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  • ot ,making a difference

    I am not an extremist but enough is enough. if the oil companies can raise their prices as they see fit and the car manufactures can regulate what you can buy then all of us in the tool and machining world ought to do the same. iwould like to see either one of those industries do something without the help of our industry.Yeah they can send it overseas but if we would band together and shutdown for a week or two they would sit up and take notice. I have not seen china do a two day turnaround yet.

  • #2
    CAUTION--Rant time.

    What the oil and auto industires are doing to us pales in comparison with what the medical-legal-insurance industry is doing.

    Insurance costs more and more, but covers less and less of the outrageous bills.

    The threat of malpractice suits has supposedly brought about the practice of defensive medicine. Defensive medicine is the biggest boon to the medical industry since widespread insurance made it possible to charge both you and the insurance company for the same service. Now they get to do that on things they know you don't need, too.

    You're effectively stopped from complaining about the bills. Who wants to risk pi**ing off the guy who might be saving your life some day?

    They often submit bills for way more than they know the insurance will pay, knowing full well the agreement with the insurance that makes them a "preferred provider" will knock off a substantial portion, and you'll think the insurance company is doing you a favor. But each time they do that, it drives up the "reasonable and customary" charge for the service, which forces the insurance to up the amount they pay and increase your premiums.

    The fees for services have nothing to do with the cost of providing those services. They just want to be able to check off one more block on the billing list.

    The greed of the majority of doctors, insurance executives, and others in the upper echelon of the industry is truly appalling.

    And now the politicians are going to get involved and make the situation even worse.

    Rant over.

    Any products mentioned in my posts have been endorsed by their manufacturer.


    • #3
      I think in The USA since there is no free health service it might be a good idea to offer a service to people at a a much reduced rate if they sign a waiver to say the will not sue in the event of something going wrong.
      This would open up medicine to a group who at the moment have to think hard before having treatment or not being able to at all.
      I think most doctors will try at all times to do a good job, and failures will from time to time happen this is inevitable.
      So why not? The cost has become too expensive for some to afford simply because of the high insurance so this makes sense to me Alistair
      Please excuse my typing as I have a form of parkinsons disease


      • #4
        No free health care in the US?

        Obviously I have missed something, when I have to wait in the emergency room while people have their colds and bruises fixed and everything else that should have been done at a doctors office. They can't turn them away, and they aren't going to pay, so the price of running a hospital just keeps going up.
        The doctor's office doesn'have to see them without payment or insurance, but a hospital can't turn them away.
        Sometimes I think I would be better off if I didn't work so hard.
        David from jax
        A serious accident is one that money can't fix.


        • #5
          Just to set the record straight about doctors offices and bill payments, my wife is a nurse in a walk in clinic that is owned and run by a major group of hospitals, they have (2) LPN's,(2) Nurse practitioner's and 1 Doctor, they see more than 60 patients in a 9 1/2 hour day, 5 days a week and probably more than half of them never pay more than $5-$15 if they pay at all and more than half of them go home with free samples to keep them from buying prescription drugs, the drug companies are another story that is riddled with just as many problems, while I do believe that health care in this country is in severe trouble and the insurance companies and hospital have severe billing practices alot of it is government regulations that are completely rediculous and exceptionally wasteful, the medical industry has problems all over it and most of it is management and regulations and ambulance chasing lawyers along with drug companies charging rediculous prices like they do.
          The oil companies and refineries are another story altogether.


          • #6
            Roger's quote:"And now the politicians are going to get involved and make the situation even worse." Where have you been the last thirty years? The meddling politicians is what has gotten us to this point where the medical industry is all screwed up. They just could not let the free-market alone because they know what is good for us, HA!

            Neil Peters
            Neil Peters

            When on the hunt, a broken part is better than no part at all.


            • #7
              All right...finally some good off topic!

              I've been thinking about this lately...Doctor's have to make enough to cover malpractice insurance, which raises the cost past the ability of many individuals to pay; making the only portal to care via an insurance company...and now Kerry (if elected) says he'll pioneer tax cuts for small business to apply to insurance coverage a defacto handout to insurance companies.

              So the Insurance companies have to charge huge outrageous premiums to cover the huge outrageous premiuums that the Doctors are paying?

              Life is funny sometimes.

              [This message has been edited by abn (edited 05-12-2004).]

              [This message has been edited by abn (edited 05-12-2004).]


              • #8
                I hate doctors.



                • #9
                  My cousin is a dortor,good one too,he has been in practice for six years now,being a doctor on call is not easy at all,I feel for him.Yes he does make more money than I do,but then again I don't go to work in the morning with the prospect of having to check out somebodies hemmoroids either.

                  He has never had a malpractice suit nor has he ever been repremanded,but because of the lawyers his insurance jumped from $28,000 per year to over $120,000!Like he told me,he never did anything wrong he just woke up one morning and had $92,000 stolen.

                  As far as free healthcare yes we do have it and yes everybody does use it,everybody from Mexico to Canada and they seldom ever pay anything.One idiot we had working for us managed to grind a finger off in a machine while on drugs,he went to the hospital,then surgery and then a week in the hospital,bill was $25,000 he never paid one thin dime,but everybody else did.

                  Insurance companies have created overbilling by doctors by refusing to pay on average 10% of the bill.

                  My boss is a retired fellow who is normally sane but insists we should have social medicine becuase its "free"no not free at all,it is still paid for by the people in society who actually work for a living,nothing is free.

                  He can't understand why hospitals and doctors charge what they do,I tell him its simple,if people came into our shop,had me do the work,took half of everything off the shelf and walked out without paying one of two things would happen,we would A:Go out of business or B:have to raise the price on everyone else to cover them.

                  I also lay most of the blame on lawyers and peoples families,grandpa was a 95 yearold alcholic chain smoker will a bad case of tb and syphillis,but if that doctor had just done this or than he might still be alive today and because he's gone we deserve money.And these liberal arse judges give it to them.

                  Add to that everytime somebody walks into the ER overdosed on drugs or shot up in a gang war we the people get stuck with the bill,I am sorry folks,but maybe we should start asking why they are there when they show up.
                  I just need one more tool,just one!


                  • #10
                    Let's not forget the pharmaceutical ripoff. Doctor gives me a presciption to be filled, costs $89, and has a few milligrams of active ingredient. Not including the bottle it was in I calculated the cost of the active ingredient to be over $8 million a pound. Is there something wrong here??? Needless to say I didn't get it filled.



                    • #11
                      Correction, that was supposed to be micrograms not milligrams.



                      • #12
                        I bought some off the shelf allergy medication yesterday. The name brand was $22.95 for 36 tabs. Right next to it was a generic exact equivalent, precisely the same ingredients for $12 per 36. Yes, we are being ripped off. Fortunately, Canada has much better regulations concerning the Generic equivalents.

                        [This message has been edited by Evan (edited 05-12-2004).]
                        Free software for calculating bolt circles and similar: Click Here


                        • #13
                          Not that I agree with the high prices, but while the actual drugs themselves may only cost pennies to manufacture, the research and developement that makes those drugs possible costs billions of dollars. Combine that with a small market and you have to cover your costs somehow.

                          Now insurance is another matter entirely. They really are con artists.

                          As for oil, if it weren't for OPEC and the whole situation in the middle east I don't think the problem would be this bad. I can't wait for the day when fuel cells are widespread and all those greedy oil tycoons go out of business.


                          • #14
                            Andrew you and I will never see fuel cells widespread in our life time, it is an awesome concept, but if I invented one tommorrow that could be prodeced for several 1000 dollars for a fuel cell to power your home and car and it had a unit with it to extract hydrogen from water to run the fuel cell I would be shot and killed within 48 hours of making it public or the government would regulate me out of existence before I ever got started. The gas and auto companies don't have a problem with it so long as there stock holders profits never drop and they make there money but nobody else is going to produce it ever.


                            • #15
                              My day job is practicing medicine. I am a trained orthopaedic surgeon with 40 years of practice experience. I don't do surgery any more, but I still see patients.

                              Here are some things you might find interesting:

                              In today's prices, my education represents an investment of $280,000 US. Fortunately, my parents were able to help me in the 1960s when I was in school.

                              After graduation I did 4 years of specialty training plus 2 years active duty with the Air Force. My wages during training were less than I was paid in the Air Force.

                              I started practice as a surgeon in 1975 for $45,000 a year. In my best year (1992) I earned $225,000, which was a fluke really, because of changes in the system I worked for. In 1993 I thought I'd give private practice a try, so I moved from Wisconsin to Ohio, worked harder and made less. In fact, I've earned less in each year since 1992 than I did the year before. When you look at it in constant dollar terms, it's a lot less.

                              I had to quit operating in 1995 because of back problems. I was unable to work for most of the next 3 years due to surgery, etc. I ate the cost of this, because I had no disability insurance. Since I changed jobs at age 55, it was much too expensive for me.

                              Now I work for the Cleveland Clinic seeing office patients every day. I don't know what they pay for my insurance, but if I had to buy malpractice insurance as an operating surgeon today it would cost me $135,000 cash in advance in Ohio. I work 8 hours a day and make less than $100,000 per year, but I don't have to go to the Emergency rooms or the hospitals.

                              During most of my surgical career I worked 10 to 12 hours a day routinely, and spent at least one night a week and one weekend a month in the Emergency room. My family didn't like it much, and neither of my kids even considered doing what I did. For about 20 years I made pretty good money, and saved as much of it as I could. A chunk of that went to support us when I was sick, and the rest of it is limping along in my retirement fund. I make a little more than I need right now, so I can buy some tools now and then. I have a mortgage like most other people, but the car and the kid's educations are paid for.

                              In my group at the Cleveland Clinic we collect about 30 cents on each dollar billed. It is true that our posted prices are outrageous, but this is mostly the result of the bizarre way the insurance companies negotiate payment for health care. The system requires a discount from the so-called "usual and customary fee", which is a price that no one ever pays except the Arab sheiks because we give discounts for cash payment to those who pay their own way and write off the costs of those who cannot pay. We never turn anyone away.

                              I'm 61 now and plan to work until I'm 67, unless the business changes and they lay me off. I'm a contract employee; I get no benefits and have no job security.

                              Medicine has been a good life overall, but it hasn't made me rich and it has been a lot of stress. Most of my friends in medicine have had experiences like mine, but yes, we do know a few guys who by hook or crook have made themselves rich. But they are the exception, not the rule.

                              American health care as a system is so badly flawed that we should junk it all and start over, for my money, and it should be a single payor system with the government as the payor of last resort. The care would be twice as good and the cost about 1/4 as much. Right now about 40% of your health care dollar goes to regulatory and financial costs -- deciding who is covered and who isn't. It's silly, since we end up taking care of them either way. I could go on for hours about this stuff, but you get the idea.

                              Paul Treuhaft
                              Paul Treuhaft