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Another study came out yesterday that adds to the already huge pile of evidence that shows that our charging fees to the sick to deter them from seeking care, results in far worse, more expensive outcomes for patients. Cost worries are shown to clearly delay Americans presenting at hospitals for ALL kinds of medical conditions, costing more in the long run. (There is a conflict of interests here, can you see it?)

This latest study, published in the April 14 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association, shows that Americans who are struck by heart attacks often delay seeking care for hours, because of money worries. Those money issues cause them to delay getting to the hospital for treatment, resulting in more heart injury, more deaths and more expenses in both the long and short run.

The evidence clearly shows that we should restructure the "uniquely-American" for-profit 'insurance' system, so that costs do not deter a patient from seeking care. Using costs and cost escalation to both deter sick people from seeking care and to drop customers when they seek care, is in direct conflict with a public health imperative- that early treatment saves lives and money. Ending the situation would reduce the high costs of medical care in the US.

Refs:

Health Care Insurance, Financial Concerns in Accessing Care, and Delays to Hospital Presentation in Acute Myocardial Infarction (JAMA)

Money Worries Delay Heart Attack Treatment: Even those with insurance sometimes hesitate over finances, study finds (Business Week)

Financial Concerns Can Delay Heart Attack Treatment (Kaiser Health News)

Heart Attack Warning Signs and Surviving a Heart Attack

NEJM Study on Co-pays and Medicare Cost - Raising Co-Pays increases ultimate cost! (NEJM)

Originally posted to Andiamo on Wed Apr 14, 2010 at 12:10 PM PDT.

Poll

Without policies that supply ALL BASIC CURATIVE CARE at NO extra cost- is "health insurance reform" acceptable ?

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| 18 votes | Vote | Results

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