Thursday, April 01, 2010

Liberal Delusion and Navel Gazing

Over at Jackson Jambalaya, Kingfish is reading the "healthcare/insurance LAW." He is going through line by line and fleshing out his thoughts on the individual stuffs. Of course, what is in that law might be completely overturned by the reconciliation law, but someone has to start somewhere. Since Kingfish has yet to figure out LABELS in Blogger, you have to scroll down on the far right sidebar to see the list "Health care bill readings."

This brings about our topic/Q&A for this morning. I need to know how you handle stuff, really, tell me dammit.

When you go to the doctor and something is suggested for your treatment, do you ASK what this is going to cost and do you tell them that you are using insurance up front? Obviously there are two opinions on this that are WORLDS apart.

Going from an assumption that all people are insured and have assloads of money, which method do you think would get better value for your MEDICAL DOLLAR....going to the doctor with the same affliction and receiving the very same treatment.

Patient A goes in and greets the receptionist with "I need to get treated for (insert illness here). I want to know how much this is going to cost."

Patient B goes in and greets the receptionist with "I need to get treated for (insert illness here). Here is my Diamond Dave's Insurance card."

I expect everyone to answer this question and there is a reward for answering. This reward is H-U-G-E, too! As always, this Blogdom to Mediocrity accepts anonymous comments, any kind of name, and requires no registration.

The more people that respond, the better. Ask all your friends, too, and add their answers to the comments. I need a pretty big sample. If you are a chickenshit, you can e-mail me your answer to meanolmeany@gmail.com. There is a handy, dandy link on the sidebar to that e-mail addy, too.

A quick note to those of you that are on Guam. Please try to limit your movement, we certainly do not want that island to tip over. DEMOCRAT! YAY!



Please take the time to comment or click one of the 'Share/Save' buttons. DO IT NOW!

14 comments:

Nobbs said...

Most of the physicians I interact with on behalf of myself and my children ask about insurance up front though I believe that is, in large part, to ascertain if one is a Medicaid/Medicare patient.

During the years with UHC as the insurance carrier I also encountered physician staffers incorrectly stating that UHC wouldn't cover their charges when what they really meant that they weren't in-network UHC-wise.

When it comes to general office visits I generally don't ask about the charges because I already know, from experience, what they will be. When it comes to specific non-standard treatments I always ask up front.

I've done some business with a specific urology practice in Jackson that is the best I've ever encountered with regards to clearly explaining rates, what my specific insurance will cover, copays, deductibles, payment expectations and arrangements, etc up front before seeing the doctor. Maybe friendly customer service and full disclosure is the reason their waiting room is always packed with customers.

Andy said...

TD, we do not have, and have not had health insurance for over 20 years. Amazingly, we have managed to raise four children (only one 13-year-old still at home).

We have paid for EVERY doctor visit out of pocket in those over 20 years...and two pregnancies to boot...and PRK eye surgery, and an emergency medical flight from Durango, CO to Albuquerque, NM for #3 son...and two sets of braces...and other dental care...and, the beat goes on!

Case in point: About 5 or 6 years ago, youngest son was having some real bladder difficulties...peeing about every 30 seconds. To our Doctor we go. Doc does her thing, and says, "he really needs to see a Urology Specialist," and makes an appointment for us with a large Urology Clinic here for a series of tests for (your namesake).

Upon arriving a couple of days later, Pam is asked about payment. She asks (as always), "How much are these tests going to cost?" She needs to know this to be able to answer "how" we will be paying for it...check, VISA, etc.

The lady informs her that the tests will be roughly $950. So, Pam then informs the lady that we do not have health insurance, and will be paying cash. The lady responds with something like, "You don't have health insurance...(long pause while clicking, and typing away on her keyboard)...it will be a total of $380."

About two years later, #2 son, Ross, developed a huge boil on his neck. It was ugly. Now, he was of legal age, and employed, so this was not on us to pay for. He makes an appointment with a dermatologist. Said Doctor lady cuts the thing off, stitches it up, gives instructions for care, etc.

He walks to the desk to pay. The bill is $190. As he starts to write a check, Doctor lady happens to pass through the office. "You don't have insurance? Make it $80."

There is not one other factor that I can put my finger on that has driven up the cost of medical care in the US more than "health insurance." We've got a HUGE cost problem...and I truly believe that it can be traced back to the advent of widespread health insurance, medicare, medicaid...and of course malpractice suits.

Just my too scents!

btw: Do you think that by today (after being made the national laughingstock), Congressman Hank has maybe actually been informed by his staff of just what a retard the nation thinks he is?

I'm thinkin' "Naw...heck, Sheila Jackson-Lee & Maxine keep churning out the hits...not to mention Fortney Stark, or Robert Byrd."

He's probably got the vid saved on his hard drive to use for his next campaign kumershul.

Skunkfeathers said...

I have insurance through work (I pay some, work pays some, to maintain it). When I use it, I pay the required co-pay ($25 for an office visit, $100 for an ER visit, $100,000 to have a frontal lobotomy to become a libtard, and thereafter a ward of the state). After the visit, I get a statement from my insurance co telling me (a) what they were billed (b) what they paid (c) what was waived and (d) what I still owe.

Barry will f*** this up, I am sure.

paul mitchell said...

Nobbs, if someone treats me like the folks you are talking about, I am willing to pay even more. If someone remembers who the hell I am, same thing. Those are huge things and good service will always get me to come back.

Andy, I have noticed the very same thing. If I choose to use my insurance, it is always more expensive and then my insurance company makes a note of it. Why not just pay out of pocket and keep the INSURANCE for the major things?

Skunks, the reason that it costs so much to get that frontal is it is really hard to make sure you do not completely veg out. Liberals are proof that Natural Selection is about as true as the Easter Bunny.

Andy said...

So, you're sayin' the Easter Bunny ain't for real?

ChristinaJade said...

The clinic that I go to charges $107 to the kiddo's insurance and I pay a $25 co-pay at the time of her visit. I, however, don't have insurance, and when i pay cash at the time of the visit, I only pay $48. When I had that nasty spider bite last year, I had 6 visits within a month, and total costs, including lab work and removing the bite totaled just under $450. The billing chick told me that if I had insurance, it would have been billed at over $2000.

Gee, reckon we might be on to something here??

Staci said...

My answer is pretty much the same as Skunkfeathers. The doctor I go to knows I have the insurance through work (I guess I already have guvmint insurance since I sorta work for 'em), I pay a co-pay, they charge whatever the heck they want, and then the insurance tells them how much they'll pay them. I have a crazy deductible that I've never met, ever, so I end up paying more than the co-pay.

I ran into a scam a few years ago, at least I'd call it a scam. With my insurance, all girls get a "free" um, chest exam during their birth month. So I had the test, and they called and said "gee, we've found something and we need to do the test again to make sure you aren't dying" or something like that. So I have the 2nd test, and, you guessed it, it's not free, and of course I hadn't met the deductible, so I paid for it out of pocket. Thing is, the first test, which insurance paid for, cost about half of what the second one did - which I paid for. Hmmm. I thought that was pretty flaky, especially when I talked with three other women who had tests at that particular women's health center, and every one of them had a "bad" first test, paid for by insurance, and a 2nd test, that they had to pay for.

But anyway, every doctor I've seen in Oklahoma, to the best of my knowledge and experience, will ask before you even make an appointment if you have insurance. Some won't see you if you don't. Some won't see you if you have a particular type.

paul mitchell said...

CJ, I think that there is a definite cash discount and from everything I am hearing today, my experience is not the exception, but the rule.

Staci, I had close to the same experience back in the 1980s when I carried a pre-paid medical plan. Those exact kinds of situations is why I switched to PAY-GO and use major medical for big things. Dammit, I never have any big things, though.

stilettoGOP said...

I have health ins (the docs obviously know this as my ins card is taken at the desk), but I ALWAYS ask how much a procedure, test, etc is going to cost first. I asked 2 others, they answered the same, so put us down for "3" in your poll. I don't get a pedicure that I don't ask my obligation up front, can't imagine winging it on a medical bill.

The discount thing, I didn't know that happened honestly.

paul mitchell said...

stilettoGOP, I have a cash only agreement with my doctor and my dentist. It just makes sense to me.

But, then again, I did shop around for the birthing facility of my boy. Service and price keeps me coming back.

The one thing that keeps slamming me over the head is that price controls always increase the price.

Wonder why housing in San Francisco is through the roof? I am guessing that it is RAAAAACISM!!!

ChristinaJade said...

I hit up a chick on failbook last night who is a medical billing specialist for an answer. She told me that the "cash at time of visit" discount is a what doctors and clinics use as a tool to insure that they a) get paid and b) save collection costs. When a patient pays cash up front, there is less paperwork, savings on postage, and less work for the billing department.

paul mitchell said...

CJ, that appears to be the consensus, too. I know that I have always paid less when I paid with cash.

ChristinaJade said...

I hit up a chick on failbook last night who is a medical billing specialist for an answer. She told me that the "cash at time of visit" discount is a what doctors and clinics use as a tool to insure that they a) get paid and b) save collection costs. When a patient pays cash up front, there is less paperwork, savings on postage, and less work for the billing department.

paul mitchell said...

stilettoGOP, I have a cash only agreement with my doctor and my dentist. It just makes sense to me.

But, then again, I did shop around for the birthing facility of my boy. Service and price keeps me coming back.

The one thing that keeps slamming me over the head is that price controls always increase the price.

Wonder why housing in San Francisco is through the roof? I am guessing that it is RAAAAACISM!!!

Post a Comment