Monday, August 31, 2009

Health care insanity

Not enough attention has been paid to the astounding irrationalities of our healthcare system. Consider:

I read recently about a woman who, suffering from aggressive cancer, went into a clinical study for a new treatment. The trial was so successful that it was stopped before it's scheduled end. The woman in question could afford the new drug's cost, but some in the trial had to exhaust their resources to pay for treatment, and some could not afford full treatment.

Think of this: In the United State, you can die if you participate in a drug trial that is too successful.

Another example: The lovely Diane and I picked up dental insurance, even though the maximum benefit is only twice the annual premium. Why would we make such a financial commitment? Because my dentist's office manager pointed out that the dentist charges the insurance company less than he would charge me if I do not have insurance. And even if we have to pay the balance--because the insurer pays less than the amount charged--we'll pay less than we would have without insurance, and so the real value of the insurance is much greater than appears.

So, there you have it: we have a system that charges those who have too little to afford insurance more than those who are insured.


1 comment:

Leanderthal, Lighthouse Keeper said...

I stumbled across this dental insurance hidden value myself.

Insanity? Oh yeah.