McFly McFly! on Healthcare

4 Sep

We need a Biff to whack some heads around. Conservative folks often point to medicare being broken, and as such it should be fixed before the govt even thinks about further involvement in healthcare. Short of folks dying and/or have a lower quality of life in the interim, I agree. 

The problems with medicare

1. Physicians get paid a small fraction of the going rate. Take a colonoscopy, hospital bills for $1500, doctor gets reimbursed ~$400 via medicare and has to eat the rest. Current proposals to cut cardiology reimbursement by 40% are going over like a brick in that arena. Oncology reimbursement is also scheduled to be cut.

2. Patients have no clue what the cost of services really are, nor do they really have much of an incentive to keep costs low.

3. Medicare is going broke, and as the baby boomer generation’s healthcare demands skyrocket through the system, its not sustainable.

4. Physicians put quotas on the # of medicare patients they can see. Once the quota is reached, no more spots are available. This does serve as a means of rationing care.

Why did this occur?

1. People only paid in a small fraction over the years in contrast with the services they now require. Medicare is socialized medicine, for sure, but it does have a cost, someone does have to pay… and its been the medical community through reductions in reimbursement, and patients, in that care is rationed, and doctor availability is more and more limited.

year               medicare tax               healthcare expenditures as a percentage of GNP

1970                   0.6%                              7.3%

1980                   1.05%                            8.9%

1990                   1.45%                          12.5%

2000                   1.45%                          13.8%

2007                   1.45%                          15.8%

Reagan was the last President to raise the medicare tax back in 1986!

It doesnt take a genius to see the problem here… but horrors, should taxes ever be raised. By the same token…someone has to pay, or, we revert back to 1986 medical practice.

Do note… medicare supplement insurance has went up multifold since 1987, plus we also now have part D. Both very lucrative areas for the insurance business, in part, because the underly costs ie hospitalization and such is taken care of via socialized medicine, ie medicare. Also, should someone really be in trouble, more often than not, medicare supplement insurance drops out, and the person ends up on medicaid, thus providing even more profit to the insurance business.

 

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One Response to “McFly McFly! on Healthcare”

  1. Anonymous September 4, 2009 at 3:36 am #

    whoops forgot the sources of datahttp://www.ssa.gov/OACT/ProgData/taxRates.htmlhttp://american.com/archive/2009/august/maybe-we-should-spend-more-on-healthcare

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