payer or socialized health care gets rid of this problem.

And that's just the side of the medical practitioners! With the insurance agencies you have insurance companies who won't issue or pull policies for patients who have pre-existing conditions, charge a small fortune for premiums while skimping on coverage and hoardes of loopholes in their policies which allow them to refuse payment on medical procedure. Now the lawyers. Add into the mix a litigious culture which has an irrational demand to have a zero risk life and sues healthcare providers with frivolous lawsuits, not to mention the lawyers which clog the courts with these kinds of cases and cost the healthcare system millions every year.

Single-payer/socialized can get rid of the greed of insurance companies. I have no clue what to do to fix the court system- it needs to be accessible to everyone who needs it but lawyers are so expensive and it favors the rich often. But the problem of frivolous lawsuits is greatly exaggerated by people like McDonald's who do not want to be able to be suited in an attempt to get "tort reform". Supposedly a documentary called "Hot Chocolate" talks about this, but I haven't seen it.

But it gets worse. Next are the drug companies. Selling chemicals and preying on America's false belief that every one of their woes can be medicated, the push high priced pharmaceuticals for everything from heartburn to thicker eyelashes. All with horrible sounding side effects; You watch these stupid TV ads with an elderly couple slowly riding bicycles down a sunlit country lane while an announcer reads off side effects like bloody mucous coming out of your asshole.

A large portion of the cost of medicine is tied up in direct-to-consumer advertisement costs- something not seen in Europe and Canada. Millions of American's buy drugs from Canada every year I believe.

And none of this goes off without the consumer. Americans are some of the most unhealthy people on the planet. Waddling, obese, stuffing their faces with junk food, drinking, smoking, using drugs and then wonder why they have a heart attack or get diabetes at age 40. Ignorant, uneducated consumers who are not inquiring on the costs of medical procedures and whether they are really needed cost millions every year. People go to the ER for minor medical problems and pay $2,200 when they could have only paid $250 at a 24-hour clinic. Also, people are living much longer and are virtually dependent on expensive health care procedures at the end of their lives, which is bankrupting the nation, considering what we're paying annually for MediCare. And top this off with the general public demanding they get all of these services without having to pay one more cent in tax for them.
Americans are some of the biggest idiots regarding health. Although one reason people go to the ER is because they can't afford care, so they just wait till they can go to the ER. If everyone could get basic care for like $10s, then perhaps we could reduce this problem. Some libertarians would like to not cover minor problem with private or public insurance to try to get these costs lower. But that just means people wait till problems get much worse if they can't afford what they need, costing even more money in the end. Another problem is many think eating health is expensive and almost all our food subsidize go to grains (corn, soy, and wheat) and meat. Although reducing our soda intake would be the single best thing we could do. Curious how NYC is going to do with their 16oz+ soda ban.
And doctors don't even really have to learn much about nutrition (they have to have like 1 or 2 semesters I believe) and tell their patients to eat better. Not sure if there is any way to make patients eat better- at the very least they could make them take supplements. Also, people aren't living much longer. Most of the increase in life expectancy is due to more people living past infancy. The increase on the other in in the last 50 years is probably closer to 5-6 years. The main problem is the baby boomer generation. We need to legalize doctor assisted suicide though- some of that cost is against the will of the patients. Since I support single payer or socialized health care, I think the age should cover all- the costs before exceeding the "healthy life expectancy" is small compared to post health life expectancy. So as people live old, the time they have the most expensive care is about the same length. Also, if we get to LEV (youtube Aubrey De Grey) if we didn't have universal health care, most of the rich would live for near-forever while many of the poor die off. Too much inequality. Social security, on the otherhand, should be increased over time. And if we reach LEV it should be abolished.

But perhaps the most despicable group here throwing a monkeywrench in the US healthcare system are the congressional lobbyists who tell you that ANY change in the existing system will kill you. I mean it. These people are the lowest forms of life, scaring old ladies and the sick like that.
The only changes are the ones like the one passed under Bush where the gov could not haggle with the prices like the VAs do.
So yeah, that's my rant on this. The solutions to all these problems together are not going to be simple or easy. I have been skeptical about having a full scale healthcare system administered by the government, not because I think the government can't or shouldn't, but because I fear that, if we instate said system without addressing all the problems mentioned above, we'll bankrupt the country doing so. All of these problems must be addressed in order to solve the overall medical problem.
30% of medicare goes to the overhead for private insurance, 2% goes to the government overhead and then other costs go down such as malpractice insurance and costs of dealing with all the insurance paperwork- these are part of the reason why the US pays ~x2 per capita than any other developed nation without getting any better care. Add in increase productivity induced by a healthier poor class, and there seems to be little problem.
See my reply in the quote box. Also, here is an interesting talk on it (I think it is the right one): http://www.ted.com/talks/atul_gawande_ho...icine.html
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