Monday, April 7, 2008

A Total Waste

According to a recently released report, lack of health insurance results in higher death rates.

A report issued Friday by Families USA, the national organization for health care consumers, concludes that nearly three people die each day in North Carolina because they don’t have health insurance.

The Families USA report says people without health insurance are more likely to delay seeking care because of the high bills, which means disease such as cancer are diagnosed at a later, more deadly stage.


I believe that this sort of thing speaks for itself. The cost of healthcare is astronomical--and it is quite simply unaffordable for the uninsured. By contrast, the insured in this country have an exceedingly poor grasp of the real cost of medical treatment, simply because they've been insulated from it by copays and percentages. Most people have some tenuous grasp on the idea that treatment for life-threatening illnesses is costly--treatments for cancer, for example, or any major surgery. But if outpatient pharmacy is any indication, most patients think that $50 is a "really expensive" drug product and they start complaining about how their insurance clearly didn't cover anything.

For some reason, telling them that the real cost of the medication is $250 doesn't change their tune.

What more can I say? I live in one of the richest countries in the world, but we have the poorest health outcomes per dollar spent. Despite the fact that America is the "first-world," people die from treatable illnesses because they can't afford to seek medical care until it's too late.

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