What do Republicans want?

Discussion in 'Healthcare/Insurance/Govt Healthcare' started by rdean, Aug 20, 2009.

  1. rdean
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    rdean rddean

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    My land lord is a regular guest for dinner. He’s around his middle 70’s and plays bridge here in Chicago two days a week. He said that his bridge partner, who is self employed, was diagnosed with skin cancer on the side of his face. It’s non-life threatening if treated early. He went to his insurance company, a company he has been paying for years, and they dropped his policy. No other company will touch him; he needs treatment and has no idea what to do.
    This is the kind of situation that “reform” is supposed to handle.

    Now, I watched a news story last night that said in Las Vegas, gambling casinos are not allowed, by law, to make a profit larger then 20%. Anything larger than 20% is considered a “scam”. In Florida, for gambling casinos, it’s 17%. For Florida, anything more than 17% is considered a “scam”.
    Insurance companies regularly make 25%. They are currently working with congress to make that 35%. AND, part of making that profit would to shift a percentage of the cost of surgery to patients.

    So the question I have is “What do Republicans want?” Is this what you are fighting for? So companies that take your money for years can drop you as soon as you become ill?
    So they can make so much money, for casino’s, it’s considered a “scam”, but for health companies, it’s a “healthy profit”. You know, at casinos, at least you are having fun.

    So once again, “What do Republicans want?” What do they expect from their health care? What if they get sick, do they expect to get dropped? Do they expect to pay for their own surgery? Then why do they need health care?

    I know there will be certain number that will swear, call names and use the “f” word, but for those others, I’m wondering, “What do Republicans want?”
     
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  2. auditor0007
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    auditor0007 Gold Member

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    Health insurance companies are not making 25% in profit. The rate is 3 to 5 percent. Profits themselves are not the problem. I'm not sure where you are getting your information from, but it is wrong. The major problem with the health insurance companies is the overall cost of administration. Administrative costs in addition to the profit margin is close to 30%. The argument for a one-payer system is that administrative costs only run around 5%, thereby saving around 25% of all healthcare spending.

    My biggest beef with the insurance companies is the fact that they will try to drop anyone they can who becomes sick and costly to them. They are in business to make money, and that is their bottom line. This to me, doesn't make sense. Should those who provide our medical care earn profits? I think this has proven to help advance new treatments and new technologies leading to great advancements in medicine over the years. However, earning profits on the administration of our healthcare does not make sense.

    The middle man, the insurance companies, are eating up 30% of what we spend on healthcare. It just doesn't make sense. There are better ways. Unfortunately, those who want to avoid government involvement cannot come up with any reasonable solutions other than to say we should just leave it the way it is. Or they may have a few bandaid ideas as to how we could save a few bucks. However, we need much more than bandaids, and we need to save much more than just a few bucks. We need a drastic revamping of the entire system so that everyone can have access to good affordable care, including those who need it the most.

    As I mentioned in another thread, the treatment I need for my particular condition can be done for $75 per treatment. In fact, I will be paying out of pocket to have this treatment because I lost my insurance and can't get insurance anymore. However, while I was insured, my insurance company was paying the hospital I went to for these treatments at a rate of $375 per treatment. A simple phlebotomy that can be done in a doctor's office for $75 was costing $375. $375 was the amount the insurance company paid the hospital, but guess what; the hospital was actually billing $600 per phlebotomy. And then we wonder where all the money is going?

    This is just one example of absolute waste for one treatment. How many others are there where costs could be cut by 500% or more? Cutting administrative costs is just one part of the solution. The other part is bringing back some real competition between healthcare providers and that means changing the way we receive treatment for many of our diseases/conditions.

    I'll give you another example of the stupidity that exists with our current system. A couple years ago, I broke a toe. I wanted to get an X-ray to be certain. I could have just gone to my doctor, but that would have cost me quite a bit because it would have come off of my deductible which I would have to pay out of pocket. However, my insurance company only required me to pay a $100 co-pay if I went to the emergency room at the hospital. Well, for me it was worth going to the hospital to save a few hundred bucks. But guess how much the insurance company ended up paying the hospital? It was over $2500.

    Now, where is it that we send all of our uninsured when they get sick? Oh yea, to the emergency room. Of course, the hospital doesn't get paid, but they pass on the cost so that getting an X-ray for my broken toe costs $2500. However, the cost of the uninsured person could have been covered with a $50 visit to a medical clinic. Our entire system is a mess, from top to bottom, from the way we pay for it to the way the actual care is dispensed.
     
  3. LilOlLady
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    LilOlLady Gold Member

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    They do not want a democrate healthcare bill. period. and they don't have a plan at all. They want Obama to fail even it they have to sacrifice their granny.
     
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  4. rdean
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    rdean rddean

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    Thank you. That explains a lot. I notice that Republicans don't really answer when asked what they want. I believe they just want to stop Obama. They may even agree with him, but they want him to fail so bad, they will sacrifice their families to see it happen. It's quite sad. If it's not race, then what is it?
     
  5. PLYMCO_PILGRIM
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    PLYMCO_PILGRIM Gold Member

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    i'm not a republican, but i'm also not a democrat so i'll add my 2 cents.

    What do I want out of health care reform?

    Very simple, better quality coverage and a regulation making it illegal to drop a patient based on an illness they contract or that they had contracted before they were a customer of an insurance company.

    Thats all i want.

    Our CARE is awesome, its just the availability of coverage to make that care accessable and affordable that is the problem.
     
  6. rdean
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    rdean rddean

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    That is the entire gist of Health Care reform. Just those two things.
     
  7. PLYMCO_PILGRIM
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    PLYMCO_PILGRIM Gold Member

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    But its not all thats in HR 3200.

    They delve into way too many aspects of the care side of things. There are also things about tax codes in there. And much more.

    If thats was all the reform that was in hr3200 it would be under 100 pages long too ;).
     
  8. rdean
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    rdean rddean

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    I was looking at CEO compensation at the top five health care companies. The average is 4 million, and that's just salary. Can you imagine how many insurance policies they have to sell to pay 38 MILLION dollars - just one years salary for Atena? The head of Medicare, which is considered one of the best, makes only 150,000. This is what Republicans are fighting to keep? Seriously? I will never understand what makes a Republican tick. They cut off their nose to spite their face. I just wish they wouldn't cut off my nose too. I look much too good.

    Insurer: Company Profits CEO Total Compensation: CEO 5 Year Comp

    UnitedHealth Group $2,977,000,000 $5,030,000 –

    WellPoint $2,490,700,000 $4,070,000 –

    Atena $1,384,100,000 $38,860,000 $77,860,000

    Humana $647,000,000 $2,390,000 $56,910,000

    Cigna $292,000,000 $30,016,000 $120,510,000
     
  9. toomuchtime_
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    toomuchtime_ Gold Member

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    It is a myth that health insurance companies can drop you if you become sick. They are already highly regulated by state insurance commissions, which means every insurance policy that is sold in a state has been approved by the state government and all of its consumer protection mechanisms. There are also federal disclosure laws that already apply. Insurance policies are legal contracts that are enforcable in court. Most often when some one loses his/her health insurance after becoming sick it is because the loss of income due to the illness caused him/her to stop paying health insurance premiums. If your landlord is telling you the whole truth and you understood him correctly, then his problem is with your state's insurance commission, not with the whole health insurance industry.
     
  10. rdean
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    rdean rddean

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    Actually YES and NO:

    I came across the following article (this is not spam, it's very informative):

    HHS: Insurance Companies Encourage Employees to "Revoke Sick People's Health Coverage"
    By David S. Hilzenrath

    You might have known that insurers can deny health coverage based on preexisting medical conditions, but here’s something else to worry about: They can take away the coverage you thought you had when actually need it, the government says.

    The Department of Health and Human Services put a spotlight on that practice Tuesday in its continuing campaign to build support for an overhaul of health insurance.

    “When a person is diagnosed with an expensive condition such as cancer, some insurance companies review his/her initial health status questionnaire,” the HHS said in a posting at HealthReform.Gov. In most states, insurance companies can retroactively cancel individuals' policies if any condition was not disclosed when the policy was obtained, "even if the medical condition is unrelated, and even if the person was not aware of the condition at the time.”

    “Coverage can also be revoked for all members of a family, even if only one family member failed to disclose a medical condition,” HHS said.

    The department cited recent research by the staff of the House Committee on Energy and Commerce, which found that three large insurers rescinded almost 20,000 policies over five years, saving $300 million in medical claims.

    At least one insurer included such savings in an employee performance evaluation.



    “Simply put, these insurance company employees are encouraged to revoke sick people’s health coverage," HHS said

    The research compiled recently for a House hearing included more detail.

    WellPoint and Assurant told the committee that they automatically investigate the medical records of every policyholder with certain conditions, including leukemia, ovarian cancer, brain cancer, and becoming pregnant with twins, the committee staff wrote.

    In November 2006, after a Texas resident was found to have a lump in her breast, Wellpoint investigated her medical history and concluded that she had been diagnosed previously with osteoporosis. The insurer rescinded her policy and refused to pay for treatment of the lump, the committee staff wrote.

    Today’s HHS post, which draws on a variety of studies going back as far as 2001, shows how the Obama administration is trying to give people reasons to support an overhaul of health care even if they are satisfied with their existing coverage. It also reflects a stepped-up focus on health insurers, which are increasingly being cast as bogeymen in the debate.

    Under the current system, something as relatively simple as seasonal sneezing can jeopardize your financial security, HHS argues, citing a 2001 study for the Kaiser Family Foundation.

    “Even when offering coverage, insurers can exclude whole categories of illnesses related to a preexisting condition. For example, someone with a preexisting condition of hay fever could have any respiratory system disease – such as bronchitis or pneumonia – excluded from coverage,” HHS said
     

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