Thursday, March 07, 2013

Bitter Pill: Why Medical Bills Are Killing US

Have you read the article from TIME magazine, Bitter Pill: Why Medical Bills Are Killing US? It's eye-opening!  Here is a (very) short excerpt to persuade you to read the entire piece:


The total cost, in advance, for Sean to get his treatment plan and initial doses of chemotherapy was $83,900. 
Why? 
The first of the 344 lines printed out across eight pages of his hospital bill — filled with indecipherable numerical codes and acronyms — seemed innocuous. But it set the tone for all that followed. It read, “1 ACETAMINOPHE TABS 325 MG.” The charge was only $1.50, but it was for a generic version of a Tylenol pill. You can buy 100 of them on Amazon for $1.49 even without a hospital’s purchasing power.
...
On the second page of the bill, the markups got bolder. Recchi was charged $13,702 for “1 RITUXIMAB INJ 660 MG.” That’s an injection of 660 mg of a cancer wonder drug called Rituxan. The average price paid by all hospitals for this dose is about $4,000, but MD Anderson probably gets a volume discount that would make its cost $3,000 to $3,500. That means the nonprofit cancer center’s paid-in-advance markup on Recchi’s lifesaving shot would be about 400%.


Read more: http://healthland.time.com/2013/02/20/bitter-pill-why-medical-bills-are-killing-us/#ixzz2MriXI4QN
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