For the sake of privacy, I’m not gonna name names or convey details; besides, that’s not what this post is about.
Rather, I want to report that I just spent five days watching someone close to me being “cared for” in the hospital—with no regard expressed whatsoever for proper nutrition or rest, by anyone in the facility.
Poked and prodded, all hours of the day and night, disallowing any decent sleep whatsoever (not ICU, mind you, just regular care). My suspicion is (and I concede that I may be wrong, but I doubt it) that they were running every conceivable test, at every opportune interval, simply because it’s a revenue-generating process. They’re gonna soak the insurance company for tens of thousands of dollars, much like law firms do, justified or not. “We’re gonna go for the max payout”…
By the time they released her, she was so exhausted she could barely walk. And once home, all she did was sleep. She literally got no rest whatsoever while in the hospital!
The “meals” were for the most part inedible; a few times, after she’d rejected the meal, I would tried to eat some of it (and was hungry), and couldn’t stomach it. I suspect frozen meat (usually pork or chicken, looked to be a pressed patty, or processed in some way), which was so dry, tough, stringy, and chewy as to be unpalatable. I even had difficulty cutting it with a knife. And obviously canned vegetables, not fresh or frozen. One salad was wilted and watery in such a way as to appear to have been frozen, or close to it, then thawed, now wilted and inedible. Finally, I had to start bringing her real food (fresh produce) because she wasn’t eating, which was exacerbating her condition, obviously.
Then, I’m walking around the facility, marveling at the extravagance; it was reminiscent of a 5-star hotel: polished hardwood and marble/granite everywhere, gleaming polished floors, glass and chrome all around, you name it. It wasn’t merely clean, or adequate for service (I could appreciate that), it was *luxurious*. They obviously aren’t hurting for funds.
Granted, they saved her life—but what really saved her life, in the ER, was oxygen and fluids (saline). And the IV antibiotics during her stay were necessary, of course. But what tiny portion of the overall bill does that comprise? Oxygen, saline, and antibiotics. That’s all she really needed (and in a free society all that would have been available at the local drug store, at market prices…days before she became critically ill, I could have set her up with preliminary care, had I been “allowed” to by the state—and as a result, she likely never would’ve needed ER or hospitalization in the first place).
But all the scans, MRIs, bloodwork, etc—AFTER the diagnosis, which exactly matched my own diagnosis, after observing her symptoms before taking her in—well, I’d be hard-pressed to believe they were anything other than racking up fees, vastly overpriced at that, to present to the insurance company. Again, mere revenue generation. If it were me, id’a been inclined to refuse many of those tests as unnecessary. Yeah, I’da been a real troublemaker!
And worse, thanks to Obamacare, her deductible is now $8500 annually—instead of the more affordable $500 or $1000 that she had before Obamacare—and she had to set up a payment plan with the hospital, and is now making a monthly payment roughly equivalent to that of an auto loan—for tests she didn’t need, most of which would have been covered by her health insurance before Obamacare.
So, thanks to government intervention and regulation in what WAS a free-market health care system—and, I might add, the envy of the world—health care in the US has become a monopolized cartel. This is why it first became so expensive that people came to depend on insurance for every aspect of care (rather than just for catastrophic events, the original intent of insurance), and now many can’t even afford the insurance, let alone the health care. And worse, thanks to further intervention and regulation by the government (aka Obamacare, now Trumpcare), many insurance companies are now being driven out of business, and millions can no longer afford either insurance or preventative care, let alone catastrophic.
Many now term our health care system more properly “sick care”—because there is no money to be made off of healthy people. And when I sit there and watch them running test after test at all hours, needed or not, with no regard given whatsoever to proper rest and nutrition of the patient…well, I would have to agree, it’s no longer about the health and wellbeing of the patients (customers), it’s about revenue generation, and only revenue generation.
After all, what’re you gonna do? Got the the OTHER monopolized health care cartel?