Number Of Uninsured Americans Soars To Over 50 Million

  • metta

    Posts: 39077

    Dec 28, 2010 4:26 PM GMT
    Number Of Uninsured Americans Soars To Over 50 Million

    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2010/12/27/uninsured-americans-50-million_n_801695.html
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    Dec 28, 2010 8:43 PM GMT
    Meanwhile, even though I'm insured, I'm getting raped in the ass by medical bills.

    Fuck you America.
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    Dec 28, 2010 9:40 PM GMT
    It was in interesting read. I am left with a question (mostly because I am not in the US, I really have not had a reason to understand the proposed changes to the health care system.) What is going to happen to people like those in the article when health care insurance becomes mandatory? Are they going to pay a fine for not having coverage and still be stuck with the medical bills, or does the fine put them on a federal health insurance coverage? The article states that in 2014 Americans making up to 136% of the poverty income will be eligible for medicaid which makes me wonder if there would not be incentive to earn less than that. If you are within 140% of the poverty line but now have to shell out 30% of your income for coverage, is there not incentive to turn down a raise or look for a slightly lower paying job? Basically, by putting in a hard cap like this, is the government not almost encouraging the loss of the lower middle class when they subsidize those who are "poor" but will, in effect, fine those making 1% above the cut off a thousand dollars each month?

    My understanding of the reform is likely wrong or lacking, but that article really did bring up a number of questions.
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    Dec 28, 2010 10:02 PM GMT
    Maybe we should add 50 million MORE economically disadvantaged people from underdeveloped nations who are instantly dependent on the dole so that we can be appalled that there's a "staggering" 100 million "Americans" in need of "free" healthcare.

    This phenomenon of an increase in uninsured people is related to a widening gap in disparity of income which is the result of unions driving jobs overseas and a major demographic growth in population pools (mostly due to immigration) that have no money coupled with shrinkage in the population pools that do have money. The result is concentration and there's nothing that can be done about it unless the people who do have money have lots of children so that the wealth gets spread around. The more people with little to no assets that you add into the population pool the more the income per head will shrink because there is competition for existing capital.
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    Dec 28, 2010 10:23 PM GMT
    mocktwinkie saidMaybe we should add 50 million MORE economically disadvantaged people from underdeveloped nations who are instantly dependent on the dole so that we can be appalled that there's a "staggering" 100 million "Americans" in need of "free" healthcare.

    This phenomenon of an increase in uninsured people is related to a widening gap in disparity of income which is the result of unions driving jobs overseas and a major demographic growth in population pools (mostly due to immigration) that have no money coupled with shrinkage in the population pools that do have money. The result is concentration and there's nothing that can be done about it unless the people who do have money have lots of children so that the wealth gets spread around. The more people with little to no assets that you add into the population pool the more the income per head will shrink because there is competition for existing capital.


    To your first paragraph, I would say let's just nationalize through a single payer system while also allowing anyone who wants and can afford to to buy private insurance.

    The second paragraph, which is largely nonsense as the growth in income disparity has occurred alongside the decrease in unionization, is then full of the usual immigrant-bashing, Ayn Randian, mumbo-jumbo.
  • HereNBoston

    Posts: 221

    Dec 28, 2010 10:31 PM GMT
    Funny thing about health care in the US is that its some of the best and the worst, a bit too technology driven, and cost-effective is a bad word around here.

    immigration doesn't play too big a role since there's been shown to be under utilization of health resources by certain immigrant groups for various reasons. Also large groups of african americans still have a distrust of the medical community. so no. immigration isn't a major driving force of the crunch on our healthcare infrastructure. of course this varies region to region, I'm just talking over all.

    there are a bunch of factors contributing to the cost of healthcare involving a relationship between power lobby groups like the american medical association, pharmaceutical companies, insurance companies, etc. and then of course the widening gap between the rich and poor with a disappearing middle class.

    I think the most frustrating part about it is that we have some of the best policy minds from around the world working in this country, and we can't use them because congress won't allow for cost effective analysis in most of the agencies. I mean, it's rather obvious what changes need to be made to how the government deals with healthcare. and yes, the government should have a role in health care given that it's over 16% of our gdp.

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    Dec 28, 2010 10:59 PM GMT
    southbeach1500 said
    HereNBoston said and yes, the government should have a role in health care given that it's over 16% of our gdp.



    That's a reason why the government should not get anywhere near healthcare right there.


    You've made his point for him with this statement. We could shave several percentage points off the cost of Medicare and Medicaid simply by allowing them to negotiate drug prices in bulk.
  • HereNBoston

    Posts: 221

    Dec 28, 2010 11:10 PM GMT
    southbeach1500 said
    HereNBoston said and yes, the government should have a role in health care given that it's over 16% of our gdp.



    That's a reason why the government should not get anywhere near healthcare right there.



    a free market needs full disclosure for all parties involved. it doesn't exist in healthcare. at any level. patients don't have the knowledge to understand incidence of complications, mortality rates and so forth. and physicians trying to make a profit encounter an inherent conflict of interest by acting as an advisor and a provider for a service. and all the while there is no guarantee of an outcome. it's a very different type of industry because it affects people in a much different way than just getting a lemon for a used car.

    I don't particular care if BMW's are priced out of the range of most peoples reach... I do care that there are people working 2 and 3 jobs who can't afford their kids medications, or that there are seniors that have to decide rent or blood pressure pills. health care is different. hence I wouldn't trust the private sector to manage it. I mean, they clearly have made a lot of money and we're not any healthier these days. reason is that disease management is more profitable than preventative care.
  • HereNBoston

    Posts: 221

    Dec 28, 2010 11:51 PM GMT



    You're talking in generalities here. Can you be a little less vague?



    Which is why they hire a physician. Same goes for when there's something wrong with the plumbing in your house - you hire a plumber.


    And there's something wrong with making more money than it costs for you to provide the service?



    And there certainly would be no more of a guarantee of any particular outcome if the government got involved.



    Ummmm.... you just got your wish a few months ago. Obamacare is now the law of the land. Of course, they had to pass it first before telling us what was in it, but I'm sure we'll find out soon.



    Well, I can't argue with you there.... trust is a personal matter and if you say you don't trust someone or something, that's your business. But just because you don't trust something doesn't mean there has to be a law backing you up on your distrust.



    On what metric do you base that statement?

    [/quote]

    ok. i'll take your points one by one :-)

    full market disclosure doesn't exist because health insurance reimbursement is generally negotiated behind closed doors, and there's also an issue of price discrimination. so long story short. no free market.

    right. you can hire a plumber and get a warranty and your money back if needed. and a plumber generally (hopefully) knows what the outcome will be where a physician does not. they have a a pretty good idea, but no guarantees. a medication might not work at all, or the surgery might lead to every complication in the book. so its a bit more complicated than a pipe bursting after a plumber does a shoddy job.

    Nothing wrong with making a profit, though health care professionals have different moral responsibilities than plumbers or mechanics. physicians have in the past created a demand for their services through referral incentives and such. i mean, not every patient presenting in an ED needs a CT scan, MRI, cardiac cath, or whatever else. but hey the doc can throw it in for good measure if he gets a referral bonus for it. again. its the idea that healthcare is different because if something goes wrong with a car, then whatever. it sucks, but your health and life aren't put at risk.

    The thing about governments as opposed to private corporations, is that the government benefits from healthier people. if you look at medicare and the VA system, they're very outcome focused these days. because it means they save money, people can work, function and contribute to the economy and society. the private sector really has no interest in preventative care beyond public relations purposes because it costs more up front, and the stream of benefits only comes after years. they don't want to invest in healthier people because these healthier people might not utilize services as much, or they might go to a different insurance company for a better rate. so why invest in it? governments on the other hand have an interest in its people being healthier in the longer term, and the US is FINALLY starting to look at comparative effectiveness of treatments. so they ask is this new fancy treatment really better or just more expensive?

    The new healthcare package does a lot of good for americans. a lot. the republicans are just louder and better at sending a message, all be it a false one. it's budget neutral, and would've actually saved us a lot of money if obama had put in everything that he wanted, but he caved so whatever. I've actually read the entire thing. a few times. it's not terrible. just overly complicated. and it can't be explained in a ten second sound byte, so most americans think it's evil even though it benefits them greatly.

    that goes into the metrics i used to say that we're not any healthier. I base my statement on the fact that we have a piss poor infant mortality rate, among the worst cardiovascular disease management and preventative care, and some of the fattest children in the world requiring us to no longer call Type II diabetes "adult onset" because kids as young as ten are developing it. there have been actual studies looking at what we've gained for the exponential growth in health care expenditure and the best anyone say is that we've gained a couple years in life expectancy, but the quality of those is questionable at best.
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    Dec 28, 2010 11:58 PM GMT
    Christian73 said
    southbeach1500 said
    HereNBoston said and yes, the government should have a role in health care given that it's over 16% of our gdp.



    That's a reason why the government should not get anywhere near healthcare right there.


    You've made his point for him with this statement. We could shave several percentage points off the cost of Medicare and Medicaid simply by allowing them to negotiate drug prices in bulk.


    It's 8.4% of the UK GDP. Need we say more?
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    Dec 29, 2010 12:20 AM GMT
    SB, you have an exceptionally short attention span. I've pointed this out many, MANY times before:
    Image_001.jpg

    With the amount of money we've spent, we've the LEAST improvement in mortality and we still lag behind ALL developed nations on mortality rates:
    Image_025.jpg

    With the so-called free market in health care, we get the absolute WORST efficiency and highest administrative costs:

    Image_014.jpg

    There's plenty more where this comes from.
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    Dec 29, 2010 12:38 AM GMT
    mocktwinkie saidMaybe we should add 50 million MORE economically disadvantaged people from underdeveloped nations who are instantly dependent on the dole so that we can be appalled that there's a "staggering" 100 million "Americans" in need of "free" healthcare.

    That's a pretty callous statement. No, 50 million Americans is just that--not "Americans." Most doctors and hospitals have been seeing more "self-pay" patients, i.e. those who've lost their jobs and thus their medical insurance. I've seen a doubling of free clinic patients in just the last 2 years (and some of these patients we've seen for years in the regular office when they had insurance), and even though we're working harder at the hospital, we're not paid any more because most of them have no insurance, and we write off the balance.

    Tying insurance to a job is a historical accident--most economists would not do it again if they had a chance.
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    Dec 29, 2010 1:38 AM GMT
    q1w2e3 saidSB, you have an exceptionally short attention span. I've pointed this out many, MANY times before:
    Image_001.jpg

    With the amount of money we've spent, we've the LEAST improvement in mortality and we still lag behind ALL developed nations on mortality rates:
    Image_025.jpg

    With the so-called free market in health care, we get the absolute WORST efficiency and highest administrative costs:

    Image_014.jpg

    There's plenty more where this comes from.



    Thank you for pointing this out.
  • Timbales

    Posts: 13993

    Dec 29, 2010 1:43 AM GMT
    I think that every US citizen should have access to a government provided healthcare plan that's pricing is based on a sliding scale of the person's income and offers tiers of coverage options.
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    Dec 29, 2010 2:14 AM GMT
    I tend to veer more toward the conservative/libertarian perspective on this, but I think full-on single-payer would have been better than the messy bit of sausage making that resulted in ObamaCareā„¢.