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$83,046 For A 3 Hour Hospital Visit – Why Are Hospital Bills So Outrageous?

The fastest way to go broke in America is to go to the hospital.  These days it seems like almost everyone has an outrageous hospital bill story to share.  It is getting to the point where most people are deathly afraid to go to the hospital.  All the financial progress that you have made in recent years can literally be wiped out in just a matter of hours.  For example, you are about to read about an Arizona woman that was recently charged $83,046 for a 3 hour hospital visit.  How in the world is anyone supposed to pay a bill like that?  I have a really hard time understanding why a visit to the doctor should ever be more than a couple hundred bucks or why a hospital stay should ever be more than a couple thousand dollars.  Outrageous hospital bills are a real pet peeve of mine and I have not even been to the hospital in ages.  What makes all of this even more infuriating is that Medicare, Medicaid and the big insurance companies are often charged less than 10 percent of what the rest of us are billed for the same procedures.  There is a reason why 41 percent of all working age Americans are struggling with medical debt right now.  It is because our health care system has become a giant money making scam.  Millions of desperate Americans go into hospitals each year assuming that they will be treated fairly, but in the end they get stuck with incredibly outrageous bills and in many cases cruel debt collection techniques are employed against them if they don’t pay.

So why do we have to pay so much for medical care?  Back in 1980, less than 10 percent of U.S. GDP went to health care.  Today, about 18 percent of U.S. GDP goes toward health care.

And considering the fact that over the next 20 years the number of Americans 65 years of age or older is projected to double that number is going to go even higher.

On a per capita basis we spend about twice as much on health care as anyone else in the world.

In fact, if the U.S. health care system was a nation it would be the 6th largest economy on the entire planet.

America spent 2.47 trillion dollars on health care in 2009, and it is now being projected that we will spend 4.5 trillion dollars on health care in 2019.

Our system is completely and totally broken, and Obamacare is going to make things far worse.  We need to throw the entire system out and start over.

A perfect example of why this is true is what happened when 52-year-old Marcie Edmonds went in to a hospital in Arizona recently to get treated for a scorpion sting….

With the help of a friend, she called Poison Control and was advised to go to the nearest hospital that had scorpion antivenom, Chandler Regional Medical Center. At the hospital, an emergency room doctor told her about the antivenom, called Anascorp, that could quickly relieve her symptoms. Edmonds said the physician never talked with her about the cost of the drug or treatment alternatives.

Her symptoms subsided after she received two doses of the drug Anascorp through an IV, and she was discharged from the hospital in about three hours.

Weeks later, she received a bill for $83,046 from Chandler Regional Medical Center. The hospital, owned by Dignity Health, charged her $39,652 per dose of Anascorp.

What makes this even more shocking is that hospitals in Mexico only charge $100 per dose of Anascorp.

These days many hospitals will do whatever they can get away with on hospital bills.

One NBC News reporter was absolutely stunned at the bill that she received after she went in for neck surgery for degenerative disc disease recently….

Once I got my itemized bill, the grand total was a little over $66,013.40!   That was for a one night stay and a four level vertebrae fusion surgery.  The charges included $22 for one sleeping pill, $427 for one dissecting tool, and $32,000 for four titanium plates and ten screws.

I brought it to Todd Hill, a fee based patient advocate who helps people decipher their medical bills. “The screws in your procedure were billed at $605 a piece for a total of $6050 dollars. We’ve seen those in our past research for $25 or $30,” he said. “In this case, the markup is tremendous,” he added.

Considering the fact that 77 percent of American families are living paycheck to paycheck at least part of the time, a single hospital bill like this can be a financial death blow.

If you have time, read this tragic story where one man was charged $11,000 and all he had was a case of bad indigestion.  Nothing was even wrong with him and now his family is going to have to declare bankruptcy.

Often medical bills are so complex and so confusing that nobody can really understand them.  A lot of the times this is probably done on purpose to keep people from understanding how badly they are being overcharged.  The following is from a recent article in the New York Times….

Hospital care tends to be the most confounding, and experts say the charges you see on your bill are usually completely unrelated to the cost of providing the services (at hospitals, these list prices are called the “charge master file”). “The charges have no rhyme or reason at all,” Gerard Anderson, director of the Center for Hospital Finance and Management at Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health. “Why is 30 minutes in the operating room $2,000 and not $1,500? There is absolutely no basis for setting that charge. It is not based upon the cost, and it’s not based upon the market forces, other than the whim of the C.F.O. of the hospital.”

And those charges don’t really have any connection to what a hospital or medical provider will accept for payment, either. “If you line up five patients in their beds and they all have gall bladders removed and they get the same exact medication and services, if they have insurance or if they don’t have insurance, the hospital will get five different reimbursements, and none of it is based on cost,” said Holly Wallack, a medical billing advocate in Miami Beach. “The insurers negotiate a different rate, and if you are uninsured, underinsured or out of network, you are asked to pay full fare.”

It has been estimated that hospitals in the United States overcharge their patients by about 10 billion dollars every single year.

Medical bills are the number one reason why Americans file for bankruptcy.  As I mentioned earlier, approximately 41 percent of all working age Americans are struggling with medical debt.

And health insurance is not as much protection as you might think.  According to a report published in the American Journal of Medicine, of all bankruptcies caused by medical debt, approximately 75 percent of the time the people actually did have health insurance.

And if you can’t pay your bills, many hospitals will come after you ruthlessly.

In fact, collection agencies sought to collect unpaid medical bills from approximately 30 million Americans during 2010 alone.

If you don’t cough up the cash they are demanding you can even end up in prison.  The following example comes from CBS News….

How did breast cancer survivor Lisa Lindsay end up behind bars? She didn’t pay a medical bill — one the Herrin, Ill., teaching assistant was told she didn’t owe. “She got a $280 medical bill in error and was told she didn’t have to pay it,” The Associated Press reports. “But the bill was turned over to a collection agency, and eventually state troopers showed up at her home and took her to jail in handcuffs.”

Although the U.S. abolished debtors’ prisons in the 1830s, more than a third of U.S. states allow the police to haul people in who don’t pay all manner of debts, from bills for health care services to credit card and auto loans.

But why do these bills have to be so high?  It is not like many doctors are getting rich these days.  In fact, many of them are going broke.

So what is the deal?

Well, as a recent article by Dr. Paul Craig Roberts explained, there are a whole lot of people pulling profit out of the system other than just doctors these days….

There are two main reasons that US medicine is so expensive. One is that profits are piled upon profits. In addition to wages and salaries for doctors, nurses, and medical personnel, the American health care system has to provide profits for private hospitals, diagnostic centers, insurance companies, and for the accountants, attorneys and management consultants made necessary by the enormous litigation and regulatory compliance cost. American medicine is the most regulated in the world and the most criminalized.

And another big factor is that the rest of us have to make up the difference for the patients that are not profitable.

It has gotten to the point where some doctors in certain kinds of practices barely make any profit on Medicare and Medicaid patients.  In fact, in many cases doctors actually lose money treating them.

An article posted on medicalcostadvocate.com has some outrageous examples of the difference between what you and I are billed and what Medicare pays out for the exact same procedures….

A patient in Illinois was charged $12,712 for cataract surgery. Medicare pays $675 for the same procedure. In California, a patient was charged $20,120 for a knee operation for which Medicare pays $584. And a New Jersey patient was charged $72,000 for a spinal fusion procedure that Medicare covers for $1,629.

So not only do we pay very high taxes to support Medicaid and Medicare, we also have to pay higher medical bills in order to make up the difference for the money that doctors and hospitals are not seeing from those patients.

Unfortunately, Medicaid and Medicare are expected to grow dramatically in the years ahead.

For example, it is now being projected that Obamacare will add 16 million more Americans to Medicaid.

And enrollment in Medicare is projected to grow from 50.7 million today to 73.2 million in 2025.

How in the world can our current system possibly handle this?

And please don’t tell me that Obamacare is the answer.

The truth is that Obamacare is going to take everything that is wrong with our health care system and make it even worse.

For a good summary on this, please see this article.

In the years ahead it is going to get even harder for those that are not dependent on the government for health care….

-Approximately 10 percent of all employers plan to drop health insurance coverage entirely because of Obamacare.

-According to one recent poll, 83 percent of all doctors in the United States have considered quitting the profession because of Obamacare, and we were already projected to have a severe doctor shortage in the years ahead even before Obamacare came along.

We are heading into the greatest health care crisis the United States has ever seen, and none of our leaders seem to have any answers.

In a recent article entitled “11 Signs That The U.S. Health Care System Is Heading Straight Down The Toilet“, I detailed a lot more reasons why our health care system is a national disgrace.  If you can handle some more ranting I encourage you to go check that article out.

I am just absolutely disgusted with the condition of our health care system.  It is dominated by government bureaucrats, pharmaceutical corporations and the big health insurance companies.  It is a giant money making scam that seeks to drain as much money from the rest of us as possible.

So do you have a hospital bill horror story to share?  Please feel free to share your thoughts below….

  • Barn cat

    There are a number of things at work. Hospitals lose money on medicare and medicaid patients. They still have to treat people who can’t pay. The net result is that those who can pay are charged an awful lot. Malpractice insurance is extremely expensive. America has more lawyers than any other country. Most countries don’t allow lawyers to get a percentage of the settlement but that’s allowed in America. The trial lawyers association is one of the biggest Democratic groups. They’re the ones getting rich on everyone else’s misery. Obamacare will “fix” it by rationing care, limiting medications and making people suffer with their painful medical conditions. Are you obese? Do you need a knee replacement? Forget it. You’ll never get one.

    • Gary2

      the malpractice is a false argument. In states that severely capped awards to patients the malpractice insurance rates actually rose slightly.

      • SmallerGovNow

        LIE! Texas has enacted such reforms and doctors are flocking to Texas to practice…

      • Bobby Ganoush

        Actually, states with caps on malpractice “rewards” have seen malpractice insurance rates go down. But never let facts get in the way of a good story.

    • Gary2

      also–we already have rationing by insurance companies who routinely deny coverage. These are truly death panels yet the low information conservatives keep defending the insurance companies.

  • dianec

    Possibly much of this is because of the illegals in our country that get free medical care. So the hospitals and Dr’s make it up on the everyone. Do you think the illegals are paying their bills? Don’t think so.

    I live in a rural area and a rancher next door had someone working for him. Not sure if he had a green card or not, but he got in an accident and completly smashed his pelvis. By the time he got out of the hospital it was over $300,000. He didn’t pay a thing and actually went back to Mexico to heal.

    • Really?

      Blame illegals for everything that’s what I would do , you people make me sick with your finger pointing we have let our nation get away from us without much rebellion or standing up for what’s right , everything is cool if you stay out of my yard. GROW UP!!!!!!!!!!!

      • Really?

        How many hospital bills have you ducked out of over the years ?
        Am I to presume that no one in this forum has ever ducked out on a debt be it health care or otherwise ,got five dollars to much change and never returned it? Did some side work and kept all the money and not pay tax? Sell a car to your nephew for a $1000.00 and put $100 bucks on the title? I know this is about the outrageous healthcare but we need to look in the mirror this holyer than thou crap needs stop!
        If you trace any problem in the USA back you will end up finding the TPTB at the source.

        • Really?

          Oh , by the way emergency room 7 hrs x-rays tests and more tests and more tests …..to tell a relative they had gas LMAO
          $16,700 dollars ……..hmmm mm……..damn illegals ……get a clue!

          • dianec

            Gee – I guess I really upset you REALLY. I did not lie. He worked on the ranch next door to me. Had no insurance and the accident DID happen. It was over $300,000 and he moved back to Mexico after all the operations.

            I DON’T LIE.

            I also have insurance and pay through my employer. I have been very fortunate and not had to use it throughout my life because I choose to be healthy. But it is there when I need it. If you want to speak about yourself ducking out of bills, do it. But I DO NOT DO THAT…jerk

    • Really?

      My point was that were no better than anyone else that’s it ,
      Why the name calling? And you just lied when you said you dont lie that’s the most ridiculous statement I’ve heard everyone lies at some point about something unless your Jesus Christ reincarnated?
      Were all stuck on this rock together your blind to the fact that the TPTB make people illegal ……no one is or should be illegal anywhere in the world lol…..I guess I really upset you. So if was your friends kid with no job or insurance it would not be that big a deal because they didn’t cross an imaginary line looking for a better life. You said yourself you didn’t know if he was “legal” or not. Yup , I’m sure of it struck a nerve with ya! Have a nice day and God Bless :0)

      • uh=huh

        really odd…really a bully.

    • paul

      SO? Have the farmer foot the bill. Easy. He should have had accident insurance for his employees. And – he should go to jail for 2 years for employing illegal immigrants in the first place.

      • Really?

        Agreed!

  • Prepared Pastor

    Hospitals charge everyone the maximum that any one insurance company will pay then negotiate down with plans individually so as not to leave money on the table. Since those without insurance cannot negotiate as a group they end up paying the most.

    My wife works for the state and I have no idea how much the emergency c-section of our baby costs because between the medical savings account and the insurance we paid nothing.

    Last time I checked medical bills were still the number one reason for personal bankruptcy. Ask them to reduce your bill to the medicaid reimbursement rate in lieu of bankruptcy.

  • Darren

    Obamacare is the worst thing that this President has done to this country (in my opinion). It is absolutely wrong for anyone to tell me that I have to purchase medical insurance. If I don’t want the insurance then all the risk is on me. This isn’t like having car insurance where you are placing other lives and property at risk, this is my own life I put at risk. Even if we get Mitt Romney elected President, I dont think he will repeal the Obamacare law because of his support for the MA healthcare law. I refuse to buy health insurance no matter what the law says. I place my life and health in Gods hands and do not worry about future medical problems.

    • GSOB

      Darren –

      You won’t be able to buy or sell without the mark of the beast. The chip implant is coming to better serve you with federal health care.

      Good call on Romney.., I predict that he will not do away with the mandate for all of us to buy the health insurance also… but I hope I am wrong.

      • Gary2

        will gog or magog get the mark? Does it give them free admission to the lake of fire???

    • k

      obamacare is romney care.

      • Malcolm Reynolds

        No, Romneycare was a debacle foisted upon a STATE that asked for it. Good for them. You dont like it you can leave.

        Obamacare is a whole other debacle foisted on ALL OF US, that no one wanted, that will destroy the entire system and us in the end.

        It also has the added benefit of being a cozy little statist blanket that denies us the opportunity to choose to leave the oppression.

        • k

          The state asked for it??

          Nice spin….

    • Linda

      Darren, if some trucker missed and buried you car under his trailer. The emergency system would get the jaws of life to cut you out of your vehicle and airlift you to the nearest emergency hospital and perform 36 hours of brain, lung and bone reconstruction surgery ($750,000). Since you have no ability to tell them (please let me die) I would carry a medical reckless that says. “DO NOT REPAIR ME I AM A BROKEN’

    • Rowell

      Darren, if you were in a terrible car accident tomorrow and taken to a hospital, do you think the hospital would turn you away because you don’t have medical insurance? No, they would not…they cannot, because they MUST provide services to those in need. You would get all the medicine and treatment you would need to recover. In the end, either you will pay the hefty bill (which would most likely bankrupt you), or the tax payers would end up fotting the bill for your treatment.

      So, I ask you, why should *I* have to pay for treatment through my tax dollars because someone is too cheap to take responsibility for themselves?

      • GSOB

        Rowell – its the third party system called government – that you seem to find sound monetary policy and solace with. You want Darren to join your misery of having to pay.

        Tax payers paying to foot the care bill for others is inherit to this third party controller – called ‘the government’. You seem to justify it’s existance at this level while at the same time you complain as a tax payer having to pay, encuraging Darren to follow your lead to pay into it.

        You are in a contradiction cununduroum

      • paul

        If you have a car accident in China, nobody would bring you to the hospital, because whoever brings you , has to pay before the hospital even takes your name.
        A fellow expat brought his Chinese coworker because he fell on his head. He wasn’t admitted because the expat didnt have enough cash on hand. No doctor saw him for the next two hours until he found an atm that took his card ans came back to the hospital. The Chinese died.

        Traffic accident victims are left dying in the streets, the drivers only get into fights as to who will remove the carcass, to enable smooth traffic.

    • Gary2

      you are a perfect example of low information conservative voter. I think your post needs to be read by all of us way smarter liberals to see what we are up against. Its hard to fix stupid.

      • Malcolm Reynolds

        Keep on postin’ Gary! You are the epitome of ‘low information’ on display.

      • SmallerGovNow

        It is a question of mathmatics Sir. You want guaranteed outcomes for each life on the planet. It is not going to happen. And there is not enough money or resources to ever make it so. Life is not fair and your liberal friends will never make it so…

    • Really?

      Amen brother!

      • Really?

        You know I have paid car insurance premiums for over 25 years never a claim , I see his point I guess I’m “lucky” that my excellent driving history has been able to help pay for others fender benders.
        It’s not necessarily low information or hard to fix stupid he has a point.
        I’m in good health have coverage I think the last time I went to the doctor was in ’08 but yet those premiums keep funneling out of my pay no reimbursement or incentive for being healthy and fit just keep the money coming. Obama are Romneycare whatever it doesn’t matter your gonna pay whether you like it or not and let’s not forget that losses are a write off. Just another scam to usurp the people of what little they have. Gary2 you crack me up bro you actually think your vote counts LMAO!

        • Really?

          A single person that makes $7.50 an hr working 40 hrs a week makes $300.00 now subtract roughly 23% for taxes off the top.
          Hmmmm……let’s see that leaves $231.00 dollars a week. If they are living on their own with no assistance form anyone or agency,
          Do you really think they can afford $200.00 a month mandatory healthcare? I would not want to give up a weeks wages for something that might happen and if it did they wouldn’t be able to pay for it anyway. So say this person does pay the money for the mandatory healthcare and needs $700,000 dollars worth of brain surgery everyone else is still gonna pay anyway. Mandatory healthcare is a JOKE! Insurance companies were heavily invested in real estate remember? Now we need …..I emphasize need healthcare now being mandated by yours truly TPTB…….I wonder whose pockets are being lined for this legislation.
          Obviously their plan is working pitting us against each other.
          They lost enormous amounts of income in the real estate fiasco now it’s a must to have coverage under the guise that it will help the people of the nation , although we have lived without this standard for over 200 years. More propaganda for us to debate and berate the less than able. REALLY?

  • Rodster

    Federal regulations and threat of lawsuits have caused doctors to practice defensive medicine which also piles on to the cost of healthcare. ;)

    • Edward

      A few years ago a girl friend told me that her father had died in Great Britain (she is a British citizen) after receiving medical care. She said that she did not understand why he had been treated in the way that he was as it seemed inappropriate for his condition. When the Obama Care debate started I realized what had happened. Her father was treated in the way specified by the NHS as the most efficacious treatment for that condition. The doctor did as he was directed to do, probably for fear of not getting paid at all for not following the guidelines at best, or remedial actions taken against him by the government. Under Obama Care doctors will be practicing defensive medicine all the more and of course the quality of health care will diminish. But then hey, the progressives want to reduce the excess population anyway.
      p.s. the ex girl friend is totally enamored with Obama.

  • Ray Kumar

    “According to one recent poll, 83 percent of all doctors in the US have considered quitting the profession because of Obamacare”

    You should not give much credence to such scare-mongering hyperbole.

    What else would they do to make a living?

    There are many countries, developed and developing, with govt. healthcare(Canada, Europe) and without, where an M.D. is not a ticket to riches, but regardless there is tremendous demand and competition for medical school admissions. And they produce world class and dedicated professionals.

    There are tangible and intangible motivations for many seeking a career in medicine. Unfortunately in the U.S. money has become the measure of all things.

    • Gary2

      Many people think about quitting their job at one time or another. That stat means nothing Michael.

      • Bobby Ganoush

        But do they think about quitting AS A RESULT OF OBAMACARE? My guess is that stat means a majority of physicians do not like Obamacare. And that should mean a lot.

    • Bobby Ganoush

      Considering that ~40% of physicians are at or near retirement age, I imagine that they would retire. There are also many opportunities available for physicians in non-clinical work, not to mention that physicians could simply leave medicine for other careers. Many have done it and I’m sure many will follow.

      • Gary2

        yeah there is openings at mcDonalds for 7.25 per hour.

        • Bobby Ganoush

          Yeah there sure is openings {sic}

          You seem to forget that doctors tend to be very smart people and can apply that brain power to any number of opportunities.

  • Evie

    The banks are buying up the hospitals. The readers digest of last month has all of the steps involved to make your bills lower.
    If debt prisons,were declared illegal what gives the state and county the right to supercede the law?

  • Florida Cracker

    Certainly there will be some cost reductions in medical care once we are firmly in the grip of the coming economic collapse, but of course then you’ll have even less money to pay those bills, so…

    The only advice I can give is:

    1. live as healthy a lifestyle as you can
    2. absolutely avoid any activity that has even a moderate risk for injury, or
    3. engage in high risk activities where death comes swiftly
    4. pray that your daughter marries a doctor (mine didn’t)
    5. pray that your son becomes a doctor (mine didn’t)

  • Wilson

    Yep, an ambulance transfer from the hospital to an aircraft for a flight from Cortez, Colorado to Denver, Colorado. The patient was not in critical condition, just needed to go to a hospital where they could treat his condition. The ambulance trip was approximately 15 miles round trip. Cost $6,000.

    • MarkieMark

      Throw him in the back of my van, I’ll drive him there for $500.

    • paul

      next time take a taxi. They are much cheaper to build than ambulances.

  • http://www.prepper-resources.com PJ Prepper

    Great article Michael, the complexity of the healthcare system is simply mind boggling. Our current system is way too far down the road for any real “fixes” to have any substantial positive impact. New healthcare laws are simply band-aids applied to an arterial bleed.

    I greatly respect and am thankful for our family Doctor whom we have known for years. I really do think he has our best interest in mind, at least it looks that way. Alas the system as a whole is broken and I have no idea how to fix it. I think it goes beyond legislation and would require a paradigm shift (you see what I did there?) in thinking. How we could achieve that, I have no idea. The issue is light years beyond Republicans and Democrats pointing the finger at each other. Actually that is really pretty fitting, since they both are to blame.

    Regardless I have a small story to share. I always wondered why my healthcare provider would bill my insurance (for example) $300, but if I told them I was paying cash they would reduce the bill to $50. What’s the REAL cost?

    Thanks again for the post.

    Cheers

    PJ

  • Mick

    Prisons are privately run and need more “customers.” Step right up and pay your 80K hospital bill or enlist in the growing number of prison inmates.

    Welcome to Obamanation

  • BeenThere

    Another anti Obamacare article. Since I don’t understand Obamacare (who does?) then maybe you are right. But what is the answer? The existing privatised system obviously is not.

    • GSOB

      BeenThere

      That’s because USA history shows that its direction has been there and done that.

      This country is on the healthcare road to perdition – Has been since 1935.

      There is no turning back.

  • JonQPublicMenace

    First, get rid of the lawyers.

    • Wilson

      Years ago Paul Harvey did one of his “Rest of the Story” segments and described how in the early colonial days lawyers weren’t even allowed in to the fledgling “country”. Eventually the were allowed in through Virginia and the rest of the story is……

      Get rid of the bankers as well, first, second, at the same time it makes no matter. Just get rid of them.

    • Mondobeyondo

      William Shakespeare said the same thing some 400 years ago.

  • Antonio Gonzalez

    “It has gotten to the point where doctors barely make any profit on Medicare and Medicaid patients. In fact, in many cases doctors actually lose money treating them.”

    You are wrong….wrong….wrong

    • GB

      Antonio, please enlighten us. Michael has written a coherent and articulate article citing facts and figures to back up his points. You give us one sentence that is barely grammatically correct. Pray tell, why should I (or anyone else) feel compelled to be swayed by your opinion?

    • Bobby Ganoush

      No this is quite true. Where I live, Medicaid does not reimburse cardiologists enough to cover the cost for a heart procedure and in many cases the cardiologists do not even charge for the procedure because they end up losing even more money.

  • http://thelawsonpost.com KL

    Mike were do you find the time. Very good piece here. Also did you here that the US fell in competitive ranking for the fourth year in a row, today? I have the article from Adams on my site. here’s the link. http://thelawsonpost.com/u-s-falls-in-competitive-ranking-for-fourth-year-in-a-row/

  • Old Man

    In America, health care is a business. Just like pharma, medical equipment, anything dealing with health, human and animal.

    And in American business, only one thing matter – maximize revenue and squeeze the last drop of profit.

    So why do they charge $83.046 for 3 hour? Because they can. And you either pay or die.

    Don’t like it? Move to Cuba, Canada, Chile, or China. Or the rest of the world really. See, for the rest of the world, they start off with a ‘socialist’ principle in health care – human life is precious. In America, it starts off with a capitalist principle in health care – human life is an opportunity to make money, and the sicker the patient get, the better.

    • Gabriel

      Move to Canada? Cuba? China? As a Canadian, I find this comparison …. well ….. hilarious.

      Check out the latest OECD and UN health and quality of life figures (things like life expectancy and infant mortality rates, never mind the literacy and numeracy statistics). In most of these determinants, the figures are better in Canada than in the US.

      Health care is generally considered a basic human right in most developed countries and subsequently not subject to the general operating principles of what you call capitalism. That said, I believe you will find capitalist principles largely apply in everyday life in Canada.

      • Bobby Ganoush

        You should also read the fine print as to how different countries calculate/report their “quality of life” measures. The answers just might surprise you.

    • Gary2

      you are 100% correct. these countries also have better outcomes at a lower price.

  • K

    How could it be any less expensive? The drug companies, have to make their billions. The Hospital corporations, have to make their billions. And many of the Doctors have to make their millions. Notice, I did not say all Doctors, some are fine people. A group that was set up to supply free medical services, in third world Countries. Now spends half their time setting up free clinics in this Country. Thank God that they do. Greed is destroying this Country. It has just been in the Medical community a little longer.

  • Jon

    As a hospital CFO, I can tell you that charges are not set as other industries. It is very difficult to base charges on cost because hospitals have very little control over net reimbursement, or what is paid after adjustments from insurance companies and Medicare and Medicaid. Since net reimbursement is what pays the bills, a CFO tries to maximize charges in an attempt to keep ahead of the inevitable price inflation all industries face in wages, supplies, health insurance, and so on.

    Having said that, there has been a great deal of pressure on non-profit and public hospitals to implement charity care programs to keep the uninsured and underinsured out of collection agencies. I always advise people I know to see if the hospital they are doing business have a charity or discount program. Sadly, many hospitals are still shortsighted and do not take care of the uninsured.

    There is no question that the healthcare system is broken, and that the introduction of Medicare and Medicaid have completely warped both the health care free market and the Bible based (good Samaritan) charity that our nation enjoyed. Diagnosing the problem is very simple. Fixing it is difficult, because each generation has been doubling down on the last one to enhance a broken system (Medicare Part D and so on). I believe a crash is the only thing that will cause people to change, but at what cost?

    • http://www.prepper-resources.com PJ Prepper

      Great post Jon, from someone who is close to the pulse of the system. Thanks for the insight.

    • John W.

      Jon,
      So you see nothing wrong with charging that woman $83,000 for three shots. There is a word for you and your lack of ethics. no wonder lawyers like to sue the crap out of doctors and hospitals. Professional envy.

      • Jon

        Hey John W,
        I understand the sarcasm. Frankly, I do see something wrong with the system. I was simply trying to explain how the system works. However, it is not my lack of ethics causing the problem. The system was created by people who’s desire is to make people dependent upon it. That is as old as Nimrod and the tower of Babel (read Josephus “Antiquities of the Jews”, if you are interested.)

        As far as lack of ethics, you will also need to blame the American people who keep electing people of both parties to keep the current system alive. This is no surprise, there are huge dollars at stake.

        As for my part, as the CFO of a hospital, I did start a charity care program to keep people with outrageous bills out of collections, and to reduce the charges to a level in line with their income. I was give the authority to do this by the CEO and local board of trustees.

        So, before smearing all of us with invective, think about how you played a part in keeping this system going.

    • liberranter

      The only practical solution to the problem is this: get insurance out of health care altogether, except for catastrophic, unanticipated injuries. After all, insurance is about managing risk. As Eric Peters pointed out a few weeks back, you wouldn’t have your car insurance pay for routine oil changes, or your homeowners insurance pay for a new coat of exterior paint on your house. The very idea is absurd from an economics perspective, cost-prohibitive, and goes against the very definition and purpose of insurance. So why the HELL is this insanity common practice in the medical and dental field? Having one’s insurance pay for a routine tooth cleaning or simple physical checkup makes no more sense than having insurance pay for a routine oil change or home termite inspection.

      Until this insanity ends, until third-party payers become a thing of the past except in exceptional cases, and until the medical profession is compelled to compete under market conditions, expenses will only skyrocket to ridiculous levels and quality of care will only continue to deteriorate to intolerable nadirs.

      • Don Levit

        liberrantor:
        I am in complete agreement with you.
        Because insurance covers the charges, the costs continue to rise.
        It will be when demand is determined by the patients for the potential supply, when we will see reasonable pricing.
        If one increases his deductible high enough, he can incur significant reductions in premiums.
        Raising the deductible to $25,000 cuts premiums 60%. Raising it to $50,000 cuts premiums 80%.
        Insurers do not want to sell these plans, for it cuts too drastically into their revenue streams.
        I and 3 partners will receive from Milliman, an actuarial firm, next week, data we can takle to prospective life insurers.
        The goal: form a 501(c)(4) health insurance subsidiary, so more discretionary dollars are available for their life insurance products.
        For $300 a month, one can build up a $25,000 paid-up policy in 36 months.
        The only premiums due will be for the catastrophic coverage, at about a 60% discount.
        Don Levit

  • WolfHound14

    Never give your name or real address to the hospital. always say you are an illegal immigrant. They have to treat you. Fight fire with fire.

    Illegal immigrants not only would have received the very same treatment as this woman, but totally free. They also probably would have gotten a lobster dinner to go with it as the social service worker was rolled in and filed paperwork to enroll them in every single government handout program under the setting American sun, probably multiple times too.

    • Rusty

      You are correct. Screw them. We’re all illegals now.

    • liberranter

      Or get yourself arrested and incarcerated. Prisoners aren’t billed for medical care either.

  • Louise in MO

    By law, those who enter the hospital via the Emergency Room cannot be denied care, even if they have no insurance whatsoever. Now imagine the millions of illegal immigrants who use this route routinely for anything, even colds, flu and the like. Then we have the countless millions on Medicaid who do the same thing, however, they are OUR citizens.

    Hospitals pass those costs down to those with health care coverage and those on Medicare. In other words those of us who have are paying for those who do not. Obamacare makes it worse.

    Now this system of charges may please Gary2 who loves the so-called “rich” paying for the “poor” and is probably happy to know this fact.

    How do I know? I worked both for two medical hospitals and six doctors for about twenty years. Medicaid pays only about ten cents on the dollar and that is not an exaggeration. Not only does Medicaid pay so little, it takes from three to six months to receive that payment. Some Medicaid bills are never paid at all.

    Medicare pays more and pays quicker. It is the private health care insurance companies, however, that pay the most and pay fastest.

    Those who have medical bills can pay on those bills in small, monthly amounts regardless of how high the bill is. If you send $10 or $25 a month and are consistent, the majority of doctors and hospitals will accept that as long as you are faithful to pay each month. Those who get in trouble are those who ignore the bill and make no effort to pay anything. These are the ones who end up in collection agencies’ hands.

    My husband has multiple health problems and all doctors and hospitals have been patient and taken small, monthly payments for anything we owe after Medicare and his secondary insurance.

    Prescription drugs are outrageously priced and the only conclusion one can reach is that greed in this case fits the crime. If the patient and the doctor agree, generic drugs are always less expensive.

    It may sound like I am on the doctor/hospital side of this issue. I am just commenting on my experience. I hope it helps someone out there to worry less about their medical care.

    My final point refers to the first couple of paragraphs….illegals and those who are on Medicaid. Medicaid we need for those who are poor and need help. Illegal immigrants we DO NOT need! Those who support “FREE” everything are milking this country dry.

    • Gary2

      Louise–I agree that the illegals are a huge drain on the system and they and their anchor babies can go back to their own country. The LAST thing we need is more unskilled immigration.

      • GSOB

        Gary2
        What do you mean unskilled immigration?

        No such thing.
        It takes great skill, determinism and dedication to migrate illegally to this country.
        Crime pays, I hope you know.

        Drop the border walls concerning all mexicans, hispanics and latinos at the same time get the government out of our free market economy health care and you will see that things would get better. quicker than any government run health care plan.

        The great depression, the decade before the WWII times (1939-to 1945), though the depress started in 1929 on black Tuesday – it did not feel that it hit rock bottom until 1933. That’s about 4 years to descent. That was a slow economic collapse – not all happening at once. Then WWII
        So……..
        4 more years

        4 more years

        more in 4 years with Robamy.

        Iran is the focus.

    • paul

      Anybody can still receive care. But when the bill cannot be paid that person could be brought before a court for theft, especially illegals.
      Hong Kong charges an entrance fee for A&E entrants. If you just have the flu or cols, make an appointment and pay nothing.
      In Germany you need to provide an identification.

    • md

      The law actually says they must be given a screening examination to determine if they have a serious or life threatening condition. It does not require that the patient be treated for anything less. But once the patient has been placed in the system and given the exam, the easy part is giving the treatment and that is what usually happens. But, if the screening exam determines that they have a hangnail, they can be refused. It happens occasionally, mostly with people who come repeatedly and abuse the system for trivial complaints.

  • md

    After 20 years in the ER, I did quit. Couldn’t do the right thing for most of the patients- sometimes had to do too much, sometimes too little. It is all about the $$$

    • WM

      md: I have a friend who was a practicing ER doctor as well as a general patient doctor at a hospital and he told me the same thing. As a God fearing man, he could not lie to the people and give them drugs when they had no need for them at all. Often, times it was a slight lifestyle change or dietary change that could cure them. He was eventually repremanded several times and asked to “go with the flow” in the sustem or leave. Well, he decided to leave and start a home business making false teeth. He also uses his talents, for free, as a missionary doctor or were ever he can use his skills.

      I know this man fairly well and can vouvh to his high integrity, and he said the health care system has become a business and its all about money through drugs and surgeries.

      • md

        Yes I agree. I volunteer as the medical director of a clinic for people with no insurance. Fortunately, I am not dependent on income from medicine. We have a business that supports us.

  • Chris

    One thing that the entire human race must understand absolutely ridiculously is “THERE IS NO FUTURE”…

    We all are moving backwards, thats why we don’t see it coming. There was never a future, we are all moving towards the greatest truth ever denied to the human race…”the force” mentioned in STAR WARS….

    The force of darkness has engulfed our planet and its in each one of us and its pulling humans, animals, plants, metals, rocks everything towards him. The elites have just aligned themselves to “the force” and have positioned themselves when we move back to exploit us even further..

    Only way we can get rid of our misery forever is to not FEAR, remove fear from our societies…death is least of our worries now….its the force which we need to be aware of…..we will never ever be free and create our own reality unless we are free of this force of darkness.

    • Zedge Hero

      Fine then, may the FORCE not be with you.

  • Gary2

    We pay way more for healthcare and get worse results then the other first world countries that have single payer. We only have the best healthcare in the world if you are rich. For the rest of us there is rationing done by the scum bag parasite insurance companies. They are the real death panels.

    Think of the burden that having single payer would lift off businesses.

    • Nexus789

      Good comment. In the US the ‘drivers’ are all perverse. It is in the insurance companies interest to have people ill rather then healthy.

      There is a fundamental philosophical disconnect between the way Americans think about the provision of health services and other countries. I have no wish to debate that as I don’t care about the US predicament and the moronic focus on Liberty an selfishness. I have lived in three countries with universal health care and I would never choose to live in the US. It is funny as when I was in Boston working and people knew that I came from Australia and when conversation turned to health I was called a ‘commie’, ‘marxist’, or a ‘socialist’. Easy to spout meaningless invective when you don’t even understand the terms being used from a political and economic perspective. I found it sadly amusing.

      The US health system is truly Kafkaesque.

    • Florida Cracker

      “We pay way more for healthcare and get worse results then the other first world countries that have single payer.”

      How long are you liberals going to keep spewing that lie. Healthcare in Europe is a joke. Our hospitals in the US are full of foreign patients seeking quality medical care they can’t get in their single-payer nations.

      Only the rich get quality care? Odd, no doctor I’ve ever been to ask for an income statement. The rich guy with the same insurance plan I have gets the same benefits. This is just more of your incessant class warfare crap.

      Single payer is just the government becoming your insurance company. And we all know how efficient the federal government is.

      • Gary2

        And we all know how efficient the federal government is.

        Yes medicare has a 2% admin cost and insurance companies have a 18%.

        everything I said about higher costs with worse outcomes are facts you can Google for yourself.

        I know conservatives do not let facts get in the way.

      • paul

        well, my parents pay health insurance for over 60 years now. When my mom had to go in for heart catheter, she didn’t have to pay a cent. They have to supplement medicine, however.

  • Gary2

    Michael–is that bottom picture a self portriat?

  • Big Dave

    My mother receved a $100,000 plus bill for kidney and heart harvesting. This was because she donated my deceased father”s organs. It was a mistake but very cruel and only a couple months after my dad died.

    • John W.

      No good deed goes unpunished. Sorry for your loss.

    • liberranter

      Wow, Big Dave, that’s f****d up, even for the health insurance industry.

      Personally, I’d think twice, thrice, four times or more about being an organ donor. While it’s definitely a noble and altruistic thing to do in the abstract, organ harvesting has become a truly sleazy racket. You or your loved ones are expected to donate organs that harvesters will be paid for extracting and that, for all practical purposes, will be sold to the highest bidder.

      While the medical establishment CLAIMS that no money is exchanged in the transplant candidacy process, that’s yet another load of MSM/Establishment bullshit. Try selling the “most deserving candidate comes first” line of BS to the family of the poor schmuck (or schmuckette, as the case may be) who didn’t get a liver transplant back in 1995 because some panel of elitist doctors or their MBA handlers decided that the washed-up, alcoholic baseball Hall of Famer Mickey Mantle, a guy who already had one foot in the grave, needed it more. So what happened after the Mick got his new liver? He croaked less than thirty days later. God only knows whether the poor schmuck (or schmuckette) who needed that liver lived long enough to get another one.

  • Klean

    Each and every system is a rigged, giant money making scam. Think about it, the healthcare system, the banking system, the housing/mortgage system, the education system, the oil/transportation system, you could even say the food/fast food/grocery system is rigged and growing more dangerous all the time and at who’s expense? The consumer or the poor idiot stupid enough to eat the food available or all that is affordable. The religion system is rigged as well and preys on the poor and stupid just the same. We know how broken and unfixable the systems in place are and is why the power grab was so important for the U.S. It knew the system was fucked and would fail and others would threaten it. But nobody can stop it. Try and you are a criminal or terrorist. So try and join these systems and keep ************ everyone and everything over. It’s the American way. The only one apparently left.

  • hero

    I recently took my wife to a Japanese hospital without insurance. Modern hospitals in Japan are high tech & fully computerized. You will be amazed with the technology.

    She got an Xray & MRT and the bill came about US$400 only. That is without insurance but still expensive by Japanese standards.

    I know US hospitals are a scam because the medical lobby is so powerful they can charge any money they wish.

    hero

  • Momof4

    We have a daughter that requires a nutritional/high calorie supplement as she has a feeding tube. When she first had the tube placed, we were hooked up with a company that provided a pump, enternal feeding supplies, and the supplemental high calorie formula she required. I went over the bills with a fine-tooth comb trying to figure out the charges and called the company (a middleman basically). After reviewing the bills, they let me know that we were actually being undercharged and they needed to resubmit the corrected charges to our insurance company. Their corrected charges were around $2000-$3000 per month for her nutritional drink and supplies. Over $24,000 per year for her food basically!!! I shopped around and called my insurance company and told them I could find it for less. Our insurance company wasn’t interested in hearing about it. Needless to say, we bought our own pump and our own enternal supplies and got rid of this company that was charging us an exhorbitant amount. We were also able to buy the formula directly from the manufacturer for a fraction of the cost we were being charged. This middleman should be put out of business. It’s a ridiculous game.

  • Scott

    “So not only do we pay very high taxes to support Medicaid and Medicare, we also have to pay higher medical bills in order to make up the difference for the money that doctors and hospitals are not seeing from those patients.”

    And remember, those tax dollars are not just going for healthcare, their also supporting a huge government bureaucracy of paper pushers. That leaves less money for actual healthcare. The hospitals of course try to make up the difference in billing. Trickle down government at its worst.

  • http://theeconomiccollapseblog.com chris1

    “And please don’t tell me that Obamacare is the answer.
    “The truth is that Obamacare is going to take everything that is wrong with our health care system and make it even worse.”

    Exactly. Obamacare just mandated people buy cheap crappy insurance.It helps/changes nothing.
    Paul Jay on the real news network on YT did a great vid on this months back when it passed.

  • hero

    One more thing…American doctors have a habbit of selling you the most expensive technology & cure when a cheaper alternative is present.

    Look at antidepressants. It’s something you don’t have to take if you know how to deal with stress. That’s something any modern society has to cope.

    hero
    Kobe, Japan

    • Jodi

      I agree, say no to antidepressants. They really don’t work, in my opinion they just make it worse. I say, exercise, meditate, yoga, change your diet, find God and most of all suck it up! Things will be just fine.

      • liberranter

        It has gotten so far out of hand that GPs are now trying to push ADs for almost everything. It has become all too obvious that doctors (not all, probably not even most, but many) are taking kickbacks from Big Pharma, probably in order to make up the difference between what Mediscam or the insurers pay and what their costs are.

        BTW, don’t EVER accept a prescription for or take ANY psychotropic drug. These things are worse than the (mostly non-existent) afflictions that they purport to cure.

  • Ken Nohe

    Well yes, I do have a case to share and a very simple solution. Whenever you case is no so bad that an ambulance must take you to the hospital, just jump in a plane instead and get treated in Asia. Hospitals in Thailand or even Singapore (More expensive but top level service) will treat you for 1/10 the price in the US. So in most case, you will get a one week “holiday” for free including the plane ticket and will not get broke on the way back. I have done it twice already, for low level problems that is true, and enjoyed it tremendously.

    Another solution if you are not rich or rather stingy, go to a University hospital. You are treated by “students” in their last years of study for a very low rate. I use this regularly for dental problem. I paid 120$ for a crown last year and about 200$ including all the work, x-ray, etc… A bargain. There is of course the risk that these people are low on training. Well, maybe but their equipment is usually up to date, as is their knowledge of course. I have used the service for the last 15 years.

    Now for those who want the address, I live in Japan so it won’t help much but there must be something equivalent nearby; just have a look, it is worth the money and time spent.

  • Snarky the Klown

    You think healthcare is expensive now just wait till it’s free.

  • Freedoms Twilight

    So discouraging. We just moved back to the states from an Asian Pacific nation. Visited China along the way. What if I told you the average person seems to feel more free in Communist China than in the U.S.A.? Surely the comparison is not perfect, and they have serious problems, but they are rapidly moving ahead while we grow more and more into a toilet country. The lack of honor in this nation is astonishing. As an aside, so too our military exploits and military itself are beginning to show signs of dishonor, real dishonor, and this is a concern as well.

    What a nightmare. I would rather live free and die early and see my country shake off the debt addiction over a tough decade or so than see this nasty, vile mess continue to grow. For that matter, even a depression would be okay if I felt like my fellow countrymen retained their honor.

    But that is less and less the case. Pathetic.

    • liberranter

      What if I told you the average person seems to feel more free in Communist China than in the U.S.A.?

      I’d respond that the average thinking, freedom-loving person would feel more free just about anywhere in the world today than in the UFSA.

      I’ve spent a great deal of time in what are, by the UFSA*’s traditional hypocritical standards, some pretty “repressive” countries. But in not one of them was I ever hassled on a daily basis over as much petty BS as I am every day here in the UFSA. So, no, I have no trouble whatsoever believing that “Communist” (yeah, RIGHT) China is a liberty lover’s paradise compared to this neo-Roman Empire in which I’m now trapped.

      (*UFSA = United Fascialist State of Amerika)

  • Matt P, RN

    I worked for a hospital (Penrose, in Colorado Springs) as a nurse. I had a bad gall bladder. The hospital’s doctor botched the surgery. I spent 28 days in a septic coma. Fivi more weeks to recover and relearn how to walk. I was then FIRED by the good Catholics at Penrose “because I could no longer do the work”! Health insurance vanished a month later. It has been a BAD four years, finally got on S.S. Disability which helps a little. Just because there’s a crucifix or two on the walls does NOT mean you are not a Corporate Vampire Squid…..

    • liberranter

      Wow, Matt, that’s ********** up. I hope you sued the living ********* out of that “Catholic” institution. It sounds like you have an airtight case.

  • dmitry

    oh my, these days it was so hard to earn a descent amount of cash. Then if we get sick, hospital will rip our hard earned dough. I choose to die anyway. :=(

  • http://www.highqualityhealthcare.com Brian

    If you have health insurance the insurance company uses a patient advocate to negotiate a lower price for the insurance company that has to pay the bill. For years this was not available to individual consumers, only insurance companies, but it now is accessible through the Karis Group. You can look it up or read about them at http://www.HighQualityHealthCare.com. Discount health programs like AmeriPlan have a contract with the Karis group so that their individual members get access to a patient advocate who lowers their payment to a reasonable amount.

    By the way, AmeriPlan, which is not insurance, is a free market solution to healthcare where the consumer has the responsibility of finding the best price within the network – unlike Obamacare.

  • David H

    Don’t go to a hospital unless you have a broken bone or blood is coming out of your **********.

  • Bri 3D

    About a year ago, my mother gave me the original hospital bill from my birth. It was still in brand new condition.
    In 1967 it was $19/night for her room & $10/night for me to stay in the nursery.
    The circumcision was $5.
    We stayed 5 nights and the total bill for BOTH of us was $257. They paid cash, no insurance.
    The average wage back then was $20 a day. So an average days wage would cover the $19 stay over at a hospital. I believe the gov’t started subsidizing health care in 1965. ( could be wrong on the year ) but the funny thing is, all my mom remembers is that I was about twice as much as my sister ( 8 years earlier ) so just barely into gov’t subsidized healthcare the price had already doubled.
    Insurance was only for major illnesses back then AND money was gold & silver.
    If we get the gov’t OUT of healthcare and return to sound money, healthcare costs will become affordable again. Same goes with education.

  • marhall

    The reason most american companies have gone off-shore is the cost of medical care. I live in Germany now. The health care is great and not expensive. I dare say it would be best to always keep enough money aside to buy a airplane ticket to europe. have your medical treatment there. it will be 80 percent cheaper than the states even without insurance. like everything else in america, its a racket. Medicine should be non-profit.

  • KB

    Michael: For giggles, maybe an experienced medical coder/biller can give us the low-down on the billing practices of hospitals and insurance companies.

    I talked to a medical biller once and she told me: That insurance companies have a tendency to balk at providing even the doctors with a copy of his/her own contract for payments because they don’t want them to be able to contest low payments or declined payments. That no medical insurance company pays for sports physicals. That insurance companies may have to pay a portion of every payment processed as a state fee depending on the state (and states are broke?). That there are a few insurance companies that if for some reason the doctor doesn’t bill the company within 60 days, the doctor is then forever barred from billing them for that service date.

    It is as if America said, “Send us your greedy, your lazy, your conniving, your cheating…”

    How on earth did our country end up so corrupt on so many levels?

    • liberranter

      How on earth did our country end up so corrupt on so many levels?

      Because other countries sent us their “greedy, lazy, conniving, and cheating,” who then, after pairing up with the native-born of said demographic, bred whole new generations of the same.

  • Concerned Person

    Yeah I do have a hospital horror story to share. I almost bled to death when I had my daughter two years ago due to sheer medical negligence. Because I was on Medicaid they cut corners and made it all too clear they wanted me out of the hospital ASAP.

    After my daughter was born the doctor who delivered her wanted to go home and was very impatient. She yanked out the placenta and it crumbled into a bunch of pieces.

    The hospital didn’t want to do a D and C or an ultrasound on me and let me almost hemmorhage to death before giving me two transfusions. I had a hemoglobin level of 5 and had lost 1/3 of all the blood in my body.

    They sent me home once the bleeding was under control, and made very sarcastic comments about my lack of insurance. At home I passed a huge piece of placenta and was taken to the hospital by ambulance.

    This hospital saved my life – I had a raging infection and had 1/2 the placenta still inside of me at the time. A few months later we had to return to the same hospital as one of my children was inpatient. The doctor who did my D and C said she had expected me to die during the procedure and was shocked that I was alive and walking around and well.

    After this experience I decided to never have another child and my husband got a vasectomy. I have three kids and that is enough.

    • Concerned Person

      I should make it clear that the hospital that saved my life was a completely different hospital – I am forever grateful to them for helping me beat all the odds!

      • liberranter

        I hope you successfully sued the ************ out of the first hospital. I’d also have gone after the medical license of the quacktard bitch who almost let you bleed to death during delivery.

  • k

    Micheal, could you tell us how doctors are going broke, or post a link to that.I am really interested in that.

  • Depressed in PA

    Last year I had an accident while repairing a friends car, this accident caused me to crack a couple of ribs. As a result of this injury I was left experiencing some pretty bad pain and difficulty breathing. I was reluctant to see a doctor due to the fact I had lost my health insurance recently because I was laid off from my job and unable to afford replacement coverage. After suffering and worrying for about a month I was convinced to make a doctors appt. The doctor referred me to the local hospital emergency room because of my lack of insurance. At the hospital they placed me in a wheelchair (in the hallway because of a lack of available rooms), and proceeded to run diagnostic tests. It was determined I had damaged some ribs and they sent me home with some OTC pain relievers. Then the bills started rolling in, diagnostics, imaging, etc. All added up the bills totaled over $21000.00. I had spent maybe 5 hours sitting in a hallway plus a couple diagnostic tests, and this was my bill. No public assistance programs exist to help me with this bill as I am a single white male 36 yrs old. I am filing bankruptcy as a direct result of this incident combined with the loss of my income. I never thought this could happen to me. I would have to agree the healthcare system is broken….

    • Michael

      This is why so many Americans are deathly afraid to even step into a hospital these days.

      Michael

      • GSOB

        Hey Michael,

        Hey why not go to the hospital? It’s free isn’t it? I mean, the government is gonna pay for it.
        It’s government sponsored – so money is not any of my concern, right?

    • Momof4

      Some hospitals, I don’t know if you know, have “charity” care–a fund you can tap into to help pay the bills if you do not have insurance or money to pay. Your situation is truly scary. And I was upset a few years back when I had to go to the ER due to a kidney stone, was there less than 2 hours, and the bill was over $1500.

  • SLAMMER

    I am being treated for chronic neurological lyme disease. About 3 weeks ago, I was rushed to the hospital with severe brain pain. I was there about 5 hours and they sent me home saying I had a “headache”. Yesterday I recieved the Cigna bill. $13,000!!!! Of course Cigna paid most of this no problem but will not cover the $16k iv lyme treatment telling me it is too expensive. But they WILL pay $13k if I go to the ER every day for a headache no questions asked. What a joke!!!

    • paul

      Many insurances are like that. They won’t pay the hepatitis vaccination, but the treatment.

  • jox

    I’d like to suggest to Americans that you don’t reject automatically other countries public healthcare systems by the simple method of labelling them ‘socialist’. When the medical professionals don’t have pressure to maximize benefits, they perform much better, looking only for the well being of the patients. And the paradox is that, eventually, the cost for the government is far lower than in US.

  • WM

    A great and timely article Michael. Ths system is surely broke. My wife has had her share of hospital visits for “check ups”, a few tests, and a few cat scans thrown in there. She is now working 2 part time jobs just to pay the insurance minimums, yes we do have what is considered good insurance.

    My wife has noticed that the hosptals try to encourage or rather push to get more tests, more follow up visits, etc. She is just starting to realize that it is all about money, and what I have been telling her over the past 8 years is true. I read the “Natural Cures they don’t want you to know about” book by Kevin Trudeau, and it seemed real radical when I read it, but seems to fit right in to what is going on. The drug companies and hospitals are out to make money, and sick people are GREAT for business. Throw in a load of processed food, bad diets and lack of excersize and you are almost guaranteeing a future of sick people to make money off of.

    It is a sick system in the great USA. My wife is from Peru and believe it or not the health care system down there is much better and much cheaper and yes they do have top notch doctors and hospital facilities. I was actually shocked at how modern everything is in many areas of South America.

    With that, I conclude with an article that I found that hopefully will inspire my fellow Americans to start thinking about when enough is enough, and when will the point come where we collectively put our foot down and say enough is enough!!!! in order to change the current path and hold the system accountable.

    Will Enough of Us Refuse?
    Living without the bonds of TV affords me the luxury of having time to read. As my third book this month, I happened to pick the Leon Uris novel, QB VII, written in the 1970s, when there was still something to be proud about in America, and when there were still enough people around who could remember the horrors of WWII.
    The story takes place in post-WWII England, and is about a libel suit brought by a Polish Nationalist doctor (Kelno), a former POW in Jadwiga concentration camp, against a Jewish-American author (Cady) who names him as performing surgeries for German doctors who were experimenting on Jewish prisoners.
    This is part of the opening statement made by the defense attorney (for Cady) in the British courtroom:
    “Well, as a matter of fact there were some Germans, soldiers, officers, priests, doctors, and ordinary civilians who refused to obey these orders and said, ‘I am not going to do this because I would not like to live and have this on my conscience. I’m not going to push them into gas chambers, and then say later I was under orders and justify it by saying that they were going to be pushed in by someone anyhow and I can’t stop it and other people will push them more cruelly. Therefore, it’s in their best interest that I shove them in gently. You see, the trouble was, not enough of these people refused.1″
    When my tears subsided I thought, what an amazing time to be reading this. How appropriate to what is happening in our country now.
    Day after day we see headlines about the indignities suffered by air travelers at the hands of TSA agents who are content to place their hands on the genitals of passengers of no matter what ages for their daily ration of bread (read: HFCS, MSG, GMO, etc.). And still the passengers line up for the privilege of being “man-handled” so that they can get to grandma’s house or their next business meeting a little faster instead of saying, “I am a free American and you may NOT touch me without cause,” or even, “I will not ride your airplane if I must be accosted so.”
    Day after day we see headlines about some police officer tazering an elderly citizen for asking a question, or throwing the occupant of a wheelchair to the ground to prove that he is handicapped… or killing a veteran for having a gun in his own home. And still we say, “Yes, sir” to the police and skulk away in fear, instead of saying, “Don’t do that to this person!”
    Day after day we see headlines about what a potential criminal/terrorist — someone to be suspected regardless of their actions — is the person who cites the U.S. Constitution to affirm their rights, or likes a certain political candidate, or has served his or her country in the military, or just wants to be left alone by “the system”, or has the audacity to disagree with the current administration — or who asks for acknowledgement of the truth instead of ridicule on a point of fact. And still we say, “Thank goodness you’re taking care of my safety and security, because I don’t want to get my hands dirty,” instead of saying, “I have a right to my opinion, to think my own thoughts.”
    Day after day we see headlines about the millions cheated out of their homes, losing their jobs, forced to beg the government for poisoned food that will make their children imbeciles compared to who they could have been so that those who control the money can amass more and more for themselves, reaching orgasm at the thought of how much they have attained and how they can hold the “cattle” as slaves. And still we say, “Thank you for the job as a hamburger flipper so that I can pay you most of my wages in taxes,” instead of saying, “I will take care of my money myself.”
    We are at the proverbial “slippery slope”. From here it will be easy to fall into the same state as was controlled by the German nazis. The slogan of the time was, “Never Forget!” But TPTB are doing everything possible — dumbing us down, directing thought — to make us forget so that they can use the same tactics unencumbered by the ghosts of the slaughtered. Don’t allow us and our children to be next. Those who forget history are doomed to repeat it. Just make sure the history you remember is the truth.
    Aldus Huxley is quoted as saying (paraphrased) that the ideal situation is one in which the slave is contented with his enslavement. You are an accomplice to your own enslavement. Stop being contented. Stop rationalizing your own enslavement as the best you can hope for.
    TPTB know that if you don’t resist, you are theirs to exploit in any way they see fit. Stop complying. Imagine what would happen to TPTB if we all just said, “hell, no” — no matter how gently they grab our balls.
    Through our website, survivingsurvivalism.com, we talk to far too many docile, I-have-a-million-reasons-not-to-take-action kind of people. The time to stand up is now, not as they close the gas chamber door behind you. No football game, airline flight, bus trip, concert, prom, no job, no social group is worth your human dignity — nor your freedom. Spread the word that we are enslaved by our own volition — and that it doesn’t have to be so. Stop complying now with that which is, at it essence, wrong. There is no excuse.
    ” …You see, the trouble was, not enough of these people refused.”

  • WM

    Oh sorry, forgot to mention by shcok and infuriation over the fact that police came and arrested someone because they were unable to pay an inflated bill due to a sickness….which they did not want.

    Yet, I know a guy in the real estate profession who screwed many people and stole lots of money, and yet was able to file bankrupcy and move to another state…..hey occifer!! why don’t you go knock on his door and leave the people who are struggling in this bombed out economy who have to struggle even more to try to pay the corrupt health care system its over inflated bills???

    I see it as the health care system stealing from its patients.

    The globalists are behind this in the shadows, all part of a plan to ruin our economy, destroy the middle class. All the while, most Americans who are struggling are simply too “distracted” in just trying to make a living, that they are blind to the little steps that are being taken to enslave us and rip upour Constitiution.

    WHEN ARE THE AMERICAN PEOPLE GOING TO SAY ENOUGH IS ENOUGH? WHEN??????

  • Joe

    Here’s a true story. A few years back I got a skin infection. With no insurance I went to the ER. For a simple diagnosis the bill was about $400, plus another 100 for meds. Two months later I had a recurrance. This time I was in Colombia. I went to a doctor, got great service. The office visit was eight dollars and the meds about $50. Imagine the irony: Unless you have cancer or some rare disease, it might be worth your while to seek treatment somewhere else.

  • grandpa

    Just like schools, hospitals are being shut down an then theres banks… one thing about all 3 are these old places are built like fortresses… body parts are big business and last 20 yrs i know mine has quite a chop shop going on without consent..how come mercey flight has turned into a full time job? cant be the easy swipe of a card. The new movement is getting your own black bag and treating your neighbors , they dont end up on a lifetime perscription and allows your body to become its own repair shop… Althouh its necessary to patronise your local mom & pops and maybe even bring back their capability to be banks, the rest need to be strangled till they turn blue..

  • K

    Institute of Medicine, released a report today. 30 cents out of every dollar spent on medical care wasted. Their math indicates, the waste comes to 750 billion dollars a year. Guess that would explain a lot of it.

  • MarkieMark

    A friend of mine needed a total hip replacement. She has no insurance. She found a grant program run by a local NFL player that helped her with the bills. That led her to other grants that helped cover other bills. These programs helped negotiate the costs and paid the bills.

    All-in-all, she got her hip replaced with the latest prosthetic from Germany, all hospital and doctor bills covered, and the only cost was $1,700 for rehab. Interestingly, she could find no grant to help with the rehab.

    NONE of this was public money or paid by the government.

  • watchermax

    I had emergency brain and spinal surgery, Weeks after, while trying to cope with a new life in a wheelchair. I received a bill for $198.670.00. It seems I did not get prior autherazation for surgery. Needless to say they made a very difficult situation even worse. Only after obtaining legal rep where they willing to deal.

  • MarkieMark

    When my Dad had to go to a Nursing Home, they made him sign a form saying he would be responsible for all pharmacy costs not covered by Medicare.
    We noticed he started to have a pile of hand lotion and shampoo bottles piling up in his bathroom. We were told the pharmacy he was mandated to use automatically provided a bottle each week. When we checked his bill we found they were charging $21 a week for the two tiny travel-size bottles. We got him a large bottle of each at Costco and told the Nursing Home we were not paying for the Pharmacy’s any more. They insisted he signed an agreement to use the “preferred” Pharmacy’s products.

    When he died, he left a bill unpaid for $850 worth of hand lotion and shampoo.

    • Michael

      $850 for hand lotion and shampoo?

      That is crazy.

      Michael

  • Kim

    My 18 year old son had gotten ill with flu like symptoms. He was not getting better so I took him to one of those walk in urgent care clinics. After the physicians assistant examined him, she suggested I take him to the ER. I took him to Providence Hosptial in Newberg, Or. He stayed for two days and was ultimately diagnosed with the influenza. We got the bill a week later and it was over $10,000. The drugs they gave him were for symptoms only, such as anti-nausea medicine, pain medicine and a hydration bag. That was it.

    I tried everything to get Providence to lower the bill, submitted tax forms, income receipts, applied for state health care (he was denied because he was 18) I even copied Providence’s own mission statement about helping people. They refused to lower bill. Not even a penny did they lower it. A year later my son was served with garnishment papers. We can’t even afford to file for bankruptcy. He is afraid to get a job because he thinks they’ll garnish his wages. He’s 21 now, out of work and depressed. I’m an alcoholic, can’t work, can’t drive, and I have no money to help him out. My life is *******. But he is only 21.

    • Michael

      Kim:

      I am so sorry to hear what happened to you.

      Please don’t give up. There is always a way that things can get better. I know from experience.

      Michael

  • Land Lord

    micheal
    If you would riddle me this.About obamacare i have had no health insurance since 1999 i have a famly of 4.Now i pay taxes so all the state and federal polititions can have it all state and county workers can have it even all the welfare,ssi and disabled get it. I own several rental houses so i pay a mountain of property taxes so all the school teachers have it even convicted killers have it.So if obama wants to give it to me that sounds great,at least if they raise my taxes for this i will be getting something for my tax money.this is the one and only reason my vote this year goes to osama i mean obama.Great work micheal god speed.

    • Michael

      Is Obama really going to be giving you free health care?

      Last time I checked Obamacare was just going to force millions more Americans to buy health insurance (and it will be more expensive than ever) and it is going to push millions more Americans on to Medicaid.

      Perhaps they should just push us all on to Medicaid. I am paying for it so I might as well get some benefit out of it.

      Michael

  • Land Lord

    micheal
    Sorry i did not mean to upset you im just sayin it would be nice to have since im helping pay for all those others to have it.Seems like im good enough to pay taxes so all those people have it but i cant.

    • Michael

      You didn’t upset me. :)

      And I agree with you – I don’t like a system where the middle class pays for the health care of everyone else but then can’t even go to the hospital themselves.

      Michael

  • TheRandyGuy

    Instead of ranting like most of these posts, the answer as to why hospitals are so expensive comes down to two things: 1) Low Medicare reimbursement rates and 2) Tort costs. Medicare pays so little the difference must be made up by those who can pay and lawsuits (frivolous or legit) have to be prepared for financially.

    • Gay Veteran

      Tort costs?

      really? and the states that have legislated “tort reform”? are their costs substantially lower?

      • md

        Tort reform, even in the states that supposedly have it, isn’t real. It is only a cap on the very high end awards. It doesn’t stop the rate of filing for trivial issues, or most of the run of the mill lawsuits.

  • JohnY

    Why Are Hospital Bills So Outrageous?

    Because America has failed!

  • Robin

    A few years back, I remember a retired WW2 American veteran living in England. Actually, he was one of the nicest, polite guys you could ever wish to meet. I shall never forget the day he came walking up to me, poking me in the chest with his finger and muttering these words. “Mr, don’t ever ever moan or complain about you National Health Service (NHS)it’s your jewel in the crown”. Recently, I had the misfortune being admitted to hospital for open heart surgery and received first class treatment. Can’t imagine the costs involved, but to me it was ZERO, sweet zero. Sadly the American died, but he left me his old wartime binoculars stamped “US Navy Buships 1943″ It’s the look in his eye and those words that I shall never forget. It took my misfortune to realise what he fully meant.

  • mushroom

    There is a very simple fix to the cost of medical care. Stop all third party involvement. If you work where health insurance is a benefit, your employer and the insurance company charge the group. Healthier people pay more so unhealthier people — usually older people can pay less. Medicare is a benefit to older people who are more likely to use health care services. Medicaid pays for the indigent or irresponsible.

    We had hospitals and doctors before we had Medicare and Medicaid. If Medicare and Medicaid and Obamacare and Employer-based insurance all stopped tomorrow, what would happen?

    After a few days of confusion, you would still have hundreds of thousands of medical professionals, billions of dollars worth of medical equipment and facilities available.

    Patients would not be able to pay for the services via third-parties and would not have the means to cover huge bills.

    This is pretty basic supply-and-demand. Demand for check-ups, doctor’s visits, medications and devices would decline. Prices would follow demand. The price-demand ratio would balance out because the supply is basically static.

    Through third party payments and Medicare reimbursement rules in particular, we have adversely altered the “natural environment” of medical care and pricing. It’s slightly more complicated than I can convey here, but that’s the general idea.

    I’m sure such a solution won’t be even mentioned because too many bureaucrats and regulators would be out of jobs, and the government would lose a huge amount of its power over us. Also, most of the unthinking voters who operate out of fear and/or a desire to get something for nothing would be aghast at the suggestion that they actually pay their own way. Doctors and hospitals would probably freak out, too.

    People who wanted health insurance would be able to buy it, just like car insurance or life insurance, based on their individual habits, history, and lifestyles. Again, that would freak people out because they would be accountable.

    • SmallerGovNow

      Great post mushroom, spot on…

    • GSOB

      mushroom,

      You are correct. It is that simple, but what holds things up like it is and why does it expand?

      GREED

      Do not love the world or the things of the world… the lust of the eyes the lust of the flesh and vain glory of life….
      If anyone loves the world, the love of the Father is not in him.

      That’s from the Apostle John who also wrote the Gospel of John and the book of Revelation, couple more epistles.

      I think what he saying here is that we are all in this world system and are enslaved to it, because that is all we know. Only God can free us from this bondage through his work of regeneration by his Spirit for the cause of Christ the Son.

      As Christians, we’ll still take what we can get from the world but will despise the world nonetheless, because we will recognize the difference He has made in us and place a faith in us to prepare us for whats to come.

      Thy Kingdom come
      Thy will be done
      On earth
      as
      it
      is
      in
      heaven

      YEAHHHHHHHHHHH BABY

    • Joe

      Almost exactly what I was going to say, except I would go further and make all insurances illegal. Insurance (hedge funds, credit default swaps) are a huge part of the economic bubble. Prices for everything that can now be insured against would plummet, as these goods and services would be ruled by supply and demand and the consumer like they were 70 yrs ago.

      The greedy bastards that are only in it for the money would get out and find a different racket, and the good doctors that were left would take chickens as payment again :)

  • BUMPALLOF U

    First let me say, that I started to really like this site until I noticed all the bias comments about Obama. Both parties are to blame but this site (Michael) can’t bring himself to really admit that. He will throw in little jabs here and there about thr rethugs, but that’s it. Second, I worked for the insurance companies and also hospital billing. Inmates don’t get billed, the state pays for it, so either way, someone is paying the bill. I work for a great org. that helps the uninsured out every day. Either by giving them charity, discounts, or just writing some charges off. A hospital can charge $100,000 but based on the contract with the insurance, they most likely won’t see half of that. Talk about the amount of premium costs and how they continue to go up, even before Obama took office. This has been going on for years and you people are to ignorant to see it. GROW UP OR JUST SHUT UP!

    • GSOB

      BUMPALLOF U

      bump this…..
      your right
      Obama and everyone before him, down to 1935
      It started in 1935 here in the US of A with the social security act.

      it has been expanding ever since.

      Robamas contribution to this expansion is a double penitration whammy!

      2014 praise the Lord! We love Obama and his concern for people that can not get quality health care – NO MATTER WHAT. That will be another milstone.

      Then the next level will be a global health care system
      the universe
      and
      beyond!

      Buzz the lighteryear away!

      Lets go get some scum…..

  • hiway280z

    Your paying your bill and all the bills of the illegal aliens who get freecare

    • Rodster

      Thank you, another reason why healthcare is so expensive these days. There are hospitals in California that have closed because illegal aliens would overwhelm the ER dept with non ER related issues.

      • GSOB

        They need help

        There just humans with wives and children.

        FLAMING LIPS baby YEAHHHHHHHHHHHhhhhhhhhhh

      • paul

        IN Hong Kong, everyone has to pay approx. $10 for each A&E visit. Citizens of Hong Kong get everything else free in public hospitals.

        • paul

          BTW, Hong Kong citizen have a Hong Kong ID card. If you can’t show your ID you pay in full.

  • Cal

    I don’t know about horror story, but I went to the ER twice when I was younger over severe panic attacks where I thought I must’ve been having a heart attack or something, and both times they could find nothing wrong with me. Now I know that such visits run about $1,000 out of pocket.

    • GSOB

      Cal

      It could have been gas built up in your intestines, pushing upward into your chest cavity.

  • Phil

    My son dated a girl who worked on billing at the “best” local hospital. We got the impression they had no idea who owed what and they had trouble getting people to pay.

    Hospital costs are up about 400 percent since 1982. This is partly where you raises have gone or why your job got shipped overseas.

    • liberranter

      We got the impression they had no idea who owed what and they had trouble getting people to pay.

      If medical assistants (MA) are handling the billing, then no wonder. These are some of the laziest, most careless, most incompetent, most functionally illiterate creatures in any profession, anywhere.

  • Old Man

    A lot of folks here said the US health care system is broken. Well, that’s a relative thing.

    It is broken for 99% of the population who use it as patient. But consider the following happy people doing health care, who you will not find anywhere else:

    – Medical professionals make big bucks. A surgeon makes $5-10 million a year, most doctors make at least a million, other pros make a couple of hundred grands. NMR scan shops, lab test shops, all rake in the big juicy bucks. Hey, they didn’t ask the patients to get sick.

    – Hospital administrators make half a million. You know, they gotta know how to handle lobbyists like a fine art.

    – HMOs and other business operators make dozens of million. Their primary job is to deal with the insurance companies, by creating the maximum amount of paperwork and red tape in order to charge the maximum amount of revenue.

    – Health insurance companies make the billions that Wall Street expects. No surprise there. Have you ever heard of a health insurance company not ‘make the numbers’ every single freaking quarter? Have any filed for Chapter 11 in the past 50 years? Hell no.

    – And finally, the poor little pharma companies make just a shade less than the big banksters. They sell their pills by the trillions. Very high tech.

    But are there any people engaged in health care who do it for the good for mankind for a reasonable living? Why of course. Government run National Institute of Health and other research organizations, who employ thousands of the brightest and hardest working scientists, do some of the very best work in the world. Their discoveries and breakthroughs are admired by mankind. But many Americans, especially card-carrying Republicans, consider them ‘evil’. Because they work for the government and therefore must be utterly incompetent and evil.

    • md

      The average ER doc makes about $150-$180K. What the group or the hospital bills as the “doctor’s fee” almost never flows through to the guy in the trench who works by the hour and whose throughput is monitored. It usually works out to about $40/patient seen (averaged with sore throats to multiple trauma and heart attacks)

  • Mattyboy

    All eyes on Jerusalem.

    • GSOB

      The New one, Mattboy…
      The New Jerusalem

      What is the new jerusalem – coming down out of heaven as a bride adorned for her husband? (Revelation 21:2)

      Ok… I’ll tell you what it is, but you gotta keep it a secret….

      What John saw/sees is in consummate form, but still working itself out today – the Holy Spirit regenerating the elect, one by one, throughout the course of this stage of his created world, – with His own life, to make them each one – a part of himself, but without blurring the two into a hybrid – but..,

      MARRIAGE is the metaphor that speaks much concerning this mystery. It is the consummation of Christ and the Church. Marriage amongst us humans portrays God’s marriage with his chosen people – the corporate body – The Church, and marriage will continue until God is ready to bring in the next stage of his created purpose. The end will come about through judgement on sin, marriage will also cease only at that time – to usher in the sinless state of the new creation and elect people in all of it’s glory.

      That’s what all the ages and their purposes are for.
      That’s what John sees coming down out of heaven from God… the New Jerusalem a city and a bride
      A habitiation place and the perculiar people… we still being the creature and Him always our God.
      God’s doing this… not us
      God is joining himself to his new creation, which is the essence that makes it new. We people are his creation. The elect people are part of the new creation and the process is pictured for us here.
      Rev 21:2
      Isn’t that spectacular!
      hallelujah

  • jayjay

    I am uninsured, 62 and pretty healthy; my husband is self-employed.
    Last May, I broke my toes when falling from a ladder that came apart.(don’t buy those!!)
    I acquired 3 bills, one from the ER doctor, $780, one from the hospital(never saw it), and one from my doctor during healing, $1600 (which you do on your own, toes can’t be healed by a doctor).
    I was told we qualified for full pmt of the hospital ER bill, not the ER doc.
    I paid as I could on the ER doctor and other doctor.
    Received a phone call after a few months, if I paid $100 that day, the balance of the ER bill would be purged. I did, gladly.
    Haven’t heard from the doctor treating my toes(that’s a joke, folks) and am sure it has been turned in to collection even though I pay on it monthly.
    I am a responsible citizen; no waste in this house–we don’t even have tv/cable.

  • SmallerGovNow

    “If you can handle some more ranting I encourage you to go check that article out.”

    They are not rants Michael, they are the things people need to wake up and hear and see neither R or D have solutions for…

  • http://theeconomiccollapseblog leonard

    Dear Michael,

    I don’t want to waste your time, you have better things to do than read what I am writing!
    I talked to many people about what your article is describing above. Most people want things to be the way they are!!!!!
    There are many solution, but most people say that there is no problem even if they have a sick close relative who can’t get health care!!!

    • Michael

      Leonard:

      I actually read every single comment that gets left. It takes a lot of time, but I find that I learn a lot. :)

      Michael

  • Highlander

    Cost of medical care has risen in direct correlation to Government paying for it. In 1965 it cost $5 for my mother to take four kids to see the doctor and that included medication if needed. Great Society and by 1967 it cost $7.50 EACH and medication was seperate and extra. 1970 it was $10 each and it was more difficult to get medication from the doctors office. Very simple, government wanting the doctors to except medicaid paid more then the going rate which raised the going rate and they started excepting it.

    Cruachan!

    • GSOB

      ouch

  • Really?

    Every Possible cost incurred by us should either be a flat rate where everyone pays the same or it should be based on your income.
    I don’t know the answer but someone making $100,000 a year can afford a $2500.00 dollar bill someone making $20,000 a year might take them a year or better to pay that bill.
    And the debate continues……………

    • GSOB

      Really?

      you can add to the debate with what the scriptures show us as… or in other words, God’s example.

      Can’t but things together than read the instructions

      God imposed taxes (basically) on His chosen people and created a system worth checking out because there is nuggets of truth and flashes of his character, the ultimate one, to be adored and praised.

      The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom.
      The fool says in his heart, there is no God.

      How bout those bookends?

  • KCR

    Just a thought on the cost of Anascorp. This antivenin is made by a Mexican firm in Mexico. It seems likely to me that the additional cost is the US (aside from all the usual) is that the US distributor had to run the full course of FDA trials for this medication to be available in the US.

    One might think that we should be able to use medications approved in other countries (saving us the FDA costs) but then we’d have another thalidomide (never approved in the US for morning sickness).

    Anascorp is a biological harvested from horse serum so there is risk of infection on top of the usual risks associated with all medications.

    The trick here is that Anascorp is indicated only in cases where the patient is having significant reaction to the scorpion envenomation (e.g. difficulty breathing, neurological symptoms). It does provide rapid relief but the report doesn’t state whether or not the patient was suffering from critical symptoms or just the pain.

    There is a lot of waste in medical care… but an earlier commenter mentioned the $10K bill for a case of the flu. But if someone with flue symptoms shows up in the ER and is advised to take tylenol and have a lie down and they later succumb to a more serious illness with flu-like presentation then you know where the lawyers will be headed.

    We need a couple of things: 1: elimination of third-party payers for routine care and 2: some sort of public fund for bad outcomes where malpractice is not a factor (some people get worse and/or die even with flawless care).

    Also – the bankruptcies: it’s likely that many bankruptcies are filed simply to eliminate medical debt… the remaining debt affirmed by the debtor. You don’t need to be living under a bridge, penniless, to file.

    • http://itsafluffy.blogspot.com DL.

      I was stung by a scorpion once. At the time I was stung, I was in bed with a very bad headache AND water in my left ear (had come back from a 3 hour trip to some guy’s house in El Paso that had a swimming pool…the headache was an all-day thing.

      So, about ten minutes after I was stung by this scorpion, and the hurt of the sting was going away, my ear cleared up and the headache was gone!

      Like the guy above said, unless you have difficulty breathing or are clearly in anaphalactic shock, deal with the sting and put up with a little pain for a few minutes!

      Folks complain about hospital and doctor bills, but can’t stand a little pain once in a while? That’s one of my biggest beefs with whiny Americans! Drugged-up Americans is why so few true patriots will stand up when the door to freedom and liberty is about to swing shut, perhaps for all of our lifetimes.

      My husband broke his little toe (dropped some firewood on it), so what does he do? He literally tapes it to his toe next door! It is still broken, but as long as he doesn’t stub it too hard he’s fine with it. (Caveat: he’s a EMS worker).

  • GSOB

    No such thing as a free puppy

  • GSOB

    There is no good deed left unpunished.

    Under Robama – there is no good deed to punish

  • GSOB

    He who is joined to the Lord is one spirit

    1st Corinthians 6:17

    WOW

    Dig that.

    That’s God’s doing,,,, not mine.

  • Really?

    An ounce of prevention is better than a pound of cure, this statement is so true but those without coverage have to wait until they can wait no longer.As a society we should be concerned with prevention and not profits. But again wishful thinking cotton fiat wins again.
    Who can afford big dollars for something small that may potentially lead to something far worse because of fear of cost/debt that can be literally impossible to pay back. This country has turned into a greed machine with no other agenda. If your not at the very top of the food chain life is difficult and disheartening . Truck driver 53 years old did all the right things had over a million bucks for retirement lost nearly all of it in the crash of ’08 and being an independent is scraping by with health issues now and no room for coverage for just trying to live from one week to the next ……Another American dream in the toilet.

    • liberranter

      As a society we should be concerned with prevention and not profits.

      There is no profit in prevention. That’s why most medical establishments aren’t serious about providing it.

  • GSOB

    Dan(m) it

    I’m a 50 year old man and if I want to drink a beer in my own house, I can do so when ever I want.

    Now leave me alone.

  • GSOB

    Get the third party out of healthcare and let the walls come down b/t our borders concerning mexican americans or just mexicans,…. and more mexicans.

    That will stimulate the economy.

    Perhaps North and South Korea will follow suit.

    Yeaahhhh BABY

    P.S.
    We are the world.. we are the children… we are the ones to make a brighter day, so lets start giving.

    MJ was great. I loved him. He suffered a lot of pain.

    He was an idealist. Some am I to some extent.

  • Really?

    Michael,
    I was curious to know if you have every done an article on drugs/ medicines themselves?
    I have a friend that had renal failure in his early twenties and one of his rejection drugs is $2500.00 a month.
    Does it cost more to make drugs like these are the ingredients rarer than what you find in aspirin or motrin and such or is price related more to what it does for you rather than what it takes to manufacture it?

  • Tatiana Covington

    You didn’t think the Ferengi were fictional, did you?

    • Really?

      Lol, it’s nice to have a chuckle in the face of idocracy.
      Thank you. Live long and prosper Tatiana!!!

      • Really?

        Idiocracy

  • Sofia

    An old high school friend is a medical coder. When I ran into her she was looking for work. Often the higher level coders work as auditors on contract. She was in the process of interviewing and told me that the health care management companies who oversee the doctors contracted under them wanted her to guarantee that she could increase their Medicare billings by 15%. She expressed her discomfort at this but said she wouldn’t get a job without agreeing. This would involve going back over all services rendered by each doctor in the plan and hunting for any service large or small that had not been billed, items such as medicines given, tests run, home help etc. this is done of course to maximize profits. No stone is left unturned in billing for medical services.

    • Sofia

      I also want to mention that my own health plan starts at home. I drink mainly purified water, cook almost all my family’s meals at home using lots of fruits and vegetables, whole grains and lean protein. We stay fit and take good supplements to keep from getting sick. We grow fruit trees and get most of our entertainment from socializing at church, going to local sporting events and one of our sons is a pro athlete so we had great fun watching him play although now he is out of town most of the year. We use hydrogen peroxide to keep germs out of our mouths and teeth, high quality colloidal minerals as natural antibiotics, i ised honey to treat 2nd degree burns from some odd superglue that spilled on my legs and it healed fine, when my arm got caught in our automatic garage dooe opener I treated the scratches and blood myself rather than go to ER. Some funky facial bumps passed on to me by a friend visiting out of town I successfully treated with yogurt and bentonite clay masks after desperately scouring the internet for advice. It could have bee shingles and somebody I knew at church suffered for months with it and rejected my suggestion choosing to go the medical route. When my husband passed a painful kidney stone I read that apple cider vinegar would help. I use it every day now in our fresh salads and a year later no more stones. Im in my 50s and have never believed in our current medical establishment’s cut, poison or burn philosophy. I believe if I had to I could splint my own leg or sew up a deep cut if necessary. We are preppers and I have dental tools and basic medical equipment but no formal training. You can avoid some of these ripoffs but you must believe you are doing the right thing and stop believing the lies we are being fed. Herbs, medicinal mushrooms, home fermentation of natural probiotics, using argan or jojoba oil on the face and hair in tiny amounts have helped keep my hair and skin nice but I’m no supermodel just decent and I like it that way. My husband loves me for me and appreciates my self reliant attitude more every year.

  • djustin

    $250,000 for a hip replacement including $900 per pill for migraine med and $3000 per shot for same med. Appaling what they are doing to us. Dear God help us!

    • http://itsafluffy.blogspot.com DL.

      $900 for a migraine pill??? I get migraines (and clusters too, BTW) all the time (about ten a month), and I used to spend about $20 a pill getting from the neighborhood pharmacy. Now I spend $4 a pill getting them from Progressive RX. Cost is 20 to 30 percent what the typical pharmacy charges.

  • kimpunkrock

    One thing I wanted to point out is that from the 1940’s on down Doctors were NOT in it for the money, they were in it to help people, not get rich off people’s sufferings and ills. today that is NOT the case, you can hardly EVER find a doctor that will do free work for those that CANNOT pay, it use to be apart of their oath, to treat regardless of ability to pay. You do not see this anymore.

    There is ONE answer to this–GIVE EVERYONE FROM THE TIME THE ARE BORN MEDICADE AND MEDCARE REGARDLESS OF INCOME!

  • paul

    Thailand has good hospitals and doctors. And everything is much cheaper there. So, take a flight and have a holiday. For $80,000 you can even have a bypass operation in Hong Kong with beautiful view over this city.

  • paul

    Well, insurance is only the smallest part of risk management. And the most expensive.
    Minimising health risks through proper food, exercise and accident prevention (OH&S, seat belts, speed limits, environmental protection, etc) is much cheaper in the end.

    Get yourself an insurance that pays for the bypass and the insulin, and gives you a no claims discount, and then pay for the annual checkups by yourself and monitor your health that way.

    Get the checkup done in Cuba. Should be much cheaper.

    • paul

      Oh, I forgot: get youself a gun and ammo for extra protection.

      LOL

  • Gary2

    Tax the wealthy to keep us healthy–Single payer now.

  • KALEB

    Who cares, this country is dead, welcome to the new system pawns.

  • Michael Garland

    In 1988 I awoke one morning with what I was sure was a crick in my neck from falling asleep on my couch. I had to travel that morning from Westminster CA back to Las Vegas NV where I was working. I was in so much pain when I arrived in Vegas I went to a local emergency room. I was two hours in the waiting room in tears I was hurting so bad. Grown man crying like a baby from the pain! I was finally taken into the emergency room and mentioned to the doctor that I thought it was a crick in my neck from sleeping wrong, but the pain was horrific. The doctor mentioned the possibility that it was spinal meningitis. I had a spinal tap and the fluid removed from my spine was tested. Received some fluids and that’s it! The results were negative of course. The doctor came in and told me to go home, take some aspirin and rest; that it was just a crick in my neck from sleeping badly. Really! Received a bill two weeks later for $6000 +. $6000+, $10 for the band aid that was put on over where the spinal tap was done. $10 freaking $’s for a band aid. Unbelievable!

    • md

      There is a thing called the “standard of care”. It is a prescribed set of tests and treatments that must be followed if any malpractice protection is needed. The SOC does not include any common sense. That’s why I quit.

  • Mondobeyondo

    I actually had a bit of a health scare a couple days ago.

    Got violently ill on Wednesday afternoon (hoping it was just something I ate, and not an ulcer). The last thing I need is to spend a few hours at the ER! Spent Wednesday evening in bed, and most of yesterday in bed. Nearly everything that went down the hatch came back up a couple hours later, if you know what I mean. Needless to say, I spent a lot of time kneeling in front of the porcelain throne.

    After half a bottle of Pepto-Bismol and a couple of Advil, this morning I’m feeling much better. Well enough to post a message on here, at least. I need to get my strength back today, so some important things can get done (like paying the electric bill which is already 3 days delinquent!)

    • Mondobeyondo

      I should be back to my usual sarcastic form in a couple of days.

    • Michael

      Are you okay Mondo?

      Michael

      • Mondobeyondo

        Yes, I’ll be fine.

        • Michael

          My wife and I pray for you often Mondo. I hope you know that.

          Michael

          • Mondobeyondo

            Thank you, Michael!

            Mondo

    • paul

      cant you pay bills via Internet?

      • Mondobeyondo

        I pay most of my bills online (insurance, phone, Internet, etc), but I don’t have my electric and water bills set up that way. They’re both holdouts of an earlier age, when I paid all my bills by writing checks. Looks like it’s time to change that.

  • ALICE

    Totally deregulated industry…The whole medical industry needs to be regulated…They bankrupt 60% of Americans…They can charge anything they want, legally…Unnecessary surgeries, medications, procedures, hospital stays most of the time….I’ve been a Republican for 30 years, and Obamacare is necessary for us all….This belief is a result of my experiences….Viva Obamacare, should be named Americare….DON’T let the Republicans reverse AMERICARE….

  • Atilla2

    THREE things that could be implemented TOMORROW by exec. order that would have a dramatic impact on cost.

    1. Allow people to buy health insurance across state borders.

    2. Get the lawyers off the backs of doctors except for GROSS negligence.

    3. MAKE the loser PAY the lawyers costs.

    • ALICE

      Have you ever tried to collect a claim from an out of State insurance company? They always deny the claim, and you have to go to their State Court to make your argument. Obamacare/Americare is right for the public….

    • http://theeconomiccollapseblog.com chris1

      “2. Get the lawyers off the backs of doctors except for GROSS negligence.”

      Done to an extent in Tx.

  • paul

    After reading all these stories – your problem isn’t obamacare. It’s only because he is black or a democrat or both.
    Your problem is the lack of consumer protection legislation in health care.

  • Doug

    For some of the outrageous costs, you need to consider (a) lawyers, (b) people who don’t pay, and (c) the “sticker price” issue.

    Re. lawyers, take the case of your titanium parts. Maybe the screws only cost $25 each, but if you are in the titanium body part business, are you really going to just sell them for a small markup, when a single lawsuit will not only wipe out all your profits but possibly put you out of business as well? No, you need to charge enough per screw so that in the 1% of cases where things don’t go right, there are $millions to pay off the claims. Now go line by line through all those mundane items that it seems like you are being ripped off on, and ask yourself, if you were selling that item and having to bear that lawsuit risk, how much would you have to mark that item up to make sure you still had a profit left after some predictable % of failures that are inevitable just from pure statistics?

    Re. people who don’t pay, others have already mentioned, someone has to pick up the tab that is not being fully reimbursed by medicaid/medicare or indigent patients, and this is especially true at hospitals where the law requires them to provide care. So, everyone’s bill gets padded. Again imagine you run a bar and you sell beer to people just on good faith that they will pay, i.e. you let your customers run tabs. Only, the law says you have to provide this to anyone who asks, even people who aren’t regulars, and even including people who’ve not paid their tab before. So now a predictable number of people are not going to pay, how much are you going to have to pad your drink prices to make sure you don’t go bankrupt running your bar?

    Re. the “sticker price” issue, I am fortunate to have excellent health insurance. I’ve looked at the bills occasionally and noticed that all providers have very high official prices for their services, but they accept a much lower price from the insurer. Since most of their patients are insured, I have to believe they are able to make a profit at the lower price, and therefore the lower price is at least close to a real market price, or at least, it’s as close as you’ll come when a third party is picking up the tab. This lower price is, I presume, negotiated by the insurer in order to put the provider on a preferred list for their insured population. So, in a very real sense, this situation is not unlike the situation where you go into an auto dealer and there is a high price on the sticker for a new car, but you can find out the real price by looking on line at kbb.com or other similar sites. The kicker is, no one is in a position to haggle over the health care service. And the markup is often 100-500%, which makes car pricing, heck even airline pricing, look sane by comparison!

  • http://noseosdemais.blogspot.pt/ Nós e os Demais

    I think the problem with such high healthcare costs in the US is hospitals being able to do whatever they want. In europe no one charges you anything for healthcare, and you dont have to have health insurances either. How can americans tolerate paying so much for such a basic right such as acess to healthcare is beyond me and franckly, beyond most europeans.
    I’m always intested to know what americans think about us europeans not paying a cent most of the time for healthcare while you guys get charged thousands of dollars for the most basic services. Do you think its fair? How do you guys justify paying so much?

    Regards from Portugal

    • onething

      I wonder why Americans put up with a lot of things. One thing is, we are subject to a lot of propaganda, and lots of people fall for it. I think the quality of life here is greatly affected by the problems with healthcare. We are a downtrodden and beaten people.

    • Ed McAninch

      Actually you do pay for it, through much higher taxation.

  • LOLa

    Somebody posted a sap story about ER docs making around $180,000 a year. Poor things! $40 per patient seen – $40 for FIVE minutes of their precious time, egads!

    Heaven forbid they make do with less than $30K a year like most people.

    And the writer wonders why healthcare costs so damned much…

  • HecatesMoon

    My dad died when I was 20. He sold everything he had and when he had nothing left, they sent him home to die.
    My step dad died in February. My mother did not know he was so ill. Before he went to the hospital, which he avoided doing maybe until it was too late, he decided not to call an ambulance because it was too expensive.
    Had he just gone to the hospital sooner maybe he would have lived. Maybe he would have lived had an ambulance taken him…who knows. But that was his concern as he was dying- though no one realized he was- was the ambulance going to be too expensive.

  • http://lnx-bsp.net/ Tel

    There is no free market competition in the US medical industry.

    The doctors run a monopoly, so you can’t choose between a slightly better doctor who is more expensive and a slightly worse doctor who is cheaper. The lawyers run a monopoly so lots of the medical money goes to pay for expensive litigation. The drug companies run a monopoly so if you wanted to make your own drugs you would be arrested for that. The hospitals sort of run a monopoly because people get taken to the nearest one, and don’t get to negotiate. The insurance companies offer you some choices, but only limited choices because they are heavily regulated (and even more regulated now).

    In Australia they have kept the fees down, but it have resulted in government takeover of most of the industry. Thus, for example when the doctor Jayant Patel worked in an Australian government hospital he was very enthusiastic about surgery, but unfortunately not skilled in this area. He made a lot of blunders, people died, but the hospital administrators loved him because he was so productive, and anyway the medical records ended up getting faked but we haven’t entirely tracked down the details of how. The government kept the litigation under control, by running their own special claims commission that pushed the victims into secret payouts that were relatively speaking quite paltry (some victims have come forward attempting a real legal challenge to this, but it isn’t looking good for them).

    Also, the trick in Australia is that the businesses get slugged with compulsory workers compensation insurance, and the exact same medical procedure is two to three times more expensive when it goes into a compo claim than a regular government-funded procedure. Thus every X-ray place tries to force you to make a compo claim, because if you do they double their pay. The business insurance is used to cross-subsidize government healthcare.

    Gradually the system is getting heavier and heavier as the bureaucrats have discovered they can get their political buddies cushy jobs as hospital administrators. These guys don’t know the first thing about running a hospital, but they don’t need to because no one is going to check on them, and if things do go wrong they will be protected anyhow. Our basic tax in Australia is already 30% of GDP, but there’s a bunch of compulsory payments like compulsory superannuation and compulsory insurance that work like tax in disguise. Despite these high taxes, both the Federal government and the states are increasingly in debt, especially in recent years. I’d say the overall quality of hospital care is getting worse, from my personal observation. Not long ago the New South Wales Health Minister admitted that it was both faster and cheaper to take patients out of the waiting lists for public hospitals and pay for procedures in private hospitals. Increasing number of people are just giving up and going overseas… I’m serious.

  • Ken

    Here’s a good one for you…
    I DROVE my daughter to the emergency room less than two miles from my home where the accident happened, only to check for broken bones and internal bleeding.
    Upon arrival and a quick exam, the emergency nurses and technicians, (no doctor observed my daughter)it was determined that she go to a children’s hospital 30 miles away for further examination and x-rays.
    In the end there was an x-ray exam and dressing wounds, two hospital visits and an ambulance ride, in which I followed in my car to drive my daughter home after the visit.
    The tab? $50,000 dollars!!
    People ask, “Did you have insurance?” yes, but that does not discount the unnecessary ambulance ride and another hospital visit 30 miles away along with the obvious extortion of the American tax payer!
    A well trained physician would probably be able to determine broken bones and internal bleeding without x-rays, ambulance rides, etc., and for what would amount to less than a hours work, charge a reasonable one tenth of one percent of my charge ($50), in a perfect world.
    I still get mail from what amounts to be online ambulance chasers, yes lawyers are looking to sue.
    The culprit in the accident they are looking to sue? Me, I caused the accident, so as a legal custodian ( I am her father ) I should sue myself?!
    Corruption, greed, end of Empire. In the far off future I wonder what legacy will be remembered of the long forgotten American Empire? Bloodiest period of history, mass insanity, dumbest, most inept humans in history, going to the moon or the time of the bank owned world? Every empire in history thought of themselves as the greatest and everyone of them disappeared in the end. The good ole’ USA seems to be no different. In fact in terms of time as an Empirewe are not even exceptional.
    This assumes that the American Empire will end. I think it already has.

    • Mondobeyondo

      I’m sorry about your experience, Ken.
      There is no way in the Eternal Inferno, that you should have to pay $50,000 out of pocket (?) for what you went through.

      It sickens me what is happening to our medical care. Don’t get me wrong, the U.S. still has the best health care in the world.

      IF. YOU. CAN. AFFORD. IT!!!!!!!

      If you are (former) Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords (regardless of party or political persuasion, you have to admire her courage and determination – she is one hell of a lady) – you’re getting the best health care in the world.

      The University of Arizona Medical Center, in Tucson, Arizona, is a top notch medical facility. Certainly one of the best in the U.S. when it comes to medical research and treatment. If I had to choose a place to get shot in the head, and if I was driving up the Catalinas from downtown Tucson towards Mount Lemmon (Summerhaven, AZ – which is an AWESOME place by the way!!) – AZ Med Center would be my #1 choice, bar none.

      She’s an American. I’m an American. Don’t we deserve the same quality of health care? I mean – if some guy robbing a Wal-Mart shot me in the head, would I get the same quality of care that Gabby Giffords did? (Nope, not in Phoenix.)

      One would think so. One would hope so.

      Or perhaps the entire system is plutocratic? Yeah, probably.

  • A.S.

    A short term solution will be to improve your health:
    1. eat only organic from local farmers if you can afford it
    2. stop eating out period!
    3. stop eating anything anything from a bag, box, can, etc.
    4. stop taking all medication unless absolutely life-threatening (this means you will die within minutes without it)
    5. research sites like http://www.naturalnews.com for free advice on how to live healthy
    6. never go to doctors or emergency rooms unless you are severely bleeding or having organs popping out…

    Essentially, the whole system is more than corrupt, it is evil. The best way to avoid is to hope and pray for ultimate health. Let them fry and go bankrupt before they take advantage of one more person.

    • http://itsafluffy.blogspot.com DL.

      Good grief AS I actually agree with you! and I’m a stupid goy! Sorry, Shicksa…

  • John

    I spent $5.00 last time I went to a hospital. And that was for parking. Of course, I live in Canada. We spend, per capita, about half what Americans do on health care (private and public), every citizen has a basic level of coverage, we’re healthier than Americans, and we live longer. We must be doing something right.

  • A.S.

    Looks like the evil liberals are trying to convince people obamacare is good:
    thanksobamacare.org.

    I just read through it and can’t believe the absolute garbage on that site and mindless people will actually buy into it. Well I have one question that destroys all their arguments which they can’t answer, but I people like me, Michael and a few others here can: if obamacare is so good, why did Congress exempt themselves from it, while keeping their own special on-demand private doctors (paid for by taxpayers)? Because obamacare really is really, really bad, and will make us like the U.K. the moment it takes effect completely. So come January 1, 2014, say hello to a 3 month line just to see a doctor for a cold.

    • http://itsafluffy.blogspot.com DL.

      Right again AS!

  • Mark

    “our health care system has become a giant money making scam”

    can anyone identify one single thing in this free-range asylum that *hasn’t* been turned into a giant money-making scam???

  • free!

    bankrupt USA ! Obamacare if it goes through!

  • shogun_01

    thank god healthcare in my country is free! yay canada

  • America dead

    Sell your kidneys while they’re still healthy for a couple thousand bucks-maybe 5 grand???

    • Mondobeyondo

      A kidney dialysis machine costs more than 5 grand, I’m sure.
      No thanks, I’m keeping my organs. :)

  • http://NA Ratchett3

    Went to hospital last year. Spider bite on foot. Spent 5 days in hospital on antibiotics, they cut the infection out, staph from spider. Ran all sorts of tests on me. Went for 2 skin grafts (cut out quite a bit of top of foot to get all of infection out). Had home care 2x a week. Had to go back to emergency room to receive antibiotics 2x (but charged regular). $86,000.00 total. After renegotiated down by insurer, $64k or so. It’s not like I had open heart surgery. If it weren’t for my insurance, would have lost everything, probably even the house. Don’t have $86k spare change sitting around. Also in 50’s.
    Pretty scary knowing that with our current healthcare people are losing their entire life savings in a week or two (if they don’t have insurance). Before the bankruptcy reform, individuals could file bankruptcy, now w/the reformed bankruptcy laws, if you have anything, work, and are in the system, you lose it all. That Fast. Almost have to live in a state with good homestead laws, at least keep your house. And/or keep your income under the means testing for CH.7; and/or irrevocable trust, otherwise, one hospital bill WILL/CAN wipe you out.

    • http://itsafluffy.blogspot.com DL.

      Actually you got off easy. I know a guy who spent about half a mil for basically what you had done (fortunately, the guy of which I speak is wealthy, but anyway…).

      Got a brown recluse spider bite once. If not treated it’ll cause your skin to rot and gets very badly infected. cost of antivenom? $75 a shot. sounds expensive but the alternative is worse. Of course that was a few years ago it’s probably over $100 now.

  • Jorge

    I just spent three days at a hospital, and my insurance ended up paying over 10,000. It is outrageous.

  • Tony

    here in australia health care is covered by a $1,500 medicare levy , this year I have had 2 CT scans , a trip to a heart suregeon , 5 GP. visits & a nose reconstruction (cosmetic surgery) and it was all covered by this $1,500 levy , it means you get unlimited healthe care as required yes surgery and medicines as well , yes even hospital stays are included, Nope out of pocket fees either . Socilist medicare like we have in australia , enlgand and canada is a blessing , it cover the cost of seeing a doctor , an eye doctor and yes even a dentist with fillings if you need it and chiropractor and dietician. the list endless we are truly lucky.

  • Tony

    I pity healthcare in america soo very expensive and your nations leaders lie to you , look at canada as a role model for healthcare. your leaders might learn something.

  • Tony

    I read $250,00o for a hip replacement in america , here in australia its free.

  • http://www.scribd.com/doc/102435452/Why-Hair-Loss-Surgery-Can-Be-Your-Most-Significant-Choice natural hair growth remedies

    I almost never comment, however after reading a few of the remarks on
    this page $83,046 For A 3 Hour Hospital Visit – Why Are Hospital Bills So Outrageous?. I actually do have a couple
    of questions for you if it’s allright. Is it only me or does it look as if like a few of the remarks come across like they are coming from brain dead people? :-P And, if you are posting at other online social sites, I would like to keep up with everything new you have to post. Could you list of every one of all your social networking sites like your Facebook page, twitter feed, or linkedin profile?

  • xiou

    it is funny, you people have put the world in to poverty and that was kool. we chinese have suffered poverty for decades now its our turn to have fun. being white doesnot make you superior humans! watch “confessions of a economic hitman” and you’ll know why you were so rich and the rest of the world was so poor. wat goes around comes around. all men equal! US isnt collapsing the earth is balancing its self. us=bully corporation vs rest of the world=innocent people, ur dirty game back fired

  • rugo

    I went to the hospital for 5 minutes treatment of “jaw dislocation” they charged me 1300$ for just pushing my jaw back. At first they wanted to offer me a scan and other treatments. Thank god i did not went along with their plan. I would have to pay lot more for those.

  • mandi

    Even those with insurance end up paying through the nose too. I went into the doctor for some persistent stomach pains. I was told that it was caused by dehydration and to drink more water. No tests, or anything. 15 minutes maximum with the doctor. A few weeks later I got a $300 bill in the mail. I looked up online, the visit was only supposed to cost about $75. It’s ridiculous, my insurance should have covered that. Why are my husband and i paying thousands of dollars a year in insurance if it can’t even cover a dumb 15 minute doctor visit?If you get an outrageous bill try to fight it with the hospital. Sometimes you can get them to lower it a bit. They took $100 off my bill.

  • Nai

    Yep outrageous. I went to the emergency room for a motorcycle accident. Nothing was broken. Took me in did 2 Xrays. Dr came in and ask a few questions. Pressed on my body to see if I’m in pain. 3
    Hours later discharged me. Figured it would be 2 thousand dollars at most for the visit. My insurance was billed 22k for that. No CAT scan, Mri, surgery. They didn’t even scrub/clean my wounds in my knee. Basically besides the Xrays nothing was done to me to be worth $22k.

  • Alexander

    Yeah I went to see a doctor and was there less then an hour and just basic examination of light injury and basic urine/std test, less then hour at the appointment. Received 2 bills for some reason from different PO Box mail-to addresses and totaling over $1,100. For what??? I didn’t even have any x-ray or blood tests nothing that would require advanced/specialized technology etc.
    Again what makes it strange is 2 separate bills for 1 visit, and also that I had very similar visit for examination and test and I paid only about $200 or so then. Again this is ridiculous and without any logic. I will have to try calling them hopefully it is a mistake or they will adjust and I cannot pay over a grand especially for simple visit that took less then an hour at the clinic…

  • clay

    I was charged a 2000 dollar bill because I was forced into going to the hospital by the volunteer service I was working for. I received no treatment but was instead given a paper saying that I did indeed go to the hospital wish I could give to my phone to your agency , but then I was sent a 2000 dollar bill in the mail which I thought was a mistake because I hadn’t even seen a single medical professional only a nurse who told me that I could so once I got the paper saying I did indeed go to the hospital . $2000 and there is not a single viable reason why it cost anything for me to even be theresince I received no treatment medication or anything of any kind while I was there I mean I didn’t even see a doctor so why would they send me a bill in the first place. thank you guys for voting for Obama and welcome to the newest additi
    on to the third world, the usa

  • Melissa

    Reminds me of when I had to take my little pomeranian to the vet. He ate a huge piece of baking chocolate from the garbage, and the vet charged me $270 and all they did was give him activated charcoal to make him vomit. I had a bottle of activated charcoal in my home, why didn’t they tell me this over the phone?

  • Lulu

    I am a nurse and just had the pleasure in administering a medication for a stroke ….hospital cost 4700…. Cost to patient 59000….. I could not believe when the pharmacist showed me the cost. It is ridiculous.

  • Lulu

    My personal solution to this mess…I am getting on a plane home when I get sick….Germany…socialized medicine.

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