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Thread: Walmart workers demand better wages

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    Re: Walmart workers demand better wages

    Quote Originally Posted by Boo Radley View Post
    I admit you seem to be moving around in a way that is hard for me to follow. So, lets back up. Technology and medical advancement moved medical care from the home to hospitals and other treatment areas. This in tandem with the need to make sure doctors were capable and qualified, and the snake oil salesmen of the past, led to greater costs. Medicine became unaffordable for many. Insurance grew out of that environment. Everything starts for a reason.

    Now, third party payers keep what s unaffordable for a majority doable for most. We mistakenly attached it to employment instead of UHC, but it as allowed more access than we would have otherwise.

    Now, if we had UHC, not only would we pay less, but access would be much better than today.

    Now, you suggested removing third party payers and suggest it would be cheaper. But you largely only addressed doctor visits which would be more expensive for the patient than insurance would be (getting less for the money as you would still need insurance for everything else).

    So I haven't followed you since you threw out HMOs with no connection I can see to anything said. Hopefully this ears things up.
    It does tend to be cheaper though.
    Just as an example, that happened to me recently.
    I got a bill from my son's pediatrician, it was for $49.63, I paid it through my HSA "send a check" feature.
    The Dr.'s office lost the check and never deposited it.

    So I called them up to see when they would cash it, they said they never got it.
    I told them I'd like to pay it in full now, I got a 40% discount off the bill, for paying in full, right then.
    Hospitals do this very same thing.

    Basically, what these offices bill for, is not what they will actually take for cost of service + profit.
    It's a sort of shell game, medical providers play.
    I was discovering that life just simply isn't fair and bask in the unsung glory of knowing that each obstacle overcome along the way only adds to the satisfaction in the end. Nothing great, after all, was ever accomplished by anyone sulking in his or her misery.
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    Re: Walmart workers demand better wages

    Quote Originally Posted by j-mac View Post
    A couple of things here...

    Technology did increase cost in medical services that is true, but one of the reasons that this drove cost is that more and more people were and are relying on Hospital emergency rooms to get well care treatment, then not paying for the services rendered, pushing cost for the rest of us.

    When our kids were younger, my wife had a job that offered kasier HMO as an insurance option, which we were in. It was great! One facility, doc visit, testing, and prescriptions all within one stop, including x-ray if needed. But as great as that model was, it was expensive. So much so that the employer dropped it as a provider later on, luckly after she left....But that is my question, if you are advocating the HMO model, which I agree was damned good at taking care of our needs at the time, how do you address the prohibitive cost of that service?
    Emergency rooms are a more modern development. I'm going back a lot further than that.

    Insured people using the er, however, is less a problem than the uninsured. At least the insured have a method of paying. The uninsured do exactly as you claim. Another reason for UHC.

    Now I'm sure I missed a talking point memo some where that has everyone throwing up HMOs instead of what is being said. No where have I mention using HMOs.

    Instead, I suggest a two tiered single payer system which provides adequate care for all (not anything you want, but no more restricting than insurance now). However, there is the freedom for all to buy more (either more insurance or more care). Remove insurance from employment. And deal with healthcare like you do other public services, like fire departments.

    AUSTAN GOOLSBEE: I think the world vests too much power, certainly in the president, probably in Washington in general for its influence on the economy, because most all of the economy has nothing to do with the government.

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    Re: Walmart workers demand better wages

    Quote Originally Posted by Harry Guerrilla View Post
    It does tend to be cheaper though.
    Just as an example, that happened to me recently.
    I got a bill from my son's pediatrician, it was for $49.63, I paid it through my HSA "send a check" feature.
    The Dr.'s office lost the check and never deposited it.

    So I called them up to see when they would cash it, they said they never got it.
    I told them I'd like to pay it in full now, I got a 40% discount off the bill, for paying in full, right then.
    Hospitals do this very same thing.

    Basically, what these offices bill for, is not what they will actually take for cost of service + profit.
    It's a sort of shell game, medical providers play.
    Small change. And those things tend to go away. Remember when you could get a discount on gas for cash? However, you should know that there is a number where that cost would be difficult. There was a time, with a family, working for low wages, that I would have had difficulty paying that.

    AUSTAN GOOLSBEE: I think the world vests too much power, certainly in the president, probably in Washington in general for its influence on the economy, because most all of the economy has nothing to do with the government.

  4. #1494
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    Re: Walmart workers demand better wages

    Quote Originally Posted by Boo Radley View Post
    Small change. And those things tend to go away. Remember when you could get a discount on gas for cash? However, you should know that there is a number where that cost would be difficult. There was a time, with a family, working for low wages, that I would have had difficulty paying that.
    This is standard protocol for medical providers, as I've learned.
    Because of insurance, they tend to skew their prices up, to get as much as they can.
    My wife, who has a separate insurance plan, received a bill detail for approximately $20k, insurance negotiated price was only 10% of that.
    You don't really think they took a loss of $18k, do you?

    Not even remotely similar to the cash price for gas, which I've never seen before.
    Gas here, as long as I can remember, has cost the same regardless of cash or credit.
    I was discovering that life just simply isn't fair and bask in the unsung glory of knowing that each obstacle overcome along the way only adds to the satisfaction in the end. Nothing great, after all, was ever accomplished by anyone sulking in his or her misery.
    —Adam Shepard

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    Re: Walmart workers demand better wages

    Quote Originally Posted by Harry Guerrilla View Post
    This is standard protocol for medical providers, as I've learned.
    Because of insurance, they tend to skew their prices up, to get as much as they can.
    My wife, who has a separate insurance plan, received a bill detail for approximately $20k, insurance negotiated price was only 10% of that.
    You don't really think they took a loss of $18k, do you?

    Not even remotely similar to the cash price for gas, which I've never seen before.
    Gas here, as long as I can remember, has cost the same regardless of cash or credit.
    I'm not going to pretend insurance is perfect, but that discount would likely go away without it. Doctors know they would have fewer customers without insurance. They also have a number who don't pay, you I've will verify that as well.

    Yes, there was a time when you could in and offer cash for a discount on gas. But, it is the reason for the discount that changes. Without the reason, no discount.

    AUSTAN GOOLSBEE: I think the world vests too much power, certainly in the president, probably in Washington in general for its influence on the economy, because most all of the economy has nothing to do with the government.

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    Re: Walmart workers demand better wages

    Quote Originally Posted by Boo Radley View Post
    I'm not going to pretend insurance is perfect, but that discount would likely go away without it. Doctors know they would have fewer customers without insurance. They also have a number who don't pay, you I've will verify that as well.
    I'm not arguing that we should do away with insurance.
    HSA's offer an alternative, cost reducing option for people who want insurance, just not to much insurance.

    I've experienced first hand, that having less insurance coverage, has saved me money.

    Yes, there are some who don't pay, but the majority do pay, through insurance.
    Hospitals overcharge on purpose, most don't know that you can get out with a much smaller bill.
    If pricing were up front, the shenanigans would be less prevalent.


    Quote Originally Posted by Boo Radley View Post
    Yes, there was a time when you could in and offer cash for a discount on gas. But, it is the reason for the discount that changes. Without the reason, no discount.
    Yes but you didn't get a 40% or 90% cash discount.
    The discount that did exist was for credit card transaction fees, which resulted in around a 3-5% discount.
    I was discovering that life just simply isn't fair and bask in the unsung glory of knowing that each obstacle overcome along the way only adds to the satisfaction in the end. Nothing great, after all, was ever accomplished by anyone sulking in his or her misery.
    —Adam Shepard

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    Re: Walmart workers demand better wages

    Quote Originally Posted by Boo Radley View Post
    Emergency rooms are a more modern development. I'm going back a lot further than that.

    Insured people using the er, however, is less a problem than the uninsured. At least the insured have a method of paying. The uninsured do exactly as you claim. Another reason for UHC.

    Now I'm sure I missed a talking point memo some where that has everyone throwing up HMOs instead of what is being said. No where have I mention using HMOs.

    Instead, I suggest a two tiered single payer system which provides adequate care for all (not anything you want, but no more restricting than insurance now). However, there is the freedom for all to buy more (either more insurance or more care). Remove insurance from employment. And deal with healthcare like you do other public services, like fire departments.

    Do you foresee a tax increase to cover that cost then, and what would it be in terms of percentage?
    Americans are so enamored of equality that they would rather be equal in slavery than unequal in freedom.

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    Re: Walmart workers demand better wages

    Quote Originally Posted by Harry Guerrilla View Post
    I'm not arguing that we should do away with insurance.
    HSA's offer an alternative, cost reducing option for people who want insurance, just not to much insurance.

    I've experienced first hand, that having less insurance coverage, has saved me money.

    Yes, there are some who don't pay, but the majority do pay, through insurance.
    Hospitals overcharge on purpose, most don't know that you can get out with a much smaller bill.

    If pricing were up front, the shenanigans would be less prevalent.




    Yes but you didn't get a 40% or 90% cash discount.
    The discount that did exist was for credit card transaction fees, which resulted in around a 3-5% discount.
    HSA is only helpful in some cases, and not a real solution. It is virtual no real help for me. Our med costs are too large. Insurance is much better. But it does nothing t all for the major problems we face with health.

    AUSTAN GOOLSBEE: I think the world vests too much power, certainly in the president, probably in Washington in general for its influence on the economy, because most all of the economy has nothing to do with the government.

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    Re: Walmart workers demand better wages

    Quote Originally Posted by j-mac View Post
    Do you foresee a tax increase to cover that cost then, and what would it be in terms of percentage?
    We've been through this. Sure there would be an increase, but likely much less than what individuals and employers pay now. However, tomorrow when I'm at a computer I'll look that up for you. I'm not sure why your so attached to av system that costs more and has less access.

    AUSTAN GOOLSBEE: I think the world vests too much power, certainly in the president, probably in Washington in general for its influence on the economy, because most all of the economy has nothing to do with the government.

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    Re: Walmart workers demand better wages

    Quote Originally Posted by Boo Radley View Post
    I admit you seem to be moving around in a way that is hard for me to follow. So, lets back up. Technology and medical advancement moved medical care from the home to hospitals and other treatment areas. This in tandem with the need to make sure doctors were capable and qualified, and the snake oil salesmen of the past, led to greater costs. Medicine became unaffordable for many. Insurance grew out of that environment. Everything starts for a reason.

    Now, third party payers keep what s unaffordable for a majority doable for most. We mistakenly attached it to employment instead of UHC, but it as allowed more access than we would have otherwise.

    Now, if we had UHC, not only would we pay less, but access would be much better than today.

    Now, you suggested removing third party payers and suggest it would be cheaper. But you largely only addressed doctor visits which would be more expensive for the patient than insurance would be (getting less for the money as you would still need insurance for everything else).

    So I haven't followed you since you threw out HMOs with no connection I can see to anything said. Hopefully this ears things up.
    I don't think you understand what I am saying. Third parties, by definition, subtract wealth from the healthcare system. Whatever services are provided by the healthcare industry, doctors could provide them at a cheaper cost without the cost of regulation, extra staff for paperwork, overhead profits, etc. etc.

    Its easy to mix up what it currently costs to be uninsured, with what it would cost if there were no insurance. Being uninsured now... doctors still have to pay their extra paperwork staff the same amount, regardless of whether or not YOU specifically have health insurance. Plus... current prices are based in part on the % of premiums doctors recieve from the health insurance company for certain services... so if you are uninsured, you are pretty much picking up the bill instead of insurance companies for that enormous amount of money that would've been deducted from premiums. Insurance companies + doctors alike are benefited by driving premiums up, creating an external upward pricing pressure. However, without insurance, that pricing model would disappear, and the rate you would pay would be more of a market set rate. Market set rates would not have that upward pricing pressure, and more likely would have a slight down pricing pressure.

    UHC would be an improvement, but I will always contend that if we can use a market constructed way of reducing prices + increasing the # amount of human resources (doctors, nurses etc.), then that should be step number one. Then... if every single one of the free market solutions (notice I say free market, I don't mean "let the free market work itself out," but rather I think we should use our understanding of the free market to construct solutions) don't work out, then and only then, would I say okay lets move to a UHC.

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