Saturday, July 25, 2009

The utter insanity of US health care

I saw this quote from David Cutler's paper on insurance premiums via Matthew Yglesias:

This analysis shows that without health reform, average family premiums will grow to more than $22,000 by 2019, up from $13,100 today.
In contrast, here in Australia I have to purchase health insurance privately, since I do not qualify for their national health care plan, Medicare, nor does work offer it (health insurance isn't tied to employment here). I have the cadillac plan, chock full of bells and whistles--it pays for 100% of my acupuncture up to a very generous limit, for example--designed for people on my type of work visa. For the privilege, I pay a whopping AU$2500 a YEAR. Granted the comparison is not perfect, since this is an individual cover, not a family one (the family costs $5000). But I am quite confident that the coverage is also far better and more reliable than the average US plan that currently costs $13,100.

I think if people in the US realized the magnitude of the excess expense they are paying today, not even the flood of insurance and PhRMA money could stop reform.

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