Health Care Costs

Health care-Real reform

Costs are out of control because there is no accountability or transparency in pricing. Example: in April I was admitted to the hospital with pneumonia. I was discharged he next day. Extra service include hydration, antibiotics and an X-ray. In November, seven months later, I received a bill for services. The cost for the service was over $13,000 with over $8000 billed to me. This was for one night in a hospital, not the ICU.

Investigation revealed an issue between my insurance company and the hospital and I was later advised that my portion would be a small copay of less than a hundred dollars.

How did such an obviously ridiculous amount get into the system in the first place? One reason is that such charges are routine and are thus not questioned.

A fee schedule, posted in conspicuous places in all health care establishments, would do much to alleviate the mismanagement and overcharging that takes place.

And how about this? Approximately 80% of people over 60 are on some sort of prescription drug regimen. There is an enormous amount of TV advertising for drugs which the viewer cannot purchase without a prescription.

Thus all a person has to do is go to an MD and ask for the drug. Physicians don’t always comply, but obviously they usually do or the pharma companies would not invest so heavily in advertising, Drug companies have a system that is designed to get people on their products and keep them there, Many seniors are taking drugs that are harmful when taken with another drug that the same, or different, doctor prescribed. Some drugs are found to be deadly years after they have been put on the market.

Come on America, ask questions. The doctor is not always right and is sometimes dead wrong. Take charge of your own health. An educated public and the requirement to post rates and pricing in all health provider facilities would go a long way to reduce health costs. Cost in any industry always go up if “someone else” pays.

We might think the payer is a faceless government agency or an insurance company, but ultimately that “someone else” is you.