Repeal and replace the high cost of healthcare

Whether you support the Affordable Healthcare Act or you’re screaming for repealing and replacing it, you’ve got to realize that any U.S. President, whoever he/she may be, will be hard pressed to come up with any solutions for the insurance companies and those they serve until we look first at addressing the high cost of healthcare itself.

When did doctors stop reaching for a cure and start reaching for our wallets and ATM cards? Gone are the days of house calls, personalized health care and having your broken leg set for the cost of a good laying hen. When you enter a hospital now, for whatever the reason, they may as well be hooking you up to monitors and your own personal ATM because, in many cases, it’s going to cost a fortune whether you have insurance or not.

You will be billed by a dozen doctors, most of whom you’ve never seen and some who have never seen you; if your chart or name crossed their desk, they’ll bill you. They will order a few dozen different tests that may or may not be related to what’s wrong with you. They’ll justify it because someone you’ve never met somewhere says that at some time or another someone who fits your basic health history, symptoms, body type and has the same number of tattoos had something that warrants that particular test so they’re going to give it to you too-just to be sure.

It shouldn’t surprise many of us that the United States consistently ranks the worst among the top 11 industrialized nations for quality and affordable healthcare. Health spending per capita in the U.S. is higher than nearly any nation on earth yet the United States’ “measure of health” ranks behind dozens of other nations. In measuring life expectancy, the U.S. ranks behind 30 other nations.

Many think or thought that the ACA is/was the answer to their healthcare prayers because they cover pre-existing conditions for the same premium rates as they charge for those without. Some think Trump has turned his back on America by wanting to repeal the ACA.

Take another look at your ACA plan in 2017 and you may realize that either way, your pre-existing conditions are going to cost you and everyone else higher premiums; at least Trump did away with the penalties for the health insurance that, soon, none of us will be able to afford anyway.

On a national average from the time that the ACA was officially signed, sealed and delivered on March 23, 2010, our health care premiums have been going up across the board. From the years 2013-2017 insurance premiums have gone up 108 percent nationally with some states like Oklahoma seeing a rise of over 200 percent in the cost of their premiums according to the Department of Health and Human Services. Nevada has seen a rise of 86 percent. These figures are calculated based on the 39 states that use healthcare.gov. At the current rate that premiums are getting hiked up, it won’t be long before nobody will be able to afford insurance of any kind.

If you have ACA in Nevada and started paying $204 a month for insurance just four short years later, you’re paying $379 and probably not getting the same amount of coverage you had in 2013. What do you think your premiums might be in just four more years? Even at the present rate of 86 percent raise, it will be over $700 in 2021.

Now, under the ACA, if at any time you can’t afford that premium payment and you allow your insurance to lapse, pray that you don’t have a pre-existing condition because now it’s really going to cost you. Yes, once your coverage lapses, insurance companies are now exempt from charging you what they charge everyone else and can now charge accordingly for your pre-existing condition.

Everything has a catch, and there’s no perfect plan, whether it comes from a republican or a democrat, a conservative or a liberal, we’re all misguided in our thoughts of trying to solve the U.S.’s medical malfunction with insurance coverage alone; we have to rein in the cost of healthcare first.

You can’t force business to provide services to the point of the company’s detriment. That’s exactly what the ACA seems to be doing by forcing insurance premiums to stay the same across the board. Trump isn’t forcing that issue. He is putting it up front that insurance costs will be higher to cover the higher expenses associated with some pre-existing conditions and he’s giving free enterprise back to the insurance companies. He is right in allowing the insurance companies their “free market” but he’s still only putting a Band-Aid on an ugly, gaping wound.

So what is the answer?

Some Americans have discovered a better plan, their way is not to seek American healthcare at all. Insurance only covers so much and out-of-pocket costs have been on the rise right along with the premiums and now Americans are beginning to steadily seek medical treatment outside of America.

There are four countries rated top notch for quality and affordable healthcare and one of them is just across the border. Thousands of Americans take a trip across the border to Mexico for some of the best medical care at a fraction of the cost of the U.S. The facilities are top notch with the latest technology, treatments and medications. Having major surgery or receiving treatment for a serious condition is not a problem even as an expatriate. You can expect to pay half or less of what you would pay in the U.S. for the same treatment and/or prescriptions. Mexico ranks fourth, Columbia ranks third, Costa Rica is second and Malaysia ranks number one in the World for affordable and quality healthcare.

According to International Living:

A stronger U.S. dollar, cheaper air travel, mounting healthcare costs in Western countries (and long waiting lists), have all contributed to the Malaysian medical tourism boom in the past decade. Medical tourists arriving in Malaysia have increased on average by 100 percent in the last five years.

George Town and Kuala Lumpur are the main two medical centers in Malaysia, and both cities are serviced by a multitude of international airlines from around the world.

It’s time we repeal and replace the United States medical industry and our government may want to look at some of these top models for examples. https://internationalliving.com/4-countries-best-healthcare-world/.

Comments

  1. David Petrillo says:

    The ACA was a good idea that never had a chance to succeed due to the intransigence of the GOP Congress. It is obvious that we need to adopt a single payer system much like the rest of the world. That would give everyone basic healthcare at a fraction of what we are paying now. If you want a Cadillac plan, you could pay for supplemental insurance. The reason we do not have a single payer system in place right now is that the medial lobby have paid a lot of Congressmen(women) a boatload of money. The medical industry is making huge profits at our expense. It is time to reign in the medical industry.

  2. Amy Marshall says:

    I agree with David–The rest of the world does have universal healthcare from cradle to death. Why on earth are we so behind every other nation? I’d gladly pay more taxes for such a plan.

  3. Who knew health care could be so complicated? Seems like everybody except for Mr. Trump.

  4. Brenda Jensen says:

    Teri,

    If you think ACA is so wrong, what is Trumps alternative? Letting insurance companies do what they want is a recipe for poverty. The free market will mean you will pay $1100-1800 per month IF they will even insure you. Have you seen how much insurance company CEO’s make??? Think about it. Because of trump, we now have to go to another country for healthcare?

    You must also believe in the Easter Bunny.

    • Teri Nehrenz says:

      Brenda,
      Have you seen the rise in the ACA cost over the past 4 years? Are you ignoring the 200% or better increases in states such as Alabama, Alaska and Oklahoma? Then I imagine you also ignored the premise of the article which was: Repeal and replace the cost of HEALTHCARE….did you miss that part? or the part where I said ANY insurance company, ANY president will be hard pressed to fix the insurance costs UNLESS WE FIRST ADDRESS THE HIGH COST MEDICAL CARE…..did you miss all of that? I never said there would be an alternative OR A FIX TO THE INSURANCE PROBLEMS with the cost of healthcare being what it is and rising. Please read the message before you pass judgement and comments on what I may or may not believe in.

    • Teri Nehrenz says:

      Brenda,

      You are delusional if you think that we have just begun to seek healthcare outside of the US since this last election. We’ve been seeking healthcare outside the US for over a decade, that’s way before Trump, you can’t blame him for this and I’m not blaming Obama so get a grip before you begin the tirade. The Malaysian Healthcare Travel Council has been working on forming since 2005 when the ministry of health formed a small unit and finally established the MHTC in 2009 because there were so many foreigners seeking healthcare there. I personally know people who’ve been getting dental work done in Mexico for an entire decade as well and not just one or two, several….no, it has nothing to do with a president, past or present…get off the Democratic high horse. Casting political blame isn’t going to fix this.

      • Brenda Jensen says:

        Teri,

        Obviously you can’t read well. I didn’t say foreign healthcare was anything new. I didn’t say I was a dem (I’m not). And if your judging standard, is Alabama, Alaska and Oklahoma, you have never been to those places, they have the unhealthiest people in this country. If I was an insurer I would pull out too, just like they are doing now in Ohio. Please think before you write, what about the 23 million uninsured?

        As I said, what is your alternative? Or be honest, you don’t have a clue. I hope you never get cancer (a pre existing condition).

        • Teri Nehrenz says:

          I’m sorry, I think I read quite well. You stated “Think about it. Because of trump, we now have to go to another country for healthcare?” The term “WE NOW” signifies that we didn’t do it before and that would mean that it’s new. “Because of Trump…” signifies that we didn’t before he became president and that also would mean new because he wasn’t president before; it also casts direct blame. This isn’t his fault.
          You are absolutely correct, those states have the unhealthiest people and wrong, I’ve been to two of the three.
          If you read the commentary at all, you would see my solution…I’m pretty sure it says it all in the headline. Repeal and Replace the High Cost of Healthcare. I wouldn’t even dream of suggesting that you couldn’t read very well yourself.

          We will never fix the insurance situation until we reign in the cost of medical care.

          We will never fix the insurance situation until we reign in the cost of medications.

          We will never fix the insurance situation because our government is too screwed up to fix themselves.

          What’s your solution?
          The states that do have the healthiest people, most don’t even participate in the ACA. What does that say?
          1. Hawaii—does not participate
          2. Vermont- does not participate
          3. Massachusetts- does not participate
          4. Connecticut- does not participate
          5. Utah $319/mo increase of 101% in 4 years
          6. Minnesota- does not participate
          7. New Hampshire-$399/mo. increase of 32% in 4 years
          8. Colorado-does not participate
          9. North Dakota- $399/mo. Increase of 44%
          10. Nebraska-$599/mo. Increase of 153%

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