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Playinghardball

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Gender: Male
Hometown: Northern California
Member since: Wed Nov 17, 2010, 02:02 PM
Number of posts: 11,665

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It's time to get mad about the outrageous cost of health care - Consumer Reports

Person for person, health care in the U.S. costs about twice as much as it does in the rest of the developed world. In fact, if our $3 trillion health care sector were its own country, it would be the world’s fifth-largest economy.

If you have health insurance, you may think it doesn’t matter because someone else is paying the bill. You’d be wrong. This country’s exorbitant medical costs mean that we all pay too much for health insurance. Overpriced care also translates into fewer raises for American workers. And to top it off, we’re not even getting the best care for our money.

First, be aware that even if you have insurance, it doesn’t always fully protect you. Four years ago, Joclyn Krevat, a 32-year-old occupational therapist from New York City, collapsed with a rare heart condition and ended up needing an emergency heart transplant. She had it done at a hospital in her health plan’s network, but no one bothered to tell her that her transplant surgeons didn’t take her insurance. They billed her $70,000 and sent collection agencies and lawyers after her while she was still home recuperating. In studying the problem, Consumer Reports has heard dozens of similar tales about surprise out-of-network bills. (If you have one, consider sharing it with us).

Second, higher health care costs mean higher health insurance premiums for everyone. It’s Health Insurance 101: Insurance is about pooling risk. That’s a good thing because it protects you against unexpected costs—but companies have to collect enough in premiums to pay for members’ health expenses. The higher the expenses for the risk pool, the higher the premiums for everyone—even if you received little or none of that care.

And if you’re wondering why you can’t get ahead financially, blame it on the fact that health care is eating your raises. Since 2000, incomes have barely kept up with inflation and insurance premiums have more than doubled. The average employer family health plan that cost companies $6,438 per staffer in 2000 shot up to $16,351 by 2013. That’s money that could have gone into your paycheck but didn’t because your employer had to spend it on your health insurance instead.

The kicker: We don’t get much for our money. In a 2013 Commonwealth Fund study of 11 developed countries’ health care systems, the U.S. ranked fifth in quality and worst for infant mortality. We also did the worst job of preventing deaths from treatable conditions, such as strokes, diabetes, high blood pressure, and certain treatable cancers. (See graph, below).




Made-up prices and a yen for brand-name hospitals
All of which brings us to the big question: Why exactly is our health care so expensive?

Health care works nothing like other market transactions. As a consumer, you are a bystander to the real action, which takes place between providers—hospitals, doctors, labs, drug companies, and device manufacturers—and the private and governmental entities that pay them. Those same providers are also pushing Americans into newer and more expensive treatments, even when there’s no evidence they’re any better.

More here: http://consumerreports.org/cro/magazine/2014/11/it-is-time-to-get-mad-about-the-outrageous-cost-of-health-care/index.htm
Posted by Playinghardball | Thu Oct 30, 2014, 02:40 PM (44 replies)

Gun Sense voter...Are you one of them?


Everytown ✔ @Everytown
Follow
We just hit a major milestone: more than ONE MILLION Americans have taken the pledge to be a #GunSense voter!

8:10 PM - 28 Oct 2014


http://gunsensevoter.org/

http://theobamadiary.com/

Posted by Playinghardball | Wed Oct 29, 2014, 01:45 PM (10 replies)

Slippery Squirrel

This is really funny - also a clever solution to their problem of a squirrel stealing all the bird food

Posted by Playinghardball | Wed Oct 29, 2014, 01:24 PM (3 replies)

Adult science quiz

Here is a quiz on how much science adults know. Only 7% of the adult population gets all 13 questions correct.

http://www.pewresearch.org/quiz/science-knowledge/



Posted by Playinghardball | Tue Oct 28, 2014, 01:20 PM (47 replies)

America's No. 1 airborne killer....



http://theobamadiary.com/
Posted by Playinghardball | Mon Oct 27, 2014, 03:25 PM (2 replies)

Ever wonder what could be worse than a colonoscopy?

You will know the answer after watching this short, absolutely hilarious video.

The Aussies know comedy!

Posted by Playinghardball | Mon Oct 27, 2014, 01:43 PM (2 replies)

Thrilling days of Yesteryear

RETURN WITH US NOW TO THOSE THRILLING DAYS OF YESTERYEAR…

Posted by Playinghardball | Sun Oct 26, 2014, 07:11 PM (2 replies)

Commercial Jetliner Joined by Virgin Galactic

When passengers boarded this plane bound for San Francisco, they never could've guessed what they would encounter near the tail-end of their flight. During the approach to San Francisco, just off the left wing — as visible in the video — there emerges a totally futuristic aircraft. What was it? Virgin Galactic's brand new SpaceShipTwo and its mothership plane, the White Knight II. Even more impressive, the aptly named SpaceShipTwo (it literally goes into space) executed a parallel landing with the commercial airliner.

Posted by Playinghardball | Sun Oct 26, 2014, 02:43 PM (2 replies)

Halloween Prank that Would Scare the Sh*t Out of Anyone

One of the internet’s favorite pranksters, Tom Mabe, is back and this time he’s getting into the Halloween spirit by scaring the living crap out of unsuspecting people with a terrifying flying Grim Reaper trick!

In a completely genius move, Mabe decided to harness the scary goblin to a remote controlled helicopter and swoop it over anyone in a city park including dog walkers, kids, and joggers.

Watching everyone’s reactions to seeing the Grim Reaper, or as Mabe likes to call it The Flying Reaper, barreling out of the sky is absolutely hilarious! Regardless of how tough some of these park goers look, everyone has the same reaction which is to scream and run for the hills!



And this is how it was done...

Posted by Playinghardball | Sat Oct 25, 2014, 07:10 PM (3 replies)

Rarely Seen Footage Of Frank Sinatra and Elvis Presley’s Live Duet

Two of music’s biggest stars came together one night for an unbelievable performance that you absolutely must watch.

This footage of Frank Sinatra and Elvis Presley performing together dates back to 1960 when they appeared on the same television special together.

Together they performed one of each of their songs. Their song selections could not be better. Elvis sang “Witchcraft” and Sinatra sang “Love Me Tender.”

This is an absolutely incredible performance.


Posted by Playinghardball | Sat Oct 25, 2014, 06:52 PM (3 replies)
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