Health Insurance Industry Profits

This post was suggested by an article by Mark J. Perry professor of economics at the University of Michigan. In it he lists the profit margins of the top 86 industries in the US. He stops at 86 because that’s the spot occupies by health insurance. If you want to see the complete list you can go here.

It’s become a a popular blood sport on Capitol Hill to demonize health insurance companies. A profit margin of 3.3% seems to suggest only two conclusions – don’t invest in this sector and if you’re in the business consider getting out. Now add to their business model the need to conform to a vast new federal health bureaucracy, new mandates, and a public system of health insurance and what is the likely result? More profits, greater rewards to shareholders, business health and prosperity? Hardly. A public plan will eventually, sooner rather than later, drive the private health insurers out of business.

Here is a quotation from Speaker Nancy Pelosi on the health insurance business.:

They are the villains in this. They have been part of the problem in a major way. They have been doing everything in their power to stop a public option from happening. The public has to know that. They can describe their arguments any way they want, but the fact is they don’t want the competition. They don’t even want anti-trust laws. They have had a good thing going for a long time at the expense of the American people and the health of our country. Our members have to go out there ready to take on a big special interest that has not made our country healthier and have made our cost spiral upward and for whom that is coming to an end.

You’d think that if these malefactors of great wealth were so powerful they’d be able to make a little more money. If they’d made the American medical scene like the plains of Troy during the time of Achilles and Hector why have the spoils of their carnage not materialized?

Then you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free (John 8:32) seems not to apply to politics.

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2 Responses to Health Insurance Industry Profits

  1. Socco says:

    Have a simple medical office
    Get one secretary
    As Dr weight and check the patient’s blood pressure without the need of a nurse or nurse assistant
    Have the secretary charge each new patient that comes to see you, keeping a list of the potential 10-20 patients that could see you every day
    Rid off from insurance plans (as a physician you sometimes do not really know how much you are exactly charging to patients)
    Charge a fix rate that could be similar all over the nation with minor variations from Dr to Dr and from specialty to specialty (i.e 65 dollars a 30 min evalation of follow up/cash)

    This could be a good start, instead of employing dozens of people that are needed ina an office because of a complex system (dept of coding and billing, 3 people answering the phones, 10 secretaries, 5-7 nurses, 2 janitors, etc) that do not make more efficient a visit for a chief complaint of dizziness or falls

    At a hospital level the solution may be more complex (not to mention chemotherapy or dialysis treatments)

  2. Socco says:

    Actually dyalisis could be solved easily. Shifting all hemo patients to PD (at least 80%) and to create a non-compliance status, where you quit delivering care to those who care less about their health than the physician that is in charge of them. When a non compliance status is labeled to a patient (i.e a drug adict that injects heroin IV through AVF/AVG/Tessio) then dialysis could be denied,in an irreversible way.

    With PD you just need a nurse and an office, not expensive filters (like deionizer, reverse osmosis, etc) to treat water, etc. PD cath insertion needs less maintenance than AVF’s G’s. Why do PD still so unpopular? MOrtality rates are not different and actually those waiting for a transplant do better in PD than in HD

    Neil, you rarely talk about corruption and you are always politically correct, and with this ingredients it is difficult to say the truth in a more clear way, rather than involving the language with sophisms and complex usless terminologies.

    Greetings from a good friend

    By the way Da Vita and Fresenius would avoid at any price the establishment of PD units that could give independence to nephrologists, I can imagine these companies at congress trying to defend their interests

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