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Universal health care question

6569 Views 307 Replies 42 Participants Last post by  RichMac
I agree that something needs to be done (desperately) to the health care system. The problem I have with universal health care is that if I understand it right, everyone's tax money devoted to the program would often go to treat preventable problems (things caused by smoking, sedentary lifestyle, etc). Is this true or false? How do you feel about it?
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Anything that contains high fructose corn syrup or trans fat. Anything that does not contain at least 10-15% of some sort of relevant nutrient, perhaps.
But if we don't control health care costs from within, won't the taxes just get higher and higher to support this level of insurance?
The operations analyst in me says that we should take a serious crack at streamlining the current private system <b>first</b>. Maybe with a less sizeable government investment in the form of tax breaks for hosptials/facilities/insurance companies that reduce costs by a certain degree? Grants for 2nd phase improvements for those same groups who execute on the first phase of BPR plans?<br><br>
There's a lot of waste in the system... <b>and</b> many of these "non-profits" are raking in huge dollars and stockpiling it...
Addictions and their sequelae.<br>
Obesity -- is the cause overeating or something physical that interferes with the way food is processed?<br>
Heart disease -- was it the sedentary lifestyle and high salt diet or the genetic condition that caused it?<br>
AIDS -- does it matter how you contracted it?<br>
Pregnancy -- does it matter whether it's an intended pregnancy?<br><br>
You can go on and on....<br><br>
And the comparison to education is a poor one for so many reasons, not the least of which is that education funding and control is one of the most irrational systems we have ever devised.
Your health care costs are astronomical (internal costs, admin costs that is) compared to ours. Seriously, you're riding a run-away train!
That's a hard line to draw. Most man made beverages and a good portion of packaged foods fall into this category.
Yeah, I know they do. And almost all store bought beverages and packaged goods are complete and utter junk.<br><br>
(My client for the past 2 years was a major food consumer packaged goods company. It disgusted me.)
maybe someone has the statistics, but isn't something like most people will incur more costs in their last 6 months than they will their entire life?<br><br>
we are living longer and it costs more. There are alot of patients that are old and on their last breath and their family wants the doctor to do everything possible to save great grandma.
maybe the government should subsidize REAL food! maybe apples and oranges should be free <img alt="banana.gif" src=""> I go batty when I'm in line after food stamps and what they are buying, but I can totally understand it, it's cheaper.
And while we're at it you run too many miles/weekly let them up your rates since your risk of injury is going up.<br><br>
If you ride bicycles any where besides public parks, increase the rates.<br><br>
If you're eating too much red meat, eggs, or milk products, up the rate.<br><br>
Where do you want to end trying to regulate people's lives.
Exactly.. isn't that what universal anything ends up?
Exactly!!!! In grad school, I read a statistic (and I can't remember where, forgive me), that said that the health care resources used in the last six months of a person's life are often greater than the resources used their entire life leading up to that point.<br><br>
Go ahead and stone me, but I think some rationing could be happening to take costs down. Case in point, DH's grandfather is 83 and bedbound in a nursing home. He is not aware of anything. He knows no one. He is not living. He is existing. He's had several rounds of IV antibiotics for four different episodes of pneumonia in the last 6 months - including one two week stint in isolation in the hospital. In my very humble opinion, this is a) cruel to Gramps because he does not understand what the hell is happening to him, and why all of these people are messing with him, and b) is it really a good use of resources for a gentleman that is going to die no matter what is done for him?<br><br>
There comes a point when you are no longer prolonging life, but prolonging the dying process.<br><br>
(off my soapbox now...)<br><br>
A good book on the topic is <span style="text-decoration:underline;">Mama Might be Better Off Dead</span>.
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That's my concern right there.
No, the problem with out insurance system right now is it only benefits those who do not need it because we run only for profit insurance companies.<br><br>
If the private insurance companies wanted to they could work toward universal health care in tandem with the government. Unfortunately they are too busy paying their executives instead of paying for health care bills. There is plenty of money to be made in health care without the greed that our system permits at the expense of those who cannot obtain insurance because if would upset the profitable balance sheet of insurance companies.<br><br>
Go to any public hospital (such as Grady here in Atlanta) and you see the dumping ground by the insurance companies for the benefit of their stockholders.
To answer the OP, i think the main idea i take away from universal healthcare & taxes is: those who can should take care of those who cannot, and in the end the whole country will benefit.
This is such a myopic view that it's bordering on comical.<br><br>
Insurance execs often make MUCH less than other business execs in similar positions. Facilities, drug companies, and insurance companies ALL play EQUAL parts in this.<br><br>
To single out any one of them is nothing short of furthering a personal agenda.
And most of the 15% that are not currently insured could be if they wanted to be. A lot of the under 40 crowd don't think they need it and would rather buy a new car, go on vacation, a big screen tv- I was one for many years- my insurance was I promised myself I wouldn't need to go to the doctor.. when I did and it costs me $2,000 for a broken bone.. I went on a payment plan to pay that off, and found private insurance. Sold my new truck, bought something cheap and used the payment I was making on owning the truck for the insurance premium.<br>
There are many programs, in many states for the poor to be covered, as I mentioned earlier<br>
Work a second job, find a job that offers health care..<br><br>
And for those that truely can't get insurance, there is Medicad, and social security.. and state programs..<br>
Having it run by the federal government will make the costs go through the roof..<br><br>
Just take the rebate thing for an instance.. at first they said it would be 150billion, then 160billion, then 168billion, and now they say it will actuallly cost more than 175billion.. that's just over the past few months.. what do you think will happen with health care run by these knuckleheads?
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Yes. I really dont believe that punishing someone for their lifestyle and addictions really helps anything. However, I do think more of our health insurance premiums should be spent promoting a healthy lifestyle (ie supporting races and such).
that is really not true, we have been struggling for over 5 years to have decent health insurance, as i am self employed. It is either so expensive ($1400/mo for me and DH) or the health insurance that was more affordable ($450-550/mo for 2) was so limited that it was not even worth having, because it covered nothing and had huge preexisting condition clauses on it. Just last week I found an HMO program that was better than the major medical insurance we have had for the past few years, which really covered nothing, but would cover us in a catastrophic event, once we hit our $5200/year deductable. Please do not make generalizations about people who buy their own health insurance. It has caused me a lot of stress and grief over the past 5 or 6 years.
I don't remember who mentioned it, but if there were a national cap on the civil suit side of malpractice, you'd see rates tumble.<br><br>
When a doctor has to pay over half of their salary per year in malpractice insurance because they might get sued for $3million dollars of...oh, what's the word??? "extra money" for the person who got hurt (not money to compensate for loss of work or additional health costs etc) ...that money comes from somewhere. And that "somewhere" is the jury (and the rest of us) who just awarded the patient astronomical amounts of money because they feel sorry for them, or hope they'd get astronomical amounts of money were the tables turned....And, just to nip it in the bud...a specialty surgeon here in Tx makes about $160k to start. That's after at least 10 years of school...most doctors do not make bajillions of dollars. My BIL, who is a pediatric hemoncologist (cancer doctor for children) makes $100k a's not like they're making millions. So where does the money go? To all of the administrative costs it takes to CYA and make sure no one will get sued. These are the conclusions I came to after being an accountant /financial advisor in the health-care industry for 5 years...not very long, but long enough.<br><br>
As a consumer of healthcare, I'm not so sure I want universal health care as it is seen in other parts of the world...where the wait to see a specialist is >3months. I like being able to call my doctor and go in tomorrow if I need it. I DO, however, want there to be easily accessible health care for anyone. Not sure what the solution is...but if we'd take a crack at the aforementioned, it might be more within reach than where we stand now.
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