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Old 02-02-2011, 09:07 PM   #61
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Hi ERD50 - The last time I debated with you on this topic, the thread was closed as deemed "too political". This time I will stay away from this thread.

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But I also think it is over-reaching to say that 50 million (or whatever number) are uninsured through no fault of their own.
Well, there have been many threads and many posts on the subject, so I don't really recall which you are referring to. But I'm having trouble seeing how you would have problems with my comment that you quoted, as President Obama said almost exactly the same things as I:

How many uninsured? Number widely debated - Health - Health care - msnbc.com
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Some people don't want health insurance or just don't bother to get it, but most people who don't have it can't afford it, Obama said.

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If Melissa were penniless, she would have received care and been alright. ...

My mother told me the following story ... Another patient in the same ward was a homeless woman .... the medical care she received was the same as any other patients, such as my late father who was on Medicare.
Wait a minute. The article said "Melissa died because she couldn't afford to see a doctor." But you are saying that once you are poor, you qualify for Medicaid, and then you do get to see the Doctor. So, it's not really the case that she couldn't get care, she chose not to, since the expenses could drive her into poverty. Now, I'd much rather see that everyone has insurance, so we spread the risk, and no one is faced with that - but that is not the situation that the article seems to present.

Again, it is still very sad and it's bad, we need reforms. I just don't like the disingenuous implications that author makes.

-ERD50
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Old 02-02-2011, 09:18 PM   #62
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I am not one who wants "free" healthcare. Perhaps it is because I have saved enough money and can afford it. Or at least I think I can.

The darn problem is whatever else you buy, be it goods or services, I know the cost of it. Health care? No way. They can charge you whatever they like. You cannot do comparison shopping, or even know the costs in advance to prepare. Can you get a quote? Nope. Just make the darn thing fair. I know that there may be complications in many cases, but that is also true with home or car repairs, and people do negotiate for things that are unforeseen.

A friend of mine had a knee replacement. The main surgeon was on the "covered network", while his assistant surgeon was not. The bill he received later showed that the assistant billed 2 or 3 times higher charges than the main surgeon. My friend went ballistic. Me too, even though I was not the patient. My friend's insurance won't pay the higher charge, and my friend wouldn't either. All parties settled out somehow, I forgot.

What a bunch of crap! There's no free market at work here either. I don't want the gummint to get involved either, but with health care providers and insurance companies like we have now, what to do?
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Old 02-02-2011, 09:19 PM   #63
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It appears that this person chose to do what she loved, and that didn't come with coverage. Some of us chose to do things we really didn't 'love', in order to get/maintain that coverage.
-ERD50
I detect quite a bit of derision in this comment. Why shouldn't she do what she loved while at the same time having healthcare? Why should working for a large corporation with cushy coverage be more valuable than her chosen vocation? This is essentially why universal healthcare is a must in every society so you don't have to choose a profession that you hate just for medical coverage. I would hate to live in a society where everyone chose the "right" and most "lucrative" career just to get health coverage. I like having artists, philosophers, accountants, scientists and yes even thinkers in society. God forbid if we all worked for big corporations and governments just to have great benefits.
My comment wasn't directed at the way things should be, but the way they are/were (remember, I say in just about every post that I'm in favor of reform?).

And as youbet pointed out, some of us made some hard choices to ensure we had coverage for ourselves and our family. So all I'm saying is if someone chooses a different path, and it doesn't provide coverage, then they shouldn't be surprised when they aren't covered. But they got to live the life they wanted. It's a trade off with the system we lived under. That seems pretty basic, it's not judgmental, it just is.


I'd like to see some form of universal coverage, and for everyone to have some 'skin in the game'. That's the only way you can avoid people avoiding paying for coverage, then suddenly wanting it at 'affordable' prices when they get sick. And you need 'skin in the game' to control costs.

And it has to be Constitutional.

-ERD50
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Old 02-02-2011, 09:24 PM   #64
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So, it's not really the case that she couldn't get care, she chose not to, since the expenses could drive her into poverty.
Yes, I believe that once you pay all that you have for health care and become penniless, the public assistance will then step in.

I think that is also true for elderly care like nursing home costs. Just become penniless and you would be taken care of.
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Old 02-03-2011, 05:34 AM   #65
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I just remember now that the homeless woman I described suffered from a stroke and not a heart attack.

About Melissa's death, it is not at all uncommon for heart attack victims to not recognize it and to seek help immediately. My close friend's mother-in-law died from it, even though she had Medicare coverage. As she lived with them, my friend said that she just stayed inside her room for a couple of days, and blamed it on some other illness. By the time they took her to the ER for a diagnosis, it was already too late. The doctors said that her heart was too damaged to have any chance of surgery. In layman's terms, it was explained that some of the heart tissues already died, and it would not even hold any suture.

So, my friend's mother-in-law was sent home to die. She lasted a month in agony. She was in her 70s.
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Old 02-03-2011, 05:59 AM   #66
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I think that is also true for elderly care like nursing home costs. Just become penniless and you would be taken care of.
Yes, this is basically the way it works. Once a person spends down his/her assets to below a certain level (which differs from state to state), Medicaid will pick up the cost of the nursing home (or the difference between that cost and his/her SS and/or pension). No one (at least in theory) is left without care.
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Old 02-03-2011, 06:54 AM   #67
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Well. perhaps it has something to do with the PPO nature of our insurance policies, but both DW and I have benefited (with different insurance companies) within our network from the negotiated rate even though we hadn't satisfied the deductible. Of course, only the negotiated rate was applied to our deductible (not the billed rate). However, it even works out better than that because our hospital gives us a 25% "prompt pay" discount for paying our copay (after the hospital has filed the claim with the insurance company) within 15 days. So in actuality, we still end up with more $ credited to our deductible than we actually paid.

This helps to clarify your statements so I appreciate the response. And thanks to ERD50 for his response as well. But what you both describe as your advantaged negoiated rates has not been my experience at all having worked for non-profits for most of my career. And as I have been researching future options with my COBRA ending soon, it is clear that finding afforable coverage with this negoiated rate-advantage is not probable. So...congrats to those who have this coverage. That's great.
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Old 02-03-2011, 08:25 AM   #68
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[And it has to be Constitutional.

-ERD50[/QUOTE]

Amen to that. Anyone see the interview done with Obamas aunt who is an illegal immigrant (or was) living for free with free health care in our country? Her statements were basically that "to live in America one is lucky" and when asked how she felt about getting things for free, she said "lucky and a gift from God". It is that freeloader attitude that gets me riled up. They come and "sit" in our country and say to us "provide for me please" ( not all but a huge percentage).

For any kind of universal health care to work, it has to be fairly administered and the cost fairly borne across the spectrum. Too many special interests and freeloaders right now as well as holes in it that make some of us pay bigger bucks - like those that have to buy individual personal policies since we don't have access to group.

The government can not administer anything. Their lack of being able to do so is why there was and is fraud in every system they have their hands in.
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Old 02-03-2011, 08:31 AM   #69
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Here is the link for Obamas Aunt on Utube"


If the link doesn't work you can search "utube video Obamas Aunt" and find it.
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Old 02-03-2011, 08:39 AM   #70
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Unless you have some special arrangement (which if you do that's great....but very uncommon) American's pay into the healthcare insurance system, but still pay 100% charged rates prior to meeting any deductable, which may be several thousand dollars a year.
Are you sure about it?
I live in Georgia and had Cigna, Aetna and Kaiser insurance and for all these providers I only paid deductible on negotiated rates.
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Old 02-03-2011, 08:43 AM   #71
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This has now gone way off the rails....

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