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(Fox News)   According to Medicare auditors, Medicare overpays for virtually everything, and Congress won't let them fix it. If that's not a model for government run health care, submitter doesn't know what is   (foxnews.com) divider line 281
    More: Obvious, medicare, congress, Medicare and Medicaid, Center for Responsive Politics, pilot program, tracking, joint session of Congress, needles  
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1571 clicks; posted to Politics » on 06 Oct 2009 at 1:56 AM (4 years ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2009-10-06 12:16:50 AM
submitter doesn't know what is

You can say that again.
 
2009-10-06 12:19:40 AM
and yet they still beat private insurance in overhead. go figure.
 
2009-10-06 12:20:17 AM
ZOMG GOVERMENT RUN HELTH CARE OBAMA IS GONNA PUT QUANDRISSA FROM THE DMV IN CHARGE OF UR HART SURGERIE!1.1!!!
 
2009-10-06 12:20:41 AM
Hobodeluxe: and yet they still beat private insurance in overhead. go figure.

Um...well...SOCIALIST!
 
2009-10-06 12:22:05 AM
Ender's: submitter doesn't know what is

You can say that again.


If only there was a way for me to express my concurrence to this statement, perhaps using ursine-related photographs.

Alas, I fear I shall never see this come to pass.
 
2009-10-06 12:25:22 AM
I think the main problem is that anytime a politician brings up Medicare, old people get very scared. It's easy to scare old people as old people do not have much else going on except being scared.

So the ability to put any kind of cost-savings in place in Medicare is farked from the get-go, because once you propose it, you get a bunch of seniors showing up at town halls screaming to keep the government hands out of Medicare.
 
2009-10-06 12:28:24 AM
remember who passed medicare part d with some arm twisting that didn't allow for them to negotiate for lower drug prices?
thank you GOP. and now Fox news is using that against Obama.
go figure.

part of the healthcare reform bill is fixing those overpayments by Medicare and medicare advantage. and there's even an amendment for negotiating drug prices. but guess who doesn't want any part of it?
the folks Fox news cheerleads for.
 
2009-10-06 12:45:31 AM
You know, I had a thought. We need to stop this culture that advertises Tylenol to fix all your ills for you. They should get rid of drug ads, both OTC and prescription, just like they did tobacco. All of you aren't sick people. Let's let the healthcare system take care of the ones who are.

Medicare is farked because it's an old bureaucracy and needs to be .....dismantled....when it gets down to paying actual bills so people get care, it's not so much.
But something else needs to come back in it's place. It's not a simple task and that's why it's become a mess, because no one wanted to deal with it.
 
2009-10-06 12:55:50 AM
Hobodeluxe: and yet they still beat private insurance in overhead. go figure.

Except for the part where they actually don't. See this chart. Medicare's per-person administrative costs are significantly higher than private plans.

The argument that Medicare has lower admin costs comes from a deceptive skewing of the statistics. Because Medicare serves an older population, they have higher overall expenditures, which makes the amount of overhead seem less in comparison to the overall expenditures. But if you break it down by per-patient costs, you get a more accurate picture.

Medicare doesn't actually have less overhead, and there's no hard empirical evidence of any administrative cost savings with Medicare.
 
2009-10-06 01:08:19 AM
i584.photobucket.com
 
2009-10-06 01:10:01 AM
WombatControl: The argument that Medicare has lower admin costs comes from a deceptive skewing of the statistics. Because Medicare serves an older population, they have higher overall expenditures, which makes the amount of overhead seem less in comparison to the overall expenditures. But if you break it down by per-patient costs, you get a more accurate picture.


rebuttal
 
2009-10-06 01:13:39 AM
The point is that everyone ELSE's government run healthcare is good so when you are saying ours is going to be shiatty you're really claiming that americans are uniquely capable of ballsing this up because they are dumber than the french.

I for one, will not have that.
 
2009-10-06 01:21:59 AM
WombatControl: Except for the part where they actually don't. See this chart. Medicare's per-person administrative costs are significantly higher than private plans.

The argument that Medicare has lower admin costs comes from a deceptive skewing of the statistics. Because Medicare serves an older population, they have higher overall expenditures, which makes the amount of overhead seem less in comparison to the overall expenditures. But if you break it down by per-patient costs, you get a more accurate picture.


Your argument doesn't prove your idea. I'm not sure what it proves, except health costs are generally more for old people. You in no way have proved that Medicare's overhead is anywhere near the overhead that private insurers demand.
 
2009-10-06 01:41:21 AM
Tigger: I for one, will not have that.

That's always the fun part, one the one hand they scream how we have the greatest medical innovation in the world, which implies smart people, but then cry we can't do what every other industrialized country has done, which implies dumb people.

/that sentence implies an afront to decency and grammar
 
2009-10-06 02:00:47 AM
Hobodeluxe: and yet they still beat private insurance in overhead. go figure.

Er, private insurance has to make a profit and pay employees competitively and stuff. Isn't overhead a good thing in this case?

Plus, I don't think that's actually correct.
 
2009-10-06 02:02:00 AM
Hobodeluxe: and yet they still beat private insurance in overhead. go figure.

Only when you ignore the cost involved in collecting the taxes that pay for it.
 
2009-10-06 02:02:45 AM
So the $500 billion in savings from Medicare waste (over 10 yrs) and the 80 Billion from PhRMA is somehow Congress not letting them fix things?


Wow.

Wait wait, even better:

"Leavitt says the congressional intervention helps explain why many are suspicious of claims that Washington can cut enough waste to actually pay for health care reform,"

So there is so much savings to be had, we're not sure if there will be enough savings to be had!

"Eventually, industry agreed to help pay the cost of terminated contracts that Medicare had already negotiated."


WTF Congress, stop working together with industry for the common good. Jerks.
 
2009-10-06 02:06:16 AM
SurahAhriman: Only when you ignore the cost involved in collecting the taxes that pay for it.

Like taxing the CEO's 24 million/year salary
 
2009-10-06 02:06:42 AM
FTFA: According to their own auditors, Medicare knowingly overpays for almost everything it buys.


B. Hussein Obama says that there's 500 BILLION in waste within medicare and that if the nation will only accept ObamaCareTM then democrats will do something about that waste and it will pay for ObamaCareTM.

But unless we accept ObamaCareTM, the 500 BILLION in waste stays right where it is...
 
2009-10-06 02:06:48 AM
That's funny because just the other day I was debating the public option with a girl and my school. She said her dad is a doctor and he gets underpaid when medicare covers the bill.

Republicans are really attacking this one on all fronts...
 
2009-10-06 02:07:12 AM
stinieroo: I think the main problem is that anytime a politician brings up Medicare, old people get very scared. It's easy to scare old people as old people do not have much else going on except being scared.

So what would happen if everyone had government run health care? Do you honestly think they are more reasonable than the elderly? Where have you been for the last 8 years?

The good news is that I think this would only apply if there were single-payer, which isn't being proposed. But I do think it shows that we need government reform before they start 'reforming' anything else. The reason this happens is because of lobbyists. Until their influence is taken away, nothing Congress does will be good for 'we the people'.
 
2009-10-06 02:08:46 AM
Seriously. Can we just merge the north with Canada, and let the south go on like idiots until they destroy themselves?

If we wait it out and let them have their own country in which they do everything their way, conservatives will eventually drive themselves to extinction through stupid policies and extremely low public health standards, draconian laws, and warlike tendencies.
 
2009-10-06 02:12:29 AM
IStateTheObvious: stinieroo: I think the main problem is that anytime a politician brings up Medicare, old people get very scared. It's easy to scare old people as old people do not have much else going on except being scared.

So what would happen if everyone had government run health care? Do you honestly think they are more reasonable than the elderly? Where have you been for the last 8 years?

The good news is that I think this would only apply if there were single-payer, which isn't being proposed. But I do think it shows that we need government reform before they start 'reforming' anything else. The reason this happens is because of lobbyists. Until their influence is taken away, nothing Congress does will be good for 'we the people'.


The article is actually referring to medical devices, not services. But my brother is a LPN and through him I have met a few doctors. They say the same thing, Medicare vastly underpays compared to private insurance. But they also say they just perform a few unnecessary tests or whatnot to run up the bill, so it works out in the end.
 
2009-10-06 02:13:45 AM
Hobodeluxe: WombatControl: The argument that Medicare has lower admin costs comes from a deceptive skewing of the statistics. Because Medicare serves an older population, they have higher overall expenditures, which makes the amount of overhead seem less in comparison to the overall expenditures. But if you break it down by per-patient costs, you get a more accurate picture.


rebuttal


I didn't see this before I made my earlier post. I am not terribly familiar with Medicare Advantage (specifically how it's administered, reading the wiki now), and your Krugman link isn't terribly informative. Got anything more in-depth?
 
2009-10-06 02:14:06 AM
Part of the problem, to be fair, is the weird government budgeting system, that causes overpayment and waste at every level of government. It works like this:

An agency writes its annual budget for a certain amount, say $5000. The amount is an estimate, based on the previous year. Then, during the year, the agency spends the money.

Suppose the agency finds itself, at the end of the year, with $1000 left over. In a perfect world, the agency would return the $1000 back to the government; and submit a new annual budget of $5000.

However, the way it REALLY works is that, as the year ends, the agency finds itself with $1000 unspent. If it doesn't spend that money (if it puts it back into the government), the government will cut the agency's budget by $1000 for the next year. However, the agency still needs $5000, since that $1000 may be due to unusual factors. So, the agency spends the $1000 on something unnecessary or unbudgeted, so it will come out at zero for the year. (Intaglio version of government budgets, but still)

This is true whether the agency is a local parks & recreation department, or the Department of Defense. Unless or until this problem is addressed, there will continue to be wasteage and padding of budgets, and no money returned to the government, even if there is any.
 
2009-10-06 02:14:12 AM
Jim_Callahan: Hobodeluxe: and yet they still beat private insurance in overhead. go figure.

Er, private insurance has to make a profit and pay employees competitively and stuff. Isn't overhead a good thing in this case?

Plus, I don't think that's actually correct.


Profit isn't usually counted as 'overhead.' Usually the opposite.

Also, private health insurance companies in other countries have overhead closer to Medicare's (3-10%)

And yes, it's actually correct. These companies are sucking up 25-30% employing actuarial staffs and paying CEOs stock options.

In what way is any of that a good thing? What value does the consumer see out of that?
 
2009-10-06 02:14:27 AM
Seriously Gato Negro,

Were you abused by Liberals as a child?
 
2009-10-06 02:16:06 AM
And this has all happened in just the past seven months? Remarkable.

/doesn't explain my $10 Tylenol tablet last time I was in the hospital.
 
2009-10-06 02:16:37 AM
IStateTheObvious: stinieroo: I think the main problem is that anytime a politician brings up Medicare, old people get very scared. It's easy to scare old people as old people do not have much else going on except being scared.

So what would happen if everyone had government run health care? Do you honestly think they are more reasonable than the elderly? Where have you been for the last 8 years?

The good news is that I think this would only apply if there were single-payer, which isn't being proposed. But I do think it shows that we need government reform before they start 'reforming' anything else. The reason this happens is because of lobbyists. Until their influence is taken away, nothing Congress does will be good for 'we the people'.


Single payer changes the stakes of the entirety of our health care system. We're not getting single payer unfortunately so the issue of everyone on government-provided insurance is moot. I think it would provide the same or better coverage at lower rates, but it's way too socialist for us. (eyes rolling)

The biggest issues is our under-educated population and a population that sees things that are new as the devil incarnate. I feel fortunate to have grown up during a time of constant, measurable innovation. New things delight me. I am in a constant state of learning. It is awesome. Don't get off my lawn.
 
2009-10-06 02:17:20 AM
"$82 for a diabetic supply kit, instead of a $47 price on the Web."
"$1,825 for a hospital bed, compared to an Internet price of $1,071."


No source is even given. For all we know the source for these internet and web prices are ebay or craig's list. Maybe our government should instruct its employees to go to Google Shopping whenever they buy anything. What is the minimum seller rating the government should buy from, republicans?
 
2009-10-06 02:18:40 AM
Seriously Gato Negro,

Were you abused by Liberals as a child?


Raped by an HIV+ liberal polar bear

cross thread comment.
 
2009-10-06 02:19:39 AM
THIS:The article is actually referring to medical devices, not services. But my brother is a LPN and through him I have met a few doctors. They say the same thing, Medicare vastly underpays compared to private insurance. But they also say they just perform a few unnecessary tests or whatnot to run up the bill, so it works out in the end.

Was a response to THIS:

T-Luv: That's funny because just the other day I was debating the public option with a girl and my school. She said her dad is a doctor and he gets underpaid when medicare covers the bill.

Republicans are really attacking this one on all fronts...

Musta hit the wrong button....
 
2009-10-06 02:20:03 AM
WombatControl: Hobodeluxe: and yet they still beat private insurance in overhead. go figure.

Except for the part where they actually don't. See this chart. Medicare's per-person administrative costs are significantly higher than private plans.

The argument that Medicare has lower admin costs comes from a deceptive skewing of the statistics. Because Medicare serves an older population, they have higher overall expenditures, which makes the amount of overhead seem less in comparison to the overall expenditures. But if you break it down by per-patient costs, you get a more accurate picture.

Medicare doesn't actually have less overhead, and there's no hard empirical evidence of any administrative cost savings with Medicare.


lh6.ggpht.com
The graph you provided disproves your point.
 
2009-10-06 02:20:15 AM
WombatControl: Hobodeluxe: and yet they still beat private insurance in overhead. go figure.

Except for the part where they actually don't. See this chart. Medicare's per-person administrative costs are significantly higher than private plans.

The argument that Medicare has lower admin costs comes from a deceptive skewing of the statistics. Because Medicare serves an older population, they have higher overall expenditures, which makes the amount of overhead seem less in comparison to the overall expenditures. But if you break it down by per-patient costs, you get a more accurate picture.

Medicare doesn't actually have less overhead, and there's no hard empirical evidence of any administrative cost savings with Medicare.


So a graph from the Heritage Foundation and an article that links to a blog post that links to more blog posts is your evidence of this?
 
2009-10-06 02:20:17 AM
cretinbob: You know, I had a thought. We need to stop this culture that advertises Tylenol to fix all your ills for you. They should get rid of drug ads, both OTC and prescription, just like they did tobacco. All of you aren't sick people. Let's let the healthcare system take care of the ones who are.

Medicare is farked because it's an old bureaucracy and needs to be .....dismantled....when it gets down to paying actual bills so people get care, it's not so much.
But something else needs to come back in it's place. It's not a simple task and that's why it's become a mess, because no one wanted to deal with it.


So much this.

Gato Negro... wtf. I agree with talan123, you were abused by the liberals, weren't you... sometimes I never understand your stance on anything. By sometimes, I mean all the time.
 
2009-10-06 02:20:23 AM
Gyrfalcon: Part of the problem, to be fair, is the weird government budgeting system...If it doesn't spend that money (if it puts it back into the government), the government will cut the agency's budget by $1000 for the next year...

This is no different from private industry and about as groundbreaking as talking about peanuts on airplanes.
 
2009-10-06 02:20:55 AM
talan123: Seriously Gato Negro, Were you abused by Liberals as a child?


That's funny. But what's funnier is that liberals in congress have 'suddenly' found 500 BILLION in medicare waste and will reclaim every penny of it to pay for ObamaCareTM - so that ObamaCareTM won't cost us one single dime.


/ya' think America's buyin' it...?
 
2009-10-06 02:21:03 AM
talan123: Seriously Gato Negro,

Were you abused by Liberals as a child?


The odds that he's not someones alt trolling are vanishingly small.
 
2009-10-06 02:21:27 AM
If that's not a model for government run health care, submitter doesn't know what is

Read up on Japanese healthcare, tardmitter.
 
2009-10-06 02:24:50 AM
SurahAhriman: The odds that he's not someones alt trolling are vanishingly small.

go to freerepublic and you'll see a thousand people posting what he posts
 
2009-10-06 02:25:26 AM
What bugs me is we've been seeing polls that indicate elderly people (65 or older) are overwhelmingly opposed to a public health care system. They enjoy their government-funded health care, but they don't want anyone else to have it.

Well, I'm pissed off enough over the matter that I will suggest that it's MORE beneficial to the nation to subsidize health care to young people who can work and provide a benefit to the US economy, rather than the elderly, who do nothing but sit at home watching TV and make the occasional doctor/hospital visit.

Case in point, my own grandmother. She's 80 years old, doesn't do shiat besides watching TV and sleeping. She gets a social security check every month and free health care. I'm 36 years old and I bust my ass to try to make a few bucks as a freelance computer programmer. I get no health insurance (unless I want to pay $400 a month for it) and the IRS hammers me for a 15% self-employment tax. 15 farking percent. That means if you earn $20,000, which is just barely above the level of poverty, you owe the IRS $3,000. And you still don't get health care. I can't even get the pills for my blood pressure sometimes because in order to get my prescription renewed I have to pay well over $100 for a visit with the doctor. It's farking insane.

Provide health care to the people who are directly influencing your economy! How farking hard is that to understand?
 
2009-10-06 02:26:44 AM
matovichj: Gato Negro... wtf. I agree with talan123, you were abused by the liberals, weren't you... sometimes I never understand your stance on anything. By sometimes, I mean all the time.


So you can't understand that democrats are lying when they claim that they've 'suddenly' found 500 BILLION in medicare waste that will pay for ObamaCareTM if we will only welcome ObamaCareTM into our lives?

If that's hard for you to understand, then why do the majority of Americans understand it?
 
2009-10-06 02:27:36 AM
violent apathy: *graph*

The graph you provided disproves your point.


Actually, read the top of that graph. It says that per patient administrative costs are slightly higher under Medicare, but since per patient spending is much higher under Medicare, the percentage is lower.
 
2009-10-06 02:27:43 AM
How farking stupid is this? Medicare overpays for everything? I worked at a medical equipment company associated with a hospital for awhile and I am calling bullshiat. And wasn't the last complaint that Medicare doesn't pay enough for doctors to live? farking idiots.
 
2009-10-06 02:28:42 AM
IStateTheObvious: IStateTheObvious: stinieroo: I think the main problem is that anytime a politician brings up Medicare, old people get very scared. It's easy to scare old people as old people do not have much else going on except being scared.

So what would happen if everyone had government run health care? Do you honestly think they are more reasonable than the elderly? Where have you been for the last 8 years?

The good news is that I think this would only apply if there were single-payer, which isn't being proposed. But I do think it shows that we need government reform before they start 'reforming' anything else. The reason this happens is because of lobbyists. Until their influence is taken away, nothing Congress does will be good for 'we the people'.

The article is actually referring to medical devices, not services. But my brother is a LPN and through him I have met a few doctors. They say the same thing, Medicare vastly underpays compared to private insurance. But they also say they just perform a few unnecessary tests or whatnot to run up the bill, so it works out in the end.


The anesthesiologists I've spoken to about Medicare have all said that it pays out only 10-20% of what private insurance does. Unluckily for them, they don't bring in their own patients, so making up the difference can mean a LOT of extra work.
 
2009-10-06 02:28:47 AM
IStateTheObvious: IStateTheObvious: stinieroo: I think the main problem is that anytime a politician brings up Medicare, old people get very scared. It's easy to scare old people as old people do not have much else going on except being scared.

So what would happen if everyone had government run health care? Do you honestly think they are more reasonable than the elderly? Where have you been for the last 8 years?

The good news is that I think this would only apply if there were single-payer, which isn't being proposed. But I do think it shows that we need government reform before they start 'reforming' anything else. The reason this happens is because of lobbyists. Until their influence is taken away, nothing Congress does will be good for 'we the people'.

The article is actually referring to medical devices, not services. But my brother is a LPN and through him I have met a few doctors. They say the same thing, Medicare vastly underpays compared to private insurance. But they also say they just perform a few unnecessary tests or whatnot to run up the bill, so it works out in the end.


Well that doesn't make any sense.

Medicare does pay less to providers, on average, than private insurance. However, ordering more tests would not cause an increase in reimbursement to the physician... unless he owned the MRI machine or something like that (which is certainly not the norm).
 
2009-10-06 02:28:50 AM
Gyrfalcon: Part of the problem, to be fair, is the weird government budgeting system, that causes overpayment and waste at every level of government. It works like this:

An agency writes its annual budget for a certain amount, say $5000. The amount is an estimate, based on the previous year. Then, during the year, the agency spends the money.

Suppose the agency finds itself, at the end of the year, with $1000 left over. In a perfect world, the agency would return the $1000 back to the government; and submit a new annual budget of $5000.

However, the way it REALLY works is that, as the year ends, the agency finds itself with $1000 unspent. If it doesn't spend that money (if it puts it back into the government), the government will cut the agency's budget by $1000 for the next year. However, the agency still needs $5000, since that $1000 may be due to unusual factors. So, the agency spends the $1000 on something unnecessary or unbudgeted, so it will come out at zero for the year. (Intaglio version of government budgets, but still)

This is true whether the agency is a local parks & recreation department, or the Department of Defense. Unless or until this problem is addressed, there will continue to be wasteage and padding of budgets, and no money returned to the government, even if there is any.


This is true of the private sector too though.

Middle management 101. Capture the biggest budget you can no matter what.
 
2009-10-06 02:30:25 AM
WhyteRaven74: SurahAhriman: The odds that he's not someones alt trolling are vanishingly small.

go to freerepublic and you'll see a thousand people posting what he posts


Oh, I know. But that sort of nonsense only holds up in echo chambers. People of that ilk tend to just get angry when contradicted. I'd be astounded if any freeper could genuinely deal with fark for more than a day or two. I've been lurking fark for over half a decade at this point, and since the last election, I can count the number of people (who post frequently) I'm convinced are actually conservatives on two hands.
 
2009-10-06 02:31:32 AM
Sabyen91: How farking stupid is this? Medicare overpays for everything? I worked at a medical equipment company associated with a hospital for awhile and I am calling bullshiat. And wasn't the last complaint that Medicare doesn't pay enough for doctors to live? farking idiots.

The under-payment arguments usually attribute it to Medicaid.
 
2009-10-06 02:31:33 AM
reimanr06: IStateTheObvious: IStateTheObvious: stinieroo: I think the main problem is that anytime a politician brings up Medicare, old people get very scared. It's easy to scare old people as old people do not have much else going on except being scared.

So what would happen if everyone had government run health care? Do you honestly think they are more reasonable than the elderly? Where have you been for the last 8 years?

The good news is that I think this would only apply if there were single-payer, which isn't being proposed. But I do think it shows that we need government reform before they start 'reforming' anything else. The reason this happens is because of lobbyists. Until their influence is taken away, nothing Congress does will be good for 'we the people'.

The article is actually referring to medical devices, not services. But my brother is a LPN and through him I have met a few doctors. They say the same thing, Medicare vastly underpays compared to private insurance. But they also say they just perform a few unnecessary tests or whatnot to run up the bill, so it works out in the end.

The anesthesiologists I've spoken to about Medicare have all said that it pays out only 10-20% of what private insurance does. Unluckily for them, they don't bring in their own patients, so making up the difference can mean a LOT of extra work.


It is about 80% of private for CPAPs. This is a stupid argument. Medicare never pays full price.
 
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