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View Diary: Justin Amash (R) gets Town Hall question: "Why would we want to trust insurance companies...?" (170 comments)

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  •  What's most disingenuous (8+ / 0-)

    is that Rep. Amash and the legion of dimwitted asshole "economic conservatives" continue to speak of markets as if they are entirely identical.

    Which is complete fucking bullshit.

    The marketplace for medical care is vastly different than the marketplace for purchasing a car, buying a house, buying a candy bar, etc. etc.

    Most noticeable is that the purpose of medical care is to keep us healthy, and under certain circumstances, to keep us alive.  You don't need to purchase a car or a house to live a pretty normal life, but if you have a heart attack you require medical care or you are going to die.  This alone should end the discussion about medical care marketplaces being anything like the stuff you learn in Econ 101.

    But if people insist, here's other reasons why you can't treat them as equal:

    1) Medical care is the most price inelastic commodity (if you will) that I can think of.  In essence, the demand for medical care pretty much doesn't change even as the price increases.  0 is perfectly inelastic, and pediatric visits are at a 0.03.  Yup.

    2) Where's the competition?  As the citizen in the above video so astutely pointed out, our choice is limited, either by insurance coverage or by sure circumstance - i.e., you don't get to choose which hospital you go to if you are being rushed for a heart attack or broken leg.

    3) Where's the pricing list?  There has been some commentary about why we as medical consumers don't have any freaking idea what even a routine procedure costs.  There's no rhyme or reason to pricing.  People without insurance are mega screwed because they don't get the benefits of an insurance plan provider discount, which can be significant (for example, my ACL repair surgery is coded for $35,000 but only cost Aetna about $6,000 since I went in-network).

    There are probably several others I could think of, but that's good for now.

    "Give me a lever long enough... and I shall move the world." - Archimedes

    by mconvente on Sat Aug 31, 2013 at 06:52:19 PM PDT

    [ Parent ]

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