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Thread: Do we want socialized medicine?

  1. #16
    Elite Member KrisNine's Avatar
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    We are constantly evolving and growing as a country. It's necessary to change our way of thinking every now and again. Healthcare has got to be at the top of that list. More and more people are going without proper healthcare because the costs are out of control...even with insurance. I used my friend as an example before and I promise you, he is not a deabeat. He is a hard worker, who happens to have started his own company. He is a single man with diabetes. He cannot (CANNOT) obtain an individual healthcare policy. His diabetes will be excluded. He had an individual policy before and they excluded EVERYTHING because they blamed everything he got on his diabetes. He can't even see a doctor because they won't see him unless he has insurance. They refuse a cash patient. Even if he threw a stack of $100's down, they will turn him away! My co-worker has to pay over $1000 a month here to cover his family. Two kids and a wife. That's on top of prescription costs and office visits. Something needs to be done...fast.

  2. #17
    A*O
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    Trust me, the UK National Health System is NOT a model upon which to base any universal healthcare system. Like all good socialist ideas it was great in theory but a disaster in practice. It creaks along, underfunded, understaffed and overloaded. Most people who can afford to opt for private healthcare, although they still pay taxes to fund the NHS.

    The 'nordic' healthcare systems work because of the extremely high levels of general taxation on those countries so the Govts can afford to pour shedloads of money into healthcare. Most European systems (and the Aussie Medicare system) involve an element of Govt subsidy to a greater or lesser extent so patients either pay upfront and get a partial rebate or can reclaim the whole amount depending on the proceedure. Obviously people on welfare get it for free.

    The system here seems to work pretty well overall, but a lot of that is because we have a comparatively small population (20m) so demand is lower.
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  3. #18
    Elite Member KrisNine's Avatar
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    There just has to be an alternative here for people who aren't able to get insurance through a company policy or for people who have "pre-existing" medical conditions. Here, most policies exclude you for anything they can find on you.

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    Health insurance is no different to any other insurance policy - they don't underwrite obvious risks, ie, a pre-existing condition. It's not fair but that's how it works.

    Organising a univeral healthcare system, free to everyone no matter what their medical history isn't actually that difficult to do. PAYING for it is because the only way it can be done is to crank up taxes and we all know how popular that would be. The choice is high taxes and good social welfare/health cover OR low taxes and more disposable income for people to spend on a heart bypass or a speedboat.

    And of course the monster lurking in the shadows is the MASSIVE demographic explosion that's going to happen when all those 1950s baby boomers turn 60 in the next few years. I heard a stat that the Australian population of over 60s is going to DOUBLE in the next 10 years.
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    Hit By Ban Bus! UndercoverGator's Avatar
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    I had a baby in Germany, at a German hospital and was seen for the proceeding months by a German OB. The Germans did much more preventive healthcare on me than anything I've experienced in the free market society of the US, even if I have some of the best health insurance you can buy. If we move towards socialized medicine we should consider doing it more along the lines of Germany and the Scandinavian countries than the obviously lacking other countries.

    But this would take a major commitment from the people of the US in the form of increased taxation, which I don't believe the average Repub is willing to make. So it might just be a better solution to have the government fund a insurance that anyone can get, base it on a sliding scale based on income. Medicaide and Medicare aren't good examples of how to do it for many reasons but mostly because they deny payment on anything but the most bottom of the line, basic care only.

    I know everyone thinks that doctors in the US are getting rich and that's the problem but it's truly not. The large clinic I work at I've seen the insane hours our doctors put in seeing patients, working at the hospital, doing rounds, working the ER, looking over lab results and test results. These guys are working sometimes 20 hour days and for what? Maybe 100K a year. Break that down by hours and you'll see they are making pretty much the same as a lot of working stiffs who didn't go to school for many long years and don't have thousands of dollars of student loans hanging over their heads. They aren't in it for the money, that's for sure.

    Speaking of money, do you know how much Medicare pays a doctor to see a patient. How about a whopping 3 bucks? You can't run an office with 3 buck patients with any effectiveness.

    The more I think about it, the only real solution is universal healthcare coverage for those that want it. The only problem I see that might arise is that if the standard payments from the insurance to the physician aren't more than 3 bucks or even what Medicare pays, then I can see that many physicians offices will not be accepting universal insurance as payment on anything.

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    Elite Member KrisNine's Avatar
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    I guess it's just the costs here are so much for just the basics. Prescription costs are breaking the bank for people on Social Security and Medicare. For me to get a name brand drug it's $60 and a generic is $35. California is trying to limit the time you can be excluded for a pre-existing condition.

    Yeah, I've heard about the Baby Boomer demo-surge. I don't know what the growth will be here, but I imagine it will be huge.

  7. #22
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    then I can see that many physicians offices will not be accepting universal insurance as payment on anything.
    This is already widespread in the UK. And finding a NHS dentist is virtually impossible now.
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  8. #23
    Elite Member KrisNine's Avatar
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    Half of the doctors out here won't except HMO's....so I can imagine that they will think of a way to get around this. They'll have to set up clinics and hospitals, like Kaiser Permanente.

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    Elite Member Daphne's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by UndercoverGator View Post
    I know everyone thinks that doctors in the US are getting rich and that's the problem but it's truly not. The large clinic I work at I've seen the insane hours our doctors put in seeing patients, working at the hospital, doing rounds, working the ER, looking over lab results and test results. These guys are working sometimes 20 hour days and for what? Maybe 100K a year. Break that down by hours and you'll see they are making pretty much the same as a lot of working stiffs who didn't go to school for many long years and don't have thousands of dollars of student loans hanging over their heads. They aren't in it for the money, that's for sure.
    When I worked at a financial advisory firm, most of the doctors made $300,000-400,000 a year (excluding investments). I am surprised that doctors in your area make so little.

  10. #25
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    One little cheer for the NHS. I delivered both my kids in a public NHS hospital and the level of care and professionalism I received could not have been better. Admittedly I had extremely straightforward births (both very quick and I went home the next day in both cases) but even the women with more complicated ob/gyn requirements were very looked after. I was and am amazed at and grateful for the dedication of the medical and auxiliary staff who often work in hellish conditions for very little pay or thanks.
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  11. #26
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    Quote Originally Posted by Daphne View Post
    When I worked at a financial advisory firm, most of the doctors made $300,000-400,000 a year (excluding investments). I am surprised that doctors in your area make so little.
    Yes, specialiists do make that kind of money but most of the primary care doctors make more along the lines of 100K to 150K a year. I'm talking about the in the trenches daily doctors, not the cutters, heart docs, bone docs but the primary care guys.

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    A*O
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    My cousin in a consultant anaesthetist and he makes a LOT of money. Without the gas man even the super surgeons can't do diddly squat.
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    Massachusetts is trying to solve this problem with their own version of universal health care. STrangely, it was the repug governor who designed teh plan.
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    Elite Member MsDark's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by A*O View Post
    My cousin in a consultant anaesthetist and he makes a LOT of money. Without the gas man even the super surgeons can't do diddly squat.
    There is a lot of money in anesthesiology. But IMO it's deserved since there's probably a higher stress level given that there's no room for even minor fuck ups.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Grimmlok View Post
    Ok, this makes no sense.

    You're already grouped together as Americans.

    You have an American armed forces.

    You have an American government.

    You have a flag that represents you all.

    You celebrate national holidays

    You have a national identity

    How in the name of hell would universal healthcare group you anymore than you already are, and even if it did, how in the hell would that negatively impact anybody?

    "not wanting to be grouped together" is, by and large, nonsensical as an argument.
    I totally agree and how the hell could anyone make this about race? I don't care if they color me purple so long as me and my children can get decent health care.
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