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(Talking Points Memo)   Healthcare spending may have slowed down permanently. Very nice   (tpmdc.talkingpointsmemo.com ) divider line 35
    More: Spiffy, Health Affairs, logical implications, out-of-pocket costs, Medicare and Medicaid, health cares, deficits  
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1326 clicks; posted to Politics » on 08 May 2013 at 8:35 AM (2 years ago)   |   Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2013-05-08 08:39:22 AM  
What, have people stopped getting sick and dying? Don't expect any reduction in healthcare costs to be a lasting trend.
 
2013-05-08 08:41:37 AM  

logic523: What, have people stopped getting sick and dying? Don't expect any reduction in healthcare costs to be a lasting trend.


I think it's more likely they simply stopped going to the doctor.
 
2013-05-08 08:44:09 AM  
But but..Obamacare was supposed to bankrupt the country and cause healthcare costs so spiral out of control!!!!  At least that is what I was told by the right wing noise machine...
 
2013-05-08 08:45:12 AM  
"If they're right, and the trend continues ..."  we can write all kinds of happy thoughts.
 
2013-05-08 08:46:32 AM  
FTA: Less generous benefits, resulting in higher out-of-pocket costs, accounted for 20 percent of it. Faced with less generous coverage and less disposable income, people consumed fewer health services.

I don't think it counts as a good thing that people are avoiding treatment because of the cost. That tends to end badly.
 
2013-05-08 08:47:47 AM  
Eventually, the Old People Bubble will eventually pop and many of those cushy healthcare and related jobs will be lost.
 
2013-05-08 08:48:14 AM  
buttcoin.org
 
2013-05-08 08:51:22 AM  
America: where we fight to allow our captains of capitalism to deny us coverage and hope we die quickly so they can make an extra buck.
 
2013-05-08 08:53:31 AM  
WE NEED TO SPEND MOAR AND WE NEED TO DO IT NOW!!!!!
 
2013-05-08 08:54:16 AM  
workers can expect higher wages


i781.photobucket.com
 
2013-05-08 08:54:18 AM  
Bending the cost curve?
 
2013-05-08 08:55:05 AM  
That's what is supposed to happen when you institute Death Panels.
 
2013-05-08 08:56:04 AM  
Let's get this out of the way, "But the good news is that spending growth also slowed among those whose health benefits haven't changed, including Medicare patients. And that suggests a more enduring trend."

There, now stop acting like babies./just kidding, continue.
 
2013-05-08 08:57:48 AM  
"The study by Harvard researchers, featured in the latest edition of Health Affairs, finds, like all studies of this nature, that the recession and weak economy contributed significantly to the spending growth slowdown."

YOU-DONT-SAY.jpg

When there's an economic upturn, the GOP position is, "this program will threaten the continued expansion of the economy!" and when there's an economic downturn, the GOP position is, "this program will slow economic recovery!"

Unless it's M1 tanks that the Pentagon doesn't want, then it's "Keep America WHARGARRBL."
 
2013-05-08 09:04:38 AM  

Kibbler: "The study by Harvard researchers, featured in the latest edition of Health Affairs, finds, like all studies of this nature, that the recession and weak economy contributed significantly to the spending growth slowdown."

YOU-DONT-SAY.jpg

When there's an economic upturn, the GOP position is, "this program will threaten the continued expansion of the economy!" and when there's an economic downturn, the GOP position is, "this program will slow economic recovery!"

Unless it's M1 tanks that the Pentagon doesn't want, then it's "Keep America WHARGARRBL."


When there's an economic upturn the DEM position is "We have tons of money!  Let's overspend and not pay back what we owe!" and when there's an economic downturn the DEM position is "We can't stop spending all this money or pay back what we owe because it'll hurt the economy!"

See how easy that is?
 
2013-05-08 09:07:04 AM  

cabbyman: When there's an economic upturn the DEM position is "We have tons of money!  Let's overspend and not pay back what we owe!"


factcheck.org
 
2013-05-08 09:08:08 AM  

cabbyman: Kibbler: "The study by Harvard researchers, featured in the latest edition of Health Affairs, finds, like all studies of this nature, that the recession and weak economy contributed significantly to the spending growth slowdown."

YOU-DONT-SAY.jpg

When there's an economic upturn, the GOP position is, "this program will threaten the continued expansion of the economy!" and when there's an economic downturn, the GOP position is, "this program will slow economic recovery!"

Unless it's M1 tanks that the Pentagon doesn't want, then it's "Keep America WHARGARRBL."

When there's an economic upturn the DEM position is "We have tons of money!  Let's overspend and not pay back what we owe!" and when there's an economic downturn the DEM position is "We can't stop spending all this money or pay back what we owe because it'll hurt the economy!"

See how easy that is?


Unless it's M1 tanks that the Pentagon doesn't want, then it's "Keep America WHARGARRBL."

See how easy that is?
 
2013-05-08 09:09:42 AM  
And I've just finished my milk:
I don't think it counts as a good thing that people are avoiding treatment because of the cost. That tends to end badly.

I can spend 25$ on a copay and then more on medication, or I can spend less than 25$ on medication which, when paired with rest, some high-potency juices, and lots of water, will do the exact same thing.

/live like you're broke, when you finally get there, you'll be used to it.
 
2013-05-08 09:28:18 AM  

Kristoph57: And I've just finished my milk:
I don't think it counts as a good thing that people are avoiding treatment because of the cost. That tends to end badly.

I can spend 25$ on a copay and then more on medication, or I can spend less than 25$ on medication which, when paired with rest, some high-potency juices, and lots of water, will do the exact same thing.

/live like you're broke, when you finally get there, you'll be used to it.


That's all well and good for cases of the sniffles or a cough. If you have a chronic condition, or you start coughing up blood, or you break a bone, or your knees finally give out, or you're farking dying of old age, those options aren't really valid (unless you've been a triage medic in an earlier life). The bad news for your plan is that the bulk (probably 3/4, but I don't have numbers) of medical costs are spent on those kinds of things, and fully 40% of medical costs are spent in the last year of someone's life. Juice, rest and water won't help that.

// well, it may help you die quicker, which will keep costs down (and if we zero out that 40%...), but it won't help you get any healthier
 
2013-05-08 09:33:57 AM  
If America joined reality healthcare spending would collapse.
 
2013-05-08 09:44:57 AM  
Thanks, Obama!
 
2013-05-08 09:50:35 AM  
Philip Francis Queeg: cabbyman: When there's an economic upturn the DEM position is "We have tons of money!  Let's overspend and not pay back what we owe!"

[factcheck.org image 483x315]


OHSNAP.JPG
 
2013-05-08 09:53:45 AM  
Well, doctors can always volunteer for the armed forces.  We always need to patch up broken soldiers. 

...that is all....
 
2013-05-08 09:58:27 AM  
This is old news. Morgan Housel has been writing about this on Motley Fool for the better part of a year.
 
2013-05-08 10:46:27 AM  
Costs went up really quickly for a while, we're not sure why.

Now they're not going up so much, we're not sure why.

So let's make some long-term projections that assumes current trends will continue.

Sounds legit.
 
2013-05-08 11:01:48 AM  

cabbyman: Kibbler: "The study by Harvard researchers, featured in the latest edition of Health Affairs, finds, like all studies of this nature, that the recession and weak economy contributed significantly to the spending growth slowdown."

YOU-DONT-SAY.jpg

When there's an economic upturn, the GOP position is, "this program will threaten the continued expansion of the economy!" and when there's an economic downturn, the GOP position is, "this program will slow economic recovery!"

Unless it's M1 tanks that the Pentagon doesn't want, then it's "Keep America WHARGARRBL."

When there's an economic upturn the DEM position is "We have tons of money!  Let's overspend and not pay back what we owe!" and when there's an economic downturn the DEM position is "We can't stop spending all this money or pay back what we owe because it'll hurt the economy!"

See how easy that is?


History would disagree with you.  FDR, one of the bigger downturn spenders, cut back spending once the economy started to recover - with measurable results to the growth of the GDP due to the necessary scaling back of government spending.  Clinton similarly reduced spending to move us toward a balanced budget.

Reagan and Bush, on the other hand, did not move us toward a balanced budget but instead exploded the deficit.
 
2013-05-08 11:10:30 AM  

EighthDay: cabbyman: Kibbler: "The study by Harvard researchers, featured in the latest edition of Health Affairs, finds, like all studies of this nature, that the recession and weak economy contributed significantly to the spending growth slowdown."

YOU-DONT-SAY.jpg

When there's an economic upturn, the GOP position is, "this program will threaten the continued expansion of the economy!" and when there's an economic downturn, the GOP position is, "this program will slow economic recovery!"

Unless it's M1 tanks that the Pentagon doesn't want, then it's "Keep America WHARGARRBL."

When there's an economic upturn the DEM position is "We have tons of money!  Let's overspend and not pay back what we owe!" and when there's an economic downturn the DEM position is "We can't stop spending all this money or pay back what we owe because it'll hurt the economy!"

See how easy that is?

History would disagree with you.  FDR, one of the bigger downturn spenders, cut back spending once the economy started to recover - with measurable results to the growth of the GDP due to the necessary scaling back of government spending.  Clinton similarly reduced spending to move us toward a balanced budget.

Reagan and Bush, on the other hand, did not move us toward a balanced budget but instead exploded the deficit.


Exactly.  The party of fiscal responsibility is the one that cuts revenue and boosts spending for the DoD, and then blames it on the other party.  It's like someone who douses your home in gasoline and throws a match on it, and then says, "You had dirty rags in the garage!  Irresponsible!  The only solution is to cut taxes and funding for the fire department, and build more tanks!"
 
2013-05-08 11:32:22 AM  
This is happening both within and without government healthcare (Medicare and Medicaid).  It is much bigger than a political issue.

My best guess is that the current trend in medical research is showing that the downside to certain procedures is greater than previously thought.  I see old people being told they're not healthy enough for a given surgery, or that even if they are, it's not likely to improve their lives long-term.  I suspect these types of prognoses were not given as often 10 years ago.
 
2013-05-08 12:23:02 PM  

And I've just finished my milk: FTA: Less generous benefits, resulting in higher out-of-pocket costs, accounted for 20 percent of it. Faced with less generous coverage and less disposable income, people consumed fewer health services.

I don't think it counts as a good thing that people are avoiding treatment because of the cost. That tends to end badly.


Depends whether the services were actually needed and justified their cost.

There's a whole lot of pure fluff that has zero to negative benefit on the patient outcome that gets done just because insurance will pay for it.
 
2013-05-08 12:26:21 PM  

GentDirkly: This is happening both within and without government healthcare (Medicare and Medicaid).  It is much bigger than a political issue.

My best guess is that the current trend in medical research is showing that the downside to certain procedures is greater than previously thought.  I see old people being told they're not healthy enough for a given surgery, or that even if they are, it's not likely to improve their lives long-term.  I suspect these types of prognoses were not given as often 10 years ago.


I hear you using long sentences, but the only words I can make out are "DEATH PANELS"
 
2013-05-08 12:55:20 PM  

BMFPitt: And I've just finished my milk: FTA: Less generous benefits, resulting in higher out-of-pocket costs, accounted for 20 percent of it. Faced with less generous coverage and less disposable income, people consumed fewer health services.

I don't think it counts as a good thing that people are avoiding treatment because of the cost. That tends to end badly.

Depends whether the services were actually needed and justified their cost.

There's a whole lot of pure fluff that has zero to negative benefit on the patient outcome that gets done just because insurance will pay for it.


because this business model is not helping the most people, is extracting the most money from those with the best insurance policies.

In Canada, doctors have to care/help more people to make more money.
 
2013-05-08 01:13:39 PM  

mrshowrules: BMFPitt: And I've just finished my milk: FTA: Less generous benefits, resulting in higher out-of-pocket costs, accounted for 20 percent of it. Faced with less generous coverage and less disposable income, people consumed fewer health services.

I don't think it counts as a good thing that people are avoiding treatment because of the cost. That tends to end badly.

Depends whether the services were actually needed and justified their cost.

There's a whole lot of pure fluff that has zero to negative benefit on the patient outcome that gets done just because insurance will pay for it.

because this business model is not helping the most people, is extracting the most money from those with the best insurance policies.

In Canada, doctors have to care/help more people to make more money.


Canadian doctors are paid the same way American doctors are.  They get money for doing things, regardless of whether those things benefit the patient (unless they go crazy about it and get audited.)  The only difference is that the sole insurance company is the government.
 
2013-05-08 01:17:44 PM  

BMFPitt: mrshowrules: BMFPitt: And I've just finished my milk: FTA: Less generous benefits, resulting in higher out-of-pocket costs, accounted for 20 percent of it. Faced with less generous coverage and less disposable income, people consumed fewer health services.

I don't think it counts as a good thing that people are avoiding treatment because of the cost. That tends to end badly.

Depends whether the services were actually needed and justified their cost.

There's a whole lot of pure fluff that has zero to negative benefit on the patient outcome that gets done just because insurance will pay for it.

because this business model is not helping the most people, is extracting the most money from those with the best insurance policies.

In Canada, doctors have to care/help more people to make more money.

Canadian doctors are paid the same way American doctors are.  They get money for doing things, regardless of whether those things benefit the patient (unless they go crazy about it and get audited.)  The only difference is that the sole insurance company is the government.


It is easier for a Canadian doctor to perform 3 tests on 3 patients than it is for a US doctor to perform 3 tests on one patient.  Sure Canadian doctors can perform unnecessary even wasteful testing but the path of least resistance is treating more patients with only necessary tests.
 
2013-05-08 01:33:58 PM  
Docs in the US don't usually profit from doing more tests.  The offsite testing facility is the one that typically profits.  Docs in the US order more tests not due to a profit motive, but because they are afraid of being sued.  The amount of "defensive" testing may go down as the medical community comes to more agreement about which tests are called for in which situations, and as the punitive damages typically awarded when things go wrong become more predictable.  If all the docs in a given area agree on best practices, it becomes difficult for a plaintiff to find a favorable expert witness.  And these best practices will become more clearly defined as the cost of not doing the test and potentially getting sued becomes defined.
 
2013-05-08 01:58:10 PM  

GentDirkly: Docs in the US don't usually profit from doing more tests.  The offsite testing facility is the one that typically profits.  Docs in the US order more tests not due to a profit motive, but because they are afraid of being sued.  The amount of "defensive" testing may go down as the medical community comes to more agreement about which tests are called for in which situations, and as the punitive damages typically awarded when things go wrong become more predictable.  If all the docs in a given area agree on best practices, it becomes difficult for a plaintiff to find a favorable expert witness.  And these best practices will become more clearly defined as the cost of not doing the test and potentially getting sued becomes defined.


Canada doesn't have lawsuit issues.  Malpractice insurance is extremely low. I think that might be another positive side-effect of single-payer.
 
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