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Many people are suggesting that the Democrats (or Republicans, for that matter) could avoid the need for real cost controls by various methods, such as selling insurance across state lines, or an "insurance exchange" for individual insurance. They suggest that the sicker risk pool made up of those not in group plans could be expanded by eliminating pesky regulations that make insurance in some states more comprehensive than others.

They say they want incremental change but then they are sneakily trying to avoid all of the changes that other countries all use that could incrementally make healthcare affordable. We're left with nothing.

This is from an article by Marmor, Oberlander and White

"All other rich democracies concentrate purchasing power to counter the medical industry's efforts to increase costs."

" If, as in Canada and Sweden, overall medical costs are on public budgets, then officials have powerful incentives to restrain increases in medical costs to avoid reducing the funds for other public programs or having to raise taxes. "

"In other countries, such as Germany and France, insurers are nongovernmental entities (sickness funds) that are financed through payroll contributions from employers and employees. The governments of these countries regulate insurers and help them control costs. Germany, for example, regulates the level of social insurance contributions (taxes) paid by employers and workers, thereby limiting the budget for all sickness funds."

We really need the nation to understand that its a life or death matter to get real cost control. Without real cost control, millions of Americans can't afford REAL healthcare, they will get increasingly expensive, abbreviated, healthcare, that increasingly kills people.

"Lower prices for medical care are the major explanation for the much lower medical costs of all the other rich democracies relative to the United States. Competing explanations—that the U.S. population is particularly unhealthy or that Americans use many more medical services—are largely false. In a detailed examination of health care spending patterns, the McKinsey Global Institute concluded that the United States population is "not significantly sicker" than that of Japan, Germany, France, Italy, Spain, or the United Kingdom. The McKinsey Global Institute also found that "U.S. patients consume approximately 20% less prescription drugs" in 9 therapeutic areas than do patients in Germany, Canada, or the United Kingdom. Furthermore, the average number of hospital days per year in the United States is the second lowest among 12 comparison countries, although American patients receive more inpatient surgeries and imaging services than patients in most peer countries . Other studies similarly conclude that "the prices of care, not the amount of care delivered, are the primary difference between the United States and other countries" in health care spending."

These problems are crucially important to getting affordable health care.
Obama must not sell us out. Its not an option.

And "leading" is not leading us to the insurance and drug company-sponsored slaughter.

Strangely, the Obama administration is ignoring other nations' time tested tools for making healthcare affordable, and is instead, trying to avoid discussing them by sending us on a four year long "wild goose chase".

Its a question of taking action.

Democrats, your saying NO to the drug companies and the insurance companies is not negotiable for America. You can't sell us out and get away with it.

They have been living high on the hog while American families are bankrupted
because, you, "our" politicians take handouts from them,
and give them handouts in return

Things must REALLY change.
The private insurance model, such as Massachusetts's,
has huge weaknesses, intolerable waste, and no ability to control real costs.

That's why we are seeing huge premium hikes, everywhere.

To preserve their profits, and insulate the politcians
from responsibility in return,
they take more and more money away from care,
leaving Americans with terrible, worstening
healthcare they still can't afford..
Politicians, stop trying to cover cost hikes and your
lies up with denial.

This isn't rocket science.
The rest of the world DEALS with it!

Originally posted to Andiamo on Wed Feb 17, 2010 at 07:40 PM PST.


Should the Obama Administration consider the lessons learned by the rest of the world on cost control?

14%3 votes
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80%17 votes

| 21 votes | Vote | Results

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Comment Preferences

  •  Tip Jar (9+ / 0-)

    WHAT exactly do insurers give us? (besides denying care) What value do they add BESIDES raising prices SO high that THEY exist? Please, WHAT?

    by Andiamo on Wed Feb 17, 2010 at 07:40:24 PM PST

  •  Selling across state lines (0+ / 0-)

    will lead to insurance industry consolidation in the state with the weakest regulations. Mississippi vs Idaho vs Texas vs Wyoming in a race to see who can enact the weakest regulations that apply to the whole damn country.

    Meanwhile, watch for the 39 separate Blue Cross Blue Shield state organizations to merge into one mega company somewhere like Pocatello, Idaho or Dothan, Alabama.

    Just like media consolidation, insurance company consolidation is a bad deal for consumers.

    •  Treaty obligations to multinationals (0+ / 0-)

      What do you think about the treaty issues?

      Basically, its a stealthy way to lock us into insurance slavery.

      If we allow multinationals to sell nationally, we'll have to pay them huge amounts of money when we need to switch to single payer.

      That strikes me as a very serious danger because the insurance approaches clearly won't work to roll prices back to 90s levels so Americans can then, afford healthcare.

      WHAT exactly do insurers give us? (besides denying care) What value do they add BESIDES raising prices SO high that THEY exist? Please, WHAT?

      by Andiamo on Thu Feb 18, 2010 at 08:34:30 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  Selling Insurance Across State lines is (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    already allowed (when my husband was employed, we lived in VT, our insurance was from his MA employer, and provided via NH Blue Cross).  

    What's not allowed is incorporating in the state with the fewest regulations, then selling insurance in all the other states, and failing to adhere to the regulations of the state in which the customer lives. If an insurer wants to sell in a particular state, they have to incorporate there, and agree to the laws of that state governing insurance. If they don't want to do that, they can't sell in that state.

    This is all part of the deal that allowed them to hold monopolies. Now they want to keep their monopoly status with its immunity from the antitrust laws, while gaining immunity from individual states' regulations.

    They're attempting to pull the same scam the credit card companies pulled back in the 1980s. It used to be that cards given to a particular customer could only charge the interest rate allowed within that customer's state. When the rules of the game were changed, so that they could all just make their HQ in the one state with no usury laws, and charge all customers accordingly, lo and behold, we were all stuck with gigantic interest rates, and there is no longer any functional usury law...

    •  People are using credit cards to pay for health (0+ / 0-)

      insurance, thinking that lower prices are just around the corner But the current bill isn't about price reduction at all. Its not going to make healthcare affordable or stop the race to the bottom on quality.

      Unless you are willing to spend around $40k a yearyou are going to get increasingly terrible, globally infamous US-HMO care.

      (probably $45-50k by now..) (for a youngish family, more if you are over 40)

      Canada or the UK has FAR better health care because they don't waste 50% on insurers and billing them.

      I can't believe they are allowing annual caps..

      I think the plan is designed to fail, (adverse selection) but the four year delay is built in "insurance" so they will lose, then their lies about that are never discovered - because it becomes the GOP's problem.

      WHAT exactly do insurers give us? (besides denying care) What value do they add BESIDES raising prices SO high that THEY exist? Please, WHAT?

      by Andiamo on Thu Feb 18, 2010 at 08:49:23 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

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