The Hospital Pricing System- It's About Profit, Not Saving People

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posted on Oct, 6 2013 @ 08:09 AM
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I started thinking seriously about this subject about a week ago when a friend told me about how much doing a blood test actually cost the hospital. He said he had a relative that worked in one that told him doing a blood test costs the hospital a grand total of $6.00. Meanwhile, he got a test done and it cost him a grand total of $200.00. Doesn't sound right does it?

So that led me to thinking, how does a hospital decide how hard to screw a patient on their services?



When a patient arrives at Bayonne Hospital Center in New Jersey requiring treatment for the respiratory ailment known as COPD, or chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, she faces an official price tag of $99,690.




Less than 30 miles away in the Bronx, N.Y., the Lincoln Medical and Mental Health Center charges only $7,044 for the same treatment, according to a massive federal database of national health care costs made public on Wednesday.




Americans have long become accustomed to bewilderment and anxiety when confronting health care bills. The new database underscores why, revealing the perplexing assortment of prices for medical care, with the details of bills seemingly untethered to any graspable principle.


Pretty insane. While Obama Care may not be the answer, something truly does have to be done.

I'm holding one of my kids and he's going crazy.........SO here is the link to an interesting article by the huggington post.

I'll post more later if I can.







posted on Oct, 6 2013 @ 08:15 AM
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the cost of a blood test will depend entirely on what the blood is being tested for.

if its just the slandered stuff some hospital environments will have a machine that will do the lot there and then for the medical staff, it will tell you blood ph, blood count, platlate count and so on and that is obviously really quite cheap.

if however you want to find some obscure antibody and have to send the blood sample off to a specialist lab that has to use some wired and wonderful technique then yeah, its going to cost more.

but as far as different pricing goes for treatments for COPD, I dont know, I am in the UK health service and we do things differently
edit on 6-10-2013 by OtherSideOfTheCoin because: (no reason given)



posted on Oct, 6 2013 @ 08:36 AM
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I certainly agree on what you're saying OP. If it may be of interest to a longer timeline? I made this board as my medical section for the budget thread I did last year.



The top are just numbers but the bottom half I had put together for interesting context info. It shows pretty clearly how steep the curve for costs of a visit and such have been...and suggested numbers for why it may have been happening, atop the mad dash for profit at all costs now of course.



posted on Oct, 6 2013 @ 08:38 AM
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Perhaps for the extra 90+ grand you get wine/hookers/a vegas show and world class catering?



posted on Oct, 6 2013 @ 08:49 AM
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reply to post by solongandgoodnight
 


There are several reasons for such price.

1) The machines cost a lot, easily can costs 100,000s of dollars or even millions + the maintenance fees. I do not know for sure, although I am 90% sure in the machine being expected to "earn" the cost back. Round here such thing does not exist, as the machines are bought by the government from taxpayer´s money or by the hospital from donations. That way these are not expected to earn their money back. If a machine is bought from the taxpayer´s money and then they are charged for using it in order to earn it back, it is absurd...

2) All the employees who work for the hospital (even the one´s who are not directly related to healthcare) need to get paid. In US the amount of administration is very large compared to what it is round here due to lots of bureocracy and also too much "specialisation". That is what I learned from the factory I visited in US, In the local service of the factory (the maintenance/equipment engineers) there was a specialist hired for every field a´la the air guy, the pneumatics guy, the mechanic, electronics guy etc etc, which in total was over 10 people in a small factory + special people running this groups paperwork. Even the most common sense things were required to be done by "specialist". I remember well when I had to wait for half an hour in order for some guy to show up and connect air supply to the machine.When couple of years, I worked round here at factory producing similar products (only about 10 times larger amount). There were a total of 4 people running the whole maintenance part of the factory and fixing the machines which broke down in shifts of 2. Everybody were required to anything that needed to be done (from air to hydraulics problems to mechical, IT & electronics issues & fill in the paperwork themselves & do safety measurements, make the maintenance etc etc). Everybody were required to be "jack-of-all-trades" doing whatever had to be done in order to keep the factory running and to be honest, this was much more efficient compared to the factory in US. Same goes to schools round here, where the total number of fully administrative stuff is 1 (economics). The other administrative stuff is done by teachers and also usually the principal is a part-time teacher.

This was just one factory and I do not want to generalise, although from what I see, I know for sure, one of the problems in US lies in too much bureocracy, too much specialisation (even for easy things that do not need specialist), which leads to too large administrative staff, who actually does not produce anything except driving the costs up by being he middlemen.



posted on Oct, 6 2013 @ 08:50 AM
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reply to post by Wrabbit2000
 


That is awesome, thanks for posting!



posted on Oct, 6 2013 @ 08:54 AM
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Wrabbit2000
I certainly agree on what you're saying OP. If it may be of interest to a longer timeline? I made this board as my medical section for the budget thread I did last year.



The top are just numbers but the bottom half I had put together for interesting context info. It shows pretty clearly how steep the curve for costs of a visit and such have been...and suggested numbers for why it may have been happening, atop the mad dash for profit at all costs now of course.


Looks like something you did for school. Good job!

Am I mistaken though? I see the numbers going down over the years but see the costs and number of MD's actually rising.

If I'm not mistaken, that alone says a lot!



posted on Oct, 6 2013 @ 09:03 AM
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reply to post by TDawgRex
 


Thats how the numbers worked out. There were a lot of surprises for me in making that thread on the various areas of the US Budget and economy, including the medical there. The staggering loss of General practitioners was something to stop over too. It's little wonder we spend a fortune by that alone. Everyone out of Med School is a specialist now in something for the payday that makes ...and it means everything gets seen by expensive eyes. Not 100%..but enough to raise overall costs in such an enormous system for scale, eh?

The bottom line of the set all show sources but if anyone wants to pursue it further (Board Sources), the link there goes to page 2 of the thread I did and to the post with the sourcing for the boards. The 6 in the upper left corner matches to the list on the source post for clickable reference back to the numbers.

No doubt the system was a mess before ACA came along... I just think the cure is killing the patient outright, eh?



posted on Oct, 6 2013 @ 09:48 AM
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I agree. The size of some of these bills must be far higher than what the innocent factor of multiple recipients of payment accounts for. I recall reading that it has something to do with the insurance companies, combined with a lack of competition that would lead to a natural drop in prices.

I theorize that this is the main problem in the ACA. They're attempting to construct a universal healthcare system while leaving the thing causing high prices intact. And it can't be done, it's like oil and water. As the saying goes, nothing is free, and that includes the satiation of high-profit greed.



posted on Oct, 6 2013 @ 09:56 AM
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reply to post by solongandgoodnight
 


You are forgetting that America is a "capitalistic nation" something that was mean to help the nations economy equally, but alas our capitalistic corporate nation is now for profits but only for those that hold the power and money, they also hold congress and the presidency by the balls.

So while you may think that something should be don't sadly within the Obamacare it was never anything to control the profits of providers.

So do not expect any changes in the way America capitalistic corporate dictatorship does business.

See in my neck of the woods, Pheobe is the only provider of medical care in the area this means no exchange to ease the working class, because they are a monopoly and controlling costs, subsidies probably will not help many and with a city that is mostly on welfare the working class will be gouged as usual.

Only on big cities that have more than one provider you can find a competition that can help you with your health care cost.

But insurance will still get you with deductibles and out of pocket expenses, that wasn't cap either in Obamacare.



posted on Oct, 6 2013 @ 10:16 AM
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I think it's interesting to note that on a routine doctor's visit my insurance company pays nothing. They negotiate a price with the Dr/hospital, an overpaid middle man. I had a visit a few months ago, like everyone else I try not to go. The cost was over $120, the insurance said the visit was worth about $60, that's what I paid, insurance covered nothing. Why do they overcharge? If I didn't have insurance you a penalized with a higher price (usually twice as high sometimes more). If the Dr/hospital would charge the correct rate that would be a start.



posted on Oct, 6 2013 @ 11:30 AM
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The medical industry in the U.S. is disgustingly all about profits. In situations of unforeseen disaster requiring emergency care you are at their mercy, which they have none. Their greed and arrogance justifying it is unreal. It is a sociopathic money addicted industry that rapes and pillages the wealth from people and whole families.



posted on Oct, 6 2013 @ 11:47 AM
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marg6043You are forgetting that America is a "capitalistic nation" something that was mean to help the nations economy equally, but alas our capitalistic corporate nation is now for profits but only for those that hold the power and money, they also hold congress and the presidency by the balls.


Capital and profit are not causing the rise in healthcare expenditure. Social distribution, market protection, collusion and bureaucracy are the origin of the horrendous cost rises.

If a protection agency comes to your neighborhood, and charges the neighborhood a large amount of money to 'protect' the residents from some new marauding gangs that showed up, and subsequently then the neighborhood has to pool its money to help even out the horrendous protection cost burden for everyone - and then you find that the protection company was nothing but the marauding gang to begin with, and now they have sole power to exercise prices which mostly go for paying their members to manage the 'protection agency' accordingly - and the protection payments are now mandatory LAW..

...this is called mafia socialism, we are seeing it in action right now, along with its sister, mafia cronyism.

edit on 6-10-2013 by TheEthicalSkeptic because: (no reason given)



posted on Oct, 6 2013 @ 12:02 PM
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reply to post by solongandgoodnight
 


Um, yes...this is not a secret.

This is what happens when you have a privatized capitalistic healthcare system...healthcare for profit, not for health.

There is only one solution to this and that is to have a socialistic universal healthcare system.



posted on Oct, 6 2013 @ 12:24 PM
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AlienScience
reply to post by solongandgoodnight
 


Um, yes...this is not a secret.

This is what happens when you have a privatized capitalistic healthcare system...healthcare for profit, not for health.

There is only one solution to this and that is to have a socialistic universal healthcare system.


Do you think *socialism* will ever make it out of the philosophy/classroom stage ?

You do know the international corporations and banks have/are applying many things from the Marx ideas ... right?

The correlations and similarities are amazing, and well hidden in plain sight



posted on Oct, 6 2013 @ 12:32 PM
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The Hospital Pricing System- It's About Profit, Not Saving People


Yep.

And the pricing system is arrived at by artificially inflated numbers.

The insurance companies pay most of the bills for people.


The medical industry operates on market demands and then establishes prices based on what the insurance companies will pay, not on market prices that reflect the affordability of the *patients*.



posted on Oct, 6 2013 @ 01:08 PM
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You see the rise in expenditures for Medicare and Medicaid, insurance companies and for-profit hospitals saw that as an open invitation to bilk the taxpayer for more and more increasing their profit margins. There is no regulatory agency to control their pricing just like the drug companies so when they saw the sky was the limit they decided to fly.



posted on Oct, 6 2013 @ 01:36 PM
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reply to post by solongandgoodnight
 


The "know it all" crowd would argue that there is a balance between profitability and the care provided, however, if you just take a look at the way our economic system operates, and the apparent value systems we have, it should be clear that we aren't doing our best in a lot of ethical and progressive realms.

The power brokers ie: the big money makers do quite a bit for the world, but at the same time, many seem to be creating stagnation in regard to innovation and true progress these days, whether they intend to or not.
edit on 6-10-2013 by 1Providence1 because: (no reason given)



posted on Oct, 6 2013 @ 01:54 PM
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reply to post by AlienScience
 



Um, yes...this is not a secret.


Thanks for not being condescending.



posted on Oct, 6 2013 @ 02:35 PM
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It would be great to see all US hospitals run as not for profit organisations to keep prices down. Living here in the UK it really worries me what will become of our NHS now the Tories are trying to privatise more and more of the NHS bit by bit. We have all seen here what has happened to prices and service when nationalised industries are privatised and the focus is on profit





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