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Old 09-06-12, 08:07 AM   #1
FrenchFit 
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Medical Cost of a Minor Spill

I posted a few months ago telling the story of my 59 yo noob riding buddy who took a spill at about 8 mph. I'm sure it looked pretty funny from a distance, and I was prepared to have a laugh at his expense..but he was in genuine pain and he got home with the bike in the back of my truck. It turned out he hit his hip pretty hard, in fact a few days later he learned he'd cracked it. The bike didn't suffer a scratch.

He told me the other day the total medical bill / insurance accounting came in. Total cost of this fall turned out to $96,000, and the core of that was putting screws in his hip. That's at inflated insurance dollars to be sure, but $96,000... I wonder why they didn't just round it up to an even $100K.

Lots of thoughts come to mind, some which are inappropriate for this board, most centering on the long-term impact of insurance companies in bed with our medical industry.

Beware.
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Old 09-06-12, 08:34 AM   #2
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Hope he gets better quickly.
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Old 09-06-12, 09:35 AM   #3
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Worth a read and a bit more research. I often wonder how many patients in the US health care system regard themselves as customers (rather than victims) and protest loud and hard about the prices they get charged.

http://www.news.com.au/breaking-news...-1226466885765
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Old 09-06-12, 10:49 AM   #4
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Why is it so expensive to buy medical Insurance? Because as the claim is on Insurance-The bill goes up drastically. If the real cost was paid by the Insurance companies and no more- then your insurance premiums would go down.

And you would not have as many Doctors living in Million Dollar homes with 3 Ferraris in the garage.
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Old 09-06-12, 11:00 AM   #5
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Why is it so expensive to buy medical Insurance? Because as the claim is on Insurance-The bill goes up drastically. If the real cost was paid by the Insurance companies and no more- then your insurance premiums would go down.

And you would not have as many Doctors living in Million Dollar homes with 3 Ferraris in the garage.
It's amazing the country puts up with the medical system as it stands. When my wife visited the ER one bill was cut by 50% if we paid within 14 days, and the prescription dropped from $70-odd to $30-odd as soon as I uttered the words "paying cash".

Personally I don't care if the doctor lives in a $1m home with a collection of Ferraris, but I'd want a choice that was more than whether to be slowly bled dry by insurance premiums or risk being financially ruined by getting sick.
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Old 09-06-12, 11:03 AM   #6
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I would bet money that the big players in the health care business are also big contributors to election campaigns. Democracy is for sale in America.
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Old 09-06-12, 11:46 AM   #7
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I would bet money that the big players in the health care business are also big contributors to election campaigns. Democracy is for sale in America.
Totally shocking!

Oh, and best wishes to the accident victim.
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Old 09-06-12, 11:46 AM   #8
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It seems that a lot of people don't pay large medical bills. One that size would be impossible for me. I probably couldn't even afford the interest on it.

The hospitals don't flag your credit rating, but eventually they sell the unpaid bills to collection agencies, and then they do affect your credit rating. They sell the unpaid bills for pennies on the dollar, so making a low offer might work.

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Interesting article. That's a lot of waste.
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Old 09-06-12, 01:37 PM   #9
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My sympathies go out to the fellow with the injury.

Well, for what it's worth, here's my Canadian story: in the winter of 2010, I was riding along a bike path in the dark. The headlight was aimed too low to mark the overhanging branch from the tree that had blown over in the wind that night. The tree itself was resting over a cyclone fence, but a branch was just low enough that I hit it just below my helmet at maybe 15 kmh. Good thing I had the Oakleys on, they protected my right eye. After picking myself up, I got back on the bike and rode to Emergency at Burnaby General Hospital. The receptionist took one look at me, got my story and pertinent personal details, took my BC medical card, and had me go straight to one of the emergency beds. A doctor appeared after maybe fifteen minutes, put in some stitches, treated the wound, wrote a prescription for some pain killer, and I was back on the bike headed for work, but with a really ugly black eye!

Total cost (for which my work medical plan pays about $54/month): zip. $0.00. Nada. Cost me nothing. I could even have called an ambulance, and it might have cost maybe $50, or nothing, I'm not sure.

I believe the same thing would happen to anyone else living in any other civilized country in the world. Except the USA, of course! And I'm not trying to provoke any political debate, I'm just saying what really happens in Canada. I just love our health care system!

Luis
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Old 09-06-12, 01:49 PM   #10
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I believe the same thing would happen to anyone else living in any other civilized country in the world. Except the USA, of course! And I'm not trying to provoke any political debate, I'm just saying what really happens in Canada. I just love our health care system!

Luis

The whole health care debate has been so propagandized and politicized in this country that the average citizen has no idea what the facts are.
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Old 09-06-12, 01:52 PM   #11
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I had both hips replaced in 2008. Cost for both was @$60K. Your buddy must have had some complications. Hips can be tricky.

I hope he can get back to riding.
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Old 09-06-12, 04:07 PM   #12
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The whole health care debate has been so propagandized and politicized in this country that the average citizen has no idea what the facts are.
Whatever the facts, and whatever the relative merits of different healthcare systems, it does provide a degree of reassurance to know that if I suffered the same spill as described in the OP the cost to me at the point of being put back together again would be nothing.
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Old 09-06-12, 04:24 PM   #13
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Sorta reminds me of a very recent news story of a California woman stung by a scorpion and charged $80,000 for anti-venom treatments that would have cost $100 in Mexico. Something is horribly wrong and it isn't the yearly compensation of the doctors.
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Old 09-06-12, 04:28 PM   #14
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Actually, lhbernhart, you did pay for the hospital treatment you recieved, we(see location) just pay for it in smaller doses paid over the long term by taxes and other hidden payments not in a lump sum like the Americans. By the way the ambulance fee would have been $80 as the gov't raised the fee just before I retired in '07.
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Old 09-06-12, 04:31 PM   #15
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Thank God for our National Health Service.

Fall off bike, hurt bad, go to A&E they fix you up.

No charge.

Even when I havent worked for ages or paid anything in.
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Old 09-06-12, 04:36 PM   #16
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US has a system known as legalized bribery , More like begging from the Rich
to run 'the best government Money can Buy'

we pay for a great health care system , in Israel..


Even The VA does its best ti buck shift health care co pays
for the veterans to the Vets themselves who paid into private insurance..

But we make High Tech Weapons systems, want to buy some ?. we're #1

It's the only state welfare subsidized socialism both parties can support..

Politically Engineered, just build part in each congressman's district
and it doesn't matter what it costs..

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Old 09-06-12, 04:37 PM   #17
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You guys will complain about the doctors when Lance Armstrong rides a bike for millions and rappers get paid millions? Lol. Gimme a break.
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Old 09-06-12, 04:40 PM   #18
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And the fact that so many people don't pay their medical bills makes it hard on the ones that do. But our new health care will eliminate the waste.,
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Old 09-06-12, 04:41 PM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lhbernhardt View Post
My sympathies go out to the fellow with the injury.

Well, for what it's worth, here's my Canadian story: in the winter of 2010, I was riding along a bike path in the dark. The headlight was aimed too low to mark the overhanging branch from the tree that had blown over in the wind that night. The tree itself was resting over a cyclone fence, but a branch was just low enough that I hit it just below my helmet at maybe 15 kmh. Good thing I had the Oakleys on, they protected my right eye. After picking myself up, I got back on the bike and rode to Emergency at Burnaby General Hospital. The receptionist took one look at me, got my story and pertinent personal details, took my BC medical card, and had me go straight to one of the emergency beds. A doctor appeared after maybe fifteen minutes, put in some stitches, treated the wound, wrote a prescription for some pain killer, and I was back on the bike headed for work, but with a really ugly black eye!

Total cost (for which my work medical plan pays about $54/month): zip. $0.00. Nada. Cost me nothing. I could even have called an ambulance, and it might have cost maybe $50, or nothing, I'm not sure.

I believe the same thing would happen to anyone else living in any other civilized country in the world. Except the USA, of course! And I'm not trying to provoke any political debate, I'm just saying what really happens in Canada. I just love our health care system!

Luis
On my little incident I waited three hours in the ER waiting room, got a shot and sent home. Four days later the surgery. Looking at the bills, if I had paid cash out of pocket it would have been more than double what they charged the insurance company. So if they are inflating the prices in collusion with the insurance companies, they're inflating them even more for people who don't have any.
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Old 09-06-12, 04:43 PM   #20
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But stitches are one thing. Just wait til you need a heart surgeon and see how that works out. I'll say the U.S. has the best doctors. As soon as the guvment gets involved in our health care you will see who wants to be a doctor then
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Old 09-06-12, 04:48 PM   #21
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It is insurance fraud to charge the insurance company more thana cash paying patient. Besides the insurance co sets the price they will pay.
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Old 09-06-12, 05:09 PM   #22
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It is insurance fraud to charge the insurance company more thana cash paying patient. Besides the insurance co sets the price they will pay.
If you say so, but it's in black and white right on the invoice, regardless of who sets the price. Cash price vs. insurance "discount". Then of course the insurance company will look at that bill and decide what they'll pay.
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Old 09-06-12, 05:38 PM   #23
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We need Affordable Care for all in the USA.
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Old 09-06-12, 05:41 PM   #24
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Even the disgraced members of congress have a health care plan for life,
after they resign.
for themselves.
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Old 09-06-12, 05:52 PM   #25
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And we wonder why insurance is not affordable or available? I think of the various spills I had over the years and am thankful I never did worst than road rash and bruises.
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