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    Re: Health Care

    Postby SandRider » 17 Oct 2009 13:53

    I understand about shuffling costs to cover indigent care & so forth,
    but the whole thing stills smells fishy. it is too damn complicated, and I
    think the insurance companies like it that way. of course, everything
    is too complicated these days - that's what happens when you export
    all your manufacturing and have a bunch of soft kids with computer
    skills; they sit around and come up with more paperwork, because that's
    the only kind of work they understand. Do I really need to log on to the
    internet and register a warranty for a ball-point pen ?

    anyway, when I signed on to the Democrats' Healthcare train, these
    billing issues and obscene insurance corporations' profits were the
    focus. Somewhere along the way all that got lost in the weeds beside the tracks.

    but without this "reform" bill or whatever it ends up the being, the Administration
    has already done one huge thing that has had a big impact on some of my people -
    the premium reductions for COBRA if you've been laid-off. Some of the kids that got
    laid off in the spring had about 3 months of coverage built up. When that ran out, to
    keep the same coverage under COBRA was going to cost them $600 a month. Most
    of these kids have found much lower paying temp jobs while waiting on the next project,
    jobs with no benefits, of course, so this was a big issue. The premium reduction was 65%,
    which makes the coverage affordable. While I agree with the decision that helped keep
    them covered, I think I'm not happy about the Federal Government kicking in the extra cost.
    Maybe if the premiums weren't so outrageous to begin with ...

    And the Viagra allowance is only for them limp-dicked auto workers.

    Linemen, iron workers, and some of the pipe-fitters actually have a
    mandatory salt-peter program ....
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    Re: Health Care

    Postby Omphalos » 17 Oct 2009 14:14

    I could care less about insurance companies. I personally think that the whole reason that the conservatives are fighting the public option is because the insurance companies that put millions into their pocket are afraid of the slippery slope; that is that more and more people will go over to a public company that they will be unable to compete with. Let 'em burn, I say. The bigger a public company becomes, it will be able to hire all those displaced insurance company workers, and give a cheaper benefit.
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    Re: Health Care

    Postby A Thing of Eternity » 17 Oct 2009 16:14

    Freakzilla wrote:
    A Thing of Eternity wrote:
    Freakzilla wrote:My kids have broken several bones, it was a $30 office visit, sometimes we had to pay $50 for an extra x-ray.


    That sounds reasonable, you already pay into a really good (and expensive) insurance plan though right? That's on top of what they cover?


    My health insurance is $143.40 biweekly, Dental is $11.16. That's actually not bad compared to some company health plans I've had. Honeywells is cheaper because they're global and have so many employees. I also have accidental death or dismemberment insurance for $0.52 and long term dissability for $7.18.

    Everytime one of my family goes to the doctor we have to pay a $30 "copay". Specialists are a little more, like $50 and an emergency room visit is $100. Generic prescriptions are $10. For some things I may have to pay lab or x-ray fees of $50.

    For major services, like surgery I have a yearly deductable, it's either $500 or 1000.

    We also have the option of putting money into a healthcare fund. I think single people like to use that.

    Like I said, I don't think it's expensive.


    That's actually not too bad all things considered. I'd hate to have to pay just for going in to see the doctor, or the emergency room though, that's too bad. Sounds like you have one of the better and more affordable plans available in the US. Like you said, that's the benifit of working for a massive company.
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    Re: Health Care

    Postby Freakzilla » 17 Oct 2009 16:17

    Omphalos wrote:I could care less about insurance companies. I personally think that the whole reason that the conservatives are fighting the public option is because the insurance companies that put millions into their pocket are afraid of the slippery slope; that is that more and more people will go over to a public company that they will be unable to compete with. Let 'em burn, I say. The bigger a public company becomes, it will be able to hire all those displaced insurance company workers, and give a cheaper benefit.



    Then one day, that will be the only insurance company and they will start raising prices... and there are no options.
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    Re: Health Care

    Postby Freakzilla » 17 Oct 2009 16:19

    A Thing of Eternity wrote:Like you said, that's the benifit of working for a massive company.


    Becoming a faceless number in the global corporation is the best thing that ever happened to me.
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    Re: Health Care

    Postby Hunchback Jack » 17 Oct 2009 16:19

    I agree about insurance companies, Omph. If the goal is affordable health care for everyone, insurance companies work against that goal. All they do is add to the cost of health care for the person needing it. Insurance premiums are worse than a tax - instead of the money going into the health system, a large portion of it goes into the insurance company's pocket.

    I don't have a problem with insurance companies making money; I'll pay the extra premium, so long as I'm getting better coverage for the price I'm paying. But if private health insurance company profits are getting in the way of affordable *basic* heath care coverage, then I'd prefer basic coverage were handled by a non-profit organisation. Like the federal government.

    HBJ

    [Edited to clarify who I was responding to.]
    Last edited by Hunchback Jack on 17 Oct 2009 16:39, edited 1 time in total.
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    Re: Health Care

    Postby Hunchback Jack » 17 Oct 2009 16:25

    Freakzilla wrote:Then one day, that will be the only insurance company and they will start raising prices... and there are no options.


    Sorry, but I simply don't believe this. Having a public, not-for-profit scheme for basic healthcare will not kill private insurance or private medicine. There are many working health care systems in other countries which have both a good public health care system, and a large number of private insurance companies and private medical groups providing a second tier of coverage and care at a reasonable cost. There is no reduction in choice.

    The choices are not this system or socialism. There's a workable middle ground.

    HBJ
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    Re: Health Care

    Postby A Thing of Eternity » 17 Oct 2009 16:26

    Freakzilla wrote:
    A Thing of Eternity wrote:Like you said, that's the benifit of working for a massive company.


    Becoming a faceless number in the global corporation is the best thing that ever happened to me.


    Even me, just working for my family's business with around 100 employees, my insurance being only $30 is pretty great.

    I definitely like it better up here though. I know a lot of you are happy with what you have, but you have to buy insurance just to avoid totally crippling costs, and then you still have to pay smaller amounts for almost every service. Up here, I automatically cannot be bankrupted by costs, and I pay $30 a month for insurance so that I don't have to pay for anything, ever. I could go to a specialist every single day if I wanted for free.

    Different ways of looking at it I guess, but the idea that the healthcare costs in the US bankrupt 1,000,000 people a year is pretty scary, and that 40,000,000 people (a whopping 13% of the country) simply have no coverage at all and could have their lives ruined by just breaking a bone is freaky.

    In Canada, the number of people who don't have access to healthcare = zero.
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    Re: Health Care

    Postby A Thing of Eternity » 17 Oct 2009 16:28

    Hunchback Jack wrote:
    Freakzilla wrote:Then one day, that will be the only insurance company and they will start raising prices... and there are no options.


    Sorry, but I simply don't believe this. Having a public, not-for-profit scheme for basic healthcare will not kill private insurance or private medicine. There are many working health care systems in other countries which have both a good public health care system, and a large number of private insurance companies and private medical groups providing a second tier of coverage and care at a reasonable cost. There is no reduction in choice.

    The choices are not this system or socialism. There's a workable middle ground.

    HBJ


    You're absolutely right HBJ, a country as hateful of anything with the word social in it as the US will never have a full blown social healthcare program. Like I just said a couple posts ago, we don't even have that in CANADA!

    It's an unreasonable fear that wouldn't come to pass for a hundred years. We're more capitalist than that up here, and the US will never be more socialist than us.
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    Re: Health Care

    Postby Omphalos » 17 Oct 2009 16:32

    Freakzilla wrote:
    Omphalos wrote:I could care less about insurance companies. I personally think that the whole reason that the conservatives are fighting the public option is because the insurance companies that put millions into their pocket are afraid of the slippery slope; that is that more and more people will go over to a public company that they will be unable to compete with. Let 'em burn, I say. The bigger a public company becomes, it will be able to hire all those displaced insurance company workers, and give a cheaper benefit.



    Then one day, that will be the only insurance company and they will start raising prices... and there are no options.


    Or...the free market system will work, companies will figure out how to do it cheaper, and the public option will keep them from colluding to jack prices to the roof. This is not a static system we have here. Its a fluid one that will change over time. But to answer the gist of your statement, for-profit companies will never disappear completely. And I have no problem with them being weakened to a point that they can no longer game the entire market or gang up against consumers. Honestly, I completely fail to see what interest the average Joe could have in helping the insurance companies. It it really just a fear of big government?
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    Re: Health Care

    Postby A Thing of Eternity » 17 Oct 2009 16:35

    I was just thinking about that 13% of Americans without healthcare stat. Think about that. That's more people without healthcare than there are homosexuals for crying out loud. That's more people without healthcare than the entire nation of Canada has citizens in total.

    In elementry, jr high and highschool, we were all probably in classes of around 20-30 people, according to the stat, 2-4 of the kids from every class don't have healthcare.

    If you have an extended family of more than ten people, one of them doesn't have healthcare.

    You play on a sports team? 2 of the members don't have healthcare.

    That's not some tiny insignificant slice of society, that is an INSANE amount of people, and the fact that many of them are probably kids is doubly insane.

    It's simply not civilized, it's animal to leave people behind like that.
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    Re: Health Care

    Postby A Thing of Eternity » 17 Oct 2009 16:41

    Omphalos wrote:
    Freakzilla wrote:
    Omphalos wrote:I could care less about insurance companies. I personally think that the whole reason that the conservatives are fighting the public option is because the insurance companies that put millions into their pocket are afraid of the slippery slope; that is that more and more people will go over to a public company that they will be unable to compete with. Let 'em burn, I say. The bigger a public company becomes, it will be able to hire all those displaced insurance company workers, and give a cheaper benefit.



    Then one day, that will be the only insurance company and they will start raising prices... and there are no options.


    Or...the free market system will work, companies will figure out how to do it cheaper, and the public option will keep them from colluding to jack prices to the roof. This is not a static system we have here. Its a fluid one that will change over time. Honestly, I completely fail to see what interest the average Joe could have in helping the insurance companies. It it really just a fear of big government?


    I guess if you're brought up being told over and over and over that anything the government does is one more thing than it should be doing, that it is better to feed the invisible hand and allow whatever happens to happen, whoever happens to get trampled to get trampled, it eventually becomes truth to you.

    Just like people who are told there is a god when they are a kid over and over eventually believe it despite all evidence to the contrary, so will people believe that any kind of social responsiblity is socialism, and socialism is bad, capitalism is good. It's been said so many times it must be true.

    This is the part of American culture that to be is what sets the US apart from a lot of other countries. Most countries are just countries, America is a religion, and Capitalism is god, and god is infallible.


    I want to be clear though, I'm not talking about Freak in the above, I'm just talking about the average stereotypical American who is afraid of socialized medicine because they've been told it will damage capitalism (though it won't, capitalism and socialism work marvelously together in reality).
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    Re: Health Care

    Postby Freakzilla » 17 Oct 2009 16:52

    I'm not for helping the healthcare companies but I'm not for giving the government a monopoly on it either.
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    Re: Health Care

    Postby Hunchback Jack » 17 Oct 2009 17:31

    AFAIK, I don't think anyone wants a government-only health system.

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    Re: Health Care

    Postby Freakzilla » 17 Oct 2009 17:40

    Hunchback Jack wrote:AFAIK, I don't think anyone wants a government-only health system.

    HBJ


    You mean, besides the government?

    How are private insurance companies going to compete with a government, non-profit insurance company?

    The public option is just a way to run them out of business.
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    Re: Health Care

    Postby Hunchback Jack » 17 Oct 2009 18:06

    Freakzilla wrote:How are private insurance companies going to compete with a government, non-profit insurance company?


    By providing you the very things you're concerned the government-run insurance won't - better coverage and more choice, if you want it.

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    Re: Health Care

    Postby Freakzilla » 17 Oct 2009 18:30

    Hunchback Jack wrote:
    Freakzilla wrote:How are private insurance companies going to compete with a government, non-profit insurance company?


    By providing you the very things you're concerned the government-run insurance won't - better coverage and more choice, if you want it.

    HBJ


    That's not competition, that's an alternative.
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    Re: Health Care

    Postby Mandy » 17 Oct 2009 18:35

    Freakzilla wrote:
    Hunchback Jack wrote:AFAIK, I don't think anyone wants a government-only health system.

    HBJ


    You mean, besides the government?

    How are private insurance companies going to compete with a government, non-profit insurance company?

    The public option is just a way to run them out of business.


    By not ripping people off, and providing decent coverage, that's how they compete. Right now they are much more concerned with keeping the premiums and denying coverage. I am not opposed to a government option, but I think regulating the insurance industry might work as well.
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    Re: Health Care

    Postby Freakzilla » 17 Oct 2009 19:08

    Mandy wrote:...I think regulating the insurance industry might work as well.


    Finaly, the voice of reason!
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    Re: Health Care

    Postby trang » 17 Oct 2009 20:25

    Freakzilla wrote:
    Mandy wrote:...I think regulating the insurance industry might work as well.


    Finnaly, the voice of reason!


    I would say "beat the insurance industy into submission!!" vs just regulate, the gods dam pharmaceutical companies along with them.

    over the years (since getting out of Corps in 1996) I have managed to keep my premiums around 300 to 400 a month. I have done various things like independent health plans, using individual at one job, and family at the other, etc.

    The average is about 389 a month, standard 80/20, 500-1500 family deductable, copay 20-30 with prescription drug plan, ER visits. Dental, Eyeball also. My son is autistic so he gets Medicaid for life, which helps some, but I pay my taxes for it so dont feel any problem using if for him.

    In general, I think healthcare system is a chamber of horrors and about 25 years behind where it should be. Profit mongering, corruption, over testing, inefficiency, and lobbyist are the major problems.

    I also think that healthcare age 18-45 isnt the problem, viable work years, and in most cases your healthy years. Its birth to 17 and 46 to when reaper comes knocking. These are the areas where either your vulnerable because of underdeveloped immune system or weaking system breaks down from the barrage of bugs attemping to do us in. Those bugs come from a variety of places (food, air, water) and are based on volentary and involentary situations.

    The Profit based model we live under, I think is slowly being agreed upon as not the model we need. What system, be it a hybrid, adjusted from current, or other, I don't know. Change is here in the form of Trillion Dollar man Obama and company so I guess we will see what happens.

    Personally I will continue the strategy I have been using until I get to a position financially where I can do something else. I hope it works out and my children and there children have a system that cares for them better then we have now. I will vote for the best of the worst(hoping for the best of the best) that come around, not much else to do in that regard.

    Its a scrap and fight system at moment, especially in special needs area, and will remain so for the foreseeable future.
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    Re: Health Care

    Postby Slugger » 18 Oct 2009 09:31

    trang wrote:Change is here in the form of Trillion Dollar man Obama and company so I guess we will see what happens.

    Quite a few trillion dollars, actually...
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    Re: Health Care

    Postby Freakzilla » 18 Oct 2009 10:37

    I really hope some good will come from Obama's changes but what I fear will happen is we will be tillions more dollars in debt and nothing will change.

    Before we make a fourth public option we should fix the ones we have, medicare, medicade and the VMA.

    I think we should regulate the insurace and pharmeceutical companies.

    I think we should reduce the size of the bureaucracy. Holy shit, I spelled that right!

    If Obama would just eliminate earmarks, like he said he would, that could probably pay for HC reform itself.
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    Re: Health Care

    Postby A Thing of Eternity » 18 Oct 2009 14:01

    Freakzilla wrote:
    Hunchback Jack wrote:AFAIK, I don't think anyone wants a government-only health system.

    HBJ


    You mean, besides the government?

    How are private insurance companies going to compete with a government, non-profit insurance company?

    The public option is just a way to run them out of business.


    How many times do I have to say it, if supposedly socialist Canada's public healthcare hasn't run the private insurance companies out of business (which it hasn't), there is no fucking way that super-capitalist-land is going to suffer from that fate.

    There are lots of good arguments against this social healthcare idea - but this ain't one of em. :evil:
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    Re: Health Care

    Postby chanilover » 18 Oct 2009 18:37

    Freakzilla wrote:
    Hunchback Jack wrote:AFAIK, I don't think anyone wants a government-only health system.

    HBJ


    You mean, besides the government?

    How are private insurance companies going to compete with a government, non-profit insurance company?

    The public option is just a way to run them out of business.


    By charging for it. You get what you pay for. In the UK, the National Health Service, which is being torn apart by lying scum in the US media, is funded by National Insurance contributions taken from pay. This funds emergency treatment, outpatient and inpatient services in hospitals and doctors' surgeries. It's not perfect, but it works pretty well. Apart from that, there are private medical insurance companies in the UK which charge premiums for healthcare. The difference between the NHS and private services is like the difference between a three star and five star hotel. NHS waiting lists for operations are longer than private practice, and private hospitals tend to be better staffed.

    I have private medical insurance through my job. I'm sure you probably would as well if you lived in the UK.

    Under the patients' charter, you can choose which hospital you use. My mum had a knee replacement last year and went through the NHS but used the local private hospital at no cost, all funded through the NHS.

    NHS doctors and nurses do an amazing job, and those lying bastards in the US media are scum.

    In the UK, even the Conservatives support the NHS. Tory leader David Cameron had a good experience of the NHS caring for his disabled son who died recently, and no, he wasn't 'killed' by the NHS.
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    Re: Health Care

    Postby Hunchback Jack » 18 Oct 2009 18:43

    Freakzilla wrote:I really hope some good will come from Obama's changes but what I fear will happen is we will be tillions more dollars in debt and nothing will change.


    no arguments there.

    Before we make a fourth public option we should fix the ones we have, medicare, medicade and the VMA.

    I think we should regulate the insurace and pharmeceutical companies.

    I think we should reduce the size of the bureaucracy. Holy shit, I spelled that right!

    If Obama would just eliminate earmarks, like he said he would, that could probably pay for HC reform itself.


    I'd back that plan.

    HBJ
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