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Old 11-29-2012, 05:06 AM
 
Location: Long Island, NY
19,717 posts, read 11,555,852 times
Reputation: 5611

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Quote:
Originally Posted by t206 View Post
There are charity organizations that make sure that people that need cars can get them, there are payment plans, there are also used cars that are again perfectly acceptable alternatives to many new cars.

Bottom line is that in any free market there will be competition, alternatives, and most importantly price transparency. All of those things would eventually lead to affordable options for everyone.

For those that TRULY can't afford even the basics, there should be an assistance program somewhere, but to try and make health care "free" for everyone is just an unsustainable concept that will likely make it much worse for the majority.
Sorry, that is fantasyland. If this was true, we would have seen it already, which we haven't. Government involvement in the insurance business is precisely due to lack of everything you said would happen.
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Old 11-29-2012, 05:34 AM
 
Location: Greer
1,611 posts, read 2,027,362 times
Reputation: 1131
In free-market health care, what happens to the people who will inevitably not be able to pay all their medical bills? Who ends up paying them? Do doctors get stiffed and pass the costs on to all their other patients?

Should doctors be able to let uninsured people die in the ER of easily treatable medical conditions?
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Old 11-29-2012, 05:51 AM
 
2,493 posts, read 2,193,007 times
Reputation: 3351
[quote]
Quote:
Originally Posted by ellemint View Post
Healthcare is an essential service, like utilities or education. Without government oversite and regulation what is to stop healthcare service providers from colluding and charging ever higher fees so that only the wealthy are able to afford healthcare?[/quote

Education is a good example. It is not free to society, we pay for it thru our taxes. But free education is available to all thru high school because we have made the decision that an educated population is a good thing.

Last edited by Eddyline; 11-29-2012 at 06:48 AM..
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Old 11-29-2012, 06:13 AM
 
Location: Camberville
12,004 posts, read 16,756,182 times
Reputation: 19709
There may be charities to help pay for cars, or medical care, but not enough to meet everyone who needs it's needs.

For instance, I volunteer at the ONLY (get that - ONLY) organization that helps young adult cancer survivors get back on their feet financially. There are tens of thousands of us in our 20s that are diagnosed each year who simply have not been working long enough to have ever hoped to saving enough to deal with treatment (even when insured - if we are insured) or have the earning potential of someone who is in their 50s. The organization gives grants to people who have finished treatment but are left financially devastated. They pay for medical premiums, pay off credit card debt, pay for a few months of rent, and even pay for gym memberships. The average grant is around $500.

Over 3000 people applied. Less than 120 people were able to be awarded grants. And it's not because the other people weren't qualified - we had to turn down people in really horrific circumstances. There just was not enough money. And there's nowhere for us to direct them. Many of these people are dealing with the "new normal" of being 24 with an ostomy bag, or 27 with the strength of a 5 year old. Many of us deal with cognitive impairment known as chemo brain that makes our old jobs much more difficult or impossible to do. And there is very little charity assistance to help us out.

Meanwhile, as I talk about often, I was denied health insurance at 22 years old because of preexisting conditions that were fairly minor and at that point in time, required no medical intervention (and had not for the past 10 years). Luckily, I got a job that offered insurance but required a 1000 mile move. Then I was diagnosed with Stage IV cancer 4 months into my first job and a month after my 23rd birthday.

In the free market, no insurer would EVER cover me. NONE. Or, if they did, would refuse to pay for cancer expenses. Mind you, I'm almost 2 years post-diagnosis and my insurance is billed about $50000 a year. That's far more than my salary. Even though I was forced to work full time through chemo and I was insured with pretty decent health insurance, almost my entire take-home income for a year went straight to medical bills. Or, rather, I still paid for rent and had to run up massive amounts of debt. My pristine credit is trashed because there was no where to get enough money to pay what needed to be paid. Now I stick with a job with incredibly dysfunctional management because I'm too frightened to leave with the possibility of relapse so high, and then be in a new place where I don't qualify for FMLA (takes a year) and subsequently lose my job and insurance. Most 24 year olds don't even know what FMLA is.

It could happen to you.
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Old 11-29-2012, 06:19 AM
 
3,537 posts, read 2,303,611 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RebelYell14 View Post
We have never had a true free market. We have massive conglomerates, monopolieis and oligopolies.
The current health insurance system we have is not a free market. There is little if any competition because we can not go interstate to purchase plans that maybe more suitable and affordable.

Obamacare has made our "free market" health insurance system worse. It empowered the monopolies even more.
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Old 11-29-2012, 07:21 AM
 
9,856 posts, read 13,419,463 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gvsteve View Post
In free-market health care, what happens to the people who will inevitably not be able to pay all their medical bills? Who ends up paying them? Do doctors get stiffed and pass the costs on to all their other patients?

Should doctors be able to let uninsured people die in the ER of easily treatable medical conditions?
The same thing that happens to people who can't pay for a product they purchase today. You set up a payment plan with interest for the person, if they skip out on that, you either sue for collection or write it off as a bad debt expense.

Why is it so offensive for someone to have a payment plan for a hospital bill?
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Old 11-29-2012, 07:34 AM
 
4,414 posts, read 3,354,577 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hnsq View Post
The same thing that happens to people who can't pay for a product they purchase today. You set up a payment plan with interest for the person, if they skip out on that, you either sue for collection or write it off as a bad debt expense.

Why is it so offensive for someone to have a payment plan for a hospital bill?
How about you take a $10.00/hr job and try to make payments on $500,000 in cancer treatments then get back to us on that one.

Healthcare (otherwise known as activities that keep you alive) is not like any other good that can be traded on an open market like a a car, or widget. There is no upper limit on what people with the means to do so will pay to keep them selves healthy and alive. Likewise no person without the means is going to decline live-saving treatment because they can't afford it.
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Old 11-29-2012, 07:36 AM
 
Location: Greer
1,611 posts, read 2,027,362 times
Reputation: 1131
Quote:
Originally Posted by hnsq View Post
The same thing that happens to people who can't pay for a product they purchase today. You set up a payment plan with interest for the person, if they skip out on that, you either sue for collection or write it off as a bad debt expense.

Why is it so offensive for someone to have a payment plan for a hospital bill?
There are a lot of people who will never be able to pay their hospital bills, even if they work the rest of their lives and you take their entire estates on their death. A lot of people. What do we do about this bad debt?

The answer is that doctors get stiffed and they pass the costs on to everyone else in the form of higher healthcare costs. And thus further people can't pay their bills, and the cycle gets worse and worse.
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Old 11-29-2012, 07:37 AM
 
22,769 posts, read 26,201,775 times
Reputation: 14558
Quote:
Originally Posted by RebelYell14 View Post
it's not wrong, it's just not realistic.

you have to be ready, as a society, to let some people die as a result of their inability to care for themselves.

for better or worse, we are not at that point in our society. So when the rubber hits the road, the government will always pick up the slack to help the helpless, which ends "free market health care."

Even the most conservative politicians in America wouldn't let indigent people die in the ER , and won't eliminate Medicare.


My opinion -- the solution is a two-tier system. Government-funded single-payer diagnosis, and treatment up to a certain threshold. Essentially, a crappy but consistent safety net. Beyond that threshold, private insurance market covers treatment. No individual Medicare or medicaid.

Last edited by le roi; 11-29-2012 at 07:46 AM..
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Old 11-29-2012, 07:40 AM
 
Location: Greer
1,611 posts, read 2,027,362 times
Reputation: 1131
Quote:
Originally Posted by le roi View Post
you have to be ready, as a society, to let some people die as a result of their inability to care for themselves.
This is the unavoidable, inevitable bottom line of free-market healthcare.
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