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Monday, April 9

It's nice to be a healthcare insurance executive

in a cruelly capitalistic country like the USA.
I have nothing against capitalism, but this is ridiculous.

What if you were under 65 and you got very ill and you had to stop working and you couldn't afford to keep up your COBRA payments on your health insurance? If you own a home, you could sell it and use that money to pay for medical costs and then when you run out of money, maybe you'd qualify for Medicaid. Maybe not.

At his last job, the husband had about $125/week taken out of his pay for medical insurance. It was pretty good coverage but many services were inconvenient which sucked when you were sick. There was a $50 co-pay for almost any drug per month- not so bad when some of your prescriptions would cost $600 out of pocket. The drug co-pays ran us about $300/month. In the new job, the salary deduction for medical insurance is much much lower because a union negotiated for it. The medical coverage is decent, but the pharmacy benefits stink. They only cover 20%. Have you priced drugs lately? Holy cow. Our monthly meds now cost about $800 out of pocket, and that is with one of the doctors giving us samples or the cost would be close to $2000/month. We're not rich. Medical costs are the biggest expenditure we have per month. Without jobs, we'd be up the creek without a paddle. Or dead. It would be nice to be cured and not have to take the drugs, but apparently there is too much money to be made and cures are not profitable.

Meanwhile, big pharm is reaping grotesquely extravagant profits and their CEO's retire with enough to medically insure a whole village. Supposedly our health care in the US is fabulous, but you have to be rich to afford it or have a great job in a great company. Not everyone can work in a great company. Our congress critters get free health care for life. No wonder they don't give a shit about the tax payers.

Missouri Mule pointed out to me something that Elizabeth Edwards forgot to address- how fortunate she is to have great health insurance and lots of money. It doesn't insure that she won't die from breast cancer, but there is a good chance that she will live longer and be there for her family longer. There are other women in America who are just as loved and needed, maybe even more, by their families and friends, but they don't have health insurance or have to quit their jobs and can't afford COBRA and FOOD in the same month. So what happens to them? The family mortgages the house, if they were lucky enough to have one and the matriarch dies anyway. Nice.

Just read this. Profits Soar, Along With U.S. Uninsured

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