Post Info TOPIC: Healthcare Ponzi Scheme
JCS

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Healthcare Ponzi Scheme
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Healthcare Ponzi Scheme

 

By

JCS

 

 

The public outrage over Wall Street shysters with golden parachutes will grow louder when it learns the healthcare industry HMOs also have their golden, if not platinum, salaries and parachutes, most notably the former CEO of United Healthcare, Dr. William McGuire, who in 2004 was paid $158 million along with 5-year bonuses totally $1.6 billion.

 

The same greedy mindset on Wall Street prevails in the American capitalist version of healthcare where the goal is profits, not quality or affordable healthcare with access for all and safety nets for the poorthe premise of socialized medicine where governments believe, like public education, health care is for everyone, not just the wealthy.

 

"The single most important factor in the atrociously high cost of healthcare in the United States is the rapacious, money-hungry insurance companies and their fat cat CEOs," according to Medscape writer Nancy Terry. "Commercial, for-profit health insurance is one of the greatest Ponzi schemes ever foisted on the public. The executives are the ones that benefit to the detriment of everyone else. How else does the president of one of the largest insurance companies get to be a billionaire? By being at the top of the pyramid of companies' and individuals' premium payments." [1]

 

The public remains unaware of these shysters since the health care insurance industry hasnt collapsed, yet. Instead of a $700 billion loan from Congress to keep Wall Street afloat, the HMO industry has been propped up by double-digit increases in healthcare premiums for the past 8 years as it squeezes care to expand profits.

 

While fat cat CEOs are definitely to blame for the high costs in healthcare, they are not alone since other elements of the medical cartel including the monopolistic AMA that has virtually eliminated any healthcare competitors, as well as Big Pharma and Big Hospitals executives who all profit greatly from the inflated world of medical care.

 

To illustrate life at the top of this pyramid, consider these salaries:

  • The top six HMO health plans paid 37 executives an average salary of $7,513,470.[2]
  • The 7 top drug kingpins had an average salary of $20, 226,089. [3]
  • The top 3 hospital kingpins averaged $15,937,849.[4]

 

Considering the average salaries of these drug, hospital, and HMO kingpins, surgeons compensation is pale in comparison although still shocking compared to working class salaries:[5]

        Orthopedic Surgery                                                                            $670,000

        Foot & Ankle                                                                                        $791,000

        Hand & Upper Extremities                                                                $770,000

        Hip & Joint Replacement                                                                   $715,000

        Spine Surgery                                                                                   $1,352,000

        Sports Medicine                                                                                   $762,000

        Anesthesiology: Pain Management                                                  $651,000

 

This medical cartel is the 800-pound gorilla in this reform effort that will not simply let go of the billions of bananas it now consumes, which explains why the AMA has been strangely quiet on reform. If the public knew of the outrageous salaries in the medical cartel, the cry for reform would be louder than that on Wall Street. 

 

Its not that the present healthcare system merely needs expansion; the fact is the American capitalist version of healthcare is broken, expensive, propped up by double digit inflation in healthcare premiums, limited in access and of poor quality considering America leads the world in every category of chronic degenerative disease.  

 

When the WHO reveals American healthcare leads the world in cost, but our population health is 72nd and the healthcare delivery system ranks 37th, were obviously not getting much bang for our buck.[6]

 

This version of monopolistic medical healthcare omits the basic market checks and balances that made this country greatfree enterprise on a level playing field. Indeed, this healthcare tragedy can be laid at the doorstep of the AMA cartel that has denied these principles in order to dominate in this $2.4 trillion industry.

 

Its time to break up this medical cartel just as the government broke up Standard Oil and AT&T to increase competition, lower costs, and improve services. The sooner patients have freedom of choice in health care treatments, the sooner all health care practitioners compete on a level playing field, and the sooner caps are placed on the salaries of the medical cartel kingpins or move to a single-payer system like Medicare for all, the sooner well see some resemblance of sanity in our healthcare system.

 

Personally, I find the upcoming fight in healthcare reform boils down to one question: Is healthcare a right for every citizen to have like public education or is it a commodity to be sold at the highest cost?

 

Our present capitalistic model obviously views it as a privilege to be bought and as such, the medical cartel has cornered the market to its profit. The AMA has eliminated almost all competitors as they tried to destroy the chiropractic profession. As the 800-pound gorilla, the medical profession has denied you a choice in treatments, charged outlandish prices, offer poor service in hospitals, and the HMOs force costly insurance premiums or else, like 48 million Americans, you simply will do without.

 

We do not simply need more of the same ineffective medical care. We need a true revolution in healthcare where prevention comes first, people are given choices in treatment, and all patients have access to quality care as we see in Canada and most European countries like the UK, France and Italy.

 

Remember: you are you're own doctor. Considering 70% of chronic diseases are self-inflicted by bad diets, no exercise, no supplements, and bad backs, the question remains: how smart a doctor are you?



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Anonymous

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You honestly believe that, if healthcare is a "right", alternative forms of care outside of the so-called medical system will be prevalent within government run healthcare? What precedent do you follow for this, surely not the Canadian model where Chiropractic has been eliminated from the social paid system?




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JCS

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You may be right, but if the ACA has any clout on Capitol Hill, we should be in the loop. I just  hope it's better than the Medicare model.

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