Over 500,000 US families go bankrupt from medical bills every year

Originally published at: https://boingboing.net/2019/02/07/over-500000-us-families-go-ba.html


It is perhaps not at all strange that a major health care policy that did nothing to build in price controls, does not, ahem, control prices.




But socialism! Freedom! Government taking hard-earned money for pockets linings! /s


You can’t imagine a more screwed up system than American healthcare. It combines the worst of everything: scummy insurance companies, inefficient bureaucracies, greedy doctors, profit motivated hospitals and lecherous pharmaceuticals. At this point the entire thing needs to be blown up and started again from scratch.

Obamacare wasn’t the best thing in the world but it’s still a helluva lot better than what we have.


I couldn’t afford to live in the US because of limitations of health care plans, high premiums and attendant risks from the loopholes. The American economy would get an enormous, continuing boost from nationalized healthcare but continues to get dragged down by the But Socialism! cries. Insanity.


I would love to see a concise and understandable write-up about what Obama originally brought forward before compromises and concessions to get it passed. Basically, how much of the failings of the ACA are a lack of imagination in the original proposal (I’m sure informed by its likelihood of passing) and how many were changes directed by Republicans before they would support it?


The latest trend being rolled out by many employers is replacing standard insurance option plans such as PPO or HMO with low or moderate deductibles to offering just 1 or 2 choices of High Deductible Health Plans with multi-thousand dollar annual deductibles. The company then provides you a Health Savings Account or Flexible Spending Account that, in theory, covers your very high deductible.

The thought here is that since a large majority of younger employees are already healthy and don’t need to see doctors, the company can get lower insurance rates by choosing higher deductible plans. But this also passes more out of pocket expenses onto the individual with lots of complexity and restrictions.

Used to be your employer would offer high a dozen or so different plans that you could choose from depending on what best suited you and your family’s needs but now that choice is being steadily eroded.

Employee sponsored health insurance is pretty much the worst way possible for covering the vast majority of Americans.


And who shrieks the most
about/against Socialism?
Red-faced mouth-breathers
on Medicare and social security!



I’ve got to keep reminding myself,
that the word
simply means “a lack of knowledge”


I think the Democrats naively figured they could get broad bipartisan support for a health care plan that was essentially the same one that Republicans had themselves proposed and championed.


That works out to 0.4% of US families per year or 8% per generation (20 years).

I vaguely recall at the time that it was commonly understood that no proposal for single-payer would have any hope of going anywhere. Do you think the ACA was the best possible option that could have been passed in that political climate?

Sooooooo… acceptable losses?

I have a hunch the number isn’t going to be going down on its own, especially at the rate of… everything.


actually it was $106,000 because they and so many other people have insurance the medical industry can milk

when is society going to say to hospitals NO you cannot charge that

will “medicare for all” fix that? (I honestly don’t know)

Obama insisted on “market-based solutions” for his “health care reform.”

I think that’s the calculation Democrats made at the time. I remember thinking that they were fools for not even putting single payer on the table; even if Dems didn’t think it had a chance of surviving to the final bill they should have started there so they’d have more room to compromise. Instead they started with the “public option” as their starting point and capitulated on that almost immediately.


Most people don’t remember just how divided many Democrats in Congress were back then. They were scrambling for every vote. The version of the ACA that passed was about the best that was possible at the time due to holdouts like Joe Lieberman who wouldn’t even support some of the provisions that he himself had suggested just months before.

Here’s a video from that time that was meant to create public pressure to change Lieberman’s mind.


It’s basically designed to kill the most people and provide the least useful effects, but it returns the most profit so it’s great for the economy! Remember kids, people don’t need to actually live to exist in economies. You can have a population of zero and a strong economy… honest, just look at this graph! If I can draw it, it must be true.