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Old 12-09-2016, 03:38 PM   #61
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I have not looked for any studies on this, but there has been a lot in the news about death rates from opiod addiction growing in the SE and mid Atlantic states. Primarily among young adults in those regions. if accurate, that would pull the avg age down more so than with growing addiction rates among the middle aged, as an early poster mentioned. Anecdotally, I have a good friend who recently lost a 28 yr old granddaughter to heroin overdose.
Now that opiod based pain pills are getting harder to get, the cartels have replaced the pill machine with heroin. It's a shame what is going on and how ineffective the drug agencies are in stopping it. We have also lost a dear family member to this tragic situation.
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Old 12-10-2016, 09:12 AM   #62
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How about more obesity, diabetes, and sugar consumption?


Ha
No question it is a factor but not suddenly in the last year?
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Old 12-10-2016, 10:05 AM   #63
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Now that opiod based pain pills are getting harder to get, the cartels have replaced the pill machine with heroin. It's a shame what is going on and how ineffective the drug agencies are in stopping it. We have also lost a dear family member to this tragic situation.
We could follow the lead of Britain, Switzerland, Germany and Denmark and provide opiates to addicts in a safe environment until their get their addiction under control. That could reduce fatal overdoses and the need to commit crime to buy drugs.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Heroin-assisted_treatment
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Old 12-10-2016, 10:32 AM   #64
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Now that opiod based pain pills are getting harder to get, the cartels have replaced the pill machine with heroin. It's a shame what is going on and how ineffective the drug agencies are in stopping it. We have also lost a dear family member to this tragic situation.
So sorry for your loss.

So sad. Too many families have lost loved ones to this terrible epidemic. I have a nephew who's been in and out of prison, halfway houses, treatment centers, for most of his life. We pray for the best knowing that he needs a miracle to occur.
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Old 12-10-2016, 01:27 PM   #65
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Will this trend, if it continues, lead to some downward funding pressure on DB plans based on revised actuarial estimates?
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Old 12-10-2016, 03:57 PM   #66
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Now that opiod based pain pills are getting harder to get, the cartels have replaced the pill machine with heroin.
And the adulteration of illicit heroin with fentanyl (30-50 times more potent than heroin) and carfentanil (100 times more deadly than fentanyl, according to the DEA) has significantly increased the death toll. Dealers put it in because it is cheaper than heroin and gets users hooked even faster. Users have no idea how much of these other things have been added to the heroin along the way (which is also typically of unknown purity). The stuff they are injecting can be instantly deadly, even to long-tern heroin addicts with high opiate tolerance.

I'm very sorry to hear of your loss.
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Old 12-11-2016, 08:35 AM   #67
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Will this trend, if it continues, lead to some downward funding pressure on DB plans based on revised actuarial estimates?
The actuarial tables are for a relevant population. So unless you were working with a drug-using workforce, there will be no change. In my case (retired on DB pension at 49), they had no insight into the fact that retiring early increased life expectancy! Their loss was my gain.
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Old 12-11-2016, 09:31 AM   #68
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The health care cost within USA become ridiculously high vs other developed countries with top level health care. I think it is mostly because of health care insurance companies. My sister in law, who unfortunately recently was diagnosed with a breast cancer, worked for decades in a medical insurance billing department. She told me that simple MRI charge is -$2,500, stay over night in a hospital -2,500, X-Ray -$850 etc. Most cost increases happened during past decade and if the cost continue to grow it will surely become not affordable at some point for millions people with self insurance and medicare (what covers only up to 80% of the cost and co-insurance, co-pays are needed).
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Old 12-11-2016, 03:34 PM   #69
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The health care cost within USA become ridiculously high vs other developed countries with top level health care. I think it is mostly because of health care insurance companies...
Insurance companies are required to pay out 85% of the collected premium for health care expenses. That means they have 15% max for profits and for operating costs.

The Medicaid program run by the government has an operating cost of 10%. If we take that as the norm, then insurance companies have a 5% profit margin.

Compare the above with Apple's net profit margin of 19% in the most recent quarter.

The above suggests that cost controlling should be looked at the health care providers. They are the ones where 85% of the cost goes.
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Old 12-11-2016, 04:49 PM   #70
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Insurance companies are required to pay out 85% of the collected premium for health care expenses. That means they have 15% max for profits and for operating costs.

The Medicaid program run by the government has an operating cost of 10%. If we take that as the norm, then insurance companies have a 5% profit margin.

Compare the above with Apple's net profit margin of 19% in the most recent quarter.

The above suggests that cost controlling should be looked at the health care providers. They are the ones where 85% of the cost goes.
Then how to explain a $2,611 average MRI cost in USA? Google it. A lowest reported cost of new MRI machine is $150K and it goes as high as $1.2 millions. If you take the number of scans the equipment makes during it's life span and divide on the equipment cost with installation, add energy, facility, MRI tech and doctor cost , add 15% for profit, do you truly believe that the cost is going to be $2,611? Some hospitals charge as much as $13,000 per MRI. I think that other medical procedures are charged in similar way.
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Old 12-11-2016, 04:54 PM   #71
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Again, the excessive money goes into the hand of the guys who own and run the MRI machine.

These are not the same guys who collect your insurance premium.
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Old 12-11-2016, 04:58 PM   #72
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add 15% for profit,
There's the problem right there. Your math is off. Profits are whatever can be had. See pharmaceuticals. 99 cent pill can go for 50 bucks 100 bucks 100 thousand bucks... whatever
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Old 12-11-2016, 05:05 PM   #73
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Then how to explain a $2,611 average MRI cost in USA? Google it. A lowest reported cost of new MRI machine is $150K and it goes as high as $1.2 millions. If you take the number of scans the equipment makes during it's life span and divide on the equipment cost with installation, add energy, facility, MRI tech and doctor cost , add 15% for profit, do you truly believe that the cost is going to be $2,611? Some hospitals charge as much as $13,000 per MRI. I think that other medical procedures are charged in similar way.
This is not the insurance company. This is the hospital. The medical costs going up in the US have been hospitals, drug companies, and other medical providers such as doctors. The insurance company just passes those costs on to the individual.
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Old 12-11-2016, 06:09 PM   #74
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What I find surprising is the number of people we know who are diabetic or pre diabetic. Not all caused by diet of course. But many are. Yet many do not seem predisposed to change.

The shame of it today is the high number of obese children. There is little hope for them. Parents either don't know any better or are shirking their responsibility.
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Old 12-11-2016, 06:40 PM   #75
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There's the problem right there. Your math is off. Profits are whatever can be had. See pharmaceuticals. 99 cent pill can go for 50 bucks 100 bucks 100 thousand bucks... whatever
I added the suggested allowable charge( see the 15℅ quote). However I strongly disagree on medication development cost. My wife works for decades in pharmaceutical companies in accounting. She knows that to develop a break through medication cost a lot.
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Old 12-11-2016, 07:39 PM   #76
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I added the suggested allowable charge( see the 15℅ quote). However I strongly disagree on medication development cost. My wife works for decades in pharmaceutical companies in accounting. She knows that to develop a break through medication cost a lot.
Ask your wife how much they spend on marketing. Maybe she'll tell us that 9 of 10 pharmaceutical companies spend more on advertising than on R&D. Those ads they run incessantly on TV? That's the tip of the iceberg--for every $1 they spend on those ads directed at consumers, they spend $8 marketing to doctors. That's a lot of free trips, free meals, and other stuff. Paid for by all of us, because the cash spigot just stays turned on full blast.



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Old 12-11-2016, 07:52 PM   #77
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How do the pharmas get so much money to spend on advertisements? From the high prices of their drugs, of course. And they have to charge high prices, because of the expenses of advertisement. Chicken and the egg...

I have not watched TV for a while, but still remember seeing all kinds of ads asking potential customers to pester their doctors for the featured drugs. Now, you would think that if the drugs are so good, they would not need to advertise so heavily. The truth is that many of these drugs are not that good, compared to older drugs that are inexpensive. For example, is Vioxx really better than Advil, or just different and having more side effects?

I think the consumers are at blame here too. We have become a pill-popping population, and expect to have a magical pill for any of our ailments to melt them away. And costs be damned.
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Old 12-11-2016, 07:58 PM   #78
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Anyway, we are getting away from the OP's topic: decline of life expectancy.

If we take away the illicit drug related fatalities, do people live longer? Every so often, a thread would start with the topic of longevity, and posters would cite some optimistic studies claiming that most of us will live to be centenarians. I have my doubt.
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Old 12-12-2016, 11:56 AM   #79
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Not sure what other pharmaceutical companies spend on advertisement vs R&D but a company DW works for r&d is far outwait advertisements. I think the cost of health care is related to life expectancy because despite ACA there are still too many people live without med insurance or cannot afford co pays while having basic plans unexpectedly need to cover huge payments thrown at them.
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Old 12-12-2016, 12:24 PM   #80
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Are we sure that the noted difference isn't the as weather is to climate. When pundits try to explain every movement of the stock market we tend to chuckle, is this different. There may be many reasons why a dip could occur but I'd like to see a few more years of data before I would be convinced that there was a real trend (even if there could be reasons for that too).
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