A Bailout? Medical Insurance – Obama Care

A Bailout?  Medical Insurance – Obama Care

I don’t know if anyone else has had these thoughts but here goes. Let me be clear here. I’ve never sold insurance, either life, medical or any other version of the product but I was, by marriage, involved with it for 20 years. Over those years and since, I have noticed how things once were and how things have developed.

 I see this Obama Care medical bill as nothing more than a huge bailout for the insurance companies! The politicians (both established parties) can say what they wish but that is the way I see it because the insurance companies got to a point that payouts would probably jeopardize their companies. Cheaper group plans, more rules and regulations by the government controlling what the companies could and must do.

 I remember the days before medical insurance became a prominent thing in society. You know the days when your Doctor was a family friend and they still made house calls. I won’t go into the history because there are many good articles on the internet about the subject. This is just one example. http://www.ehow.com/about_7233090_history-medical-insurance.html

 I’m just going to stick with what I have experienced over time. I noticed that when insurance came into play with each of these groups I will mention that it did seem very strange to me that the bills always seemed to go higher. When going to your medical doctor, before they took insurance, it seemed to me that one could always reasonably afford the cost. Even a trip to the emergency room was somewhat manageable because there were payment plans. Then as soon as doctor’s offices and hospitals started to really get connected with the insurance companies, the prices seemed to go higher and higher. In a weird twisted way, you kind of had to scramble to be hired by a company that offered medical insurance as a side to the hiring package.

 This really hit home while married to my husband. He worked for a very large insurance group, mostly on the life insurance side back in the day when there was still door to door monthly collections. Now, we had really good coverage to say the least. But I saw so many take advantage of a good thing. I can’t tell you how many times I heard “don’t worry the insurance will pay” or “I don’t care about the cost, I’m insured”. Did they ever check their bills for over-charge? Not many. Another form of abuse in my eyes! My point here might be that the medical insurance became a double edged kind of sword. On the one hand you had patients receiving treatment never questioning the charges and on the other the medical practitioners over-charging. I always questioned the latter and, yes, it did happen.

 Good examples might be chiropractic, dental, and even massage therapy. I remember when I was going to a chiropractor before insurance companies recognized them as viable. The prices were affordable. That group fought long and hard to get recognized by, I guess, the AMA and insurance companies. The minute they were recognized and able to file claims to insurance companies the prices went up, over a cliff! Then you could see the double edged sword again. “Do you have insurance?” if the answer was yes, your charges were higher when you received a bill. And, of course, many customers, early on, did not have coverage. “Do you have insurance?” if the answer was no, you were able to pay what the original quote of care was per visit. Understandable in a way because the chiropractor didn’t want to lose his previous business. But I do believe this practice was considered insurance fraud. I don’t know such details but there were quite a few chiropractors shut down. I guess you cannot have two prices for different groups.

 Same thing happened when I had a lady massage therapist working as a renter from me. She was so excited about being able to submit claims to the insurance companies when the time came around that insurance companies would finally consider massage therapy as necessary and valid. Well she filled out her forms and became certified by the state. Great. Until one day she told me that she was having financial problems and was having a hard time getting me the rent. Well, long story short, she told me she was waiting payments from the insurance companies for the claims she had submitted. I guess she wasn’t thinking when she reveled to me just how much she had been charging the insurance companies and I knew what her rates were to folks that did not have insurance coverage. As said, I had seen this before and told her she would have to leave!! Gee, bad apples make it bad for us all.

 Over the years I have noticed that every time insurance is introduced, prices just don’t go down prices only seem to go up. You betcha! Now you can add dental insurance and veterinarian insurance to the mix. I honestly, don’t know if it is the fraud, litigation or just the cost of living that has made prices go over a cliff. I can only assume that insurance companies wanted to make a profit. I think it got to a point that the many arms of insurance within a company could not sustain all the group plans, general increased costs, limitations of medicare, medicaid and still make their profits. My suspicion is just that unsustainable would be key word. Not enough money coming in to offset the claims. Now, I am not trying to protect big insurance companies for many of the deceptive practices but neither can I protect people cheating them either.

 This is why I think that the new Obama Care that the politicians passed (without even knowing what was in it) was nothing more than a bail out for the medical insurance industry.  A wolf hidden in sheep’s clothing, and this care plan is, certainly, raising its ugly head. Can you tell I have no faith in the political elites up in Washington? They stick their fingers into the pot for power instead of leaving the economy and free market make or break it for any company be it insurance, banks, fanny & freddy, student loans or car dealers. In my opinion if Obama Care is allowed to keep going the prices will never go down and will only go up. It is just in the NATURE of Big Government!

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5 Responses so far »

  1. 1

    Oh, Ace, you have hit the nail on the head!! Yes, insurance seemed like a good thing. But pretty soon, it was a mindless trip to the doctor or pharmacy without checking out who is cheaper and least expensive. And now, you can’t even GET a quote on an office call!!

    By having insurance, we have abdicated OUR repsonsibility to check and contain the costs we are willing to pay. For instance, notice the TV ads that say “we will bill Medicaid and your insurance company”!! Sure, they will, gladly!!! You won’t have ANY IDEA how much they are going to charge!! And how many of us go to the doctor with any inkling how much they are going to charge? We pay the copay and are just grateful we don’t have to pay the rest. Between the insurance companies, the medical profession and PEOPLE, rates and costs HAVE skyrocketed. It isn’t just one group, it’s all of us!! And the Obama Care isn’t just ludicrous, it’s scary!!

    Right now, I don’t have insurance. None, nada. I ran out of a medication, called the doctor to renew the prescription and because my primary doctor retired, I now have to establish a relationship with another doctor in the office (which I have since I’ve seen them at times, too!!). I told the nurse that I HAD seen the other doctors at different points. Then she said that since I hadn’t BEEN there in a year, I needed to make an appointment and be seen to get a renewal of the medication. I asked her how much it was going to be – I don’t have a job and I don’t have insurance. She COULD NOT tell me!! There might be blood tests, yada, yada, yada, yada.

    This is for a generic drug for Zantac (ranitidine). An over the counter medication, that I can purchase for $48.00-$62.00 a month over the counter or I can purchase the same dosage (higher than over the counter doses) for $20 from Walmart for 3 MONTHS (nothing through ANY insurance company)!! Which is why I choose to keep the presctription. I mean paying $180 or so compared to $20 is a no brainer!! Right?? But because I haven’t been to the doctor for over a year, I guess that they feel they aren’t making any money and need to CHARGE me to make sure I am still alive and kicking so they can issue another prescription. We aren’t talking about Oxycotin or something like that!!

    And it is getting much worse with so much of the population getting up in years!! My dad has been overcharged several times on his hospital bill but because they are so confusing, he has no idea!! And if he pays it, they just add it to their coffers!! They don’t bother refunding it. It has become a whole new industry just to figure it out, if they can. So, we have to go through all that stuff when we can to be sure he isn’t overpaying!!

    I can remember when there were 2 office girls in a doctors office of 4 doctors. NO MORE!! Now, there are at least 10 back there with more in the “billing office”!! And I have been going to the same doctor, until he retired, for 35 years. He went to practice in emergency rooms!! He got fed up with the malarkey in the office!! He still has a couple of years to go to full retirement because he is about our age.

    Yup, you did a great post!! This health care situation is going to ruin our country and we have let it.

    Oh, and I guess I might be fined or go to jail if the full Obama care was in force!! Does that make sense? I can’t afford health care so the government is going to make me PAY!! I pay my own bills, thank you very much!!

    I think we need to fire the health insurance companies!! The bill has played right into their hands!! No responsibility, no checking, just bigger costs!! Yes, if something catastrophic happens, insurance is a very good thing but I will vouch for one thing. If you DON’t HAVE insurance, you don’t go in for every little thing!!

    • 2

      grouchow said,

      @KK Been with and without insurance over the years too. I bet it would be really hard to find a doctor that would let you make payments now days. You are totally right when you say you are more cautious when you have to watch the costs. I’m glad my post made sense to you. Thanks for your post.

  2. 3

    chateycathey said,

    Great Blog. I have to agree that the whole situation with insurance is totally out of control. The Obama Care is not to help the general public as all in government would have us think. It will surely drive more doctors out of office practice though. We have a woman here in town who went to her doctor for her checkup (medicare mandatory) and while she was there he told her this would be the last time he could see her and he was sorry. She ask why and he told her he was closing his practice and moving to Canada and that his office there was already set up and ready to open. She said she has been a patient of his for 32 years. How is Obama Care going to take care of this problem? I imagine more doctors will follow him out of the country just as so many businesses have gone to other countries. Are they ALL blind or are some of them in higher power afraid to speak up because they do not want to make waves? Thanks for the great blog.

    • 4

      grouchow said,

      CC…….. I truly believe that the politicians have lost touch with the general public and only have their own personal agendas. Medicare sucks too because it has been mandatory for years. My husband was sooooo pissed off when he got his first bill that was taken from his social security. Cost him triple of his original insurance. That is why I said Obama care is just another bail out! Those crappy dems and reps up there in Washington should get what we get instead of being able to give themselves all the beanies they afford themselves on the tax payer dollar!!!

  3. 5

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