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It's weird,but I'm always shocked to hear about the costs of… - Me myself and I
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It's weird,but I'm always shocked to hear about the costs of healthcare in the US. Can doctors, and especially specialists really demand fees that high?

Just thinking, even without the Ziekenfonds here, I'd still barely pay 30€ for a visit to my GP. And a visit to a specialist costed me about the same, in preparation to my operation. With aid from the Ziekenfonds that amount can usually be cut in two if not more. The same goes for dentists.

Or when I hear about vet visits for pets that cost over a 1000. Now my Dru's only had one bit of surgery, aka her sterilisation. But even with that included, I don't think I've spent more than 200€ on all of her vet visits and care in all the years I've had the joy of her companionship.

I mean I've got a hospitalisation insurrance, but honestly, that's more for paying stuff like hospital rooms and post-hospital care, than to pay the doctors. And I don't think that I pay more than a 100€ a year on my Ziekenfonds either.

That aside, my stupid main comp refuses to start up since saturday. I have no idea what's wrong, everything was ok on friday when I pulled out the plug cause I was staying over at my mom's place, and now it utterly refuses to work. If I was actually able to bend over as I should, I'd pull out all unnecessery plugs and try again that way, but... just glad I recently bought this netbook or I wouldn't be able to go online at all.
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petzipellepingo From: petzipellepingo Date: August 21st, 2012 07:27 am (UTC) (Link)
I'm always shocked to hear about the costs of healthcare in the US. Can doctors, and especially specialists really demand fees that high?

Absolutely and the insurance companies shell out to them without blinking. Which is why if you don't have insurance, you're pretty much screwed.

And indeed dentists and vets bills are equally high over here so you're lucky if you have dental insurance coverage.

shipperx From: shipperx Date: August 21st, 2012 11:59 am (UTC) (Link)
Saw my vet advertising Vet Insurance the other day.
petzipellepingo From: petzipellepingo Date: August 21st, 2012 12:35 pm (UTC) (Link)
Yes, mine has a brochure as well. Although, I've heard the coverage isn't as good as human insurance.
shipperx From: shipperx Date: August 21st, 2012 02:28 pm (UTC) (Link)
I figure it's like buying independent dental insurance, you pay a lot for not much.

I sort of agree with Caesar Milan's concept of making savings account for 'pet healtcare'.

Edited at 2012-08-21 06:28 pm (UTC)
honeylocusttree From: honeylocusttree Date: August 21st, 2012 07:59 am (UTC) (Link)
I worked for a doctor for a while--a big part of it is that the insurance companies don't actually pay the full price, which is why they're jacked up so high. Unfortunately they don't usually make adjustments for those without insurance (even though it seems like the humane thing to do). There are reasons for the insurance payout being so low, which I has to do with having contracts with the providers (whoever the dr. is) so that's why some doctor's won't even take patients with certain types of insurance--no contract means no payout from the insurance at all. I think.

In other words, it's 6000 kinds of screwed all to hell. And some ignorant people act like it's just amazing and wonderful and any attempt at public health care is the devil. Don't ask me why.Stupidity breeds stupidity.
liliaeth From: liliaeth Date: November 24th, 2012 03:54 pm (UTC) (Link)
That's just stupid, and makes me glad I live in a country with 'socialist' healthcare
daydreamer1984 From: daydreamer1984 Date: August 21st, 2012 08:29 am (UTC) (Link)
I live in Canada and health care is free. I mean you have to pay for medication but surgeries, check ups, procedures are all covered.

Vet visits on the other hand are not and are very expensive. I have pet insurance on my dogs. I get 80% back on all medication and procedures etc (after my premium is paid).
liliaeth From: liliaeth Date: November 24th, 2012 03:55 pm (UTC) (Link)
Yeah, I heard that Canada is like the UK in that way. Which is awesome. Too bad about the vet thing though.

(sorry for responding so late, comp was broken when I posted this, and I've been way too busy the past few months to go back to older posts)
enigmaticblues From: enigmaticblues Date: August 21st, 2012 09:36 am (UTC) (Link)
Yes, healthcare really is that expensive here. If you've got insurance, you will usually have a co-pay, which can be anywhere from $10 to $30+, and then you may have to pay a percentage of the cost of your visit or any lab work. And that's if you have decent insurance. Otherwise, you could pay a lot more, and the insurance companies pay the doctor more than that. The kicker is that insurance companies negotiate for lower prices, so if you have no insurance at all, you pay even more than the insurer.

It sucks, plain and simple.
liliaeth From: liliaeth Date: November 24th, 2012 03:56 pm (UTC) (Link)
I'm just hoping that things'll improve for you guys when Obamacare starts up. Even if you should have had single payer healthcare instead.
spikes_heart From: spikes_heart Date: August 21st, 2012 10:07 am (UTC) (Link)
Don't even get me started on healthcare over here, what with my recent issues.

Anyway, I guess that explains why I haven't 'seen' you online for a couple of days. No YIM. Miss you, love. Just glad to know you're okay. Hurry back!
shipperx From: shipperx Date: August 21st, 2012 11:53 am (UTC) (Link)
It's weird,but I'm always shocked to hear about the costs of healthcare in the US. Can doctors, and especially specialists really demand fees that high?

In a word -- yes.

It basically works like this.

Medicare is (at least currently) available for seniors. Medicare sets what rate they can charge for seniors. Basically, they reimburse doctors X for procedure X. Set fee. Private insurance that a senior may have will also kick in a nominal amount (leaving the vast majority to medicate to pay because...well... they can) but with insurance companies it's another issue.

Doctors/Hospitals bill X for a procedure X, however Insurance Companies negotiate with Hospitals what they're willing to pay, which is Y. So what is listed on the bill is usually not what is paid... if it's paid by insurance (though you do have to pay your deductible before insurance will kick in. What your deductible is varies based on how good of insurance you have... which is usually up to your employer).

So essentially, different insurance companies are different, reduced rate Y based that they've negotiated for procedure X.

If you don't have insurance, well tough luck. You're paying full price not the insurance company's reduced rate.

Not that everyone has the same insurance anyway. How much you're responsible for out of pocket, your lifetime cap of possible benefits, etc is set by what your individual insurance will cover (though Obamacare eliminates the "lifetime cap"... which is one of the reasons the insurance companies are spending millions trying to have Obamacare repealed).

Really big corporations get a better selection of insurance policies (because it's spreading the risk over a larger population) than small businesses or -- God forbid -- an individual. So how much you pay for insurance and how much insurance will pay your doctor is based on a number of factors including the size of the business where you are employed, what kind of benefits your job offers, and how much they're willing to spend on premiums.

Buying insurance as an individual? You really want to avoid that if you can. It's exhorbitant.

That's of course if you can buy insurance, because if you've been sick in the past and have lost insurance they can simply not accept you based on a 'pre-existing condition' or they can refuse payment on something if they can categorize it as a 'pre-existing condition.'

Of course that means there's a sick population without insurance, and ethically many hospitals are compelled to treat the insuranceless, who if they can't pay...well... the hospital jacks up the prices on those with insurance (See the vicious cycle?)

And just to make it all just a bit more gag-worthy, something like 80% of the states amount to what is essentially an insurance monopoly as insurance companies don't want to directly compete with one another (that whole capitalistic competition thing isn't desirable to them) so in most states there's essentially a monopoly on which insurance company is predominately available. So it's not like it's particularly easy to shop around for a better insurance company or lower premiums. In my state in excess of 90% of the population is the same insurance company.

So... yeah... our system makes no damn sense.

Edited at 2012-08-21 04:05 pm (UTC)
liliaeth From: liliaeth Date: November 24th, 2012 03:58 pm (UTC) (Link)
And yet republicans still insist that the US has ' the best healcare system in the world' ...
as if.
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