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Grandfather of Obamacare's ER flip-flop!

  1. Mighty Mom profile image90
    Mighty Momposted 4 years ago

    Mitt Romney, the architect of universal healthcare in Massachusetts (aka "Romneycare") has done it again. Flopped on camera and shown how out of touch he is with rank and file Americans.

    In 2010
    Romneyy appeared on MSNBC's Morning Joe and said that using ERs as health care wasn't fair to tax payers, who pick up the cost when the uninsured can't afford it.

    Last night on 60 Minutes
    Now he explains that uninsured can get their healthcare at the Emergency Room. "We'll pick them up at their APARTMENT in an ambulance and they can go to the ER." When prodded about the fact that ER is the MOST EXPENSIVE place to get care, his answer was that different states have different ways of dealing with that.

    Let's review. ER care is not "free." See below link.
    My son (20) recently went to the ER and once there refused all care. His bill?
    $2300 for the ER and another $350 for a doctor.
    Ambulance rides are not free, either. Hard to find stats but $900+ seems to be the minimum.

    Second link (Forbes) has some interesting related stories about the "accountable care" wave.

    http://www.consumerhealthratings.com/in … cat_id=274

    http://www.forbes.com/sites/brucejapsen … -comments/

    1. wilderness profile image96
      wildernessposted 4 years ago in reply to this

      Your son was refused all care and still got a bill?  Demand proof of service and refuse to pay anything when it isn't provided.  An itemized list of services/products given should suffice.

      1. Mighty Mom profile image90
        Mighty Momposted 4 years ago in reply to this

        I may not have worded that correctly. My SON is the one who refused care once at the ER.
        But apparently they did manage to get a blood test done, and of course he was occupying a station so there's probably a per minute charge there.

        I knew nothing about it until he called me from the admin office  (days later) where he was contemplating asking for charity care.
        He read me the form and the penalties for lying about assets, etc.
        I did not feel right about doing that (for the very reasons we discuss here -- the cost would just be bumped onto someone else).
        So I paid it.
        I did manage to negotiate down a little bit, but not much.

        The grand irony with him is he is studying to be a naturopathic doctor!

        1. KFlippin profile image59
          KFlippinposted 4 years ago in reply to this

          .... a "per minute charge" , are you really saying that?  smile

          1. Mighty Mom profile image90
            Mighty Momposted 4 years ago in reply to this

            I'm trying to understand what could possible have cost $2,300 when they didn't treat him.
            The best I can figure is the stations have meters like a taxi.

            1. KFlippin profile image59
              KFlippinposted 4 years ago in reply to this

              Absurd, completely absurd.

    2. Josak profile image60
      Josakposted 4 years ago in reply to this

      How are we to expect poor Mitt to understand this? It's not like he has ever had to lie awake wondering if he should go to the hospital and wipe out his savings from the last three years or just stay home and see what happens, it's not like he has ever had to call an ambulance for his child with no idea how he is going to pay for it.

      Those things are generally restricted to the 47% he hates so much.

      1. Mighty Mom profile image90
        Mighty Momposted 4 years ago in reply to this

        It's doubtful whether Romney is tracking what has occurred in his state as a result of Romneycare (I mean, he's been pretty busy campaigning since 2008!). But others are.
        Basically, when people are given (or sold) health insurance, use of Emergency Departments for primary care diminishes.
        What a concept, eh?

        1. A recent study on the Massachusetts health reform law found no additional increase in ED utilization due to coverage changes implemented in the state. 
        2. Some have argued that the decline in ED use in Massachusetts is a result of better access to primary care.

        Chen C, Scheffler G, Chandra A. Massachusetts’ Health Care Reform and Emergency Department Utilization. New England Journal of Medicine. 2011:110907140018030.
        Smulowitz PB, Lipton R, Wharam JF, et al. Emergency Department Utilization After the Implementation of Massachusetts Health Reform. Annals of Emergency Medicine. 2011;58(3):225–234.e1.

    3. KFlippin profile image59
      KFlippinposted 4 years ago in reply to this

      So, your son has not chosen to buy health insurance and pay for it from his salary?  And his employer does not offer it at some discounted rate via a group policy, therefore he simply had nada to decline on that score, or he is unemployed and uninsured and . . . Therefore, his distress was so severe that he ran up a plus $2K bill ?   Okay.........let me think on this... okay and I'd add he must be single, or maybe free Medicade would have stepped in and paid the bill?  such a confusing government system!

      1. Mighty Mom profile image90
        Mighty Momposted 4 years ago in reply to this

        My son is 20 years old.
        He is a student, but not at a university so there is no health insurance coverage offered where he studies.
        He does not have an employer.
        He had coverage when he lived in CA which is a long story unto itself.
        It was through an HMO which did not have services in CO where he moved.
        I looked into getting him covered on my plan (under the new rules where kids can stay on their parents' plan till age 26). Wouldn't you know, he missed the birthday cutoff date by 2 months. He would have had to have been 19 on January 1, 2011. He did not turn 19 until March 2011.

        He has tried to obtain coverage but has been declined due to preexisting condition. He tried on his own and I even spoke with an insurance broker there and was told "no way."
        We are now looking into the Colorado state pool plan, which I don't know if it is available to people with preexisting conditions.
        Here in CA there are 2 state pools, one specifically for people with preexisting conditions.

        So here you have a case where someone WANTS to PAY for insurance but can't get it.
        That is the side of this ACA equation that it seems too many people here do not get.
        The market of people who will gladly pay for their own insurance -- if only an insurer will accept them!

  2. Paul Wingert profile image78
    Paul Wingertposted 4 years ago

    Romney will say anything to get elected.