Can a Doctor's Office Charge Much More Than Another?

  • Thread starter kyphysics
  • Start date
  • Tags
    Charge
In summary: I had a friend that had serious medical issues so was constantly in the hospital and getting crazy bills, and he had quite a bit of luck pushing back on the more egregious charges.
  • #36
Vanadium 50 said:
This is what happens when one gets one's economics from Dave Ramsey rather than learning how to do research on your own.

Can we agree that the absolute cheapest drugs can get is no cheaper than when the company that makes them makes zero profit? It turns out that all US publicly traded companies have to file a form with the SEC called a 10-K which says, among other things, what their revenues were and what their profits were for the preceding years. This is public, and can easily be found on each company's web site. You will find that most of these companies have profits in the 20% ballpark - with some annual variation, of course.
So that's the maximum possible savings: 20%. In real life, it's much smaller.
Sorry, comrade. It's been tried and it does not work.

What was the purpose of your first sentence, as it's entirely false and I think you've read enough of what I've had to say in the financial advice thread to know this. What it to pot shot/cheap shot Dave Ramsey? What is to inflame a conversation here and pot shot/cheap shot me? Do you have something personal against me? Even if I disagreed with another person's views, I'd never go after that person on a personal level or want to make them feel bad.

Do you like making people feel bad? Is that your thing? Do you have feelings as a human being? I'm trying to understand why you feel the need to do this type of stuff - especially, in a thread not even devoted to personal finance and Dave Ramsey. I'm honestly trying to understand what you get out of comments like the bolded one above.

Not once have I cited Dave Ramsey on economics, but have in fact said he was deeply ignorant of many topics in the field. Even in topics of personal finance and business (which are what he's trained in), I have said I feel he's right on many things, while being wrong on others. By no means have I ever just blindly accepted his views. So, I think you can stop with these misrepresentations and cheap shots.

As for Ramsey's confused ramblings on macroeconomic theory, of the four major schools of thought (Marxian, Austrian, Keynesian, and Modern Monetary Theory) he's probably closest to the Austrian School (e.g., Hayek) in his views and would be opposed to things like medicare for all/single-payer and probably thinks supply and demand sets prices for drugs. He's pretty much as laissez faire, let the free-market dictate prices and wages as you can get. I don't want to derail this thread too much, but suffice it to say that I could list a litany of things that I disagree with you about in economics.

In terms of U.S. drug prices being inflated, due to Big Pharma lobbying against importation and negotiation, this is indisputable and easily proven. Just look at drugs manufactured in the U.S. and sold in Canada for much cheaper prices. These are our own drugs! We ship them to Canada and they pay much less in free trade borders.

It's costing us billions of dollars a year in the U.S. and why Bernie Sanders tried to pass the "Affordable Drug Act" last year (to allow importation), but had it squashed by uncooperative Congressmen/women bought by their Big Pharma donors. There are many articles online, but here is just one from The Nation:
Because Canada, like virtually every other wealthy industrialized nation, offers comprehensive universal health-care coverage, Canadians generally pay much lower prices for medicines overall than their southern neighbors. US consumers, who are locked in Big Pharma’s captive market, pay brutally inflated costs through insurance or out of pocket—for drugs that Canadians can buy at a fraction of the price.

http://www.citizen.org/pressroom/pressroomredirect.cfm?ID=10228 (with a companion bill in the House) would give Americans access to Canada’s cheaper drugs by allowing cross-border retail purchase and imports of medicines. The measure could save consumers as much as 35 to 55 percent of the usual US list price. For example, the popular cholesterol drug Lipitor can cost Canadian patients under $50, compared to more than $150 for the same dose sold on the US market.

Though the measure would only curb one source of health-care inflation, and though Canadian market access would still be restricted under the law, granting more consumers access to a rationally priced market (with the possibility of adding more countries’ markets later on), could start to chip away at Big Pharma’s market stranglehold and spur campaigns for more broad-based health-care restructuring. Predictably, the pharmaceutical industry lobby is smearing the measure by painting it as “government interference in prescription drug pricing.”

But the public is frustrated enough with “free market” drug pricing to finally seek government intervention. Runaway drug prices will cost Americans about $328 billion this year, about $50 billion straight from consumers’ pockets, while drug makers enjoy record profits. As individual patients struggle with medical bankruptcy or get forced to choose between rent and their next insulin shot, the drug cost crisis also feeds into wider societal ills, including the epidemic of medical bankruptcy and even opioid abuse.

Under pressure from pharmaceutical industry lobbyists, both Democrats and Republicans have repeatedly squelched efforts to regulate drug prices.

https://www.thenation.com/article/why-are-canadas-prescription-drugs-so-much-cheaper-than-ours/


We could easily have cheaper drugs via importation (of our OWN drugs oftentimes...to circumvent Big Pharma's price gouging with U.S. laws) and these companies would still make a profit.
 
Last edited:
Physics news on Phys.org
  • #37
kyphysics said:
We could easily have cheaper drugs via importation (of our OWN drugs oftentimes...to circumvent Big Pharma's price gouging with U.S. laws) and these companies would still make a profit.

Proof by repeated assertion?

Seriously - if you make lousy arguments, expect to be called on that. If it makes you feel bad when someone points out that your argument is lousy, the solution is to stop making lousy arguments.

As discussed earlier, it takes a lot of money to bring drugs to market. It is true that there are countries out there that are "free riders" with respect to paying these costs, but not every country can do this. Take a look at the 10-K. That shows where the money comes from and where it's going. Come back with a logical and reasoned argument, and not "my feelings are hurt when he said I was wrong".

As far as the claim that Sanders and socialism will fix this, it's been tried. I don't think you'd much care for life under the Khmer Rouge.
 
  • #38
Yes, the doctors charges may vary, if you are in US. Also the insurance cost, deductibles also vary from state to state in the US. If you think that your doctor is charging more than actual cost, then you have to contact the hospital and discuss with them about the medical charges. My uncle is also facing the same problem regarding Medical bill. He contacted the hospital and also his insurance agent from this site also helped him regarding bill cost.
 
  • Like
Likes kyphysics
  • #39
I believe that the provider (Dr,hospital,spec) negotiates with the insurance carrier for reimbursement rates for each plan the carrier has, and uses that and the co-pay to determine if it is financially logical to accept that ins. Recently an ins. carrier wanted a cancer care center to start a value based payment system (which other cancer providers agreed to), and they refused. After a lawsuit, later dropped, the cancer care center ended filing bankruptcy and closing because they lost 38% of their patients just by losing only one insurance carrier.
I spent a week in the hospital due to an infection, and almost lost it when I saw the bill. Insurance paid over $19,000.00 and my co-pay was $500.00 . I'm glad my ins is a benefit fully paid for by my employer.
 

Similar threads

  • General Discussion
Replies
1
Views
997
Replies
13
Views
2K
  • STEM Academic Advising
2
Replies
54
Views
5K
  • General Discussion
Replies
16
Views
3K
Replies
1
Views
492
  • General Discussion
Replies
3
Views
3K
  • STEM Academic Advising
Replies
10
Views
5K
Back
Top