Editor Sarah Worthman firstname.lastname@example.org
8:34 pm on Wednesday, May 22, 2013
Why does it seem like lots of folks have found John Banner's script copy from Hogan's Heroes.
'I see Nothing, I know nothing' (Sergeant Schulz)
9:11 pm on Monday, May 20, 2013
@Randy... The 1966 Medicare projected cost for 1990 was an inflation adjusted figure. I don't know the rate of inflation they selected for the calculation.
They did set the medicare payroll tax as a fixed percentage, without delinting a known date to make any changes to the percent of payroll contribution. So, I expect they thought healthcare inflation would track general inflation. Had they actually read the published statistical evidence,known at that time, healthcare inflation was measured to be higher than general inflation.
I've seen some quality economic analysis that points to 3rd party payers in general, and more specifically, Medicare/Medicaid as the major contributory cause of our out of control medical inflation. Remember the wage and price controls of WWII led to the job related tax-free healthcare benefits package(3rd party payer) we all know and love. So 'they'(Congress & LBJ) had no grasp of un-intended consequences 20 years later!
If one reviews a graph to help visualize 'general Inflation' v 'Healthcare inflation' one will note the slope of the graph significantly increases for the healthcare inflation rate at the 'start-up phase' of medicare/medicaid v general inflation in the same time period. http://metricmash.com/34hc
-Or- as Bob McBride would say, and I agree, it is a CLUSTER.
5:51 pm on Monday, May 20, 2013
Howard... Can you provide evidence that the CBO accurately projected the reduced cost of drugs, due to patent expiration, into their cost model v. discounting due to bulk purchases?
The fact that they missed the projection by a factor of two, in just 10 years, with regard to the monthly premium, should concern us about their ability to project anything accurately.
While you are putting together the numbers on part 'd', why not show us the cost forecasts for all the 'other Medicare Parts', from their date of inception.......
I'll get you started.... In 1967, the House Ways and Means Committee projected the new Medicare program, launched in 1966, to cost about $12 billion in 1990. Actual Medicare spending in 1990 was $110 billion.
—off by nearly a factor of 10 (in the,um, uh, wrong direction)
10:41 am on Monday, May 20, 2013
Keith... How are you accounting for us being assessed at 37th? When you look strictly at medical outcomes, adjusting the statistics for country specific factors(ie. BMI, Automobile accidents,Shootings) the USA is near the top in medical outcomes.
Advances in Pharmacology and medical devices happen because we are willing to pay for them, the rest of the world is riding on our financial coat-tails. So, lets pass a federal law that will not permit any drug or device in the USA for more than the world average price;the rest of the globe needs to start paying its fair share.
@ Randy... When it comes to Obama-care, I'm reminded of the phrase 'Cutting off the nose to spite the face'.
9:05 pm on Sunday, May 19, 2013
@Randy... The proposed plan would have allowed certain catastrophic health conditions to immediately join Medicaid or Medicare(prior to age 65), upon proper diagnosis, prior to exhausting all ones financial resources(before financial ruin).
We would be looking at about 2% of the total, non-medicare age eligible or non-medicare financial (welfare) eligible US population that would join the current medicare/medicaid plans if we followed this type system.
Why would anyone think that it would be the financially responsible(remember premiums are up $3000 in the timeline they were promised to go down $2500), let alone intelligent at any level, to think congress could/should re-write all of the current medical insurance programs to serve about 2% of the population?
Medicare/medicaid could have easily absorbed this 2% of the population without disruptions that we are feeling with the Obama-care plan, or any other type of national healthcare scheme.
We should be more than happy to cover individuals, that have a medical catastrophe not of their own contributory negligence, with the current medicare/medicaid plans.
10:23 am on Sunday, May 19, 2013
Where have you been, Frances?
Right out of the gate is was suggested that anyone suffering from a 'catastrophic medical condition' should be covered by one of our existing programs of Medicare or Medicaid, rather than private insurance.
We didnt need to reinvent the whole medical payment scheme.
9:39 pm on Saturday, May 11, 2013
@Randy... I don't object to requiring those that subject themselves to an excessive glycemic index, or excessive alcohol consumption, to contribute more for their health insurance, if it is a reliably measurable cost factor.
I don't know how one measures a glycemic index exposure or excessive alcohol consumption across time. It's probably just a little late to raise their premiums if they are in need of a Liver or Kidney transplant.
We do know how to reliably measure a BMI. The medical world knows through numerous studies that a BMI of 25+ is correlated to higher healthcare costs;about half of all of healthcare costs is attributable to excessive weight.
Do we expect a control measure on the size of our soft-drinks to be any more effective at eliminating obesity than Prohibition was at 'whatever it was' that it was supposed to fix!
4:40 pm on Saturday, May 11, 2013
Healthcare economics tells us we should not particularly care, with any precision, how the adult population gets their total calorie intake. We should only care about the Body Mass Index (BMI).
A nearly perfect +1 correlation, and known provable cause effect relationship exists between calorie consumption and a BMI over 25 with increased healthcare costs. Thus, it is only rational to assess taxes based on a BM levelI.
First, we need to put an IRS approved loading dock type scale at every cash register to assess BMI. All the high calorie to gram weight foods items will be assessed and a tax collected based as a function of your BMI.
Every fruit,vegetable,meat, etc..., that is purchased in a 'raw' or unprepared form will be -exempt- from the BMI tax. As, unprepared foods (even fruits) have relatively low calorie to gram weight ratios vs most every prepared food.
The BMI tax is a direct address and treatment of the problem: just too many calories consumed. It is not some crazed scheme that attacks, as 'evil', certain name brand products.
The EU countries have their VAT tax, we can have our FAT tax.
9:17 am on Saturday, May 11, 2013
Only in America can 'those' (read: elected officials) that almost single handedly created the Overweight problem, through third-party payer and by legally preventing health insurance carriers from charging the calculated correct rate for knowable 'self-inflicted' health risks (read:overweight), now claim to 'come to our rescue'<sarc> to fix a problem of their very creation;not by fixing the insurance market with premiums that reflect personal choice, but through a product ban.
This ban as a solution just screams, 'I don't understand the concepts of insurance and statistics'. And that, 'I don't understand the concepts of insurance and statistics' goes for those that would cast a vote for someone proposing a soda product ban.
7:54 am on Friday, May 10, 2013
We need to take our focus off the teachers and school districts and focus on the family and family intervention programs. Why isn't home economics and parenting not required to be taught in middle and high schools? Why are we expecting our teachers to be social workers, for which they've never been trained?
@Lyle.... Do you think one can just teach 'parenting' in the middle/high school classroom?
My siblings and I, as well as my wife and her siblings all had 20++ years of 'understudy' work before we took on that parenting role.
Teaching parenting sounds like teaching morality;it's learned not taught.
You might need to define 'teaching parenting and home economics'.
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