Monday, August 17, 2009

Compare International Medical Bills

Countries with governments and economies similar to the United States have come up with a variety of methods to make sure that all of their citizens receive health care. While residents in Europe and Japan may pay higher insurance premiums or taxes than Americans, in the end, when all costs are added up, Americans spend more money on health care per person with fewer people covered. Pull-down charts HERE that are informative.

4 comments:

Mark in DE said...

Very interesting. More reason for reform.

Berry Blog said...

I checked out US/England but didn't go further. They do have their challenges as well, but somehow manage so much better than we do. I am convinced of medical bureacracy, duplication of testing( one dr won't accept the MRI of another even when it's the same area scanned), and duplication of one thing after another. One computer system that eery doctor in the system could access would help. It's a shame that nearly crippled people have to travel from one doctor to another to get x-rays and deliver them themselves.Stuff like that.

Pseudonymph said...

Interesting, but it didn't mention Australia - I would have liked to see how we compared. A compulsory medicare levy is taken out of wages, and this is used to fund public facilities, and give a rebate for doctor visits - I pay $60 to see my doctor, and get $28 back. Some doctors bulk bill (just accept the rebate paid to them as payment) but they tend to be the churn 'em through type. As both my husband and I earn a good wage, we are obliged to take out private health insurance, or else we would have to pay an extra medicare levy. This means I can go to a private hospital for treatment, and they will cover most of it. For example, Josh needed tonsils/adenoids/grommets done when he was younger, and he went to a lovely private hospital, Greg stayed with him, and he was done within the month of booking. Waiting lists for public facilities are up to 2 years! It's over $3000/year, but with a growing family, glasses, braces, physiotherapy etc, it is paying its way finally. We get partial rebates on these things. And as we get older, we will need to keep it - waiting lists for knee/hip replacements are over a year! It is a 2-tier system, but by making people take private insurance out, it keeps those that possibly could afford differently out of the public system, and frees it up for those who can't.

Joy said...

Thanks, P, I wondered how it worked there. Now I know!

I think that's what they're going for here, but the bills are hard to understand when I read them online. We definitely to make changes, and it's all really complicated. The insurance companies here are out of control. Some of them pay well and some don't.