Have you had a family member spend any time in the hospital over the last few years?  We have — three of the five members of our family have needed a surgical procedure done in that time.

Have you ever gotten an itemized statement from a hospital stay — whether it’s overnight or over a few nights — and seen what you were charged for, and how much you were charged?  I have, and it’s staggering to say the least.

time coverSteven Brill’s recent special report in Time Magazine, “Bitter Pill: Why Medical Bills Are Killing Us,” is a lengthy but necessary read as we look at the cost of health care in America and what that cost is doing to us as a nation.  To put it in perspective …

“Taken as a whole, these powerful institutions and the bills they churn out dominate the nation’s economy and put demands on taxpayers to a degree unequaled anywhere else on earth. In the U.S., people spend almost 20% of the gross domestic product on health care, compared with about half that in most developed countries. Yet in every measurable way, the results our health care system produces are no better and often worse than the outcomes in those countries.

“According to one of a series of exhaustive studies done by the McKinsey & Co. consulting firm, we spend more on health care than the next 10 biggest spenders combined: Japan, Germany, France, China, the U.K., Italy, Canada, Brazil, Spain and Australia. We may be shocked at the $60 billion price tag for cleaning up after Hurricane Sandy. We spent almost that much last week on health care. We spend more every year on artificial knees and hips than what Hollywood collects at the box office. We spend two or three times that much on durable medical devices like canes and wheelchairs, in part because a heavily lobbied Congress forces Medicare to pay 25% to 75% more for this equipment than it would cost at Walmart.”

Click here for the full report in Time Magazine.

9 thoughts on “Take a look at the “bitter pill” Time Magazine showed to us

  1. Thanks John. This was an eye-opening article and not in a good way. Anyone who does not have the Congressional Medical Plan needs to read this and get angry!

  2. Now that your job situation has put you back on dry land instead of treading water almost up to your nose, let’s hope that the Miller family has some nice, uneventful time ahead as far as your singular & collective health is concerned as well.

    People in this country are frightened by the concept of socialized medicine, but not by thousands of people being denied health care?????

    I find that as my age increases (68 now), that my patience exponentially decreases. Reading your blog on & off for the past year plus, I can only marvel at how patient (and steadfast in your faith) you were, my friend!

    Geeze

  3. Try $57,000 in MEDICATIONS ALONE over a 6-month period the latter half of last year. It’s not only frightening, it’s completely criminal and driven by greed – not need. Bring on socialized, not-for-profit health care, and bring it now!

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