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I believe everyone should have access to health care, which means the last thing I would advocate is the government fixing the price (or making it "free" as it were).
One of the best arguments and someone might have already mentioned it, would be to point out how some of the same medical procedures for dogs are cheaper than for humans and continue to get cheaper while the oppposite is true for humans. The difference being government intervention into one and not the other. Also, I hear that lasik surgery is not covered by any welfare or insurance programs and thus decreases in price while increasing in effeciency.
"Look, the American people have chosen to have a fiat money standard because they want a welfare state. You cannot have a gold standard and a welfare state at the same time. You have to make the choice. We have made a decision as a society that we’ll be dealing with the welfare state." -Alan Greenspan
I have no answers, just anecdotes.
A local hospital in Michigan was in the paper a few years ago about settling some medicare (I believe, or other federal monies) overbilling. It took them months to figure out and it was estimated they overbilled around 10 million. They settled for a few million less than that. It's times like that when you realize the government, nor the hospital, can understand the typical billing or what the feds actually cover.
Over Christmas I was in Cleveland for 40 days with my mother for liver cancer surgery at Cleveland Clinic. I was impressed with everything they did and especially how paperwork is handled. Patients can login to their own records at any time, it's your information. The bill is a given rate regardless of what may have come up. She was in the Intensive Care for a long while and it was the same rate every 8 hours regardless of if she had different tests, treatments, had to see different specialists,etc. I know other hospitals you get separate bills from different doctors and it's a nightmare to just wade through. Cleveland was simple. I believe Mayo does the same sort of thing. I can see why Cleveland Clinic was brought up in the debates as what more hospitals should be like. Although if my mother didn't have private insurance she wouldn't have had the care they offered.
Why other hospitals don't operate that way is beyond me. I can only assume hospitals are a very expensive and hard to enter industry. Even Google gave up on their personal online health records initiative. It was a personal project of a Google founder's wife so you know it had the full company support. If Google can't do that with their resources there is a serious problem.
With modern technology, we can keep very old sick people alive for a very long time through mechanical means with respirators, tube feeding, and an array of drugs. The problem is that if those very old sick people don't die, eventually there wont be enough healthy people to take care of them. Death is a necessary element of biological life.
Do we as a organized society have any social obligation to help the sick, needy, elderly etc? Parts of me say we do and parts say we don't. My guess is that if you go back in time there are several diseases that found cures because we tried to "fix" people through procedures, drugs etc. If everyone had to pick up the enormous cost on the frontend maybe there wouldn't be cures to polio or eye glasses or many of the cheap thigns we have today?
Again this is a hard question as it is but it is really easy to answer if you're not dealt those cards of a $M baby.
"Foreign aid is taking money from the poor people of a rich country, and giving it to the rich people of a poor country." - Ron Paul
"Beware the Military-Industrial-Financial-Corporate-Media-Government Complex." - B4L update of General Dwight D. Eisenhower
"Debt is the drug, Wall St. Banksters are the dealers, and politicians are the addicts." - B4L
"Totally free immigration? I've never taken that position. I believe in national sovereignty." - Ron Paul
Whenever I see posts like this on rpf, I cant help but wonder if the OP really wants an answer or the OP is trying to wind us up. Nay, because you should not force anything on free people, no matter how good the thing is. I actually think universal healthcare could be better than what we have now, but a free market based system is far more preferable than UHCS.
Medical bills are destroying my family and I..I mean DESTROYING.
I had a surgery that cost 15k and I refused medicade..at this point I dunno what to do.