Dozens of midpriced items were embedded with similarly aggressive markups, like $283.00 for a “CHEST, PA AND LAT 71020.” That’s a simple chest X-ray, for which MD Anderson is routinely paid $20.44 when it treats a patient on Medicare, the government health care program for the elderly.
More than a 10x -- that is more than 1,000% -- mark-up.
You'll find dozens of examples in this article.
You'll also find documentation that so-called "non-profit" hospitals make plenty of profit -- they're just prohibited from distributing it to shareholders. Multi-million dollar salaries, on the other hand, are just fine.
Further, the essential purpose of a non-profit must be to operate for some charitable purpose. You will find single-digit percentages of operating income that are in fact "donated", including those alleged "compassionate use" claims from pharmaceutical firms.
While pharmaceutical companies are for-profit companies, the supposed non-profit hospitals and networks are another matter.
Again folks, as I have argued, if your medical bills were 1/10th or 1/5th of what they are charged at today, you could probably pay them in cash.
Every contract, combination in the form of trust or otherwise, or conspiracy, in restraint of trade or commerce among the several States, or with foreign nations, is declared to be illegal. Every person who shall make any contract or engage in any combination or conspiracy hereby declared to be illegal shall be deemed guilty of a felony, and, on conviction thereof, shall be punished by fine not exceeding $100,000,000 if a corporation, or, if any other person, $1,000,000, or by imprisonment not exceeding 10 years, or by both said punishments, in the discretion of the court.
What do you call a practice that is universal among the participants in a given market where the person who is buying not only has the price actively concealed from him or her before the fact but worse is unable to negotiate in many cases due to exigent circumstances (e.g. a perceived or obvious heart attack!)
Of course we have plenty of exceptions and simple refusals to prosecute when it comes to these firms and industries.
It's not an accident.
You're being robbed outright, and now it's in the "mainstream media."
Oh, and Obamacare? It further institutionalizes these practices by forcing you to participate and have your money stolen.
For how long will you sit back and tolerate this sort of outright theft in an amount that aggregates to nearly three trillion dollars annually, undertaken with the full permission and active participation of the United States Congress, the Administration and the States as well?
Where We Are, Where We're Heading (2013) - The annual 2013 Ticker
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