America's healthcare insanity


$ 82,215 – for 29 days of fan use.


It’s all good, all but around $6k is Medicare. I.e., taxpayers. Best health care system in the world! At least for those suckling at the teat.

Old thread is too big anyway, thank me later stusser!

Open enrollment meeting today at work. All the usual bullshit, which I’m not here to complain about.

What I’m here to complain about is the video in which we were encouraged to become “smarter, more efficient healthcare consumers” to help mitigate our costs and maximize the benefit of the glorious and perfect High Deductible plan.

Obamacare fixed some of the worst abuses of the apocalyptically terrible system we are burdened with, but we have a long damn way to go.

I am so very full of socialist rage right now.

So, if it is open enrollment, I’m guessing premiums are going up, deductibles are going up, benefits are going down, and employees are paying the premium difference?

We’re doing open enrollment at the moment, and I just learned that our insurance includes a “health advocate” benefit, which is like…a person who helps you navigate the complex billing and shit if you have problems with a provider.

Which just struck me as a particularly insane just-as-designed conflict of interests. The health insurance companies contribute to an impossibly byzantine system, and then sell you the services to navigate it. Everybody wins! If by everybody, you mean “only the insurance companies.”

I guess the same as our tax prep industry, tbh.

You must be telepathic or something.

So, tell me…how much do you weigh, in ducks?

Depends on the ducks. Probably about 30 ducks or so?

I guess you can view the HSA as another deduction/retirement plan if you have money to spare. You know we’re probably not gonna have Medicare by the time it’s our turn.

You are not helping my rage level.

The joke is we’ve been on HDHPs for six+ years now, but we keep clearing out the HSA that we put the max into because it turns out that cancer treatment is expensive.

But yeah, retirement, lol. I defer the money into the 401k now so my family can have it later.

Ouch. I am sorry, I did not know you were dealing with that.

I know. Not raging at you. Just, you know, the machine.

Very sorry to hear that, Adam.

People who are ill should not have to fight a bad system for treatment, or go broke doing it. Terrible that we have to say that and try to convince others that it is true.

FWIW, I’m “cured” at this point in that I’m 5+ years out from treatment with no recurrence. So weep not for me; I’m one of the lucky ones.

Yeah, I’m on a high deductible plan as well with similar results. You pour everything you can into the bucket but it’s hard to fill it up when it has a giant hole in the bottom.

Why is shit so expensive?

If I put in the max, $3500 for 20 years I’ll have 70k, just enough for a single year of nursing home care.

Freedom ain’t cheap, yo.

I mean, it’s a profit-based system where the “consumer” has no ability to opt out since it’s their life on the line. If Samsung rolls out a $20,000 TV I can laugh and ignore it. When I get charged $800 to have a mole removed or $7500 for a 30-day heart monitor rental there’s not really much I can do.

And of course, every step along the chain has to make their money. Doctors need to make their money, hospitals need to make their money, medical suppliers need to make their money, pharmaceuticals need to make their money, and then the insurance companies need to make their money. So I guess the buck stops with us having to provide the year-over-year profit growth for each of those links in the chain.

Is there any way to look at this and not see spectacular national failure?

We spend twice as much to die 10 years earlier. Awesome.

I’m not sure I understand the axes on that chart. Or the X axis anyway.