Sunday, September 24, 2006

Health Care in the Empire

We revisit health care today, to find that it has produced the vast majority of new American jobs since 2001. The sector is growing exponentially, which should set off alarm bells, especially since it certainly isn't expanding the number of citizens covered (at last count, more than 45 million citizens of the Empire were not covered by health insurance). In fact, insurers are growing ever more clever in their attempts to eliminate costly claims. Seems that actually attempting to use the insurance one has paid for will now trigger a detailed extensive review of the original application. Any discrepancies, omissions or misunderstandings will result in denial of coverage and to add insult to injury (literally, haha), said insurance company will often attempt to recover funds already expended on the claim. Sounds too outlandish to believe? Kindly peruse this (registration may be required). Those who are receiving their coverage through their employers are considered safe from this dirty practice at the moment, but don't get too comfortable; things like this have a way of expanding.

Another report on American health care finds that the US system is failing: the country has a higher infant mortality rate than that of 24 industrialized countries and the lowest life expectancy of those who have reached age 60. "When graded according to 37 indicators assessing health outcomes, quality, access, equity and efficiency, [the Empire} recieved a score of 66 out of 100, a failing grade." Trends are not favorable here: more expensive and less responsive health care in the future would be Chaos' prediction. The diminishing marginal returns, in Tainter's lexicon.

No comments: