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Is employer-provided health insurance worth it


By Dan8267   Follow   Thu, 21 Feb 2013, 9:32am PST   1,979 views   59 comments
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Soliciting opinions. Is employer-provided health insurance a better or worse deal than what you can get in the free market? Do you know of a good or bad health insurance provider? If so, speak up here.

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Dan8267   Sat, 23 Feb 2013, 4:55am PST   Share   Quote   Permalink   Like   Dislike (1)     Comment 20

@Patrick

Google really likes your site. I just did a search for BlueOptions Predictable Cost 535 review and http://patrick.net/?Healthcare was the number one hit because of this thread, which is only two days old.

There has to be a way you can capitalize on this. Maybe have a form where people can fill out what health insurance they have, how they rate it, and write a review like users on Amazon.com do. Then use a nice SEO path like /healthInsurance/{InsuranceProvider}/{PlanName}. For example, http://patrick.net/healthInsurance/BlueCross/BlueOptionsPredictableCost535.

I mean, geeze, you're the number one Google search result for a specific plan just because of this one thread. You gotta take advantage of that. Marketers would kill for that page ranking.

Patrick   Sat, 23 Feb 2013, 5:29am PST   Share   Quote   Permalink   Like (1)   Dislike     Comment 21

Thanks for the suggestion Dan!

Dan8267 says

There has to be a way you can capitalize on this. Maybe have a form where people can fill out what health insurance they have, how they rate it, and write a review like users on Amazon.com do. Then use a nice SEO path like /healthInsurance/{InsuranceProvider}/{PlanName}. For example, http://patrick.net/healthInsurance/BlueCross/BlueOptionsPredictableCost535.

Yes, that's a good idea. But how would I make money from it? Ads I suppose, but ads have never worked well for me.

Patrick   Sat, 23 Feb 2013, 5:30am PST   Share   Quote   Permalink   Like (3)   Dislike     Comment 22

Dan8267 says

this plan only costs about $125/month ($1500/yr).

I don't believe it.

Certainly there is nothing like that for a family of 4 with the parents in their 40's.

MMR   Sat, 23 Feb 2013, 6:35am PST   Share   Quote   Permalink   Like (2)   Dislike     Comment 23

Situations like this are the reason why I'm pretty darn sure I'll never accept insurance after I'm done. Based on studying insurance reimbursements from different insurance companies for various procedures, I don't think it is exactly rocket science to come up with rates that a person could reasonably afford to pay out of pocket and also present to the patient in advance.

Insurance is a noose around the neck forcing doctors to become shift-working salaried employees who are minimally concerned about doctor-patient relationships that once made medicine a highly rewarding profession, both personally and professionally.

CaptainShuddup says

just because you're insured, life saving procedures and follow ups, are ofter not done because of executive decisions or if you want those done, you'll have to pay out of pocket. Like CT scans after mass removal, to make sure they got it all. Usually they are told by the ins companies to wait three months, against the Doctors suggestion. Also the waits to get procedures done or hell even diagnosed. Two of the people I'm talking about complained to their doctor for up to 6 months before they were even diagnosed.

Where as the poor people in the emergency room, they get every thorough test ran before they leave. They know they have cancer the day they complained.

MMR   Sat, 23 Feb 2013, 6:40am PST   Share   Quote   Permalink   Like   Dislike (1)     Comment 24

Although I know some dirtbag gunners, the vast majority want to make a good living without necessarily having to choke off those who need help. I suspect that people who are 'all about money' don't often pursue medicine, since there are far easier ways to make money, like getting an MBA at a top 5 school.

The extortionists are the insurance companies and ambulance chasing bottom feeders.

Patrick says

Note that neither of these requirements has anything to do with taxes. It's just about preventing extortion.

Dan8267   Sat, 23 Feb 2013, 1:14pm PST   Share   Quote   Permalink   Like   Dislike (2)     Comment 25

Patrick says

Dan8267 says

this plan only costs about $125/month ($1500/yr).

I don't believe it.

Certainly there is nothing like that for a family of 4 with the parents in their 40's.

Well, obviously ensuring 4 people is going to cost more than insuring just one. The $125/month is for an individual plan. The family plan costs more. I ran the numbers at the US News site for a family of 4 in Florida and got this result... $350/month but with a $20k deductible, which is a bit high even for just guarding against catastrophes. Of course, if you are married, there's probably other coverage you might want to get like maternity that's not covered by this plan.

Dan8267   Sat, 23 Feb 2013, 1:24pm PST   Share   Quote   Permalink   Like (1)   Dislike (2)     Comment 26

Dan8267 says

7 tips for choosing a health savings account by BankRate

I love the fact that someone here is so petty that he's disliking every post I make, even if it's just a link to tips or faqs on health insurance. Every time I see such a dislike I know that I pissed off some troll so much that I'm always on his mind and ruining his day, and that puts a smile on my face.

elliemae   Sun, 24 Feb 2013, 4:18am PST   Share   Quote   Permalink   Like (1)   Dislike (1)     Comment 27

CaptainShuddup says

So I went to the owner of the company and told him I had to quit and become indigent, so that I could get the best healthcare in the world.

CaptainShuddup says

The only people who have it made in this country are the piss poor people who go the Emergency room, and get operations through social worker welfare groups.

CaptainShuddup says

In the last 10 years, I know about 5 people who got serious stage 1-3 cancers, and were treated and never saw one bill. They are all alive today and cured.

I know about 6 people who had cancer on employer based insurance. and 4 of those people are dead.

Where as the poor people in the emergency room, they get every thorough test ran before they leave. They know they have cancer the day they complained.

I realize that you are angry - happens alot, btw - but you are over-generalizing. Can't remember who, a poster from long ago, had a mantra that "the plural of anecdote is not data." That applies in your example.

1) Many people don't qualify for Medicaid. That will change under Obamacare, but in many states one doesn't qualify for Medicaid unless they are under 18, over 65, or handicapped/disabled (such as SSI recipients). If it were as easy as quitting your job to receive medical coverage, there wouldn't be so many unfunded hospital patients. You make it sound so easy - "I'll just quit my job and then all my troubles will be over..."

2) Medicaid isn't the "best healthcare in the world." A patient whose payment source is Medicaid is assigned a hospital case manager and his costs/treatments are only provided if necessary. Even then, if the treatmens/tests can be provided in a less expensive environment, the patient will have to receive them on an outpatient basis.

3) Medicaid reimbursements to providers (including hospitals, nursing homes/rehabs, labs, physicians, etc) are shit compared to private insurance. Hospitals are paid months later at a substantially reduced rate.

4) People who are admitted through the emergency room and sent up for an operation receive the care due to medical necessity regardless of the payment source. If the treatment can wait, the patient will have to jump through all sorts of hoops but if it's medically necessary and life threatening, the patient will be sent for surgery.

5) Your anecdotal evidence about the cancer patients who were cured vs those who died is inflammatory - but every cancer is different, every patient is treated according to his disease process. That five people with stage 1-3 cancer were treated and cured (or are in remission) can't be compared to the 4/6 people who died. What stage were they? What type of cancer was it? When was it diagnosed? How was it treated?

The latter patients had insurance - so they could have made arrangements to pay the copayments. Either way, they had access to treatment.

For all we know, the first patients you described had stage 1 breast cancer or encapsulated prostate cancer, while the 4/6 had pancreatic cancer or metastatic lung cancer.

Your anger at what you perceive to be a system of free healthcare vs that for which you are paying renders your arguments useless. You are looking for cause & effect based on payment source - and although that does exist (such as the person who has no health insurance and can't access a physician, therefore a sign or symptom of a serious condition isn't caught until it seriously impedes the patient's ability to maintain his lifestyle), it doesn't exist here.

Dan8267 says

I love the fact that someone here is so petty that he's disliking every post I make, even if it's just a link to tips or faqs on health insurance. Every time I see such a dislike I know that I pissed off some troll so much that I'm always on his mind and ruining his day, and that puts a smile on my face.

I have the same problem - a trollster who dislikes me enough to stalk my posts & dislikes them. I imagine them masturbating as they do it.

CaptainShuddup   Sun, 24 Feb 2013, 10:29pm PST   Share   Quote   Permalink   Like (1)   Dislike     Comment 28

So you're saying I'm Ellie? I didn't imply everyone gets medicaid, I simply stated that those that have it, fare far better than those LIKE MY SELF, that are paying out of the ass for insurance, and still are nickle and dimed on every turn. On top of that, good Doctors are still hard to find.

My guess based on what you're saying. Florida has a better system than Utah.

elliemae   Mon, 25 Feb 2013, 7:59am PST   Share   Quote   Permalink   Like (1)   Dislike (1)     Comment 29

CaptainShuddup says

So you're saying I'm Ellie?

I'm fairly sure that you're not Ellie, because when I looked in the mirror this morning all I saw was the same lovely face as I always see.

CaptainShuddup says

I didn't imply everyone gets medicaid, I simply stated that those that have it, fare far better than those LIKE MY SELF, that are paying out of the ass for insurance, and still are nickle and dimed on every turn. On top of that, good Doctors are still hard to find.

Many private physicians don't work with Medicaid due to the piss-poor reimbursement. And just like all insurance plans, there are limitations as to the services Medicaid patients receive.

CaptainShuddup says

My guess based on what you're saying. Florida has a better system than Utah.

No - Medicaid eligibility is pretty much the same from state-to-state at the moment. This will change when the healthcare reform kicks in, but for now the eligibility categories for Medicaid in Florida is:

•Low income families with children
•Child-only coverage
•Pregnant women
•Non-citizens with medical emergencies
•Aged or disabled individuals

Florida families with children may qualify for Medicaid coverage if they meet the following requirements: •Family income below the limits for Temporary Cash Assistance (TCA). In 2011, the limit is $364 for a family of four and increases approximately $62 for each additional family member. For more details see the TCA eligibility chart.
•Countable assets less than $2,000 (excluding your homestead)

$364 for a family of four? I'm hoping (and guessing) that you make more than that. Most people who are receiving unemployment benefits don't quallify for Medicaid.

I'm not trying to be contrary here. It's just that you seem to have a misconception that people who are on Medicaid are happy just to be screwing the system. They're not - they're struggling to get by. If they're fortunate enough to receive the assistance mentioned above, they're pretty fucking poor.

Also - your comment about people on Medicaid having every test run isn't accurate. I work in the field and have seen many, many examples of patients who were referred to a primary physician without any testing having been done at all. Emergency rooms are supposed to be for emergent conditions, not diagnostic purposes. Many hospitals have case managers who have to approve testing before its done, because MD's would run every test possible for every patient if they could.

And if they ran every test, and found every condition, and treated it - well, where would we be? Oh, yea - healthier.

Btw, Walmart started a $4.00 prescription program that most pharmacies (except CVS) follows. For many common medications, it's cheaper to get 30 days worth at $4 than to pay an insurance copayment.

curious2   Mon, 25 Feb 2013, 9:14am PST   Share   Quote   Permalink   Like   Dislike (1)     Comment 30

elliemae says

And if they ran every test, and found every condition, and treated it - well, where would we be? Oh, yea - healthier.

That's a myth of "preventive care." Many tests are harmful and produce ambiguous results, leading to unnecessary procedures that can injure or even kill. More interaction with the medical-industrial complex does not necessarily lead to better health, in fact it often leads to the opposite. That's why there was such a big fight over Obamacare's mandatory pre-payment for mammography, even on women where it is more likely to kill them than to "save" them (not to mention Elizabeth Edwards, who was "saved" by enduring more than five years of treatment for a cancer she might never have got if she hadn't paid for so much radiation testing). It's amazing that in some states women are actually being charged more for medical insurance than men, even though women used to have safer risk profiles; the only explanation I've seen is the rise of mammography producing more cancer, and now Obamacare will make that mandatory with no co-payment thus producing even more of it. Nobody lives forever, and maximizing spending does not always help.

elliemae   Tue, 26 Feb 2013, 11:25am PST   Share   Quote   Permalink   Like (1)   Dislike (2)     Comment 31

curious2 says

That's a myth of "preventive care."

I've long said that you and I view preventative care as two different things. You have repeatedly stated that, to you, preventative care means MRI's.

I, on the other hand, view preventative care as access to an MD to be seen on a regular basis. I include the ability to pay for medications for chronic conditions that indigent people often go without, and they end up with serious problems as a result.

Treatment for Diabetes before it becomes insulin dependent. Medications for Rheumatoid Arthritis that help to stave off the disease, resulting in a better quality of life for the patient. Mild doses of blood pressure medications to keep the condition from escalating to the point that it's life-threatening.

People need access to healtcare, rather than only to be treated when a condition becomes life-threatening or so fucking debilitating that the patient's lifestyle is threatened. MRI's and x-rays aren't ordered in every instance - often a simple change of diet can help a patient with a condition long before it becomes life-threatening.

Without access to healthcare, these options aren't available. Please understand that I'm not negating that many tests are ordered too often - but a blood test can save a life. A physician visit can help a patient to be diagnosed before a condition is life-threatening.

You and I will continue to disagree as to the definition of "prevatative care." I view it as access to healthcare, while you appear to view it as over-access to healthcare.

Meanwhile, until healthcare reform kicks in, many people lack the ability to be seen by a physician, to recieve medications for conditions and to learn how to live with the hand that they're dealt.

ducsingle5313   Tue, 26 Feb 2013, 11:31am PST   Share   Quote   Permalink   Like (1)   Dislike     Comment 32

Dan8267 says

That perfectly describes Aetna's Flexible Spending Accounts. Each year, you lose what you don't spend and you lose everything if you change jobs.

All Flex Spending Accounts are like this. Not just Aetna's.

errc   Tue, 26 Feb 2013, 11:36am PST   Share   Quote   Permalink   Like (1)   Dislike     Comment 33

True preventative care would be based in nutrition, as malnutrition is the basis for the majority of these "conditions" people seek healthcare for.

Look at the crap that people put in and on their bodies, its no wonder so many people are "sick". The human body is an amazingly resourceful machine, it just needs to be treated properly. The government and its accredited mouthpieces and professionals are mostly to blame. A generation has been misled to believe that the food pyramid provides a proper macronutrient prodile, ha! 12 servings of breads and grains per day, and a bunch of fruit and some veggies, some sweets and avoid animal proteins and fats at all costs. Do the opposite of everything the government suggests in regards to nutrition, and avoid your physician at all costs, and you will likely live a long and healthy life. You can DIY that plan like a good little american,,,,

epitaph   Tue, 26 Feb 2013, 11:38am PST   Share   Quote   Permalink   Like   Dislike     Comment 34

If you are <30 probably not.

ducsingle5313   Tue, 26 Feb 2013, 11:40am PST   Share   Quote   Permalink   Like   Dislike     Comment 35

drew_eckhardt says

I pay 28% in Federal taxes, 9.33% in state taxes, and 1.45% in Medicare which allows me to spend 63% more on employer coverage than private market for the same impact on what's left over.

If I earned less money I'd also be paying 6.2% on Social security and 1.0% California State Disability insurance which would allow me to spend 85% more on the employer plan.

How do you avoid paying Social Security and CA Disability by making more money?

MMR   Tue, 26 Feb 2013, 12:06pm PST   Share   Quote   Permalink   Like (1)   Dislike     Comment 36

Blood tests are extremely useful; especially for checking levels of vitamins and minerals, as well as for blood counts, renal function, liver function, blood lipid levels etc. Generally speaking, this information is extremely useful for determining whether the nutrients you consume are being absorbed and assimilated by the body.

Regarding type II diabetes, the best treatment is dietary modification and exercise. Most doctors tell their patients this, but very few are qualified to tell patients how to do this and I suspect that insurance makes it harder for those who are qualified to tell patients. Still, many doctors only keep other doctors in their referral network, effectively preventing patients who are at risk of developing diabetes from getting the help they might need.

Blood sugar that is managed with diabetes meds is not the same as blood sugar that is managed with diet and exercise.

If access to healthcare only results in a prescription for a drug and not any meaningful game plan for modifying risk factors/lifestyle changes, then effectively speaking, many dr visits are extraneous and do little to improve quality of life. In many instances, it is a revenue engine driving the overutilization trend

Ideally visiting the dr. for real preventative care is an ideal that we all should aspire to. Unfortunately, for doctors taking insurance, the incentive to do so is extremely poor, as the reimbursement rate for 'well visits' is far lower than sick visits. Also, I'm not sure on this, but there might even be limits on how many well visits a doctor could have with the same patient, but don't quote me on that last part because I'm not sure.

My personal experience is that, these days, the majority of doctors who truly emphasize wellness rarely take insurance. Insurance turns private practices into production lines.

elliemae says

lease understand that I'm not negating that many tests are ordered too often - but a blood test can save a life. A physician visit can help a patient to be diagnosed before a condition is life-threatening.

curious2   Tue, 26 Feb 2013, 12:13pm PST   Share   Quote   Permalink   Like (1)   Dislike     Comment 37

MMR says

the majority of doctors who truly emphasize wellness rarely take insurance. Insurance turns private practices into production lines.

Exactly. Elliemae, you know I like and respect you, but the scams that Obamacare covers aren't the preventive measures you're looking for. The reason you're required to buy Obamacare is because a rational person wouldn't buy it if offered a free choice. The industry's worst players bribed politicians to require you to buy it, because that's the only way they could sell their crap at the incredibly high prices they demand. Then, once you've spent all you can afford on that "affordable" policy, you have nothing left to buy what might really help you. And there is often little correlation between spending and results, in fact there can be an inverse correlation, especially in insuranceworld. This is the point John Mackey and others have been trying to make, that Obamacare forces everyone to prepay into the most injurious and wasteful aspects of the medical industrial complex at the expense of better solutions that actually improve health.

Likewise employer-sponsored insurance offers all sorts of opportunities for kickbacks, fraud, and abuse, because the employee has little or no choice about what to buy. But, as I acknowledged earlier, individual mileage may vary: some people with high covered expenses, or with gold-plated policies that are basically scams to take advantage of the tax subsidy, may benefit. On the whole, Americans lose.

Regarding arthritis, the best preventive measures are (a) don't smoke, (b) don't injure your joints, e.g. don't eat so much that you become overweight. None of these involve insurance or taking drugs. If you have arthritis, OTC ibuprofen is better than Vioxx (now withdrawn), and costs 2 cents/pill, and because it's OTC it might not be covered by insurance anyway.

elliemae says

You have repeatedly stated that, to you, preventative care means MRI's.

Actually, I've hardly ever mentioned MRIs, but I do observe intensive marketing and mandatory prepayment for "preventive" radiation, including C-T scans with no benefit.

CaptainShuddup   Tue, 26 Feb 2013, 9:50pm PST   Share   Quote   Permalink   Like   Dislike     Comment 38

elliemae says

•Low income families with children

•Child-only coverage

•Pregnant women

•Non-citizens with medical emergencies

•Aged or disabled individuals

You just listed 80% of the population.

elliemae   Tue, 26 Feb 2013, 11:23pm PST   Share   Quote   Permalink   Like   Dislike (1)     Comment 39

CaptainShuddup says

You just listed 80% of the population.

I had the pleasure once of denying benefits to those who fell in the middle. It was horrible.

CaptainShuddup   Wed, 27 Feb 2013, 12:06am PST   Share   Quote   Permalink   Like   Dislike     Comment 40

elliemae says

I'm not trying to be contrary here. It's just that you seem to have a misconception that people who are on Medicaid are happy just to be screwing the system. They're not - they're struggling to get by. If they're fortunate enough to receive the assistance mentioned above, they're pretty fucking poor.

Ellie I never implied they are screwing the system. If you would just try to look deeper past your Liberal eye liner and mascara, you would realize that what I am actually saying and have said all along. I would rather pay higher taxes and Medicaid be expanded to everyone.

And my point to my story was, I was prepared to quit work and become indigent, so yes, I would have qualified as a "Low income family with Children".

And had, the BEST insurance in the world.

zzyzzx   Wed, 27 Feb 2013, 12:57am PST   Share   Quote   Permalink   Like (1)   Dislike     Comment 41

MMR says

I suspect that people who are 'all about money' don't often pursue medicine,

I'm pretty sure that the "all about money" types frequently pursue medicine.

drew_eckhardt   Wed, 27 Feb 2013, 1:24am PST   Share   Quote   Permalink   Like   Dislike     Comment 42

ducsingle5313 says

How do you avoid paying Social Security and CA Disability by making more money?

I'll still pay $7050 in Social Security ($14,100 including the employer's share) and $1009 in CA SDI this year.

The numbers just don't change based on how much compensation I take home instead of spending on benefits due to the earnings caps which means the cost difference between taxable and not taxable insurance products is lower for me than if I earned less.

Given a dollar in income
- If I take it home my employer spends $1.0145 and I take home $0.61
- If I spend it on pre-tax benefits they spend $1 and I get $1 in benefits (64% more value based on what I earn, 66% based on what they're spending)

In the same tax brackets below the caps
- If I took home a dollar my employer would spend $1.0765 and I'd keep $0.54
- If I spent it on benefits they'd spend $1 and I'd get $1 in benefits (85% more value based on what I earn, 100% more based on what they spend).

The impact of pre versus post-tax would be 33% higher below the caps based on the number on my pay check and 50% based on what my employer is spending.

elliemae   Thu, 28 Feb 2013, 12:54pm PST   Share   Quote   Permalink   Like   Dislike (1)     Comment 43

curious2 says

Regarding arthritis, the best preventive measures are (a) don't smoke, (b) don't injure your joints, e.g. don't eat so much that you become overweight. None of these involve insurance or taking drugs. If you have arthritis, OTC ibuprofen is better than Vioxx (now withdrawn), and costs 2 cents/pill, and because it's OTC it might not be covered by insurance anyway.

1) I don't smoke, never have
2) My joints were not more mistreated than anyone else's duing my youth.
3) I'm not obese - a few pounds over my ideal weight, but not fat.
3) OTC Ibu doesn't work for Rheumatoid Arthritis.

There is no preventing RA. It's an autoimmune disease where my body reacts to everything - such as a minor infection.

If you get a hangnail you pull it off and move one. I get a hangnail, I get an infection. I have to carefully treat it with antibiotics and attentive wound care. If I'm not careful, it becomes such an issue that I have to go to the MD to be treated. And this minor infection can cause my body to go into a flare. Ohhhhhh, boy, what a blast.

As this disease causes my body to attack itself (the aforementioned "flare"), I experience the pleasure of my body freezing up and causing extreme pain - that's the best part. My joints freeze - sometimes my neck, my shoulders, my knees... it's unpredictable. I then take prednisone, which kills my stomach and has loads of fun side effects on its own (but stops the disease flare).

The ongoing periperal neuropathy is incredibly painful and horribly limiting. The fatigue is often overwhelming, but I get up and go to work every day and am grateful to have a job. My patients don't know that I'm in pain, nor do my coworkers. I just make it through, then go home and wish I were dead.

I do my best to appreciate that I don't have the extreme nodules (yet, but they're starting):

I eat right, I rarely drink, and I take a shitload of medications that are designed to limit the progression of my disease and poison the shit outta me at the same time.

I believe in being able to access medical care, and having the payment for these medications that enhance my life even as they limit my life.

Without health insurance, I wouldn't have access to treatment. Physicians need to be paid, and most people can't afford concierge medicine. I'm grateful for my doctor, who is loyal to me as long as I'm able to pay her (via insurance & copays). I get that - I don't work for free either.

So forgive me if I continue to insist that access to healthcare is important. Without the MD visits and medications, I'd either be dead or wish I were.

elliemae   Thu, 28 Feb 2013, 12:56pm PST   Share   Quote   Permalink   Like (2)   Dislike (1)     Comment 44

P.S. Kinda felt like I overshared, there. But seriously, ya'll who are healthy need to appreciate how it feels to be that way. I don't remember what it feels like to feel "good."

curious2   Thu, 28 Feb 2013, 2:12pm PST   Share   Quote   Permalink   Like   Dislike     Comment 45

elliemae says

If you get a hangnail you pull it off....

You don't know me, or my health, but I will tell you one thing: nobody should ever pull off a hangnail. That's just begging for infection. Always use nail clippers.

elliemae says

Without health insurance, I wouldn't have access to treatment... I'm grateful for my doctor, who is loyal to me as long as I'm able to pay her (via insurance & copays).

I sympathize with your pain, but I don't understand why you think nobody cares or understands, when what people are saying is that they oppose a system that makes it worse.

Please tell me, what has your insurance and doctor given you that you could not buy on your own if the law allowed you? Everyone I know who has been to Mexico has found they could buy everything they needed at full retail for less than their insurance co-pay. Some of those pharmacies are open 24 hours/day, happy to sell to anyone. You extol your doctor, and even say proudly that you are grateful for the people who have made a revenue center out of your pain, and you blame the people who would rather see that money go towards research to solve the problem instead of continuing it. Stockholm Syndrome can happen to very bright people, not just mentally ill drug addicts like Homefool. Objectivity requires considering, why do you praise the people making money off your pain, and say they should get even more, even at the expense of research that might free you from it?

Anyway, tying this back to the original topic, someone who goes frequently to American doctors and pharmacies, probably does run up a lot of medical expenses eligible for insurance coverage, and employer sponsored insurance can shift much of that cost onto co-workers. So, to people in that situation, employer sponsored insurance can seem like a good deal. Especially if you dislike your co-workers and employer, I guess. But, literally everyone I know with employer provided insurance, who has also been to Mexico or Costa Rica, has found they could buy everything they needed for less. So, employer sponsored insurance is definitely worth it for the overpaid industry in this country, and maybe for some employees who have a lot of expenses and don't like to travel, but on the whole it's a disaster.

elliemae   Thu, 28 Feb 2013, 3:21pm PST   Share   Quote   Permalink   Like   Dislike (2)     Comment 46

curious2 says

Please tell me, what has your insurance and doctor given you that you could not buy on your own if the law allowed you?

I don't care about laws - I care about reality. I need medical care and am blessed to have it through my employer. Healthcare reform is about providing healthcare via insurance - a crappy plan, but it's a plan.

curious2 says

Everyone I know who has been to Mexico has found they could buy everything they needed at full retail for less than their insurance co-pay.

Sure - but would they have a physician who would diagnose them, work them in and be there to prescribe new medications when the old ones aren't working? To prescribe the correct amount of medication to alleviate my symptoms?

It's a non-issue - I drive a couple of hundred miles at most to receive my care, not hundreds of miles to Mexico. I'm talking reality, while you are talking about the ideal treatment for somene who has the ability to diagnose and treat a condition from which they suffer.

curious2 says

You extol your doctor, and even say proudly that you are grateful for the people who have made a revenue center out of your pain, and you blame the people who would rather see that money go towards research to solve the problem instead of continuing it.

Obviously, I would prefer that I didn't have this disease, and I wish that someone would cure it. But today, I'd like to not hurt for awhile.

curious2 says

Stockholm Syndrome ...

My doc is not holding me hostage, she's freeing me from the symptoms. The money I and my insurance are paying for my treatment don't interfere with the research currently being conducted.

I do enjoy the chutzpah you display by diagnosing me, over the interwebs without having ever met me, with Stockholm Syndrome, which is "Feelings of trust or affection felt in many cases of kidnapping or hostage-taking by a victim toward a captor." Very creative, but so unbelieveably fucking cruel to say that when you don't live inside my body and have no clue as to the insensitivity you display in demeaning my experience with a serious disease. curious2 says

employer sponsored insurance can seem like a good deal. Especially if you dislike your co-workers and employer, I guess.

Funny you should mention this... I purposely contracted a serious disease (the origin of which is still not known) in order to screw my co-workers. I actually enjoy the thought that their premiums are calculated based on my health condition. Except, of course, that our premiums decreased a few dollars per year.

curious2 says

But, literally everyone I know with employer provided insurance, who has also been to Mexico or Costa Rica, has found they could buy everything they needed for less.

Again, this works for people who have the ability to travel to other countries and who are able to self-prescribe. Many of my clients can't even drive across town... and would kill themselves self-prescribing.

I'm talking about reality - mine. You are talking ab