At Summit, Obama Warns Health Care Costs Pose 'Biggest Threat' to Economy

Discussion in 'Politics' started by Revmitchell, Mar 5, 2009.

  1. Revmitchell

    Revmitchell
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    President Obama said Thursday that rising health care costs represent the "biggest threat" to the financial health of the country, as he urged Congress to help him enact comprehensive reform by the end of the year.

    The president spoke at the top of a White House health care summit that invited dozens of representatives of the health care sector -- including doctors, patients, insurers and drug industry employees. Obama also invited Republicans, who were expected to speak up.

    He told his guests that health care reform is critical to the economic recovery, claiming that skyrocketing health care costs are forcing families out of their homes and into bankruptcy.


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    Of course the biggest threat to the economy all depends on what Odrama wants to get passed right now.
     
  2. THEOLDMAN

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    It's about time somebody tried to fix this "mess" we call health care.
     
  3. Steven2006

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    Something definitely needs to be done about the cost of health care in this country. As long as that something is not government run health care.
     
  4. Revmitchell

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    Sure we need correct some things. It is not a mess. But we need to get the frivolous law suits under control and stop using it for every little sneeze and sniffle.
     
  5. OldRegular

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    When O'bama opens his mouth he shows his ineptitude; or is stupidity a better word?
     
  6. Pastor Larry

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    Yes, it's an unbelievable mess. Nobody should be able to get service as quickly as they do in America, and the quality is way too high. I decided to have surgery on Thursday and had it on a Saturday. Totally shameful. My insurance covered it all but my $1000 deductible. I should have had to live in pain for at least a month if not more, and I should have paid way more money.

    I think we should get the same people in charge of health care who brought us Walter Reed and the VA. They do a great job.
     
  7. THEOLDMAN

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    What insurance pays 100% ,after deductable, with no "co-pay ? I need some of that !!!
     
  8. Pastor Larry

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    High deductible plans do. You should research insurance before beating up on it.

    That's one of the problems with the health insurance debate: People have no clue what they are talking about. They are told their coverage is bad and too expensive and the government should be picking up the tab for you.

    But they don't even understand their own insurance. One of hte benefits of having privately purchased insurance is that you take the time to learn what you are talking about.
     
  9. THEOLDMAN

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    Honestly, I would love to know the name of the company you use. How much are your premiums ?
     
  10. OldRegular

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    O'bama is using fear to institute socialized medicine.
     
  11. OldRegular

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    Listening to Fox News tonight it appears that O'bama was either lying or ignorant of the truth. Take your pick!
     
  12. Pastor Larry

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    THEOLDMAN,

    I have Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan Flexible Blue (BCBSM) ... Premiums just over $200/month. $1500 out of pocket max. (I had a slightly different plan when I had my surgery.) You can check mine plan out here.

    Here's a summary:

    In a high deductible plan, the insured pays the first X dollars (whatever the deductible is). After that deductible is paid, everything else is covered at 100%. There are different plans but most companies have them. I don't understand why anyone would have a traditional plan.

    I have the BCBSM 1500 plan, which means I pay the first $1500 and then have 100% coverage after that. In the BCBSM 2500 plan, the premiums are substantially lower, but you pay the first $2500, and 20% until you have paid the next $2500 and then you have 100% coverage. I did the math and figured out what my medical bills would have been with both plans. In every year of my life except 2007, I would have saved thousands of dollars with the 2500 plan. But when I had my surgery, it was helpful to have a different plan.

    Here's the math if you can follow this (I am going a little from memory here but this is really close).

    For the 1500 plan: $200/month ($2400 for the year) plus $1500 deductible = maximum cost $3900, minimum cost $2400.
    For the 2500 plan: $95/month ($1140 for the year) plus $5000 (deductible+copay) = maximum $6140, minimum $1140.

    In most years, I never go to the doctor, never have any problems, so in most years, I could get away with the $1140 of the 2500 plan. However, after having my back problems, I was a little nervous about having a recurrence so I opted to for the higher minimum/lower maximum.

    With a high deductible plan, you can have a health savings plan (HSA), where you can put up to $2850 for an individual (more for a family) tax free. You can use that money to pay the deductibles as well as other medical plans.

    I don't know what it's like in Wyoming. Call some agents and ask them. Ask around ... talk to two or three different agents and see what all the options are. Some plans differ but they are all similar in nature.
     
  13. canadyjd

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    Yeh, I thought the home mortage crises was the biggest threat to the economy.....or was it fanny Mae and freddie mac.....or was it the "Big Bank bailout".....or was it failure to enact the stimulus bill....or was it the crisis with the automakers......or was it George Bush's tax cuts for the wealthy......or was it global warming.....or was it simply the failure to act immediately, right now, don't read the bills because the sky is falling and it must be done this second (BTW, I'm taking a long weekend at Camp David)....or was listening to Rush Limbaugh the biggest threat to the economy......and so on and so on.

    I suspect the American people will quickly grow weary of the strategy of never ending doom and gloom coming out of the White House used to scare people into accepting socialism.

    At least I hope so....

    peace to you:praying:
     
  14. JustChristian

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    Why should America be 37th in the world in terms of the effectiveness of its health care? I suppose starting a new war is more important to you.
     
  15. Revmitchell

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    You don't have a clue what is more important to me. Maybe you should start there. 37th according to who. Not that I care what your source is.
     
  16. Bro. Curtis

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    Actually, it's Obama that is now bombing Pakistan.

    I suppose trying to make conservatives look bad is more important than having facts straight.
     
  17. Revmitchell

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    So in what post on this thread did I attack you in this way? Since you claim you act this way only because others do?
     
  18. OldRegular

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    Frankly I have thought that JC makes conservatives look good, not purposely of course.
     
  19. LeBuick

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    I can't say which is tops but health care has to be up there. Medicaid/Medicare is a huge chunk of the national budget. Then you have all the states who chip in for health care also. We take care of every patient no insurer will cover and now HIV patients are living longer and longer (thank God) on drugs that cost more and more.

    A lot of jobs offer really crumby plans. I have a friend who has a 60/40 split with no max. Medical bills is also a large portion of the bankruptcies. We have got to get more people covered in reasonable plans.
     
  20. windcatcher

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    Well, I'm not sure about insurance rates now. Maybe they are more competitive than they used to be.... But I had employer furnished health care....... and every year I heard the same gripes, both from Personnel and Accounting and also from the employees. Employer's gripe was that insurance was going up so they were shopping around for a new provider: Our coverage would change with new policies. Those who had family plans to cover children and/or spouse had significant and increasing differences to make up ...... but would usually stick with the employers' plan because the individual plans had premiums too high to afford...... and the unused employee benefit was lost if not used.

    When using COBRA in 2002, my premium was about $250/month. In 2004-2005, again out of work, COBRA from my last job was at $350/month. But it paid for my radiation, surgery ........ all but co-pays. But, the out-of-pocket expenses for all medical was not reimbursed for the amount which exceeded promises of ceilings in the plan...... I never could get it resolved, nor could I ever get them to send me the forms which were necessary for me to apply for reimbursement, and, frankly, I was too tired physically and emotionally to fight them.

    But, in all the years that I had insurance...... When self provided, I never used it cause I bought a policy to cover the most dire medical if needed and not routine visits for required annual physicals or the typical cold, tummy ache, or back sprain. About the last 8 of the years of employer provided insurance, we had policies which covered routine visits for any physical complaint plus an annual physical, with low co-pays of $5-10. I noticed among my co-workers, there seemed to be an increase in utilization of doctors for routine complaints than there had been before: This is subjective and based upon in what seemed to me to be increases in days I worked 'short staff' because of other's "call in sick" or got offered over-time to cover for unplanned leave due to illness.

    I have since thought..... if I'd had that $600/year premium spent for medical insurance when I first started buying it and found good ways to invest or save it.... plus the later premiums my employer stated they were paying on my behalf....... that by this time, there'd be a niffty nest egg to cover even large medical expenses, including those which amounted to a great deal in 2005. If this had been the character of most peoples provision and use of insurance, then the private shopping for doctors and medicines might have kept the cost more competitive. Plus, folks would be less inclined to used health care for every little headache, stuffy nose or upset tummy w/o first considering home care which includes considering what might have contributed to the symptoms and how best to avoid that discomfort in the future...... a sort of health and body consciousness.

    Of course independance in medical care doesn't insure poor people will get health care....... but there's a BIG difference for all when, in a free market with competition, a routine office visit is $25-40 vs a market which competes for whatever insurance will pay..... so that a visit cost $100 or more, insurance requires a $10 co-pay, and contracts with the doctor to pay $40-60 or more of remaining cost adjusted. In the later instance, those who have no insurance or large deductibles, are frequently poorer because they pay the full amount for office visits, and the office may come under regulations which do not permit voluntary adjustments according to income allowances to help them to assist those who are too poor to pay.

    I think someone here already mentioned the outrageous sums awarded in law suits and protective insurance fees for both doctors and nurses and medical assistants, which adds tremendously to the cost of doing medicine. ----Perhaps that is one area which would change under socialized medicine: Suiing the doctor who provides the service for the state might be viewed as suiing the state..... in which case the state or the government could proclaim 'sovereign immunity' and there by exempt itself and those who contract under it from liabilities which occur.... as long as they were following the government's policy and protocol.
     
    #20 windcatcher, Mar 7, 2009
    Last edited by a moderator: Mar 7, 2009

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