An Excellent Comment

Filed under: by: Hey Doc Wait

To whomever "TB" is (I hope he/she doesn't have tuberculosis!), I am going to post your comment here, because I thought it was great:

If someone thinks that our healthcare system isn't... If someone thinks that our healthcare system isn't flawed, than they are either selfish, ignorant, or blind. I have heard enough from O about that. For the last year whenever he talks about healthcare he talks about how it needs his "change". I'd like a lot more open discussion about what he is trying to push through and a lot less about what is wrong. How are his "changes" going to fix the problems we have today?If he is creating a government plan that doesn't reject based on pre-existing conditions, a few more people who can't get private insurance (like myself) who don't have a job that provides insurance (unlike myself) than some more people will be covered.But what about the 20-something who thinks they don't need it. What about the unemployed who can't afford it. Who pays for them when they get in a wreck or cut off their fingers trying to unclog the lawnmower? I hear a lot of talk about the number of millions of uninsured, but how many are uninsured by choice?Healthcare is expensive for a lot of reasons. There is medicolegal risk, there is defensive medicine to prevent that risk, there is abuse of self-referral, there are large back-end operating costs, and there is a large cohort of non-payers. If any hospital approached your suggestion of collect 50% of what they bill then they would be collecting more than double what most hospitals do.How about we fix the abuse of litigation (which is going to be hard considering most senators and congressman are lawyers). How about we fix back end costs of pharmaceuticals, medical grade equipment, and billing departments. How about we fix the waste of defensive medicine. How about we fix medicare/medicaid abuse in self-referral of unnecessary procedures.Once those are done and the cost of providing healthcare is reduced, it might be an easier feat to then fix the problem of who actually pays for whose care.

Very well said, ma'am/sir. It's entirely true that the costs in our system are driven up by a wide variety of different things--the number and variety of costs is astonishing. Truly doing "health care reform" is going to be so incredibly complicated that I'm not sure it can happen all at once. It's also entirely true that some people are uninsured by choice--they're banking on being young and healthy (usually) but when something unexpected DOES happen the cost of their care is often covered by everyone else, not them.

And to TB, I can sympathize with you; I am also a person who has private health insurance through an employer, but I would not qualify for health insurance (or only at very high rates) due to a couple of pre-existing conditions that don't bother me on a daily basis but that have disqualified me from disability insurance.

So forgive me for posting your comment like this, but I liked it, and I did not want to take credit for it. Thanks!


On August 17, 2009 at 11:15 PM , TB said...

Just your friendly, neighborhood, republican anesthesiologist doing his part by soapboxing on other peoples' blogs.