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 Preventing The Next Medical Stupidity
Sonoran_monk 2k posts, incept 2021-08-16
2023-01-17 15:02:00

Another wish list item would be the elimination of heavy metals from the vaccines. These may serve a preservative purpose, but how much mercury and formaldehye do you need? We know that these accumulate and are neurotoxins. We can't come up with any safer alternatives to these substances to serve the same function?

People will wisely avoid mercury in seafood and that at least goes through the digestive tract and has some ability to be mitigated.

Look at the list of excipients and ask yourself if you want some of these things in your bloodstream.

https://www.cdc.gov/vaccines/pubs/pinkbo....
Margbp 138 posts, incept 2021-12-02
2023-01-17 15:02:36

@Oldchemist
And the actual value of that $350 telemed call?

$80. The lowest amount the doc was willing to take.


This infuriates me.



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It is difficult to get a man to understand something when his desires depend upon his not understanding it.
~Upton Sinclair slightly paraphrased
Oldchemist 39 posts, incept 2022-05-31
2023-01-17 15:46:09

Update on the CT scan. The hospital finally called me back after 3 left messages over a week.

I was waaaaaay wrong. CT scan through insurance contracted price is $6000 so $3200 is my portion after deductible and co-insurance. Self pay is $500.

How can this even be legal?
Tickerguy 192k posts, incept 2007-06-26
2023-01-17 15:46:42

You wanted to know why so-called "insurance" is so expensive?

Now you do.

Is it time yet?

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The difference between "kill" and "murder" is that murder, as a subset of kill, is undeserved by the deceased.
Ak1900 93 posts, incept 2010-06-10
2023-01-17 16:04:56

Don't have insurance for the past 4 years. If needed will drive to the Oklahoma clinic.
Latviski 187 posts, incept 2008-02-22
2023-01-17 16:37:52

There's no need to flat rate or mess with pricing at all. Free market forces. You want the best care, pay for the best. You want average, pay for average. You want a self-printed diploma and rusty instruments, it's cheap!
Get the insurance megalopolies OUT of medicine and pricing returns to something you can save up for in an HSA, etc.
Even from the dental side, where it's less egregious than the med side, insurance companies take a HUGE paycheck every procedure and every year they 'renegotiate' to get a bigger slice of the practices, docs, and patients pie.
You all want prices to come down - start ditching your insurance and demanding free market forces dictate the quality AND price of care.
Cary 86 posts, incept 2021-12-26
2023-01-17 16:38:08

I hate the so called medical insurance scam. They keep covering more and more routine or recurring stuff but keep raising the max out of pocket. Their big "good news" this year is that they are going to cover all routine diabetes related expenses; strips, lancets, meds, and insulin. But if my family were in a serious car accident with serious bills, we could pay up to $12k out of pocket. This is upside down of how "insurance" should work. My favorite analogy is that it is like covering oil changes and tires for your car insurance but then making you cover several $k if the car is totaled in an accident. Now I have the savings unlike many to cover such a situation, but it is completely backwards and has the completely wrong incentives.
Sonoran_monk 2k posts, incept 2021-08-16
2023-01-17 17:04:35

Clearly the only thing insurance is ensuring is the massive wealth transfer to the medical industry.

People are paying more for some ephemeral "coverage" than they are for their mortgage. At least after that screwing you have a place to go to sleep.
Gavilan 554 posts, incept 2014-01-01
2023-01-17 17:04:40

I got all my childhood vaccines at the county health department. My dad's office was right down the hall. No idea if they still do that here.

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Fuck the Forest Service.
Oh and FJB too.
Tickerguy 192k posts, incept 2007-06-26
2023-01-17 17:04:54

They do.

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The difference between "kill" and "murder" is that murder, as a subset of kill, is undeserved by the deceased.
Jesjohn94 1k posts, incept 2019-05-07
2023-01-17 17:48:31

@Oldchemist This is how the current system fucks you. Logically you pay $500 rather than $3200. The problem is it's only January. You have no clue what medical costs you might end up with in 2023 especially if you have family coverage. Say your max out of pocket is $8k and something big comes up later in the year like an accident or cancer? That $500 you made the smart decision to spend turned out to be a 100% loss.
Oldchemist 39 posts, incept 2022-05-31
2023-01-17 18:46:03

@Jesjohn94. My thoughts exactly. 😎 That is one of the reasons it is so exasperating.

@Tickerguy. Beyond done and fed up. I took the advice of one of your tickers a few years ago and quit my rat race job and only made enough $ so that I got a 100% Obama care subsidy (for 2 years). I think I was better off working less and making less and having better health insurance. It might be time to go back in that mode.
Idiom 322 posts, incept 2015-02-20
2023-01-17 18:47:48

You guys probably have the public support for a national or at least state amendments enshrining the right to refuse any medical procedure. You should have it just on religious freedom grounds any way.

(it would be epic to allow private access to any medical procedure, but abortion would nuke that)

We have that in NZ and the courts struck down even requiring the police and army to be vaccinated.


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The order limits the right to be free to refuse medical treatment recognised by the New Zealand Bill of Rights Act (including because of its limitation on peoples right to remain employed), and it limits the right to manifest religious beliefs for those who decline to be vaccinated because the vaccine has been tested on cells derived from a human foetus which is contrary to their religious beliefs, Justice Cooke said.

More specifically with regard to the right to decline a medical procedure, Justice Cooke stated that while it is clear the government isnt forcing Police and NZDF employees to get vaccinated against their will and they still have the right to refuse vaccination, the mandate presents an element of pressure.

The associated pressure to surrender employment involves a limit on the right to retain that employment, which the above principles suggest can be thought of as an important right or interest recognised not only in domestic law, but in the international instruments, Justice Cooke declared.
Lizardqueen 4k posts, incept 2008-04-01
2023-01-17 18:49:17

"You all want prices to come down - start ditching your insurance and demanding free market forces dictate the quality AND price of care. "

This ^. But it won't happen until people flat out can't afford the insurance anymore (which is close) and revolt, if at all.
I'm really not hopeful because as things get worse there will be more and more call for single-payer managed "care" where "someone else" pays rather than a return to the free market.

I've been in and around the health care industry for the last 7 years now and what I see is not good. It all trends toward more cost, more gov't involvement, less choice and less freedom, not more and it is snowballing. Here are a few observations:

1) In the interest of reducing costs and promoting "evidence based medicine" more and more layers of bureaucracy are loaded on top of the existing systems. Reporting, metrics, analysts, audits etc. These add nothing to bedside care, just raise the overhead. Most of them you cannot ditch because they are either federal or state mandated rules. Unfunded mandates, just like in the public education system (one reason why your property taxes are so high).

2) Fee for service is going away. The focus now is on "population health", meaning trying to keep people healthier so they don't end up in the hospital. The hospital or system is paid a flat fee per "covered life" and if annual care cost goes over that the providers eat it.
What this means is that if you think your wife nags you, just wait until you are a covered life with high blood pressure or some other chronic issue. They will hound you with programs to enroll in, surveys to answer, calls, etc to make sure you are checking your pressure 10x a day. It will probably increase it LOL.
They already do this to me with my lifelong asthma, despite not being hospitalized for it in the past decade.

To me, forcing providers to manage someone else's health without the authority to do so, so they don't eat the overage, is utterly fucking insane but the "experts" say this is the way to go and don't like it when I point that out. "Are we supposed to sit on the fat guy and rip the Twinkie out of his hands?" I ask.
Note on annual review: "cynical attitude" .

Freedom to say no is going away. If you say no to something that the covered life script says is required for your "care" you will be labeled as non-compliant.
I'm unclear how this hooks up with the patients bill of rights, which at most places distinctly allows the right to say no to treatment.

I also would not be surprised to eventually see vaccinations included in this population health "care plan" and to refuse is to be tagged "non-compliant". It is unclear at what point recommendations will turn into "or else" but it feels like it's coming.
Big pharma is going to end up with it's dirty little paws in here.

I'm kind of unclear as to how this interfaces with insurance (I'm not on the billing side, I'm clinical/technical) but I'm assuming that the covered life lump sum will come from the insurance company.

3) Health care is turning into a nanny, which goes along with (2). Now health care institutions are expected to somehow deal with "social determinants of health" issues as part of keeping the population healthy. This is things like food and housing insecurity, domestic violence, "gun violence", DEI, LBGTQBBQWTF, all the standard buzzwords. That's why you get all those quiz questions at your annual physical.

I tend to be unpopular at work because in meetings where this comes up I ask questions like "what responsibility does the patient have in assuring they secure their own adequate living situation, or are they our ward for life?" and "who is going to pay for this?" . I also ask things like "If we're dealing with this what use is the state Department of Social Services?" and "Is health care or social work our core competency?".
Note on review: "not a team player".

4) The vast proportion of the unhealthiest people (Medicaid and Medicare) aren't going to pay an extra red cent for the above. It comes out of the hides of the privately insured, since the federal M programs are the stingiest of all and the payments often don't cover the costs. And the Medicaid population won't pay proportional to what they use, as they can't. I don't see where the incentive to stay healthy is for that population if they have no financial skin in the game.

I mentioned that to my boss and he said "people want to stay healthy, we have to assume that". I was like "well, explain the fat guy in the waiting room with the 2 liter Coke and bag of Fritos".
Another "not a team player" note on my annual review.

5) Because other facets of the system is breaking down the costs get shifted to where they shouldn't be. Take a look at these stats. These were from a day in January at an unnamed institution with 50 ED beds and 500 beds total:

Census Level: Red
Psychiatric boarders in the ED: 11
Medical/Surgical boarders in the ED: 7
Patients Awaiting Placement: 79

Census level - the amount of patients vs staff. We've overclocked the dilithium crystals, Captain.
Boarders - in the ED because there is nowhere else to put them. Either no bed for admission or nowhere to discharge them to. ED bed cost is really expensive and these 18 patients shouldn't be there. If there is a mass casualty incident, well, guess I'll see you in the hallway. This doesn't even count observations in there that are not boarders.

Psych - often equals drugs but not always. They shouldn't be in the ED, they should be in rehab or a mental institution. Oops no room, we closed those down. But they can't be discharged unsafely.

Patients Awaiting Placement - these are patients well enough to leave the hospital but with nowhere to discharge them to. 79!! Seventy. Nine. In a 500 bed hospital. These are people who need to go to ortho rehab, nursing homes, drug treatment, home etc but there is no where to send them because the receiving sites have also broken down or the home is unsafe. The cost of retaining them in the hospital is far more than it would be if they could be sent to a lesser level of care. The M's often won't pay. Guess who gets to.

TL:DR - its a clusterfuck from top to bottom and getting worse. I know there is a lot of talk about grift here and there is a lot but the problem is so much deeper than that.

I have no answers other than try to stay healthy, stay out of managed systems, find an independent practitioner and pay negotiated cash when you can. And learn how to suture.

Edited to add: And private insurers can at least negotiate drug and procedure prices at the group level , as they have the weight and leverage of thousands of patients behind them. Individual cash payers are usually completely screwed - all the unpaid bills of everyone else mentioned above roll down onto them. If they give you a break on a negotiated deal up front GET IT IN WRITING.

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"Pull your pants up, turn your hat around, and get a job"
---P.J. O'Rourke

Reason: speling and gramar lol
Tsdj86 52 posts, incept 2022-12-06
2023-01-17 19:18:40

Guys this is a little off topic, I hope you don't mind Karl, it is medical related.

Dr. Chris Martenson has an up coming show on Youtube. You won't believe the pictures of the clot crap that embalmers have removed from dead people who have taken the jab. It literally resembles something out of a sci fi movie.

How this isn't front page news everyday is beyond anything I can comprehend. This is possibly the most massive coverup in medical history.
Tonythetiger 794 posts, incept 2019-01-27
2023-01-17 19:19:35


@Oldchemist

Try taking a look at the Radiology Assist website. Another TF member posted it a while back and I bookmarked it.

I did a quick search in my area for a CT Scan - Chest, with and without contrast

I found an imaging center less than 15 miles from my house that would only charge $283.46.

I've never actually used the site before so I can't comment on how reliable / easy to use it may or may not be. Can't hurt to look though.

https://radiologyassist.com/

Probably won't count toward insurance deductibles, but a lower cost than the $500 you were citing.








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"War is when the Government tells you who the bad guy is. Revolution is when you decide that for yourself." - Benjamin Franklin
Sonoran_monk 2k posts, incept 2021-08-16
2023-01-17 19:29:28

Tying health insurance to your job is a double screwing, you've shifted some of your compensation directly into the medical monster without one second of care being provided and then when you need some care you get to pay again up to some point where something so bad has happened to you the luxury of caring about money may no longer be an option.
Tonythetiger 794 posts, incept 2019-01-27
2023-01-17 20:04:16


Lizardqueen wrote..
What this means is that if you think your wife nags you, just wait until you are a covered life with high blood pressure or some other chronic issue. They will hound you with programs to enroll in, surveys to answer, calls, etc to make sure you are checking your pressure 10x a day.


This sort of stuff is already working its way into group health care plans.

It usually starts off with innocent things like a $5/month credit if you're a non-smoker. Then it's another $10/month off if you get an annual physical and send in the results.

They're looking for any markers they consider red flags for chronic disease, like over-weight, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, etc.

Once they find a marker that's sufficiently out of line they use that as a lever to badger the living hell out of you to change your life. Take the 'pill of the day' for your problem, eat less cholesterol, low salt, etc. etc. I'm sure if you tell them to get lost they would find a way to jack up your insurance premiums or deny coverage.

Once marked, you will never escape the punishment phase.

I had a taste of this at a former employer in the early 90s. One co-worker signed up and hit 300+ on cholesterol and was put on drugs and a diet he despised. No meat, no eggs, etc. Even after months of this his cholesterol was still nearly 300. Told me he wished he'd never agreed to the deal.

That's what's coming to our country. Busy-body medical micro-management of your life in the pursuit of keeping you 'healthy' (by the measures they choose).

Current employer has similar deals, in the early stages of the progression. I've politely declined everything except the non-smoker option. Won't ever sign up for the other stuff because I've seen what comes afterward.





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"War is when the Government tells you who the bad guy is. Revolution is when you decide that for yourself." - Benjamin Franklin
Oldchemist 39 posts, incept 2022-05-31
2023-01-17 20:09:28

@Tonythetiger Thank you very much. I went to the website and found several that do the test for $250. The only issue is that I live in a rural area and the closest one that participates in the program are 200 miles away. So with travel costs and time the $500 option looks best. And that assumes I use less than $2000 in medical the rest of the year. Its like going to Vegas and playing the odds.
Tickerguy 192k posts, incept 2007-06-26
2023-01-17 20:10:07

We either stop this by whatever we have to do or else.

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The difference between "kill" and "murder" is that murder, as a subset of kill, is undeserved by the deceased.
Smooth 132 posts, incept 2020-03-26
2023-01-17 20:20:23

OldChemist -- I have a CT scanner in my office, for sinus scans. My charge for a CT is $150 including my interpretation, and we sit and go over the scan immediately after it is done, if you have questions they are answered right then.

Keep looking. There are still some straight up medical doctors and facilities out there.
Chemman 333 posts, incept 2021-05-03
2023-01-17 20:20:39

@Oldchemist

I was going to say the Valley is much cheaper than Summit. But it looks like the participants in the program are in the Valley.
Nickdanger 1k posts, incept 2011-06-12
2023-01-17 20:22:19

Here's another nanny state medical tactic to get you on their "system". We get periodic calls from our Medicare provider wanting to do home visits. When we have graciously declined, they stress that in no way does this interfere with your relationship with your primary care provider, costs nothing, and I think there have sometimes been incentives to get us to agree to the visit. Blah, blah, blah...

One of my friends got talked into this, and the medical provider that came to her house hassled her about the vid and flu jabs.

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-- I'm in the control group

-- In life, it's important to know when to stop arguing with people and simply let them be wrong.
Smokeyblonde13 277 posts, incept 2021-10-29
2023-01-17 21:54:55

@Oldchemist I've paid cash for all medical expenses since 2009, except one 4-day hospital where I was so out of it when admitted that there is no way I would have consented to billing my insurance if I was even if in a 1/4 of my right mind. And I've never had a problem getting a cash-on-the-spot price.
Twiggler 166 posts, incept 2021-02-02
2023-01-17 22:43:40

An incident with my brother. His former roommate's dog attacked my brother and sent him to the ER for treatment including stitches --- the reason this person is a former roommate.

The hospital where he lives is to say the least sleezy.

My brother received a bill a couple of weeks later for thousands of dollars.

My brother is conditioned to simply accept things and he was going call to figure out a payment plan, etc.

Thankfully he called me first. I told him to not do so. I educated him on the medical scheming and billing and insurance and payment processes. I asked him to send me all statements from the hospital, providers and his insurance. And I asked him to let me into his insurance's website so I could read up and educate him on his own insurance.

I think the 1st hospital ER statement was over $5K or something like that. The providers that worked on him in the ER also sent statements.

After reading through and understanding his insurance I gave him some advice. Make sure when you call back that the hospital and providers submit claims to your insurance.

Fast forward a few weeks. The hospital and providers are still going back and forth with the insurance. My brother calls one and they blame the other and vice versa.

I told him to call the hospital and providers and tell them they are not getting a penny until everything clears the insurance.

It all worked out as the hospital and providers finally did what they were supposed to do.

Instead of $5K+, he ended up paying what his insurance said he had to pay.

But one provider used by the hospital was out-of-network. That sucked because the money he paid there didn't apply to the lower in-network deductible. Doesn't matter now since Jan 1 rolled around. But he learned to always ask for in-network.

The key is to know your insurance and push back when something doesn't seem right.

I worked for a rather large medical software company in the mid-2000's. I worked on the billing interface which included ETL with insurance clearing houses, including states Medicaid organizations. Each and every clearing house interpreted the rules just enough different to through things off. One thing I did learn is that the entire business side of our medical industry is one big con. Everything is arbitrary.

At this company we had a type of insurance where our premiums were "given" back to us in "cash" to use for our 1st bit of medical expenses. Then there was a bridge amount, aka deductible. Then it went traditional PPO. So I started shopping since I was wanting my first set of money out of pocket to go as far as possible. NOT ONE DOC OFFICE COULD TELL ME HOW MUCH A TREATMENT WAS WITHOUT FILLING FOR THE INSURANCE FIRST. Ugh!

I learned then that the whole industry is simply a legal medical mafia.

I could go on and on and on but by reading above y'all know.
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