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  1. #281
    deplorable basketcase Tellenbach's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Coriolis
    American health care is more expensive than overseas for those who pay, in large part to cover those who cannot.
    I don't think so. As Peter Schiff pointed out, non-subsidized procedures like liposuction cost $2000 in 1995 and $2,884 in 2011. Adjusted for inflation, it's slightly cheaper today. Other non-subsidized procedures like LASIK have seen 30% drops in price.

    The primary reason why health care is expensive is because of government subsidies and other government policies like mandated coverage. Most states have a list of required procedures that insurers must provide like birth control. These mandates automatically increase premiums and once you have the insurance, you're going to want to use that service whether or not you really need it. This drives up consumption and cost as well.

    Malpractice insurance is very expensive (over $100K/year) and 1 in 14 doctors get sued for malpractice each year. Unfortunately, the Democrats refused to address tort reform because trial lawyers are a major donor. If a doctor has to spend $100K on malpractice insurance, do you think he's going to raise prices or lower prices?
    Senator Rand Paul is alive because of modern medicine and because his attacker punches like a girl.

  2. #282
    Senior Member statuesquechica's Avatar
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    @Tellenbach: there are tons of reports, charts, diagrams, videos, books, etc. that show Americans pay more for medical procedures and medications than any other country. All you have to do is say "I don't think so." and it goes POOF! from your mind. Clearly you don't want to see the big picture and look at the comparable services and costs from other industrialized nations and draw some sort of rational conclusion.

    Your argument is so full of holes and misses the point that it isn't even worth the time or effort so I will defer from further discussion. My silence doesn't indicate agreement or defeat.

    I just don't like or
    I've looked at life from both sides now
    From up and down and still somehow
    It's life's illusions I recall
    I really don't know life at all

    Joni Mitchell

  3. #283
    Senior Member Mal12345's Avatar
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    "Everyone has a plan till they get punched in the mouth." Mike Tyson
    “Culture?” says Paul McCartney. “This isn't culture. It's just a good laugh.”

  4. #284
    deplorable basketcase Tellenbach's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by statuesquechica
    @Tellenbach: there are tons of reports, charts, diagrams, videos, books, etc. that show Americans pay more for medical procedures and medications than any other country.
    I've never disputed this. I'm pointing out that the reason why certain services and medications are so expensive is because of government policies like mandated coverage and subsidies.

    Coriolis thinks it's partly because of all the young people who aren't insured, but hasn't that always been the case? Also, no one's mentioning the elephant in the room ---- millions of illegal immigrants who use services in our emergency rooms. Obamacare doesn't address this issue either.
    Senator Rand Paul is alive because of modern medicine and because his attacker punches like a girl.

  5. #285
    Senior Member statuesquechica's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tellenbach View Post
    I've never disputed this. I'm pointing out that the reason why certain services and medications are so expensive is because of government policies like mandated coverage and subsidies.

    Coriolis thinks it's partly because of all the young people who aren't insured, but hasn't that always been the case? Also, no one's mentioning the elephant in the room ---- millions of illegal immigrants who use services in our emergency rooms. Obamacare doesn't address this issue either.
    Ok, we can agree that services and meds are priced higher than other industrialized nations but we differ on the reasons. I believe it is due to insurance companies and their lobbyists having a hand in our health care and deregulation...clearly we will agree to disagree on these points. The amount of $ put into advertising for medications is obscene and the practice isn't allowed in other countries, not to mention as citizens we aren't allowed to negotiate for lower bulk prices (capitalism entering a very perverse state IMO).

    ERs are very limited in what services they provide and their criteria are pretty strict...I have worked with uninsured people to get ER services and it ain't easy, and sometimes it doesn't happen.

    As a country we seem so averse to looking at other countries and seeing what does/doesn't work...I fear our attitude of "exceptionalism" will be our doing, as it should be, because we aren't.
    I've looked at life from both sides now
    From up and down and still somehow
    It's life's illusions I recall
    I really don't know life at all

    Joni Mitchell

  6. #286
    Senior Member OWK's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by statuesquechica View Post
    Ok, we can agree that services and meds are priced higher than other industrialized nations but we differ on the reasons. I believe it is due to insurance companies and their lobbyists having a hand in our health care and deregulation...clearly we will agree to disagree on these points.
    You are right to suggest that insurance companies and other bureaucrats are the reason that health care costs have exploded.

    But as with most problems, the cause is TOO MUCH government, and not too little.

    Prior to the early 70's in this country, people went to the doctor, and they paid... the doctor.

    Now when people go to the doctor, they pay... an insurance company.. and the insurance company's actuaries.. and their plan administrators.. and their sales force... and even their CEO... and then that money gets paid to the doctor's office.. and the doctor must pay his staff of professional paper-pushers to handle HIPA compliance and reimbursement paperwork.. and electronic records compliance... etc.. And this doesn't even count the cost of the army of government bureacrats who make their living by taking a piece of the healthcare dollar pie.

    It used to be when you went to the doctor.. you paid... the doctor.

    Now who you go to the doctor... you pay a dozen people's salaries.. or more.

    And people wonder why the cost of healthcare is exploding.

    (It started with the HMO act of 1973, and has gone steadily downhill since)

  7. #287
    reborn PeaceBaby's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tellenbach View Post
    Canadians leave the country because their care is terrible.
    Ah, another "expert" on Canadian health care, I see ...

    By an overwhelming margin, Canadians prefer the Canadian health care system to the American one. Overall, 82% said they preferred the Canadian system, fully ten times the number who said the American system is superior (8%)....from a Harris-Decima poll (.pdf), July 2009. .
    The vast majority of Canadians, 91 per cent, felt that Canada's health care system was better than the United States...CTV, a Canadian television network, Jun. 29 2008, reporting on a survey, conducted by the Strategic Counsel for CTV and The Globe and Mail.
    In November 2004, Canadians voted Tommy Douglas, Canada's 'father of Medicare'") the Greatest Canadian of all time following a nationwide contest."... CBC
    I live in Canada and have lived in the US, experiencing both health care systems.

    I cannot be bothered to counter all of your unsubstantiated claims about Canadian health care, but this handy article from 2009 should help (written when the debates on implementation were high). Are there room for improvements in Canada's system? Absolutely. Is using Canada a valid reason to oppose universal health care in the United States? Nope.

    Find some other arguments to support your premise.

    As America comes to grips with the reality that changes are desperately needed within its health care infrastructure, it might prove useful to first debunk some myths about the Canadian system.

    Myth: Taxes in Canada are extremely high, mostly because of national health care.

    In actuality, taxes are nearly equal on both sides of the border. Overall, Canada's taxes are slightly higher than those in the U.S. However, Canadians are afforded many benefits for their tax dollars, even beyond health care (e.g., tax credits, family allowance, cheaper higher education), so the end result is a wash. At the end of the day, the average after-tax income of Canadian workers is equal to about 82 percent of their gross pay. In the U.S., that average is 81.9 percent.

    Myth: Canada's health care system is a cumbersome bureaucracy.

    The U.S. has the most bureaucratic health care system in the world. More than 31 percent of every dollar spent on health care in the U.S. goes to paperwork, overhead, CEO salaries, profits, etc. The provincial single-payer system in Canada operates with just a 1 percent overhead. Think about it. It is not necessary to spend a huge amount of money to decide who gets care and who doesn't when everybody is covered.

    Myth: The Canadian system is significantly more expensive than that of the U.S.

    Ten percent of Canada's GDP is spent on health care for 100 percent of the population. The U.S. spends 17 percent of its GDP but 15 percent of its population has no coverage whatsoever and millions of others have inadequate coverage. In essence, the U.S. system is considerably more expensive than Canada's. Part of the reason for this is uninsured and underinsured people in the U.S. still get sick and eventually seek care. People who cannot afford care wait until advanced stages of an illness to see a doctor and then do so through emergency rooms, which cost considerably more than primary care services.

    What the American taxpayer may not realize is that such care costs about $45 billion per year, and someone has to pay it. This is why insurance premiums increase every year for insured patients while co-pays and deductibles also rise rapidly.

    Myth: Canada's government decides who gets health care and when they get it.While HMOs and other private medical insurers in the U.S. do indeed make such decisions, the only people in Canada to do so are physicians. In Canada, the government has absolutely no say in who gets care or how they get it. Medical decisions are left entirely up to doctors, as they should be.

    There are no requirements for pre-authorization whatsoever. If your family doctor says you need an MRI, you get one. In the U.S., if an insurance administrator says you are not getting an MRI, you don't get one no matter what your doctor thinks — unless, of course, you have the money to cover the cost.

    Myth: There are long waits for care, which compromise access to care.

    There are no waits for urgent or primary care in Canada. There are reasonable waits for most specialists' care, and much longer waits for elective surgery. Yes, there are those instances where a patient can wait up to a month for radiation therapy for breast cancer or prostate cancer, for example. However, the wait has nothing to do with money per se, but everything to do with the lack of radiation therapists. Despite such waits, however, it is noteworthy that Canada boasts lower incident and mortality rates than the U.S. for all cancers combined, according to the U.S. Cancer Statistics Working Group and the Canadian Cancer Society. Moreover, fewer Canadians (11.3 percent) than Americans (14.4 percent) admit unmet health care needs.

    Myth: Canadians are paying out of pocket to come to the U.S. for medical care.

    Most patients who come from Canada to the U.S. for health care are those whose costs are covered by the Canadian governments. If a Canadian goes outside of the country to get services that are deemed medically necessary, not experimental, and are not available at home for whatever reason (e.g., shortage or absence of high tech medical equipment; a longer wait for service than is medically prudent; or lack of physician expertise), the provincial government where you live fully funds your care. Those patients who do come to the U.S. for care and pay out of pocket are those who perceive their care to be more urgent than it likely is.

    Myth: Canada is a socialized health care system in which the government runs hospitals and where doctors work for the government.

    Princeton University health economist Uwe Reinhardt says single-payer systems are not "socialized medicine" but "social insurance" systems because doctors work in the private sector while their pay comes from a public source. Most physicians in Canada are self-employed. They are not employees of the government nor are they accountable to the government. Doctors are accountable to their patients only. More than 90 percent of physicians in Canada are paid on a fee-for-service basis. Claims are submitted to a single provincial health care plan for reimbursement, whereas in the U.S., claims are submitted to a multitude of insurance providers. Moreover, Canadian hospitals are controlled by private boards and/or regional health authorities rather than being part of or run by the government.

    Myth: There aren't enough doctors in Canada.

    From a purely statistical standpoint, there are enough physicians in Canada to meet the health care needs of its people. But most doctors practice in large urban areas, leaving rural areas with bona fide shortages. This situation is no different than that being experienced in the U.S. Simply training and employing more doctors is not likely to have any significant impact on this specific problem. Whatever issues there are with having an adequate number of doctors in any one geographical area, they have nothing to do with the single-payer system.

    And these are just some of the myths about the Canadian health care system. While emulating the Canadian system will likely not fix U.S. health care, it probably isn't the big bad "socialist" bogeyman it has been made out to be.

    It is not a perfect system, but it has its merits. For people like my 55-year-old Aunt Betty, who has been waiting for 14 months for knee-replacement surgery due to a long history of arthritis, it is the superior system. Her $35,000-plus surgery is finally scheduled for next month. She has been in pain, and her quality of life has been compromised. However, there is a light at the end of the tunnel. Aunt Betty — who lives on a fixed income and could never afford private health insurance, much less the cost of the surgery and requisite follow-up care — will soon sport a new, high-tech knee. Waiting 14 months for the procedure is easy when the alternative is living in pain for the rest of your life.



    Read more: Debunking Canadian health care myths - The Denver Post http://www.denverpost.com/opinion/ci...#ixzz2zuOtUzT5
    And, because part of your argument involves Canadians travelling to the US for care, I want to pull out this part specifically:

    Myth: Canadians are paying out of pocket to come to the U.S. for medical care.

    Most patients who come from Canada to the U.S. for health care are those whose costs are covered by the Canadian governments. If a Canadian goes outside of the country to get services that are deemed medically necessary, not experimental, and are not available at home for whatever reason (e.g., shortage or absence of high tech medical equipment; a longer wait for service than is medically prudent; or lack of physician expertise), the provincial government where you live fully funds your care. Those patients who do come to the U.S. for care and pay out of pocket are those who perceive their care to be more urgent than it likely is.
    "Remember always that you not only have the right to be an individual, you have an obligation to be one."
    Eleanor Roosevelt


    "When people see some things as beautiful,
    other things become ugly.
    When people see some things as good,
    other things become bad."
    Lao Tzu, Tao Te Ching

  8. #288
    deplorable basketcase Tellenbach's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Peacebaby
    By an overwhelming margin, Canadians prefer the Canadian health care system to the American one. Overall, 82% said they preferred the Canadian system, fully ten times the number who said the American system is superior (8%)....from a Harris-Decima poll (.pdf), July 2009. .
    Irrelevant because it's a subjective evaluation. We should be looking at wait times, cost, and outcome. If you have cancer, there is no better place in the world to get treated than the US.

    Quote Originally Posted by Peacebaby
    I cannot be bothered to counter all of your unsubstantiated claims about Canadian health care, but this handy article from 2009 should help (written when the debates on implementation were high).
    I've made no unsubstantiated claims. If I have, please point them out.

    Quote Originally Posted by Peacebaby
    There are no waits for urgent or primary care in Canada. There are reasonable waits for most specialists' care, and much longer waits for elective surgery. Yes, there are those instances where a patient can wait up to a month for radiation therapy for breast cancer or prostate cancer, for example.
    "Meanwhile, the average wait for surgical or specialist treatment is nearly 18 weeks, up from 9.3 weeks in 1993, according to the Fraser Institute, a right-wing public policy think tank in Vancouver."

    "Another watershed lawsuit was filed last year against 12 Quebec hospitals on behalf of 10,000 breast-cancer patients in Quebec who had to wait more than eight weeks for radiation therapy during a period dating to October 1997."

    Canadian Health Care In Crisis

    Quote Originally Posted by Peacebaby
    Myth: The Canadian system is significantly more expensive than that of the U.S.
    "“Health care in Canada is anything but free,” he states, noting that the average family of four pays more than $11,000 a year in taxes for hospital and physician care. However, he explains in an article for The American “surely such expenditure is justified if Canadians receive a stellar health care system in return for their tax dollars. Unfortunately, that simply isn’t the case.”"

    Problems abound with Canada’s health care; tax dollars at work

    Quote Originally Posted by Peacebaby
    Is using Canada a valid reason to oppose universal health care in the United States? Nope.
    Of course it is. No one disputes the long wait times. Every socialized medicine scheme introduces extra demand (resulting in rationing of care) because the services are "free".
    Senator Rand Paul is alive because of modern medicine and because his attacker punches like a girl.

  9. #289
    reborn PeaceBaby's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tellenbach View Post
    We should be looking at wait times, cost, and outcome. If you have cancer, there is no better place in the world to get treated than the US.
    And if you don't want to go bankrupt after needing services at the hospital, there is no better place to be than Canada.

    Listen, your arguments are classic scare tactics, built on faulty premises, sourced from biased reports and cherry-picked to suit your opinion. When we lived in the US I listened to seniors at our church pray to get to 65 so they could get Medicare and actually GO to the Dr. So arguing with you here is akin to speaking to a brick wall.

    And when conversation veered toward an attack of Canada’s health-care system, and its long wait times for certain procedures, Martin delivered a defense that has garnered much applause from fellow Canadians and national media.

    “On average, how many Canadian patients on a waiting list die each year? Do you know?” asked U.S. Sen. Richard Burr, R-N.C., in Washington, D.C., last month.

    “I don’t, sir, but I know there are 45,000 in America who die waiting because they don’t have insurance at all,” replied Martin, a family physician and vice-president of medical affairs and health systems solutions at Women’s College Hospital in Toronto.
    ~http://communications.uwo.ca/western...ashington.html

    America had the perfect opportunity to look at all of the universal health care models in existence and make the best single-payer system in the world. Instead, a whole bunch of folks, who utterly fail to note or appreciate that ALL of the "socialized" services they already receive, like schools, roads and much much more, are essentially no different than receiving health care via the same system, put themselves in the way of potentially a fantastic outcome and now you're all stuck with a hobbled-together plan built from trying to accomplish something rather than nothing at all. Why? Politics.
    "Remember always that you not only have the right to be an individual, you have an obligation to be one."
    Eleanor Roosevelt


    "When people see some things as beautiful,
    other things become ugly.
    When people see some things as good,
    other things become bad."
    Lao Tzu, Tao Te Ching

  10. #290
    deplorable basketcase Tellenbach's Avatar
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    And if you don't want to go bankrupt after needing services at the hospital, there is no better place to be than Canada.
    I've already addressed the cost issue earlier. The reason why medical care is so expensive is because of government subsidies, regulations (like Obamacare), mandated services from insurance companies, frivolous lawsuits, and illegal immigration. There are ways to address these problems without wasting billions of dollars and growing the bureaucracy.

    Listen, your arguments are classic scare tactics, built on faulty premises, sourced from biased reports and cherry-picked to suit your opinion.
    Actually, I'm using sound economic principles.

    When we lived in the US I listened to seniors at our church pray to get to 65 so they could get Medicare and actually GO to the Dr. So arguing with you here is akin to speaking to a brick wall.
    Medicare and Medicaid are disasters. The two programs cost $700 billion/year and $100 billion of it is wasted in fraud, abuse, and mismanagement. I don't think it's acceptable to waste $100 billion no matter how good the intentions are.

    So arguing with you here is akin to speaking to a brick wall.
    I would urge you to watch some Milton Friedman youtube videos or read some of his books. You may also want to read about central planning and how that never ends well.
    Senator Rand Paul is alive because of modern medicine and because his attacker punches like a girl.

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