Scotties Toy Box

January 24, 2020

More than a third of U.S. healthcare costs go to bureaucracy

Filed under: Economics, Greed, Health, News, Political, Questions, Reason — Scottie @ 06:35

https://www.reuters.com/article/us-health-costs-administration-idUSKBN1Z5261

U.S. insurers and providers spent more than $800 billion in 2017 on administration, or nearly $2,500 per person – more than four times the per-capita administrative costs in Canada’s single-payer system, a new study finds.

Over one third of all healthcare costs in the U.S. were due to insurance company overhead and provider time spent on billing, versus about 17% spent on administration in Canada, researchers reported in Annals of Internal Medicine.

Cutting U.S. administrative costs to the $550 per capita (in 2017 U.S. dollars) level in Canada could save more than $600 billion, the researchers say.

“The average American is paying more than $2,000 a year for useless bureaucracy,” said lead author Dr. David Himmelstein, a distinguished professor of public health at the City University of New York at Hunter College in New York City and a lecturer at Harvard Medical School in Boston.

“That money could be spent for care if we had a ‘Medicare for all program’,” Himmelstein said.

When the researchers broke down the 2017 per-capita health administration costs in both countries, they found that insurer overhead accounted for $844 in the U.S. versus $146 in Canada; hospital administration was $933 versus $196; nursing home, home care and hospice administration was $255 versus $123; and physicians’ insurance-related costs were $465 versus $87

More at the link above.   We need Medicare For All.  Hugs

Everyone owes him something he believes

Filed under: Cartoons, Criminal, Fascism, Greed, Health, Memes, News, Political, Questions, Reason — Scottie @ 06:20

January 21, 2020

In Historic Shift, Second Largest Physicians Group in US Has New Prescription: It’s Medicare for All

Filed under: Economics, Health, News, Political, Questions, Reason — Scottie @ 05:23

Although the United States leads the world in health care spending, it fares far worse than its peers on coverage and most dimensions of value. Cost and coverage are intertwined. Many Americans cannot afford health insurance, and even those with insurance face substantial cost-related barriers to care. Employer-sponsored insurance is less prevalent and more expensive than in the past, and in response, deductibles have grown and benefits have been cut. The long-term solvency of U.S. public insurance programs is a perennial concern. The United States spends far more on healthcare administration than peer countries. Administrative barriers divert time from patient care and frustrate patients, clinicians, and policymakers. Major changes are needed to a system that costs too much, leaves too many behind, and delivers too little.

The ACP’s detailed review of the current for-profit system—even with some of the improvements resulting from the Affordable Care Act (ACA)—found that “too many Americans are uninsured or underinsured” and that current spending is “high and unsustainable”—especially as other developed nations show their ability to achieve better or similar outcomes for less while offering universal, government-guaranteed coverage to all.

While acknowledging that a transition to Medicare for All could be “highly disruptive” to the healthcare system, the ACP said “single-payer financing approach could achieve [its] vision of a system where everyone will have coverage for and access to the care they need, at a cost they and the country can afford. It also could achieve our vision of a system where spending will have been redirected from health care administration to funding coverage, research, public health, and interventions to address social determinants of health.”

Medicare for All, the paper continued, could also “achieve other key policy objectives, including portability, lower administrative costs and complexity, lower premiums and cost sharing, lower overall health care system costs, better access to care, and better health outcomes, depending on how it is designed and implemented.”

According to an op-ed by Woolhandler and Himmelstein, also published in the Annals alongside the ACP’s new position paper, “Achieving universal coverage would be costlier under the “public choice” model the ACP co-endorses along with single payer.”

Unlike a public-private mix of coverage that the public option would represent, the pair write, a single-payer Medicare for All  would allow hospitals and doctors to “save billions on billing-related costs” each year, and those savings could be re-purposed “to expand care” to millions for less cost than the status quo.

More information at the link above.   The times they are a changin.   Hugs

 

 

January 19, 2020

Say what?

We have a lot to lose

Filed under: Cartoons, Economics, Education, Fascism, Health, Memes, News, Political, Questions, Reason — Scottie @ 07:02

January 18, 2020

South Dakota GOP bill would jail doctors for 10 years if they provide trans health care to minors

Please understand this is not about safety or helping kids, it is about erasing trans people.   Puberty blockers should be started for trans kids just  puberty starts.   They do no harm, they simply stop the effect of the hormones from affecting the  body to make / change gender characteristics.    This is important because that lets a person who is trans keep from looking like the wrong gender.   A trans girl wants and should be allowed to look like a female, not forced to look like a boy in drag.   Same with trans boys, they should be allowed to look like males.  The blockers do not harm as if they are stopped regular puberty begins.   It simply is delayed but the process starts and continues as it would if the blockers were not used.    No one is letting kids get vasectomies and sexual reassignment surgery.  It is a scare tactic just like the misinformation about puberty blockers.  This is all about hurting and stopping people from identifying as trans.  It is another case of legislators wanting to be between the patient and their doctor.   Hugs

https://www.salon.com/2020/01/18/south-dakota-gop-bill-would-jail-doctors-for-10-years-if-they-provide-trans-health-care-to-minors/

South Dakota has proposed 16 anti-trans measures in recent years. Now the GOP wants to imprison doctors

House Bill 1057 would make it a felony to prescribe puberty blockers and hormones to people under 18 years of age and bans surgeries like vasectomy and vaginoplasty.

The bill was introduced by Republican state Rep. Fred Deutsch and has already drawn more than 40 co-sponsors in the Republican-dominated legislature.

This part is just a lie.  The medications are not dangerous and are used all over the world and the US without complications.  Rep. Fred Deutsch is wrong and using debunked scare tactics to outrage people.

“Children need to wait until they’re mature to do it,” he said, arguing that the procedures and medications barred under the bill are “dangerous” because of the psychological and physical effects they have on young people.

 

Harvard psychiatrist Dr. Jack Turban, who researches the mental health of transgender youth, told NBC that it is “unsettling to see state legislators proposing that standard medical care, as outlined by The American Academy of Pediatrics, The American Academy of Child & Adolescent Psychiatry and The Endocrine Society, should be a felony.”

The Endocrine Society and World Professional Association of Transgender Health both recommend puberty blockers and hormone treatments for transgender teens, though both organizations also recommend delaying surgeries until 18 years old. The report noted that only a quarter of transgender and gender non-conforming adults have reported undergoing transition-related surgery.

“Transgender kids, like all kids, deserve a chance to experience joy, to learn in a safe environment, to get the health care that they need, and to survive into adulthood,” said the ACLU’s Libby Skarin. “When the government proposes laws that would stigmatize them and undermine their care, they lose those opportunities.”

“The spate of anti-trans bills in South Dakota and elsewhere in recent years reflects an intentional strategy on the part of the anti-LGBTQ right wing,” wrote Gordon-Loebl. “Having lost the fight on gay marriage and recognizing the increasing national acceptance of lesbian gay and bisexual people, groups like [Alliance Defending Freedom] — alongside the Trump administration — have decided to pick off trans people, who are in many ways the most vulnerable and least protected members of the LGBTQ community.”

 

 

 

 

 

Biden Accidentally Makes Case for Medicare for All by Admitting Employers Can Take Away Your Insurance—Even If You Like It

Filed under: Economics, Health, News, Political, Questions, Reason — Scottie @ 09:50

The often touted idea that most people have a choice in medical coverage is a myth.  Only the very wealthy have a choice, they rest of us struggle to get whatever we can and deal with it.  Also no one loves their insurance company, they love their doctors and that they do have access to medical assistance.    Hugs

Biden Accidentally Makes Case for Medicare for All by Admitting Employers Can Take Away Your Insurance—Even If You Like It

“If you like your plan, you can keep it, assuming—I should add the obvious—if your employer doesn’t take it away from you,” said Biden.

“And with that, my friends, Joe Biden successfully makes the case for single payer healthcare,” tweeted activist Evan Sutton.

Progressive researcher Andrew Perez was among the first to seize on the remarks as an indication that any plan with less than universal coverage at its center—including today’s status quo—is insufficient.

“No one can promise to preserve your employer-based health insurance plan,” said Perez. “You lose it if you’re laid off, switch jobs, or if your employer changes offerings”

“Working people continually lose coverage from their employers,” said DeMoro. “The #1 cause of strikes is healthcare.”

The kind of system that Biden is proposing, warned DeMoro, doesn’t do nearly enough.

Conservatives think profits are more important than the quality and quantity of health care

Filed under: Cartoons, Criminal, Economics, Greed, Health, Memes, News, Political, Questions, Reason — Scottie @ 07:10
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Conservatives want sick people to suffer.

Conservatives want families to stress about bills.

Conservatives want mothers/newborns to be as unhealthy as possible.

Conservatives think profits are more important than the quality and quantity of health care.

US Conservatives are out of step with the entire world.

Healthcare

Filed under: Cartoons, Economics, Health, Memes, News, Political, Questions — Scottie @ 07:07
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#MedicareForAll now!

January 16, 2020

Florida Republicans submit 4 anti-gay bills on last day to file

Filed under: Bigotry, Gender, Hate, Health, Homosexual, LGBTQ, News, Political, Questions, Sex, Transgender news, Youth — Scottie @ 11:01

I do not understand the hate in these people, nor their desire to harm others not like them.    Also I am tired of politicians trying to make medical decisions for people instead of leaving it up to the patient and their doctor.    I use to have a muscle relaxer that worked really good for me.   The Florida state legislature in an attempt to look like they were addressing the opioid addiction problem, made it illegal for a pain doctor to prescribe it, while other doctors still can.   I have to use other drugs that do not work as well and have worse side effects.   The drug was not even an opioid.   I shouldn’t be forced to take medical advice from a legislator instead of my doctor.    Hugs

https://www.nbcnews.com/feature/nbc-out/florida-republicans-file-4-anti-gay-bills-last-day-session-n1116256

The bills would repeal LGBTQ antidiscrimination ordinances, criminalize trans health care for minors and allow conversion therapy in places that had banned it.

Seven Republican lawmakers in Florida filed anti-LGBTQ bills late Monday, just hours before the deadline to file new bills for the coming legislative session.

If passed, the bills would ban gender-affirming health care for transgender children, repeal municipal and county ordinances protecting LGBTQ workers, and legalize so-called gay conversion therapy in places that had banned the medically debunked practice.

Equality Florida, the state’s largest LGBTQ rights group, also decried the late-session bill dump.

“This is the most overtly anti-LGBTQ agenda from the Florida Legislature in recent memory,” Jon Harris Maurer, the group’s public policy director, said in a press release. “It runs the gamut from openly hostile legislation that would arrest and imprison doctors for providing medically necessary care, to legislation that would carelessly erase critical local LGBTQ protections.”

“It is outrageous that conservative legislators would threaten their health and safety,” she said in a statement. “Medical professionals, not politicians, should decide what medical care is in the best interest of a patient. Forcing a doctor to deny best practice medical care and deny support to transgender youth can be life-threatening.”

Conservative Republicans across the country have lately moved to introduce bills that would criminalize the provision of medical care for transgender children — including treatments endorsed by all major medical organizations. Florida’s trans health care ban proposal joins a list of similar bills that have been filed in recent weeks by staunchly conservative lawmakers in Tennessee and Texas.

“Sadly, the medical care of transgender youth has been sensationalized and politicized,” Jack Turban, a researcher at Harvard Medical School, said. “Gender-affirming medical care for transgender adolescents is endorsed by major medical organizations, including the Endocrine Society, the American Academy of Pediatrics, and the American Academy of Child & Adolescent Psychiatry. It should go without saying, but providing standard medical care should not be a felony.”

 

 

 

January 15, 2020

Journalistic malpractice

Filed under: Cartoons, Economics, Fascism, Food, Greed, Health, Memes, News, Political, Questions — Scottie @ 07:38

January 14, 2020

Testing a REAL Exoskeleton – the Comau MATE

Filed under: Health, News, Science, Things I like, You Tube — Scottie @ 15:19

I find this really interesting.   One of the things I struggle to do is hold my arms over my head.   The pain builds quickly to very intense.  Also to stand for any length of time my spine starts to really hurt badly.  Something like this would really help me.   But it really might be good for people much worse than I am, in the future could people without the ability to walk use something like this?  Could people who have to use a walker use this instead?   This really is an important part of human / science interaction we need to look into.   Oh yes the first few minutes are silly, but get beyond them to where he goes to the factory and shows what the suit really can do for workers.   Hugs

Taiwan’s single-payer success story — and its lessons for America

Filed under: Economics, Education, Health, News, Political, Questions, Reason, Science, Things I like — Scottie @ 11:36

There is much more information at the link, it is a long read but worth it.   Some good things, and it explains some of the harder choices.  It is do able and it has really improved the health of the people.   But there are strains and it will need price increases, which from a US view point are inconceivably low.    The say a co-pay is about 12 dollars.   Remember though our country is much wealthier.   Anyway I found the article fascinating.   Hugs

https://www.vox.com/health-care/2020/1/13/21028702/medicare-for-all-taiwan-health-insurance

Diabetes, alcoholism, and heart disease are common problems among the Taroko. The indigenous people have endured displacement, forced assimilation, and discrimination over the centuries. They are also poorer than the ethnically Han Chinese who make up most of Taiwan’s population.

But they never have to worry about one thing: their health care. In Taiwan, everybody is covered. The Taiwanese health care system is built on the belief that everyone deserves health care, in Xiulin just as much as anywhere else. The costs to patients are minimal. And the government has set up special programs to deliver care to the people in Xiulin and their neighbors in Hualien County.

In the 1990s, Taiwan did what has long been considered impossible in the US: The island of 24 million people took a fractured and inequitable health care system and transformed it into something as close to Sen. Bernie Sanders’s vision of Medicare-for-all as anything in the world.

There’s clearly a need for lessons. Compared to the rest of the developed world, America spends more money on health care and produces worse outcomes. By one advanced metric — mortality for causes that should be avoidable with accessible, high-quality health care — the United States ranked last among the G7 countries in 2016. America’s infant mortality rate is almost double that of some of its peers. Nearly one in 10 Americans lack insurance. People go bankrupt over medical bills. Yet Americans still spend about twice as much money on health care per capita as the average comparable country.

No health care system is perfect. But most of America’s economic peers have figured out a way to deliver truly universal coverage and quality care. The United States has not.

“Canada and virtually all European and Asian developed nations have reached, decades ago, a political consensus to treat health care as a social good,” health care economist Uwe Reinhardt wrote in his book Priced Out shortly before his death in 2017. “By contrast, we in the United States have never reached a politically dominant consensus on the issue.”

Taiwan made its choice in the 1990s and embraced single-payer. It has required sacrifice: by doctors who believe they’re forced to see too many patients every day; by patients with complex and costly conditions who can’t always access the latest treatments; by citizens who have been asked from time to time, and will be asked again, to pay more for their health care than they did before.

The national government would eventually fast-track the implementation of the new system to 1995, hoping to get the chaotic transition period over before the first popular elections in 1996. There was plenty of skepticism leading up to it. Industry, experts, and the public alike doubted the program would succeed. Labor protesters threw paper money traditionally used in a funerary rite when the legislature passed the single-payer bill in 1994. A majority of people in Taiwan disapproved of the single-payer plan when it took effect.

But the program’s reputation quickly improved once people started to enjoy its benefits. Approval has dipped (when premiums were hiked in the 2000s) and risen (when the rural health care program that employs Tien in Xiulin was implemented) over the years, but there has always been a solid baseline of support. Today, approval of the national health insurance program hovers near its all-time high, over 80 percent. The system endures 25 years after it was established.

Part of its appeal is its simplicity. Everybody in Taiwan is insured through the National Health Insurance Administration (NHIA). They receive an ID card as proof of coverage, which also stores their medical records. The Taiwanese program runs with extraordinary efficiency: About 1 percent of its funding is spent on administration, according to a 2015 review by Cheng. (Compare that to the US, where researchers have estimated that private insurers spend around 12 percent of overhead, and hospitals spend around 25 percent on administrative work.) Experts say Taiwan’s advanced IT infrastructure deserves a good share of the credit.

The benefits are quite comprehensive: hospital care, primary care, prescription drugs, traditional Chinese medicine. Patients must make copays when they visit the doctor or fill a prescription or go to the ER, but they are generally low, 360 NTD (about $12) or less. Lower-income patients are given an additional break on their cost-sharing obligations. Higher-income patients can take out private insurance for certain things not covered by the single-payer program.

The system is mostly funded by payroll-based premiums, with contributions from workers and their employers, supplemented by more progressive income taxes and tobacco and lottery levies. Premiums have been raised twice in the past 18 years to cover the growing cost of the program. The most recent rate increase in 2010 moved the payroll income tax rate from 4.55 percent to 5.17, a 14 percent increase.

In the early 2000s, again at Reinhardt’s recommendation, Taiwan converted to global budgets to pay for health care as another cost-control measure. This means that every year, government officials and private providers sit across a table and negotiate rates for services, with an annual cap set on the total payments to hospitals and doctors that the government will make. Health spending has stayed flat in recent years as a percentage of GDP, and it is growing at a slower rate in Taiwan than in the United States.

“That’s the essence of universal health coverage,” he says. “The principle of health [as a] human right is that everybody regardless of geography, religion, gender, age should have the right to access.”

No child should have to worry where her next meal will come from or whether she will have a place to sleep each night in the wealthiest nation on Earth.

Filed under: Cartoons, Children, Criminal, Economics, Family, Health, Memes, News, Political, Questions — Scottie @ 07:58

Trump/Republicans cut S-CHIP for children and Medicare for retirees. Republicans are against Medicare For All. Republicans cut mental health funding for veterans. Republicans want more guns in schools

Filed under: Cartoons, Economics, Fascism, Food, Health, Memes, News, Political, Questions — Scottie @ 07:52
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Trump/Republicans cut S-CHIP for children and Medicare for retirees. Republicans are against Medicare For All. Republicans cut mental health funding for veterans. Republicans want more guns in schools.

What health care is he talking about?

Healthcare is a human right

Filed under: Cartoons, Health, Memes, News, Political, Questions — Scottie @ 07:42

January 13, 2020

I like this idea

Filed under: Cartoons, Economics, Health, Memes, News, Questions, Reason — Scottie @ 07:14

The average US citizen

Filed under: Cartoons, Economics, Gender, Health, Homosexual, LGBTQ, Memes, News, Political, Questions, Race, Reason — Scottie @ 05:57

Heart beat

Filed under: Bigotry, Cartoons, Children, Criminal, Family, Gender, Health, Memes, News, Political, Questions, Race, Reason — Scottie @ 05:50

Criminal enterprise

Filed under: Cartoons, Criminal, Economics, Greed, Health, Memes, News, Political, Questions, Reason — Scottie @ 05:38
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