European healthcare

Old Aug 8th, 2007, 10:42 AM
  #41  
 
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In Sweden i've heard and perhaps someone can collaborate that handicapped men or seniors perhaps get the services of a sex therapists that is paid for by the national health care.

Now, if true, that's enlightened and i may retire to Sweden if i end up like that.
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Old Aug 8th, 2007, 10:49 AM
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In Ireland, GP visits cost between €35 and €70 (depending on the GP and, to an extent, on location). For most people, there is no system of reimbursement except, perhaps, their private insurance if they have it. People on low incomes and the over-65s get "health cards" that entitle them to free treatment.

Those without health cards pay for prescription medicines to a maximum of €85 a month -- any balance is paid by the state.

A&E and hospital treatment is free unless you opt for private treatment. There are long waiting lists for some procedures, which encourages many people to opt for private medicine.
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Old Aug 8th, 2007, 10:51 AM
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According to my latest payslip, I am paying 45.26€ (US$61.55) a month for the additional health coverage.
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Old Aug 8th, 2007, 11:00 AM
  #44  
ira
 
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Hi K,

>Speaking of GP's, I was wondering what the current price is in various countries.

In France, the standard rate for a GP is 22 euros (US$30)....

Can't give you a single price for the US. Depends on where you are and what kind of insurance you have.

As a retiree with medicare for myself and spouse, we pay 86.80 USD/month for private insurance (through former employer) including Rx plan and $177/mo for medicare - total of $3170/yr.

We pay nothing for physicians and hospitals.

Our Rx plan requires a copay of about $5 for most medication, $30 for fancy stuff.

We pay for dental out-of-pocket.

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Old Aug 8th, 2007, 11:05 AM
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Can't give you a single price for the US. Depends on where you are and what kind of insurance you have.

well $75 is a minimum IME as i pay for office visits.

And yes depends on insurance - thing i can't understand is that here at least if you don't have insurance you can pay much much more for things as with insurance you pay the preferred rate and as a non-insured individual you can pay much higher for same thing.

US needs single-payer national health care or anything that covers everybody affordably like practically every other industrialized society.
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Old Aug 8th, 2007, 11:35 AM
  #46  
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Gsteed, We do not suffer from chronic health concerns. Both incidents came out of the blue. Neither one of us had ANY risk factors for our attacks. As they say #@*% happens.
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Old Aug 8th, 2007, 12:08 PM
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Obviously, high salaries are a factor to the high cost of healthcare in this country. But, European health care professionals, while paying high taxes, do not have to worry about the exorbitant costs of a private four year college. Also, European companies have not phased out pension programs like American companies have.

American families are facing a holy trinity of problems--high health care costs, ever-escalating tuition costs, and erasure of pensions. DH has told me to try to move to Italy or France if anything ever happened to him. He wants our child to have a good future.
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Old Aug 8th, 2007, 12:17 PM
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In an emergency, everybody will help, that's for sure. Just don't expect to be welcomed using a system others have paid for all their life, just for you to get the benefits and never having paid a cent into the system. It's solidarity, don't abuse it.
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Old Aug 8th, 2007, 12:49 PM
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In Spain we don't pay anything for a GP. You have to pay 50% for prescription medicines unless you recieve any kind of pension or are over 65.
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Old Aug 8th, 2007, 03:24 PM
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<< Hi Rex,

Interesting to get an inside viewpoint.

1. Everyone in healthcare is overpaid...

I don't think that my internist would agree with you.

U[H]ave you worked as a small-town GP?>>

No, ira - - I have not (my dad has though) - - and I assume that your internist is essentially running a small business (for which, perhaps, he has no training, and he may have gross revenues many fold greater than his own net - - because it is a hard business to run efficiently)...

Not every _individual_ is overpaid, just as (perhaps) not every athlete is overpaid. But in the aggregate, the entire healthcare segment is overpaid (again, this is strictly my opinion) - - why? because demand is so skewed, since no one pays (directly) for the services they receive.

America has such a death-phobic culture, that it is willing to pay exorbitant amounts of money for services that just don't make life better, in my opinion. Now this is a gross over-generalization - - but we don't make anything - - we repair "things" (people) that are broken, rarely making them "as good as new again" (and the older the patient, the more money spent, for a huge shortfall from "as good as new again").

I would be the first to admit that my values are skewed way to one extreme of a spectrum - - most people are in the middle of this spectrum - - and my generalizations are partly an over-reaction to those at the other end of the spectrum - - who would spend every penny of the GNP on healthcare.

I _have_ been a small business owner (you may recall that my career detoured for over a dozen years into information services and database management, and I practiced neonatology "on the side"); I created jobs and worried about making a payroll (like many practicing physicians, I wasn't particularly trained nor skilled in running a small business).

And personally, I thought that many of the things I chose to (or wanted to) buy were better value than "healthcare expenditures". If I could live in an alternative universe, a greater monetary value would be attached to artists, teachers, architects, builders and craftsman.

It may well be that I value "beauty" and "stuff" way too much.

But I am happy doing what I do, too. There is unbounding beauty in a mother being able to take a baby home... who might have otherwise died, or been crippled for life due to a bad start in the first hours/days/months of breathing here "in the world outside".



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Old Aug 8th, 2007, 03:47 PM
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But wouldn't it be easier on all doctors if they didn't have to run a s business? If they only had 1 agency to submit bills to. No need to employ 4 people in their billing offices
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Old Aug 8th, 2007, 05:10 PM
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"Having national health insurance couldn't be any more onerous or expensive than the current system of HMOs."

Correct - and then some. Per capita, Americans spend about twice the OECD average on their health system and seem to get remarkably poor value for money.

My (Australian) GP charges the equivalent of US$43, of which I get about US$25 refunded by the federal government's Health Insurance Commission. As I have just had my 65th birthday I'll now be eligible for zero-fee consultations, my GP billing the HIC for her services. When employed I paid an income tax surcharge of 1.25% to fund the system. People without private health insurance pay 1.75%. We have private insurance, but it doesn't cost much.

I'll also be eligible for a prescription charge of about US$3.50 in lieu of anywhere between US$13 and $37 (from memory) I've been paying until now. People in receipt of government income support (pensioners, unemployed, students etc) get the same deal.

Most Australian GPs actually don't bill upfront at all but accept a lower fee in return for bulk-billing the government. As my GP and her partner employ only a receptionist, who doesn't look overworked, I assume that the paperwork isn't onerous.

Public hospitals are free, but a lot of people, encouraged/coerced by the government have private health insurance to jump the queue for elective surgery.

Except in rare instances employers have no need to pay their employees' private health insurance premiums.

I'd prefer that every wage-earner pay a 1.75% (or even 2%) tax surcharge, and that the government stop subsidising private health insurance and put the money instead into the public hospital system.
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Old Aug 8th, 2007, 05:37 PM
  #53  
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<< But wouldn't it be easier on all doctors if they didn't have to run a s business? If they only had 1 agency to submit bills to. No need to employ 4 people in their billing offices >>

I couldn't agree more. Now, of course, everyone will groan when I propose that airlines are an appropriate model - - (they are so wonderfully service oriented, and quite irrelevant, when it comes to the complexity of an individual's particular needs...)

...but in principle, it is just as ludicrous to have 100,000 individual doctors' offices... as it would be to have 100,000 different airlines, each employing one to twenty pilots.

My point is that the cost of flying has a direct bearing on how much people fly. And there is no entitlement to fly, to get from A to B. Even this, results in some true heartbreaking tragedies - - a sad but true aspect of life and its inequities (for example, how many displaced Katrina families suffer true sadness over the inability to travel, even infrequently?)...

But the insulation... from the cost of healthcare by _insurance_ largely paid without true visibility for its staggering expense - - and paid hugely by families at the upper end of the income spectrum... for a very large slice of the population pie at the other end...

...has helped to create a chaotic mess - - just think if there were "Flight-i-caid" and "Flight-i-care" so that the "uninsured" could show up at the airport and insist that they _need_ to be flown from A to B, based on their complaints.

It's draconian - - in fact, the word doesn't come close to expressing how awful some people will view it... but the bad old days need to come back, at least a little bit (and I predict that they will)...

...for those who are (old and) sick, and no fortune to spend (or have better sense than to do it)... and no real prospects for producing further income to pay for the care that _could_ be rendered...

...then unless your community wants to rally around and cough up the money for you, they will tend to you with a cool compress to your forehead, caring, compassion and prayers - - and just say "no" to having eight wealthy xyz-ologists in every community big enough to have a marching band.

I guess I just don't believe that the problem in american health care is some legion of fat cat insurance executives getting rich, nor their employment of thousands of paper-pushers. The far greater problem is that people want it, want it, want "it" (medical care) and blindly think that it's okay to ask their neighbors to pay, endlessly, to provide it to them.
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Old Aug 8th, 2007, 06:28 PM
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rex,
It is not very clear to me what you are saying, but if I understand the last paragraph correctly, I am sure glad you are not my doctor .( if that is what you are).
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Old Aug 9th, 2007, 02:43 AM
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GP in Finland --> same as France, 22 €.
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Old Aug 9th, 2007, 03:27 AM
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British pricing:

GP visits - free

All hospital treatments - free

Homecare - free

Prescriptions - £6.70 each unless you are on benefits (welfare), under 18, pregnant or over 60 in which case free

Dentistry - theoretically subsidised, in reality pretty much private with fees to match. Again children and pregnant women don't pay (as do some other groups)

Specs etc - eye tests are about £10, specs are paid for by the user - so whatever they are prepared to pay. Kids specs are free.

"Fringe" medicines eg acupuncture, homeopathy etc aren't usually covered.
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Old Aug 9th, 2007, 03:45 AM
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<<< Again children and pregnant women don't pay (as do some other groups) >>>

But many dentists offering NHS dentistry for children require the parents to be privately registered

<<< Specs etc - eye tests are about £10 >>>

Eye tests are always free in
Scotland and are free in England & Wales if there are risk factors - like diabetes - in your immediate family
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Old Aug 9th, 2007, 04:22 AM
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In addition to the sum deducted monthly from our salaries +/-€165, which covers amongst others help for chronically ill and handicapped patients, and the other "social"contributions we make (around €550 per month) we pay €94.95 pp insurance for the "basic package" which covers our GP, certain medicines, hospital care etc. We also pay €41.50 pp extra insurance to cover physiotherapy, and certain other things, and €11.50 pp a month to cover dental treatment.
The dental treatment insurance pays out to a maximim of €250 so is not great but it helps.
Every body over the age of 18 must have at least the basic package. The price varies a bit depending on your insurer, but it is never more than €1,139.40 a month. From next year we will also have an excess of €250 euros.
So health care is not cheap here, and we can only use hospitals and clinics approved by our insurerer otherwise we don't get the full sum paid. You also have to produce proof of insurance before receiving treatment.
So you can perhaps understand why I resent foreigners receiving free treatment when they are quite capable of paying for it.
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Old Aug 9th, 2007, 04:25 AM
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hetismij....where is "here" ?
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Old Aug 9th, 2007, 04:34 AM
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Hi Rex,

>it is a hard business to run efficiently

I definitely agree.

My GP now has 6 people in his office, some PT some FT, some who do the administration and some who assist in patient care, who he has to supervise as well as taking care of his patients and whatever duties he has at the hospital.

In addition, the whole system is very inefficient. Despite having all sorts of computerized equipment that allows for specialists to review CAT scans, MRIs, etc at long distance, my medical records are all on paper. If my dr wants to see what my cholesterol was last year, he has to riffle through the pages.

And the billing system is worse than dealing with any government agency.

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