A letter in today's Times: Health care spending still can't be discussed! We base our pronouncement on a letter in today's New York Times.
The letter responds to a recent Times report concerning our excessive spending. Rge report appeared in the hard-copy Times on March 14. Today's letter looks something like this:
LETTER TO THE NEW YORK TIMES (3/22/18): Re “Why Is U.S. Health Care So Expensive? Some of the Reasons You’ve Heard Turn Out to Be Myths” (The Upshot, March 13):The letter may seem to respond to this question:
It’s true that “analysts are fond of describing the system as wasteful, with too many patients getting too many services.” But those of us on the front lines know that large segments of the population have no real access to quality medical care, and even those with “good insurance” struggle through a maze of barriers and increased costs.
The United States has some of the highest administrative costs in the world because of our fractured, multipayer, profit-based system. Private insurers add zero value but drive up costs through administrative waste and profiteering, and require hospitals and doctors to maintain complex billing and cost-tracking bureaucracies.
While no system is perfect, we have an excellent solution in the form of Medicare. A single-payer plan like H.R. 676, “Medicare for All,” could save an estimated $617 billion a year by slashing administrative waste in the private insurance industry ($504 billion) and bargaining down drug prices ($113 billion), freeing up money for universal coverage without any net increase in health spending.
E— S—, TORRINGTON, CONN.
"Why Is U.S. Health Care So Expensive?"
That's an excellent question! The letter may seem to propose an extremely popular progressive "solution" to our presumed
overspending—"Medicare for All."
How expensive is American health care? As we've noted three million times, this nation spends two to three times as much on health care, per person, as other developed nations. These are the most recent data from the OECD:
Per capita spending, health care, 2016Oof! We spend more than twice as much, per person, as France, Canada or the U.K. Where does all that money go?
United States: $9892
United Kingdom: $4192
South Korea: $2729
That letter might seem to respond to that question, but it actually doesn't. The letter might seem to suggest that our Medicare program is so frugal that it would correct for our current massive level of spending.
That said, we've never seen a comparison of what we spend, per person, on older people as compared to what is spent in countries like France. In reality, that letter merely says that "Medicare for all" would be somewhat cheaper than our current arrangements are. It doesn't say how much spending would occur in a system like that, as compared to the spending which occurs in nations like Canada, Australia or France.
On line, the Times links that letter to the recent analysis piece which ran beneath those headlines. Here they are again:
“Why Is U.S. Health Care So Expensive? Some of the Reasons You’ve Heard Turn Out to Be Myths”
Go ahead—click that link. What don't you see in that upbeat "Upshot" report?
That's right! You don't see the type of data we've posted above! Is there a law against letting American citizens know how widespread the looting is?
On the brighter side, we are encouraged to spend our time hearing about all the f**king, especially from 2006. But uh-oh:
Concerning the looting of health care dollars, neither Rachel, nor Lawrence, nor Chris nor Chris will ever take you there! Just a guess:
In the judgment of their owners, The Looting is too boring for cable. Also, The Interests might not approve!
Our cable stars are paid the big bucks. (You aren't allowed to know how much.) They very much hope you enjoy The Chase and, of course, all The Sex.