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2018-11-23 07:00 by Karl Denninger
in Health Reform , 339 references Ignore this thread
Sweet Jesus, The Scams NEVER Stop
[Comments enabled]

The entire "health industry" needs to be destroyed.

Not "reformed" -- there is no reform possible -- destroyed.

Everyone involved at the executive level must go to prison and, if the government won't do it, well..... use your imagination.

Millions of sleep apnea patients rely on CPAP breathing machines to get a good night’s rest. Health insurers use a variety of tactics, including surveillance, to make patients bear the costs. Experts say it’s part of the insurance industry playbook.

The article goes on to point out that not only are insurers and the companies that make these machines getting "telemetry" on your individual use data they're screwing you blind on the price of consumables too because you have "insurance."

Of course said "insurance" usually comes with a deductible, which means for many people you get screwed out of the whole difference in cost simply for having the "insurance."

And they spy on you -- the data from which, I'm sure, will "never" be misused -- right?

If this isn't racketeering, never mind a blatant anti-trust violation may I ask what is?

Oh, and no, health insurance companies are not immune from 15 USC under McCarran-Ferguson.  They twice went to the USSC -- all the way there -- with that argument in the 1970s and lost both times.

So where are the damned cops?

Where is the FBI?

Where is the AG -- federal and all 50 States'?

Why is it that this sort of behavior, which is endemic across the health "industry", hasn't resulted in prosecutions, prison, and if the government won't do it why don't the people find their damned pitchfork and torch?

What sort of stupid is America filled with these days that allows this crap to go on?

May I remind you that you're being hosed all-in to the tune of 500% on health care, generally, over what free market prices?

Think I'm kidding?  Go over to the Surgery Center of Oklahoma and price a procedure (they'll give you a price.)  Now call your local hospital for the identical procedure.  If you can get a price you'll find it it's typically 500% higher -- and in some cases worse.

Oh by the way the Surgery Center has a hospital-acquired infection rate 1/20th -- that's not a misprint -- of most hospitals.  Why?  Because as a "one price, everyone pays the same, cash on the barrel" provider if they give you an infection they have to eat it instead of billing you for it.  This means they're a lot more careful than the hospital is.

While we're at it can I bother you with the fact that roughly 200,000 Americans a year die -- the third leading cause -- as a result of errors committed by medical providers, and the reason that number is so high is that they get paid whether the results are good, bad -- or if they literally kill you.

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Bodhi
Posts: 715
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Quote:
"Levy said he wouldn't have worried about the cost if his insurance had paid it. But Levys plan required him to reach a $5,000 deductible before his insurance plan paid a dime. So Levy looked online and discovered the machine actually cost about $500."


One of the big issues with health "insurance" is that people are unconcerned or oblivious to the costs of medical care as long as their insurance pays the bill.

This article describes what I would label as pure racketeering and should be punished as such. But it's long past time for patients to push back against this criminal behavior, as well as take responsibility for their own health.

A picture of one of the users of the CPAP machine accompanying the linked article shows a man at least 100 pounds overweight. I suspect if this man lost that excess weight there would be little or no need for a breathing machine.
Quik49
Posts: 5304
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The number of radio ads for this **** has gone exponentially up in the last year....like those scooters that they push for Medicare to pay for.

What would be the best way to approach a state AG about this whole racket...seems to be the best starting place.

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Long Vaseline....

Tickerguy
Posts: 155252
Incept: 2007-06-26
A True American Patriot!
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@Quik49
Quote:
What would be the best way to approach a state AG about this whole racket...seems to be the best starting place.

Approach? They know damn well all about it and literally do not give a ****. Nor does Congress; I have face to face, in a town hall meeting earlier this year, brought this up with our sitting Congresscritter and was blown off with a litany of lies including that health firms were immune from Anti-Trust. This despite him (Gayetz) being told DIRECTLY in the question that the health companies had gone to the USSC twice AND LOST.

Then there's the ~2011 meeting with Senate Staffers (I drove to DC for that meeting) with roughly a dozen Senate chiefs of staff. They admitted (behind conference room door of course) that they knew damn well what was going on, that it was illegal, and that it would destroy the budget -- they can and did do the math. They stated FLAT OUT they won't go anywhere near it.

They have just flat-out decided to let these firms **** you despite KNOWING its illegal.

Nothing short of a revolt is going to change it, and if we don't change it Medicare and Medicaid will destroy the budget at a federal (and state) level within the next decade.

Time's up.

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Winding it down.

Oliver1655
Posts: 131
Incept: 2012-08-02

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I was hoping you would write a Ticker on this CPAP madness. There was also another article I just read in the last week or so, but cannot remember where it was at now, about smart toilets.

I kid you not ! Some guy was claiming that a wealth of gastro intestinal info. was being flushed away and a smart toilet would be so helpful in analyzing all this. WTF ?

Couple this with the non stop ads about prescriptions and "living behind the mask" with depression, or the barrage of talking about toilet paper, constipation, diarrhea, flatulence, adult diapers, tampons, Kotex pads, periods, bladder leaks and urgency it's all just plain sickening.

Has the whole damn Country lost it's mind over bodily functions ?

Then as was discussed with your home automation project it's not a bug that everything is connected to the cloud and remains unsecured its a FEATURE of all these systems to harvest every bit of information that will inevitably used against you in some way, shape or form.

Here is a referenced patent that was in a ZH article (was not sure if it was ok to link a ZH here ? ) about Googles intent to data mine homes.

http://pdfpiw.uspto.gov/.piw?PageNum=0....

Couple this with all the push to get everyone DNA tested.

https://www.bloomberg.com/tosv2.html?vid....

It suggests the idiot masses are being pre-conditioned and herded into a 1984 big brother scenario where all thought crimes will be recorded and tracked for future prosecution.

Extortion and extraction remains the goal to gain total and absolute control of the citizenry and the dumbed down sheep quietly follow along.

Never ever willingly board the trains or go to the showers.





Drifter
Posts: 188
Incept: 2016-02-11

Pacific Northwest
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Sleep apnea affects thinnies and fatties. I have it and am in great shape. I had a local orthodontist make me a mouth appliance that holds my jaw in a place so my airway stays open all night long. Along with HFLCMP, this baby is a lifechanger for me, and is a hell of a lot better than a cpap. Ymmv, of course.
Quik49
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Understood. I've gotten the glazed over look trying to explain it to a number for people.

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Long Vaseline....

Mtdm
Posts: 511
Incept: 2009-07-23

NH
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Quote:
thinnies and fatties


Why do so many people now say thin instead of skinny? For the love of god, thinness is a two-dimensional measurement and does not make sense in the context of a human body. Fine hair; thin sheet of paper; skinny woman; etc.

I expected better on Tickerforum.
Thelazer
Posts: 204
Incept: 2009-05-11

Davenport, Fl
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Speaking as a user of a CPAP, I was advised upfront 100% that there was a monitoring requirement, compliance usage requirement and what supply's will / can cost.

Did they tell me they would / could sell the data?
Well, I assume that (I assume all my data is now for sale) anyways so no shock there.

Can I "Shop Around" for supply's, yes and I have.
I find mask's and such cheaper online pretty easily.

All that said, my sleep has improved. I no longer fall asleep mid day.
My wife says I don't wake up gasping for air.
Well, if that's the price I have to pay than so be it.
Radiosity
Posts: 154
Incept: 2009-03-05

Sunny UK
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Mtdm - Probably because so many people today are 1 dimensional NPCs at best? ;p
Gable
Posts: 883
Incept: 2009-07-04

Retired in NC Mountains
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Quote:
They have just flat-out decided to let these firms **** you despite KNOWING its illegal.

if we don't change it Medicare and Medicaid will destroy the budget


They live only for themselves today and screw the public and the future.

I think they know if they prosecuted the Health Care Industry it would financially collapse all companies involved and their stock prices would collapse with a depression to follow since they account for such a large part of the economy.

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In all of history, no government became more honest, less corrupt, or respected its citizens' rights more as it grew in size. E.L. 2016
Ckaminski
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One thing I'll note is that the SoOK pregancy price still seems stratospheric @ ~$12K. But their add-on charge for a c-section is ONLY $2K. Unless they're being sneaky and pricing in most of the C-sections into the regular vaginal deliveries.

Drifter
Posts: 188
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@MTDM: To answer your question, because it is grammatically correct. If you consult your dictionary (Oxford), you thin-skinned ass, you will find that your concept of the word is very 'thin', as it can refer to something not great in cross section or diameter, such as Scrooge's 'thin blue lips'.

You might also look up the British meaning of the word, 'thick', while you are at it.

Dcsleeper
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Northern VA
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ROFL

I have sleep apnea.
My regular use of a Neti Pot, and HFLCMP diet have basically eliminated it. YMMV, but water and salt are basically free.
Jal
Posts: 638
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I'm going to say the same thing as everyone but in a different way.

Im going to make a list of all the social problems and economic problems that have been caused by the socialists, the poor, the powerless, the disenfranchised, the immigrants, the slaves, and the non-elites.
1. Getting scammed by the powerful
2. Getting scammed by the rich
3. Getting scammed by the elites.

Now, you make the list of social/economic problems that have been caused by the rich and powerful.
Mangymutt
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Vancouver WA
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The vast majority of medical conditions, whether it is bleeding from a cut, diabetes, depression and I would venture to guess, sleep apnea are conditions our bodies have learned to deal with and even survive against. I also believe all of us suffer from these types of things through the course of our lives and except for in extreme cases we as well as our ancestors learn to deal with them.

Our skin it there to protect us from a host of bad things, but one of it's functions to protect us is to bleed. The blood is a warning to us. YIKES! Red stuff is leaking from me, I should probably stop it. Bleeding also washes stuff out and prevents bacteria from getting in. So bleeding is good for us.

Pull the skin together as close as you can apply direct pressure the best that you can and pack with moss or cover with honey, wait 7 to 10 days and except for extreme cases i.e. deep wound, loss of appendage or severed artery, you are good to go. Plus you have a wicked scare to show off too.

Thanksgiving, Christmas, birthdays and the such we eat too much we get hyperglycemia and we pay the price, but normally bounce back rather quickly. Now we eat that way every day, allow our kids to eat that way, heck public schools even teach kids it's ok to it like crap every day. Eventually diabetes sets in, but in most cases it is preventable and can even be reversible.

Same thing with depression, we all expense it through the natural flow of life, normally it brought on by a tragic and or acute experience in our lives. But over the course of time, the pain becomes less and we learn to move on with our lives.

Of course there has always been extreme cases of any medical condition that a rare percentage of the population suffers through by absolutely no fault of their own. And modern medicine should be applauded for helping those people live richer and fuller lives. But when it is used to shackle us into over eating, or control our feelings it becomes very dangerous to not only ourselves, but our families and society in general and except for extenuating situations should be avoided.

Wow, that is a lot to get me to where I want to ask: What exactly is sleep apnea? What are it's underlying causes and how is that a protective function of our bodies? Why is it being sold to us?

My knowledge of sleep apnea comes through t.v. commercials, co-workers and friends, so it it very limited. I know that since early adulthood I have awoken with shortness of breath, gasping for air. For myself it seemed to run a couple times a year and last for a few days and go away. The only reason I state that is because I believe sleep apnea is a normal function of humans and has a direct purpose. What that purpose is I have no clue and is why I am asking: What is the potential underlying cause and how do we naturally over come it.

In no way am I saying sleep apnea is not a serious condition that shouldn't be managed, but it seems like it is something like diabetes and depression that is being sold to those who could benefit through natural means. And it does not surprise me one bit that all that data is being collected and sold.
Mtdm
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@Drifter - LOL. I don't think I'm thin-skinned, sorry if you took my comment as a personal slight, it was really meant as a point of discussion. I'm pretty sure I wouldn't seek to engage in debate hereabouts if I were thin-skinned! :)

To be sure, you're right that in contemporary dictionaries, the usage is supported, so maybe it's just me, but in all of my imperfect recollection until very recent years, words like slender, slim, skinny, slight, gaunt, athletic, etc. have been used, and thin has not. Nowadays, thin seems to be the prevailing expression amongst the young, and I'm not sure why this has changed (or, according to you, stayed the same). Unfortunately, my copy of the OED, which would actually give me some view of whether this is a novelty, or whether I'm just wrong and would have been equally wrong a century ago, is packed away. So, I'll withdraw my prior comment and for now will refrain from stating this as an absolute.

And yes, I'm very familiar with the expression thick as two short planks and its meaning. It's worth noting that, in that turn of phrase, thick is also being used to allude to the linear measurement of distance from the outer surface of the first plank to the outer surface of the next plank, not to any measurement of area. smiley
Tripseven
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My father had to use the CPAP machine. He was 150 lbs overweight and stuffed everything he could down his pie-hole along with 750 ml 100 proof vodka about every three days...WHOA! Tried talking him into lightening up on the booze and crap-food intake but just got angered. Asked him what the CPAP machine cost and told me "Nothing, Tricare pays for it" (retired Navy). Conversation went from bad to worse when I told him "You mean I pay for it, thanks. Not only do I get to watch you die, I also have to help pay for it." He died last June at 78 yo of ongoing heart problems I knew nothing about.

On a funny note, his wife told me she parked the dog bed a couple feet away from the CPAP machine in their bedroom. Well, their golden retriever decided to let loose of some gas and got sucked right into the intake of the CPAP. She said she never seen his 6' 330 lb ass move so fast chasing that dog around the bedroom LMAO.

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Please God, take it all away...we don't deserve what we have!

"I find medicine is the best of all trades, because whether you do any good or not, you still get your money." -Moliere "A Physician in Spite of Himself" 1664
Hstella
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Colorado
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The rate of sleep apnea in the US is about 10x that of Nordic countries and is attributed almost entirely to obesity. Some people do have other physical obstructions that cause sleep apnea without obesity, however.
Kareninca
Posts: 263
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I have a very close relative who just died of heart failure. One likely factor was his severe sleep apnea. He was never willing to get tested for a CPAP, until just a couple of months before his death, when he was finally tested and told that he had unbelievably bad sleep apnea. The industry practices described in the article linked above are worse than disgusting; I am sure they are killing people who are actually willing to use the things (since I have been told of family friends whose CPAPs were grabbed back when they didn't log enough hours).

Here is some survival information. There is a charity that provides free CPAPs (or rather nearly free, as you are expected to send $100 to cover their costs): https://www.sleepapnea.org/community/cpa.... They do not require proof of income. I have not used this, but was on the verge of doing so for a different relative who had lent her CPAP to yet another pigheaded relative who wouldn't go for a sleep study (but then a neighbor gave her his old CPAP). So, I can't vouch for this organization from personal experience, but it appears to be legitimate.

The thing is, there must be about a zillion old CPAPs kicking around, and really a used one that was set for someone else is better than none. At least from what I have observed in my family; this is not medical advice. I'm sure CPAP companies are desperate to set up rental deals so that people don't end up with owned units that they can pass on to someone else.

I was at a family gathering a couple of months ago and there were eight of us and someone asked who was on a CPAP. I was the only one who wasn't. I was also the only one who wasn't fat. You can be slim and have sleep apnea but weight often is a factor.
Captainkidd
Posts: 1197
Incept: 2010-05-25

Houston, Texas
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CPAP machines go for $300 up.
Only available via prescription.
Even if you buy it, it's illegal to give to someone else, as it is prescription equipment.
So, if there IS a need, a doctor gets his cut.....
A device that's probably worth $50 sells for 5-10 times that.....
And you don't really own it, because you can be arrested if you sell it or give it away.....
Hmmmmm....
I think it's becoming clear to me.

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A lawyer with a briefcase can steal more than a thousand men with guns. --Mario Puzo

It is well enough that people of the nation do not understand our banking and monetary system, for if they did, I believe there would be a revolution before tomorrow morning. -- Henry Ford
Thelazer
Posts: 204
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Davenport, Fl
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Captain. You can buy a 2nd hand CPAP.
It just has to be for "research" use only.
Riverbarrow
Posts: 77
Incept: 2011-05-11

Virginia
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Desleeper said:

My regular use of a Neti Pot, and HFLCMP diet have basically eliminated it. YMMV, but water and salt are basically free.

Desleeper, can you please elaborate and give more specifics on how a Netipot and high fat low carb diet helped you. Also not sure what you mean by YMMV....

Thank you!

Eleua
Posts: 15490
Incept: 2007-07-05
A True American Patriot!
N 47.72/ W 122.55
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I have always had colds and congestion. When I dropped the carbs out of my diet about 3 years ago, I've only had about 3 incidents of congestion. All three came directly on the heels of a "carb binge." (basically a "cheat day" that got away from me.)

I'm developing a theory that it is the inflammation caused by the processing of carbs weakens the immunities to whatever rhino virus that causes the crud. Without the inflammation, my body fights off the virus before it really takes hold.

Even so, the symptoms have been minimized, and it isn't the yuge snot-fest it normally is.

YMMV

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Hot civil war is now inevitable.
Jdaun
Posts: 171
Incept: 2007-07-30

Minneapolis
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Similar scam anecdote:

I'm a runner and recently diagnosed with a stress fracture. Doctor wrote me a prescription for an ultrasonic bone stimulator device ... supposed to improve healing by 30-40%.

Here's the scam: If insurance covers it, the manufacturer bills insurance company $4000. My insurance covers durable medical devices at 90%, so I'd still pay $400 co-pay in this scenario.

If insurance DOESN'T approve it, then the manufacturer will "work with the patient" to allow the patient to pay out of pocket for the device ... and they only charge the patient $400.

That's right ... if insurance covers the device, the manufacturer pockets an additional $3600. What's an extra $3600 profit among friends <barf>

Or, as my doctor also suggested, a savvy shopper can buy a used device on eBay for $150-$200 if you know what to look for. You can imagine which route I went.

Totally. F'n. Scam.
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