Thursday, August 5, 2010

Health Care is like getting a car fixed...

Have you ever wondered why car insurance is so much less than health insurance? Yes, we are talking the difference between an expensive car and a human life, but let's look at it just as costs for now.

What does car insurance pay for? Oil changes? New tires? New shocks/struts? New brakes? Gasoline? New radiator? Timing belt adjustment? See where I'm going? It pays for catastrophic problems - accidents/injury/body repair/etc. That's why is it relatively cheap. What do you do when you have to get new tires? You shop around for the best deal. New brakes? Shop around. You have to pay for those things, so you are more careful about the cost. If car insurance allowed you to go get 22" chrome rims with sport tires that were $350+ a piece, with just a $20 copay, you would do it for sure. What's cheap for you is that way because someone else is paying for it. Shifting your responsibility to others may be convenient, but it's not right.

The answer to controlling health care costs is to make people more responsible for their own decisions and allow insurance companies to do what they originally were created to do - provide catastrophic coverage, not routine maintenance.

We complain that health care costs are skyrocketing, but WE are the ones requesting and requiring insurance companies to may more and more, which they then pass back to us. If we really want the costs to come down, we have to stop expecting insurance to pay for everything, and take that responsibility ourselves. It will be somewhat painful for many, my family and I for sure, but hopefully it would save us some money. Plus, it's the right thing to do, and that's what matters.


Andru said...


I had to get stitches a couple months ago at 9 PM. It was a gash to the chin that required 8 stitches. I waited for about 3 hours (most of it in a room--not the waiting room), then the doctor came in and spent 15 minutes stitching me up. Total bill... wait for it... $2,000.

Time comes to take out the stitches and I get them all out by myself--except one. It was put in poorly and had "gone underground". Instead of the ER, I went to a local "competitor" called Nason Medical. I go in, fill out a form, pay $35 for the visit, and sit down. They have food and drinks in lobby which I would have helped myself to except the nurse called me back almost immediately. After discovering this was no ordinary suture removal, they had to put me in a room and began working on it. After 20 minutes, they had to give me a shot so they could actually cut me open and get the stitch out. After another 10 minutes they had gotten it taken care of and sent me on my way. I didn't have to pay a dime more. No itemized billing for the room, the shot, or the doctor's time who had to come in and help out. Just smiled and wished me a good evening.

Had they been open when I hurt myself in the first place, that is where I would have gone. They are a for-profit business and they are making plenty of money doing it.

We don't need Obamacare, we just need to give our existing system a dose of capitalism.

Barry Zundel said...

Right on, Andru. Perfect example!