Robert Winner

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Would you support a hospital and doctor pricing chart.

Not everything is transparent in the world of medicine. If you can afford insurance or have the ability to pay for services then the prices are jacked up to cover the thousands that use the services and never pay the tab. Facilities, services, and equipment are not cheap.

As an example: The federal government made it manditory for emergency rooms to see all who request emergency services. In Arizona the illegal population use the emergency room for non-emergency "free" doctors office call ... this cost must be made up somewhere.

Knowing that many people abuse the system .... is a flat rate even possable?

  • May 10 2013: I would support transparency and competition.

    We should recognize and accept the fact that medical services are part of an industry that is shaped by economics.

    We should have access to all of the information needed to make a rational decision regarding whose services we are willing to hire. Most importantly, that information must include medical outcome statistics, but also prices, whether by the hour or per procedure. When medical institutions and individuals become competitive many of the problems with the current situation (it is not remotely a system) will disappear.

    By the way, when people who cannot get medical care in any other way go to an emergency room, they are not abusing the "system." Medical services should be available to everyone, and it is the responsibility of society to find the most economical method to deliver appropriate medical care.
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    May 11 2013: Yes
  • May 10 2013: I agree with what Mr. Palmer said below, but would add that shopping for medical services is not something the average person can do. There will always be a level of trust that exists between doctor and patient because of the level of knowledge and understanding required to be able to make good general medical decisions and tailor them to the needs of a particular patient. To that end, the various medical specialties need to be self-regulating relative to some standard set by a board of experts empowered to act in the best interest of the general public.

    Medicine, like other businesses, is in business for a profit. They should be allowed to pursue this goal to the greatest extent possible. However, decisions that are made relative to providing or not providing care or services to patients should not be business decisions. I think this is an opportunity for the government to step in and help underwrite the risk associated with these patients to minimize the risk to the medical industry caused by patients in bad economic circumstances. This is not a blank check for people to receive high end medical care in a stratified system where luxuries might be part of a profit making offer made by medical professionals, but the services needed to keep healthy and take care of basic medical needs should not be denied based on economic status.

    Part of the regulation process needs to include control over the medical insurance industry. They too deserve to make a profit, but actuaries should not decide the quality or extent of medical care provided to citizens. Similar to the medical oversight group, an insurance oversight group needs to be actively involved in decisions involving benefits provided relative to premiums paid and services provided.

    Lack of of affordable medical makes people, and the people that love them, desperate. Desperate people make bad decisions and have nothing to lose. Everybody suffers.