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Thread: Why require people to buy health insurance?

  1. #16
    A*O
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    oh and TAXES too (psssst, don't tell them that contributions to a public system will be much less than what they currently pay for private insurance)
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  2. #17
    Elite Member cupcake's Avatar
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    I heard today that Alabama is trying to instill a fat tax for gov employees. $25 more per month if they are over 34% body fat. Over weight people will be subject to complete medical testing and will be taxed until they get to a healthy weight and bodyfat percentage. I didnt realize they already have a tax for smokers. $20 more per month. Probably other states will try this as well
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  3. #18
    Elite Member Wiseguy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by A*O View Post
    Or even better, a mandatory but affordable public system which you can then "top up" with private insurance if you so choose.
    Absolutely right. I've lived in several countries, and this is by far, the best system of health care I've seen. Medicare in Australia is an excellent example. It's not perfect, but it works extremely well.

    Psychiatric Patients Fare Well in Australia's Health System

    Unlike America's Medicare, Australia's Medicare covers people of all ages. Nonetheless, the Australian government encourages its citizens to purchase private health insurance to supplement their Medicare coverage.

    When Americans think of life “Down Under,” that is, in Australia, they often envision cowboys roaming the outback and encountering kangaroos, dingos, and laughing kookaburras or young adults in splendid health playing on Sydney's beaches. And indeed, life is very good for many Aussies; their life expectancy is among the highest in the world.




    When it comes to health insurance, however, Aussies do not emphasize rugged individualism as much as Americans do. Australia has had a publicly funded universal health insurance system since 1975—first called“ Medibank” and then renamed “Medicare” in 1984. As Ken Kirkby, M.D., president of the Royal Australian and New Zealand College of Psychiatrists, explained in an interview, “The philosophy of Medicare is communitarian; we all chip in to help those less fortunate.” Kirkby is also chief psychiatrist of mental health services in the Department of Health and Human Services in Tasmania.

    Under Australia's Medicare, all citizens are entitled to treatment in a public hospital at no charge. “Many people who can't afford treatment or who need extensive treatment are treated in public hospitals,” Kirkby explained.

    Medicare will also pay 85 percent of the going Medicare fee for outpatient visits with physicians in private practice; patients then pay the remaining 15 percent as well as anything beyond that when doctors do not accept the Medicare fee as payment in full. A Medicare fee accepted as payment in full is called “bulk billing.”

    “Anywhere from 70 to 90 percent of psychiatrists bulk bill sometimes, but a lot of them don't do it most of the time,” said Kirkby. When psychiatrists do bulk bill, he added, it is often for patients who are incapacitated by depression or psychosis and not working. Also, there is a limit on patients' out-of-pocket costs for outpatient care; Medicare picks up the tab for any care beyond the limit.
    Australia also offers people of few means outpatient care—including outpatient psychiatric care—in public clinics. “For example, we have outpatient clinics in country towns that are free to the user,” Kirkby said.

    Medicare is funded by a 1.5 percent tax levy. An exemption applies to low-income earners and the unemployed. In practice, the levy raises only a fraction of the money required to cover the program. If the levy were to cover it fully, then it would need to be about 8 percent. Moreover, Medicare does not fund public hospitals; they are financed by federal tax revenue through grants to the states.

    The Australian government also encourages citizens to purchase private health insurance to supplement their Medicare hospital coverage.....


    In Kirkby's opinion, “Australia's Medicare system is one of the world's best health care coverage systems.” One of the features he likes best about it, he said, is that it provides “universal coverage of the population.”

    Psychiatric Patients Fare Well in Australia's Health System


  4. #19
    A*O
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    We won't convince them Wiseguy. Tha attitude seems to be "why should I pay for someone else's medical care with MY taxes". Well, why should someone else pay for yours? That's kinda how it works.
    If all the women in this place were laid end to end, I wouldn’t be surprised - Dorothy Parker

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    Elite Member Sojiita's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by collateral damage View Post
    It is my understanding that most hospitals operate in the red because people without Health Insurance use the emergency room as a primary care physician of sorts. We all pay. But at the same time I don't get the way some people use health care. I rarely go to the doctor. For some people it's like they go to the doctor once a week.
    Then fuck the insurance stuff-just consider yourself very fortunate. I am sure that most of the people who have to visit the doctor every week would gladly trade places with you.
    Quote Originally Posted by travelbug View Post
    My SIL is an insurance broker and she says that even for people in good health, age 40, with a $5000 deductible, premiums can be $1200/month. So much for cheap high deductible policies.
    Amen. Insurance is so damn high.
    Quote Originally Posted by laynes View Post
    Wow.. that's a crappy policy!. We have an HDHP/HSA and the family deductible is only $2400 w/ a $4000 out of pocket limit and my employer gives us $2000 a year in our HSA. We have no monthly premium.

    I guess employers need to shop around.

    HDHP/HSA's are great IMO b/c they teach us to be consumers about our healthcare. You think twice before going to the ER for a hangnail.
    Many employers are dealing with the issue by phasing out any health care benefits entirely. My company made everyone parttime(including me, and I have worked 3200 hours so far this year) and just paying overtime instead of having fulltime employees with health benefits. They are doing it by attrition-when a full timer leaves(retires, quits, fired, etc.) the position is eliminated and another 'parttime' position is created.
    Quote Originally Posted by sputnik View Post
    why not combine a public option and mandatory insurance, which is what countries like switzerland have? everyone has to buy insurance bit if you can't afford it, then you receive help from the government.

    wiki article:
    Healthcare in Switzerland

    prices may seem high but keep in mind salaries are much higher in switzerland too.
    Posted from my iPhone
    Sounds good.
    Quote Originally Posted by A*O View Post
    Or even better, a mandatory but affordable public system which you can then "top up" with private insurance if you so choose.
    Yes, sounds even better.
    Quote Originally Posted by sputnik View Post
    ^^^
    yeah but that might be too much for many americans and their fear of teh evil 'socialism'
    Posted from my iPhone
    Probably true. *sigh* Anything progressive is 'socialism'-especially if it is associated with Europe, that bastion of liberal evil. *eyeroll*

    On some things The United States is just great; on other things it just sucks, and this issue is one of them.
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  6. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by laynes View Post
    Wow.. that's a crappy policy!. We have an HDHP/HSA and the family deductible is only $2400 w/ a $4000 out of pocket limit and my employer gives us $2000 a year in our HSA. We have no monthly premium.

    I guess employers need to shop around.

    HDHP/HSA's are great IMO b/c they teach us to be consumers about our healthcare. You think twice before going to the ER for a hangnail.
    Who is your insurance carrier (who pays for any healthcare expenses after the family deductible of $2400)? Is your employer paying the monthly premium then?

  7. #22
    Gold Member laynes's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by travelbug View Post
    Who is your insurance carrier (who pays for any healthcare expenses after the family deductible of $2400)? Is your employer paying the monthly premium then?
    Insurance is through Custom Design. Yes, my employer pays the monthly premium plus contributes to our HSA. We have pretty good benefits and supposedly my employer is still paying less per month than they would for and HMO or PPO?



  8. #23
    A*O
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    Medicare is funded by a 1.5 percent tax levy
    And this is deducted directly from your gross income. Most people probably wouldn't even notice the difference until the time comes for some medical treatment when suddenly it seems like very good value for money indeed. What's the average percentage of people's income for private insurance? It's a no brainer but there's still this deep seated resistance to the whole idea.
    If all the women in this place were laid end to end, I wouldn’t be surprised - Dorothy Parker

  9. #24
    Elite Member Wiseguy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by A*O View Post
    And this is deducted directly from your gross income. Most people probably wouldn't even notice the difference until the time comes for some medical treatment when suddenly it seems like very good value for money indeed. What's the average percentage of people's income for private insurance? It's a no brainer but there's still this deep seated resistance to the whole idea.
    Agree. And under this scheme, low income earners don't even pay the 1.5% levy. It couldn't be fairer.


  10. #25
    Elite Member nana55's Avatar
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    If you are oor, you will probably continue to get medicaid. Most working stiffs can afford $25.00 to $75.00 a month. They will have to cut back on movies and eating out at McDonald's. That can cost well over $25.00 for a family. People want cable, nice tennis shoes and free health insurance. Can't have it all baby.
    If I can't be a good example, then let me be a horrible warning.

  11. #26
    A*O
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    It's a great shame that in 2010 so many Americans are forced to regard healthcare more or less as a "luxury" and not a basic human right. There are tried and tested public systems out there (the UK system has been around for 60 years) and while they aren't perfect, they do work most of the time. Ask anyone who is lucky enough to have a public system if they even notice their automatically deducted healthcare contributions and the answer will be "no". But they do notice that they can go to any doctor, any specialist, any hospital and get the treatment they need without worrying whether they might have to sell the house to pay for it.
    If all the women in this place were laid end to end, I wouldn’t be surprised - Dorothy Parker

  12. #27
    Elite Member cupcake's Avatar
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    Amish will be exempt from the $750.00 penalty for not buying insurance
    My grace is sufficient for you, for my my strength is made perfect in weakness...I love you dad!
    Rip Mom

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