My New Healthcare Plan
Buy stock in healthcare.
With the current Senate bill moving forward, healthcare insurance stocks have skyrocketed. Ironic, since Republicans consistently bitch and moan that we’re going to kill the healthcare industry.
This image is courtesy Google Finance.
As you can see, since October 27th, Coventry is up almost 32%. CIGNA is up 29%. Aetna is up 27%. Wellpoint’s also up near 27%.
In 2006 (mind you, this number has increased,) the OECD reports that the average per-capita cost of healthcare is $6,714. If you just took the numbers for a family of four, $26,856 (absurd, I know, isn’t it?) and devoted it not to your insurance premiums, but to Coventry stocks, you’d have about $35,500. If you’re an average family in America making the median of about $50,000, that’s like a 10% increase in income!
It’s a sad situation. Now, Americans are going to be forced to spend on healthcare they couldn’t afford to begin with. Look at the numbers. The average per capita healthcare cost puts an average family of four at spending half their income on healthcare. How do they do it? Well, they don’t. Remember, the average assumes some very high numbers on the high end, and low numbers on the low end. So where somebody might spend millions on their own health, a number of people can’t afford to spend at all.
I recently looked into a job with a healthcare provider. I’m a college-educated person with relevant experience. The offer amounted to 28,000/yr. That amounts to about $1075 gross pay per pay check. That’s about $970 after Medicare/Social Security tax. It ends up at $775 after federal taxes. It’s just under $700 after state taxes. $670 after city taxes. $670 in net pay.
I went to orientation. I looked into their information and benefits. For my family of three at the time, I was expected to pay $450 per month for insurance. This didn’t include vision and dental. Those would have been another $50. So a major healthcare provider (on that chart, mind you,) was asking for $500 per month for healthcare insurance with barebones deductibles, terrible limits and copays that I couldn’t afford if I had to.
Look at it like this: I would be paying $6,000 per year on my premium alone.
It’s not just a horror story. At a job I did take, outside the insurance industry, I had a similar health plan. Last year, I had one mile trip in an ambulance. I’m looking at a bill for $2,700 for a panic attack on the job because my insurer refused to pay, and my employer’s also refused. The ER copay was $300. My medication was $25 every two weeks for a month. At that point, if that were the only reason I’d have to visit a hospital or doctor in the year, I’d have paid $6,000 in order to have the privilege of paying $3,050 to go to the hospital. Not only that, I was treated in the hallway. I saw a doctor for less than five minutes. Last year, that was the only medical care I received. I effectively paid $9,050 for a minor issue needing only basic medication and outpatient care.
In contrast, I lived for a while in Canada, under their single-payer system. During my time there, I paid a few dollars over $100 for my insurance monthly. Mind you, that was Canadian. That means it amounted to something like $70 US money. During my year there, I only went to the hospital once. I fell and broke a leg. My ambulance ride was covered. My ER visit was covered. My medication… I had to pay for it. I paid $10 for painkillers. I paid that twice over the month. That year, I paid about $860 for healthcare.
One year, I paid $9,050 for healthcare. Another, I paid $860. Both of those years, I had exactly one ER visit. Do we see the disconnect?
So, back to the original topic. If you’re healthy, cancel your insurance plan. Buy stock in Coventry, CIGNA, Aetna and Wellpoint. If you don’t spend a lot of time in the hospital, you’ll come out profiting.
And hey, you can point to the success of our majestic healthcare reform bill for your good fortune!