Why should the exact same treatment for pneumonia cost $5,000 in one building and $124,000 in another? Or the exact same infusion drug for a chronically ill patient that requires them every six weeks cost $14,000 per shot in one setting, but $28,000 down the street? Why should patients have to pay so much more, simply based on where they park their cars? The answer is simple: they shouldn’t.
Obamacare is known by its official name: the Affordable Care Act. As I’ve said often, one constant in politics is that the law being considered will do the exact opposite of what the politicians say it will do. Another constant is that politicians will create a problem, create a solution for the problem they created that creates more problems, then create another problem-causing solution to follow. And they always require more money. Obamacare is no exception. The real solution is to turn to a free market in which consumers either negotiate costs directly with insurance companies for coverage they need at a cost they can afford, or better, where the consumer negotiates prices and treatment directly with the healthcare provider.
A recent Gallup poll and a poll done shortly after 9/11 shed light on how healthcare’s hyperinflation and under-performance is fueling the Trump and Sanders phenomena. Financial anxiety and a general sense that things aren’t working sow the seed for movements. On the bright side, the horrible under-performance of how healthcare gets purchased and delivered has caused a few positive responses already
Co-ops created under Obamacare reported net assets despite losing millions because they used an accounting trick approved by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services. Tax filings for 18 co-ops, including nine that collapsed in 2015, also revealed that co-op CEOs were paid handsomely before many had to shut down. In July 2015, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services amended its agreement with co-ops, allowing them to list $2.4 billion in loans they received from taxpayers as assets.
For John Kuhn, a simple X-ray after a snowboarding accident turned into an accounting nightmare when the hospital billed him $20,000 for a surgery he never had. "So I had to go down in front of the billing department no less and pull up my shirt and show them that I did not have any major scarring on my stomach at all," Kuhn said. It turns out the hospital's hard drive had been stolen along with Kuhn's medical records.