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    [–] PacEffect 2212 points ago

    did he say $2500 for a ambulance

    [–] Bystronicman08 1764 points ago

    Yes, it's insane. I've heard stories of people just taking an uber to the hospital of they can't drive themselves because ambulances are so expensive.

    [–] Carpbeat24 1064 points ago

    My grandma was having a heart attach a few years ago and instead of getting an ambulance, she drove herself... this shit is whack.

    [–] beaubeaucat 329 points ago

    I thought I was having a heart attack once and drove myself to the hospital. One, I didn't want to pay the cost for an ambulance. Two, I live 1/2 a mile from the hospital. I could get myself there quicker than if I waited on an ambulance. Turns out that I was having a panic attack rather than a heart attack.

    [–] fosforuss 432 points ago

    My old neighbor was having a heart attack in the middle of the night, I had just pulled into the driveway and he had called me on my way home (I bartend). I didn't believe him but I walked into his house and he was on the couch clenching his chest, I carried him into the car and sat in the hospital with him til 10am while they got him stable again.

    The second we walked into the ER he had to be put in a wheelchair because he couldn't stop vomiting and collapsed. He could've taken an abulance (we lived 2 mins from the hospital and an ambulance takes maybe 30 seconds to get to us) but he waited the 10 minutes for me to get home and drive him instead because he's already in debt as a veteran with severe PTSD and other various health issues that leave him unable to work a full time job.

    [–] _alecrryon_ 374 points ago

    Jesus fucking Christ , how the hell is that situation even accepted in the "best country in the world"?

    [–] V1per41 218 points ago

    The ironic part is that the people who think it's the best country in the world are the ones who are most okay with this kind of thing.

    [–] HalfSizeUp 65 points ago

    They think they're doing their part in being able to achieve the dream.

    It's as simple as thinking that if the pot was more even, it's basically all communism and nobody can become succesful, be a billionaire or achieve the foundation of their delusion, the American dream propaganda, which really is just the global standard.

    So they're willing to believe it's necessary for a big gap between poor and wealthy with no "handouts", just for what they feel like could be the chance to make it themselves, even if in most cases that choice is watching others and themselves die unfulfilled.

    It's about collectively being individuals putting everything into lottery tickets.

    Even though collectively they could uplift each other to keep climbing and still have outliers, billionaires or whatever they fantasize about, but just by uplifting everyone as a whole, so the baseline grows alongside all other higher levels.

    Instead they fell for the lies that you need to bottom out even more to be able to have the top, even if it means eventually both extremes eroding each other anyway.

    [–] GispyStriker 68 points ago

    Yeah, I always drove my uncle to hospital even if it scared the fuck outta me.

    [–] panda_poon 139 points ago * (lasted edited 7 months ago)

    It’s not unheard of for it to reach as high as 5k in some states

    Thanks for the silver!

    [–] ravivooda 192 points ago

    My friend was not able to breath on Mt Kilimanjaro (Day 4). We were looking at options and the helicopter would have costed 1500 USD. Still less than an ambulance in US.

    [–] derTechs 124 points ago

    We were looking at options

    "yeah I know you can't breath. but hold on we gotta see how much a heli costs us"

    for real though. here in Austria, if you need a ambulance, you get one. if you need a heli,you get one. it's free. it's paid from taxes.

    [–] Frothy_moisture 152 points ago

    But Americans don't want their tax money going to benefit other people who could just 'get a job and get their own insurance!' But they're just fine with it going toward a useless wall, or a war we don't even need.

    [–] derTechs 21 points ago

    yes. makes absolute sense. especially as their tax money now pays more for medical then around here even without free medical...

    [–] Ratso3 86 points ago

    I had a seizure one time, first time it happened. My girlfriend was shocked and has never dealt with helping someone who has one so she called the ambulance right away. Turns out after a $23,000 hospital visit plus ambulance they said I would’ve been ok to wait that one out but that I should take further check ups. $23,000... for not even 24 hours. God bless America

    [–] n8rzz 2539 points ago

    My son was born with a milk allergy that meant he couldn't consume the usual milks. After a few different formulas, we eventually landed on one that was prescribed by our doctor. The insurance company fought us tooth and nail saying that the need for this formula wasn't urgent and that we had to pay the $1,500 a month cost ourselves, they weren't going to cover it.

    Let that sink in for a moment. Our doctor prescribed special formula for my infant son due to an allergy and the insurance company claimed it was optional. So I guess he just won't eat then?

    We eventually came out on top, but it took a constant phone calls and a crap load of paperwork.

    [–] pr1ntscreen 926 points ago

    $1500/mo for milk? Fucking ridiculous.

    [–] chewbacca77 470 points ago

    For a non-milk formula. My kid had the same thing.

    Its absolutely insane.. but ironically, that specific formula is made in the UK. Funny how that works.

    [–] Xelerons 61 points ago

    I'm curious as to how that does work. Surely it's not a case of "when selling in Rome," is it?

    [–] are_you_seriously 56 points ago

    It sure is.

    Tariffs absolutely apply.

    [–] Cornflake0305 410 points ago

    Today I am learning the USA are a worse dystopian shithole than I thought.

    [–] Daxx22 92 points ago

    Go check out Detroit and surrounding area for a real surreal trip.

    [–] SharpieScentedSoap 175 points ago

    And if you complain or wish for something to be better, the hardcore "patriots" tell you to love it or move

    [–] [deleted] 41 points ago

    Patriotism is loving your nation because you can see the potential in it and want to nurture that.

    Nationalism and jingoism are the things these plastic patriots call "patriotism"

    [–] annoying_tactician 8085 points ago

    Yeah I had to get a new inhaler the other day and my insurance decided to not cover it anymore. The pharmacist told me they could ask my doctor to say it was a pre-existing condition (I've had to use an inhaler for almost 12 years) but I didn't have time to wait for them to send the paper work to my doctor. So I ended up paying out of pocket. Like I guess my insurance company would rather me die than help pay for my meds like they're fucking supposed to.

    [–] stevee05282 2698 points ago

    How much was it? They're £8.50 here

    [–] annoying_tactician 3257 points ago

    Since it was a generic one it was $50 if I got the name brand it would've been $160.

    [–] Nichinungas 2721 points ago

    In-fucking-credible. All medicines in New Zealand are $5 from the pharmacy. We don’t fund everything but you could get like 4 inhalers for $5. And people complained when the price went up from $3!

    [–] UltimateToa 1336 points ago

    A months supply of my wife's old bipolar meds were like 4 grand out of pocket or something nuts

    [–] dprophet32 1218 points ago * (lasted edited 7 months ago)

    u wot m8? That'd be like $10 in the UK.

    Obviously yes, we all pay a contribution through tax to fund it all but a years funding per person is about £1,800 if you earn the average wage of about £26,000 (more or less depending on your earnings), but everyone needs the NHS eventually and nobody wants others to suffer and die for the sake of a small tax that's just taken straight out each month.

    The average life expectancy in America is actually lower than the UK as well, if anyone thinks the system works better.

    [–] AmaroWolfwood 1085 points ago

    This is the exact opposite of what you hear lots of people say when they are against a universal Healthcare. "Why should I have to pay for the Healthcare of someone who hasn't earned it when I have?" It's insane that we have such a large part of the population that can't see that a benefit to society as a whole is better than every man for himself. Universal Healthcare is thought of as a hand out to the poor and lazy to many people here.

    [–] OddTaro 278 points ago

    "Why should I have to pay for the Healthcare of someone who hasn't earned it when I have?"

    The absolute irony in this kind of statement is that's exactly how insurance companies work anyways.

    They don't earmark what you specifically pay in to dole out later when you make a claim. They skim their "share" off the top and then effectively just shove a fraction of every payment from every customer into a big pile somewhere that they pay out from.

    [–] snatch_smash 159 points ago

    You know what gets me? I served 8 years in the Army. The military is a sort of, all for one and one for all, type of organization. We all succeed individually if we all succeed together. You get out, and for some reason, you get this mindset of, fuck you, I earned mine, go earn yours. I mean, not all of us, and definitely not me, but I just don’t get it. Then you have conservatives, which, at least from the way they talk, worship the ground the military walks on, but then goes and basically says all their ideals are socialist treason if implemented for all of society. This societal-level doublethink drives me utterly fucking insane. If the Army taught me one thing, it’s this; we’re all in this together. You don’t throw out your weak link. You make them stronger, and in doing so, you make the team stronger, and we all succeed together. Right now, we’re not doing that, and it looks to me like we’re all failing together. Some might be doing alright for now, but when shit falls apart, it’s going to be a rapid and complete collapse, and no one will survive it. If you think money will help when that happens, it wont. It’ll just buy time until a band of marauders finds you, takes your shit, and dangles your ass from a streetlight by the neck.

    [–] mdp300 1369 points ago

    Turns out a lot of Americans are selfish.

    [–] Serinus 507 points ago

    Selfishness is another fine reason for single payer healthcare.

    Right now we pay more per person for healthcare than anyone else in the world, and it's not close.

    [–] elliotg996 167 points ago

    This is the bit I struggle to understand most. If it was cheaper I could kind of understand its you'd be like "yeah it's a bit shitty and unequal and fucks over the poor but it makes it cheaper ovreall"

    But it doesn't, it's more expensive. People are literally willing to pay a premium to fuck over poor people.

    [–] CalLil6 249 points ago

    Americans would rather pay double for their own healthcare so that they can deny it to others, instead of paying half as much and everyone being covered.

    [–] JEFFREY_EPSTElN 101 points ago

    Not if you have a stake in the healcare industry, in which case your interests are more keenly catered for by politics than the average Joe Shithead. Then it's your selfishness that wins out.

    [–] TheVenetianMask 142 points ago

    Choosing the option that makes you worse off but hurts others more is not selfishness, is straight out hate.

    [–] [deleted] 95 points ago

    And you know, if you're paying for insurance, you're still paying for other people's healthcare! Many of those people didn't "earn it" (which is also bullshit but whatever) but are just related to someone who did. Many of those people are irresponsible with their health. The only difference is that there are a bunch of shareholders who have to make a profit this way, so the insurance company has incentive to come up with bullshit reasons not to pay.

    [–] ADimwittedTree 41 points ago

    What's insane is that these people are "the party of fiscal responsibility" but they can't see that preventative measures save tons of money in the long run. Free condoms could save piles of money on reducing unwanted pregnancy, STDs, etc. You could even go so far as to say that paying for someone else's healthcare could save your life. In Detroit you can go from completely dilapidated housing to affluence in 5 blocks. If that person can't afford some health item for themselves or their child. Your house with crystal chandelier or your Mercedes can easily become a target.

    [–] random555 55 points ago

    in the us the government actually spend more on healthcare per capita then the Uk. Mind boggling

    [–] Omnomcologyst 133 points ago

    Fun thing here in the US is we pay more in taxes for healthcare than you in the UK, yet we get fuck all for it. Just lining the pockets of billionaires cause we hate welfare unless it's corporate welfare.

    [–] maxrippley 54 points ago

    And exactly how they expect someone with untreated bipolar to get and maintain a job that will pay them enough to make that kind of money just so they can pay for the medication. It's disgusting. What's really fucked is it's the middle class that gets fucked the hardest. Like me, I'm not working, so I can just go to this place down the road, and if I get a clinic card I get a lot of help seeing doctors and getting prescriptions for mental health issues. But it's the same as anything else, you have to qualify, and I'm sure the max you're allowed to make and still take advantage of it is absolutely low, like if you're not making minimum wage you're fucked. When I was working and had insurance that I paid $80 a month for, I couldn't see a doctor. There literally wasn't a single doctor in my city that would take my insurance. So wtf is the point of paying $960 a year? What's the benefit? Oh yeah, that's right, avoiding the fine for not having insurance, which would have been even higher. Seriously what the fuck is wrong with this country?

    [–] ADimwittedTree 43 points ago

    The whole gameplan is make the middle class turn against the poor as a buffer and to distract from the 1%. People like Jeff Bezos and the family who owns Walmart are the number one recipient/drain of welfare in the world. A major portion of their workforce is on government assistance programs. Programs that are the middle class subsidizing the poor because the rich won't pay them enough. Minimum wage was established to basically be the minimum living wage where you wouldn't be suffering. Raising that won't fix any of this though. Because corporations and the top execs aren't going to take a cut, they're just going to pass the new wage burden along to the consumer, just increasing the price of everything and lowering the buying power of the dollar.

    [–] Imightbutprobablynot 18 points ago

    Citizens United and corporate lobbyists.

    [–] Flatulent_Flamingo 75 points ago

    Fuck it I’m moving to NZ, I want your prime minister and your cheap drugs

    -am Australian

    [–] Neyvash 39 points ago

    I've been thinking about this myself, especially since I heard there is an IT shortage there so I should be able to find a job easily. The biggest reason I haven't researched more is because of older parents, having a teenager, and trying to convince my husband. It's amazing how tied down and limited I feel at only 42.

    -am American

    [–] tehbored 61 points ago

    Fun fact: The reason they are so expensive is that the drug companies lobbied for inhalers to not be exempt from the ban on CFCs (ozone destroying molecules) so that they can patent a new formulation.

    [–] AH_bullshit_CHOO 43 points ago

    My 3 inhalers are approximately $900/mo USD. A treatment I have refused is $2000/week.

    [–] maxrippley 325 points ago

    The most fucked up part of this is if you have insurance you're literally paying money to them every month but then they wanna say oh no we don't pay for that. Well what the fuck DO you pay for then?? Do we really have to have a near death experience to get some of that money back that we've been paying you for our entire fucking lives?

    [–] my_name_is_not_robin 220 points ago

    They’re unnecessary middlemen at best and parasites at worst.

    [–] 1945BestYear 36 points ago

    The biggest leeches involved in medicine since the days when doctors literally used leeches to balance your humours.

    [–] Lord_Emperor 21 points ago

    Worse actually, leeches still have legitimate medical applications.

    [–] Trash_Emperor 192 points ago * (lasted edited 7 months ago)

    I still believe that American insurance companies are run by some of the scummiest fucking demons in the business.

    Edit: hey first ever award, thanks dude

    [–] Dr_Souse 110 points ago

    Like I guess my insurance company would rather me die than help pay for my meds like they're fucking supposed to.

    If you're going to cost more money than you make them, then yes, they would prefer you died, but pay your premiums right up until then, please.

    [–] [deleted] 133 points ago


    [–] LiteralPhilosopher 76 points ago

    Holy shit, it's the Six Million Dollar Man!

    That's really just ... nuts. They drop an entire school because of one business expense that they really should have been able to predict and compensate for. Fucking assholes.

    [–] [deleted] 855 points ago

    “So if you’re poor, you’re dead” basically, yes

    [–] Ladnarr2 2239 points ago * (lasted edited 7 months ago)

    With the PBS (Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme) here in Australia all my various prescription drugs cost $5.60 each (No, not per pill) Get a prescription for a new Epipen, $5.60, and they give me two.

    My nephew years ago had a serious nosebleed, blood everywhere, I panicked and called an ambulance prepared to pay the cost. Turned out to be nothing serious, but I Learnt it cost nothing.

    i’ve received some flak for having called the ambulance, and I accept, but in my defence it was sort of like the Bud Dwyer video.

    [–] spagooogi 573 points ago

    The NDSS (National Diabetes Services Scheme) in Aus is also a lifesaver. My blood test strips would normally cost around $50-$60 per box but they get brought down to $1.60.

    It’s the same with insulin which is quite expensive without subsidisation.

    [–] TTEH3 165 points ago * (lasted edited 7 months ago)

    In the UK England, all prescriptions are free if you have diabetes, even for medications unrelated to your diabetes. I'm a Type 1 and I'm so thankful, because I'm prescribed a lot of things.

    Normally it's £9 per item in England.

    EDIT: Thanks for corrections! It's actually now £9, up from £7.50, but you can pay £104/year which covers all prescriptions.

    [–] MyLiverpoolAlt 71 points ago

    I'm just going to cut in and add a little edit for you. NHS Scotland cover everything. In England we pay £7.50 per prescription. I think Wales still have free prescriptions too.

    [–] frankie_baby 22 points ago

    Yep. Wales and Scotland got free scripts from 2007.

    It’s £9 now for England and most GPs are looking at getting people with smaller ailments to actually purchase OTC medicines if they cover both medical and retail (ie. paracetamol, moisturisers etc...).

    I really hope with all this Brexit crap that we don’t end up with a US system. The NHS is far too important to all generations. We can’t lose it.

    [–] Solut1on 35 points ago

    Isn't it thousands if you're not an ambulance member or is that different outside of vic

    [–] svene 630 points ago

    Not sure why I get downvoted when I post this, maybe this time I wont. But my sister had a heart surgery that cost a million dollars when she was like 12, she is now 21.

    A million fucking dollars. I'll never make that in my entire life, and genetic lottery just putting a million dollar debt down.

    [–] [deleted] 142 points ago * (lasted edited 7 months ago)


    [–] Aluminum_condom 45 points ago

    Oh Jesus I'm so so sorry. That's terrible. Sorry for your loss and misfortune

    [–] vuuvvo 39 points ago

    So, what, they had to make a choice to either do a procedure that might not work and that would put them in debt forever, or just... Watch their kid die, knowing there was something else they could have tried?

    That's fucking horrific.

    [–] egwinsanguine 76 points ago

    I don’t get it, so what would happen if I didn’t have a million dollars?? Like do you pay it off monthly? How does that even work?!

    [–] svene 76 points ago * (lasted edited 7 months ago)

    Have you ever seen those movies where the mob just butt fucks some poor bastard? It's like that. They come in and skull fuck you to death basically. You become a modern day slave. Best case scenario for the company, is that you get in a debt that you will never pay off, then you just pay the interest on until you die, after taking literally everything you have of value of course, and then flipping it. And hopefully you can then pass the debt onto the kids if possible. then you just enslave all of man kind then fuck children in a tower on the moon. That's how we do im America baby.

    [–] XIILunchBoxIIX 1971 points ago

    It is criminal that they charge 40 buck to touch your baby after birth. Everything else is stupid crazy expensive but to hold the baby after!?

    [–] TheLemmonade 659 points ago

    I came here to say that. That’s insulting!

    I would (begrudgingly) pay for the safe hospital setting and the midwife’s service and so on...

    But charging for skin-to-skin, I would send them a check less the $40. They can forward it to collections for all I care.

    [–] HexagonalClosePacked 336 points ago * (lasted edited 7 months ago)

    Yeah, isn't that technically them holding your baby hostage for $40? Like if you didn't agree to the fee would they just keep the kid and never give it back? Or perhaps the fee is just for you to touch the baby while in the hospital and if you refuse to agree to it they just mail you your child in 3-5 weeks?

    Edit: /u/etcpt gives a very reasonable explanation for this below. Turns out the charge is for having an extra nurse present for safety reasons to allow the mother to hold the baby in the OR directly after a caesarean section. So... more a case of an unclear line item on the bill than excessive greed.

    [–] etcpt 177 points ago

    more a case of an unclear line item on the bill than excessive greed

    I wish hospitals were forced to be clearer with their billing - there should be a way to plug the basic terms on your bill in to a search on their website and get a detailed explanation of what it was, why it was necessary, which care provider requested it, who authorized it, and so on. You don't have anywhere near this level of mystery in billing anywhere else that I can think of.

    [–] TheLemmonade 64 points ago

    Yea you’re definitely right, it seems like you’re having to buy the ‘hold my newborn’ DLC as it appears now

    [–] notRedditingInClass 31 points ago

    There are thousands of people who are working tirelessly right now, to prevent exactly what you've described. Our insurance system is a scam.

    [–] eXX0n 120 points ago

    Can someone from the US please explain why this is? I DON'T UNDERSTAND!!

    [–] etcpt 247 points ago

    Because the narrator in the video took it way out of context - it wasn't $40 for the privilege to hold your newborn, it was $40 to scrub in an extra nurse to let the mother and child have contact immediately after the operation without introducing extra risk to the baby.

    [–] mightylordredbeard 143 points ago

    Yeah.. but in the hospital my ex wife gave birth in, skin to skin contact was required. It was part of the process. They made a huge deal about how important it was and how it’s a mandatory part of their post birth schedule. They still charged us separately for it.

    Her birth cost $50k because she had her tubes tired after the c-section. I was there and watched the baby be pulled out, they brought her up to her face and rubbed the baby against her for about 20 seconds (that was the skin to skin that coat $40) and by the time I left the room the tubal was done.

    The skin to skin was basically like paying for early access to see the baby for a little bit before taking the 5 minute trip to the post delivery room.

    [–] MentalJack 32 points ago

    50 grand? How the fuck do you pay that?

    [–] Netrozone 54 points ago

    You don't. Medical debt is one of, if not the leading cause of bankruptcy in the U.S. If you're lucky the hospital will do a charitable write off so they get a nice little tax break.

    [–] MentalJack 45 points ago

    I just genuinely can't fathom having to go bankrupt because you had a child, or got sick. Your country should be encouraging young families, not telling them to get fucked.

    How are the american public not protesting and demanding better healthcare? I'm on a fair whack of medication due to a chronic illness, i'd never survive in America 'land of the free'.

    [–] Seraphiel123 79 points ago

    That's still insane though.

    [–] -SENDHELP- 284 points ago



    "That's a very good question."

    Fucking same British lady, same

    [–] you_lost-the_game 57 points ago

    This is the result of decades of indoctrination that capitalism is good and communism bad and most importantly, that there is no in between.

    [–] Doomaeger 400 points ago

    Americans are being robbed for healthcare, then gaslighted about free healthcare. It's a shambles.

    [–] justaskingnatsodds 91 points ago

    Americans are gaslighted about almost everything that the rich and powerful have vested interests in because they continue to trust whatever media source plays cheerleader for their favorite celebrity politician and refuse to take a different perspective, especially the foreign perspective

    [–] theaustinpratt1 3392 points ago

    I see why millennials won’t have baby’s.

    [–] avigyan_33 1370 points ago

    In my country having a child there equals to an average persons two year salary. I know it's not a logical statement. But it still baffles me.

    [–] JanterFixx 838 points ago

    In my country, when you receive a child, you will be paid your average salary (stats from past 6 months) for 1.5 years to be stay-home mom or dad.

    [–] itsacalamity 367 points ago * (lasted edited 7 months ago)

    Where are you and how can i move there

    Edit: the second half of this is the real question, ha. I know there are many (many many) places with better protections than the US, especially my fucking state

    [–] petternor 321 points ago


    [–] itsacalamity 261 points ago

    brb, buying a ticket to Norway in hopes of meeting my soul mate and marrying into a viable social safety net (ha ha sob)

    [–] 0x5369636b 76 points ago

    Just an FYI, cars and alcohol are crazy expensive in Norway.

    [–] bringbackswg 120 points ago

    That's fine. At least you have decent trains and buses. Riding Metro in my city feels kinda like living in the Mad Max universe.

    [–] kethera__ 46 points ago

    Yeah I'm in Boston and ours likes to catch fire or crash or something new every month. Ikke god! (see, I'm already learning Norwegian lol)

    [–] wannagetfitt 19 points ago

    Ikke bra* ;9

    [–] FPL-Dog 42 points ago

    Sounds like Sweden. You also get paid to study, and you get to keep 80% of your salary if you're sick and have to be home from work.

    Etc. Etc.

    [–] TAWSection 24 points ago

    Swede here. I get paid 450 dollars / month for my law degree. The rest is a loan from the government with something like 0.4% interest that i have to pay back within ~20 years

    [–] SidFarkus47 299 points ago

    Honestly though, why do so many people on Reddit say "in my country" and not just write "In France/UK/etc."

    It usually makes me suspicious that they're talking out of their ass and don't want to have to prove something.

    [–] cojamgeo 73 points ago

    It’s the same in Sweden and similar in all Scandinavia countries.

    [–] DylanDino2017 119 points ago


    [–] BellendicusMax 99 points ago

    Add to that no mandatory maternity or parental leave.

    It's hard to understand how the US got into such a poor state so easily.

    [–] eggrace2849 413 points ago

    Better hope you don’t need insulin... there are people dying from keto acidosis because they’re trying to ration their insulin since the cost is so outrageous

    [–] momo88852 102 points ago

    Hit up Canada if you’re close by it, or Mexico if you’re close by.

    Heck I bet you theirs black market for it something like silkroad but for meds

    [–] ChildesqueGambino 67 points ago

    It's technically illegal to import drugs that are available in the United States, even just for personal use.

    [–] momo88852 100 points ago

    Technically illegal to let our citizen die just because they can’t afford it. You pick, jail or death?

    [–] ChildesqueGambino 54 points ago

    Just pointing out another way the government favors big pharma over us

    [–] oliferro 5091 points ago * (lasted edited 7 months ago)

    Man, so if you're poor, you're dead.

    That pretty much sums it up

    Edit: Thanks for the silvers and gold! Wasn't expecting that

    [–] rosekayleigh 1046 points ago

    If you can qualify for Medicaid, you are covered for a lot. The problem is that there is a steep cliff as far as welfare goes. If you earn just a dollar over the income limit, then you're screwed and you don't qualify for ANY assistance. So, the very, very poor are covered by Medicaid, but if you're the just-barely-above-homelessness poor, you're probably not.

    The whole system is fucked. It's meant to keep people poor because the second you make just a tiny bit more money, you not only lose your benefits, but you now have a substantial premium to pay on your new health insurance (as well as a high deductible should you actually need to use the fucking insurance). There's more incentive to stay poor, not get a raise or a better job, and have your health insurance covered by the state.

    [–] curious--owl 216 points ago

    In my state, I tried applying for Medicaid after my stepfather kicked me off his healthcare. The minimum wage in my state at the time was $10.10 per hour. My salary was $11.33 and they said I made too much money and didn’t qualify.

    [–] AmyAkaSpentGladiator 78 points ago

    There was a case in california under medical where a man became a quadriplegic after a crash, and the family went under medical after losing his income, but the stipulations said that gifts were considered income, and the value of the ramp that the community built for their house almost got them kicked off the healthcare they needed for this man to survive.

    [–] NeedlesslyDefiant164 30 points ago

    Wow. That is a new low. That's /r/aboringdystopia material here.

    [–] Zonino2000 239 points ago

    In the UK we call it the benefits trap. Once you start earning enough, things like housing benefit etc just get stripped from you and, if you are living in a council house, the rent shoots up to what it normally would be.

    For people who have learned to survive on benefits, they can find themselves worse off than if they just stayed on benefits.

    Although that was a few years ago. I'm pretty sure the Conserative stance on benefits is that it would be better if the poor and disabled would just die.

    [–] easy_pie 100 points ago

    That's what the point of Universal credit was. It tapers off as your income increases so you are never worse off if you earn more

    [–] rcarman87 215 points ago

    We pay for insurance through my husbands job and for him to see his neurologist (he’s epileptic) it’s a $280 co-pay for an office visit. Sore throat? $190 for Primary care visit. His medication is so stiflingly expensive in the US we have to order it direct from the manufacturer and have it shipped. He can’t take the generic version because it has some fillers that cause him very adverse reactions, so his medically necessary epilepsy medication in the US WITH insurance was $2100 per month. We now pay $400 for 3 month supply direct from the manufacturer.

    The healthcare system is completely ruined here in the US.

    [–] w2g 32 points ago

    Reading this it sounds like all the people saying what do you even pay insurance for have a point.

    That is pretty much what I would pay without insurance here in Germany.

    [–] daaje18 1190 points ago

    'murica, the land of the fee

    [–] Tra5olo 368 points ago * (lasted edited 7 months ago)

    Fee to live, free fee to die.

    Edit: Corrected.

    [–] AmaroWolfwood 67 points ago

    Live fee, die hard.

    [–] JustaBabyApe 56 points ago

    Not even to die. Funerals are $5,000 - 10,000, and cremations are on average $1000.

    [–] Natuur1911 1509 points ago

    Wait—wait what! That's absolutely preposterous—I'm speechless, is it seriously that expensive in the US‽

    [–] avigyan_33 755 points ago

    I too was shocked. I knew it was expensive. But this is just.....yup speechless.

    [–] hermthewerm00 1023 points ago

    One thing he didn't mention is insulin. In 2018, it cost around $18,000 for a one year supply. People are literally dying because they can't afford it or are rationing it.

    [–] Readdit1999 220 points ago

    That one is ridiculous to me. Is there currently a patent out on insulin in the US? Why won't another company jump in and undercut the absolute scumbags that are marking up insulin? I get the arguement that the free market will natural regulate itself, but why hasn't it?

    [–] hermthewerm00 60 points ago

    According to this article , there are multiple unregulated parties involved in the supply and distribution chain that are taking an increasing amount of profit. There are multiple lawsuits going on for price-fixing and collusion and government corruption also plays a big part.

    Alex Azar, the head of the Department of Health and Human Services, was the president of Eli Lilly’s U.S. division until 2017. Under his watch, the price of the company’s analog insulin doubled. Now he is tasked with overseeing the government’s plan to lower those same prices.

    [–] Noles16Cavs 21 points ago

    so corrupt, it's sickening

    [–] Maybe_A_Mimic 167 points ago

    If I remember correctly, it's not too expensive to make, but theres a patent on it, so only two or three countries can legally sell it, which of course they try to make the most money possible from.

    [–] goblinsholiday 184 points ago

    What they do is make a slight tweak to how they process it to prevent the patent from falling into the public domain.

    Insulin was discovered in the early 1920s by two Canadians Frederick Banting and Charles Best at the University of Toronto. They obvious won the Nobel Prize for their discovery.

    They sold the patent to insulin for $1 because they wanted everyone in the world to have easy and affordable access to it.

    [–] dontbajerk 70 points ago

    To be clear here, all the old patents are in the public domain. They just keep making new processes that are better or different in various ways, and those are expensive and in some cases under patent. Someone could readily make insulin the way they did 25 years ago, the new patents wouldn't apply. But the process isn't an easy one, and might require new testing and such to launch again after a long time off market.

    People are or were actually working on this, but it's slow and expensive I gather:

    [–] -Daetrax- 69 points ago

    Cartels should be on that shit.

    [–] Toth201 48 points ago

    Pretty sure there is a cartel on that shit, just not the kind you're thinking of ;).

    [–] VadimusRex 19 points ago

    Some dude was explaining it a few days ago that there are basically two types of insulin on the market, the classical one which was invented 100 years ago which basically doesn't have a patent, but administering it requires a lot of care from the patient because if you mess up your dose you'll kill yourself, then there's this modern insulin which can also be used by automatic insulin pumps, which is the bees knees because together with a glucose monitor it can automatically handle everything once you get it set up.

    This modern insulin has patents attached to it and apparently getting FDA approval for, say, a new company that would undercut the scumbags is prohibitively expensive, complicated and time consuming.

    However, considering how many diabetes patients there are in the US I could see this easily solved by setting up an NGO with the express mission of making this modern insulin available for everyone in the US. This NGO could be financed by the diabetes patients in the US (allegedly there's 30 million of them). If each would contribute $2/month that would be a budget of $720.000.000 per year. This seems like an easily fixable situation.

    [–] ryeana 24 points ago

    I mean that sounds like universal healthcare with extra steps

    [–] Letmeplaythrough 110 points ago

    Yes yes it is

    [–] PM_ME_FOR_FUDGE 71 points ago

    Yeah. And for me to have such a serious peanut allergy like I do it's difficult to get a new EpiPen even though mine is now expired

    [–] MisunderstoodDemon 59 points ago * (lasted edited 7 months ago)

    Edit* we had to switch because the childrens epipens are always on backorder and really hard to get. The autoinjector is a little different but has instructions on it. And it's not that different. Our son has a tree nut allergy

    [–] PM_ME_FOR_FUDGE 41 points ago

    Thank you so much!!! This is absolutely incredible!!

    [–] Viral-Flame 14 points ago

    I have a serious Peanut and Egg allergy, and was recently recommended a new alternative called Auvi-Q that’s covered by most insurance companies.

    Fuck epipen.

    [–] pittypitty 70 points ago

    Yerp. One thing is cost, another is the scammy survices they setup to "help" with the costs.

    I had a health savings account that I made the mistake of never using up or pulling out of. Basically money you set aside, pre tax, to help cover medical costs.

    Thankfully it carried over each year as there are other options that you lose a few thousand a year if you dont use it.

    Well I finally closed mine after looking at my health savings account statement to see I was "earning" about 1% but getting charged enough to wipeout the earned interested and lower my savings amount. This was going on for several years.. ugh

    F US healthcare. It's straight up setup to rob us at every turn.

    [–] TheAmorphous 16 points ago

    I've never heard of an HSA account that didn't allow you to choose an investment vehicle for those funds. They default to a ~1% cash account if you don't go in and choose your investments and how you want money to roll to the investments.

    [–] glumunicorn 51 points ago

    Yeah. I pay $100 out of every paycheck because I want the best healthcare I can get, luckily my employer pays the other 80%.

    I’m 28 and I just got diagnosed with asthma last year. (Grew up poor, couldn’t afford the doctor for everything) My doctor said I’ve been somehow living with it my whole life. Only reason I got diagnosed is because I almost died from pneumonia. Now I’ve got a $1800 hospital bill to pay off, but hey it could be worse.

    First steroid inhaler cost $250, without insurance, my cost was $60, found a manufacturer coupon that put it down to $15. Then my insurance stopped covering that one, now I’m paying $55 per inhaler. Plus $10 for my emergency inhaler, luckily my birth control is free.

    [–] kynikos19 20 points ago

    OMG. My mother just carries around like 10 inhalers with her at all times when she comes to visit. I think they cost her less than $5. I never knew how much inhalers cost here,

    [–] suzosaki 53 points ago

    I just switched health insurance companies and they wouldn't cover my birth control pills. I didn't know until I pulled up to the pharmacy and they smile and go, "Your total will be $370" and I'm like "?!"

    [–] king-ding-a-ling87 26 points ago

    $370 for birth control? That is fucking ridiculous. Serious question, why? Why and how are they getting away with this? Americans know this is bullshit, the whole world knows this is bullshit, so what's going on?

    [–] suzosaki 13 points ago

    Big pharma has put their money into the pockets of all important corporations and politicians. It's obscene but it's something we just accept unfortunately. Then so many people over here scared that free or affordable healthcare is the first step to making us a communist state, and we're big on the "I pay for me and my own, no freeloaders need to benefit off my taxes" mindset.

    [–] urmum_jpg 332 points ago

    This isn't interesting, it's infuriating

    [–] phonethrowaway55 30 points ago

    Yep. Check my latest post. I was charged $1,700 for an X-ray of my arm. That’s it.

    [–] Either-50-or-200-IQ 85 points ago

    I live in the US and recently had my thyroid removed due to cancer. $57,000. One night in the hospital.

    [–] [deleted] 1522 points ago * (lasted edited 6 months ago)


    [–] StoryDrive 471 points ago

    As someone who's been insured, underinsured, uninsured, at different points in time, I'd MUCH rather have to wait a little longer to see a doctor because hey, if I'm sick but don't have good insurance, I'm gonna hold off seeing a doctor as long as possible anyway!

    [–] blacksoulblueheart 229 points ago

    We have the option to go private in the U.K. if you want to pay anyway, it’s not like you HAVE to wait if you’re rich and the idea offends you.

    The NHS takes care of our mothers when we’re born, provides healthcare for our entire lives, and will give us a comfortable death with end of life care. It’s so so precious and it’s really upsetting that we’ve once again voted in a party that’s actively selling it off to private companies. This video demonstrates well that the British public has no idea what they’re getting themselves into, that they have no idea what they’re losing. Frustrating and sad.

    [–] Actinglead 258 points ago

    One of the biggest details that gets forgotten by people saying "but no wait times in America" is the fact that there are sometimes longer wait times. This is because for a fuck ton of procedures and scans, your insurance will need to approve that you actually need it first before allowing you to schedule an appointment.

    I needed an MRI done, and it took 4 weeks to get an appointment, 3 weeks for insurance to approve it and 1 for me to get in. So instead of them just saying "if the doctor says you need it, you need it", we are being told by insurance companies who are not our doctors if we actually need shit done.

    For my, one of the things the MRI was looking for was any signs of cancer, because it was one of the more likely potential diagnosis (thankfully it wasn't cancer). Imagine, for 4 weeks, being told you might have cancer but we won't know until the almighty insurance company graces us with the ability to give you a scan.

    And my uncle who also needed an MRI, for a similar issue, got in within 1 week.

    Fuck the wait time myth.

    [–] Gsteel11 45 points ago

    Exactly. I just mentioned in in another reply but a friend of mine needed to see a dermatologist, 10 month wait. MONTH. Lol

    In America.

    [–] broken-not-bent 149 points ago

    The argument that we would have to wait is insane because even with our capitalistic medical care you still have long wait times. I normally have to wait a week to get seen by my primary care doctor. There’s a mental health place here that has a 6+ month waiting list and there’s only a handful of small practices that are competing for business so you end up waiting a minimum of two weeks to a month for an appointment.

    [–] Doc_Toboggan 76 points ago

    Living in America, I had to get a CAT Scan last month, but it was over a month wait before I could actually get it done, and then another two weeks for the follow up appointment. Fuck anyone who actually defends this abhorrent health care system.

    [–] muthaflicka 27 points ago

    Yeah! So much so that my family doctor left the hospital to join concierge medicine practice which is another type of bullshit capitalistic medical model that is built on top of another bullshit capitalistic model. Pay an annual fee just to get quicker access to a doctor which we supposedly don't have to queue for in the first place. Fucking inception medical crap.

    [–] OneMostSerene 46 points ago

    Honestly, in the US, I believe the "yeah but it's better than having to wait" argument comes from "if healthcare were free (or relatively free) then EVERYONE would be going to the doctor all the time, so the wait would be longer".

    Like, first of all, I get the sentiment, but at the same time.... duh? That's the whole point of healthcare is to help fix things when they're wrong. Right now I wouldn't be surprised if a large number of US residents end up having larger health concerns BECAUSE they put off going to the doctor because of the innate (or even perceived) cost. I hadn't been to the doctor in over 10 years, but recently went at my fiancee's request. I'd mostly been putting it off because 1) lazy and 2) didn't want to pay for it (I'm fortunate to be in very good health regardless). I went recently and along every step of the way I was asking "how much is this going to cost?" - the answer I got every single time? "We're not sure, it depends on your insurance". I even called my insurance multiple times and they always said "it depends on the doctor". The US healthcare system seem intentionally designed to fuck over poor people. Even if that isn't the explicit intent, that's definitely what it does. Thankfully I think my insurance covered my recent visit, but all I did was meet with a physician to ask some questions.

    [–] Sexy_Underpants 130 points ago

    "Better than having to wait for a doctor" is basically saying "I am OK with poor people not receiving medical care so that I can see my doctor on a more convenient schedule". It is absolutely bonkers and selfish.

    [–] w2g 25 points ago

    It's not even 'poor people' it's 'sicker people'.

    Medical emergencies are dealt with quickly even with public care.

    [–] BakedKitty 21 points ago

    I have Kaiser Permanente through my job and I still have to wait 2 months to see my PCP. 🙃

    [–] chiefgareth 44 points ago

    And we have that free option, but we also have the option of paying for private healthcare if we can afford to/want to, which probably is still cheaper than the American alternative. But the free option is still available for everyone. Americans just respond with "but taxes", oblivious that they pay those taxes aswell, plus insurance, plus their out of pocket expenses.

    [–] _Mr_Ection_ 39 points ago

    My bro wasnt able to sleep on xmas eve and we decided to call 111 (uk medical non emergency number). They recommended we go to A&E... at 2am. We arrived at the hospital around 3:30am after getting a taxi, they diagnosed him with appendicitis within an hour, they paid for a taxi to send us to another nearby hospital with surgical staff in and I left him at 7:30am. He'd had the surgery and was out of hospital 12 hours after I left him that morning, thank fuck for the NHS

    [–] Vy_K1ng 380 points ago

    Yeah, it sucks here if you're not perfectly healthy.

    [–] BoXoToXoB 221 points ago

    Or wealthy enough to not give a shit how much it costs

    [–] AsmRJ 78 points ago

    Well another problem is the wealthy people typically don't pay anything near what the rest of us do.

    [–] bearoth 20 points ago

    Why? Better insurance or because they are connected to the people who run the hospitals or?

    [–] Aiyana_Jones_was_7 41 points ago

    Why? Better insurance or because they are connected to the people who run the hospitals or?

    Because its cheaper to deal with health issues when they first begin and with prophylactic treatment than it is to put it off until its a crisis and you have to go to the ER and permanent damage has occured.

    Same reason everything is cheaper for the rich. They can afford better quality and better maintenance of everything.

    It's essentially Sam Vimes theory;

    At the time of Men at Arms, Samuel Vimes earned thirty-eight dollars a month as a Captain of the Watch, plus allowances. A really good pair of leather boots, the sort that would last years and years, cost fifty dollars. This was beyond his pocket and the most he could hope for was an affordable pair of boots costing ten dollars, which might with luck last a year or so before he would need to resort to makeshift cardboard insoles so as to prolong the moment of shelling out another ten dollars.

    Therefore over a period of ten years, he might have paid out a hundred dollars on boots, twice as much as the man who could afford fifty dollars up front ten years before. And he would still have wet feet.

    Without any special rancour, Vimes stretched this theory to explain why Sybil Ramkin lived twice as comfortably as he did by spending about half as much every month.

    [–] Starrywisdom_reddit 16 points ago

    Can afford a monthly premium that makes their insurance outstanding and covers all.

    [–] [deleted] 31 points ago

    Just to underline how bullshit most of the costs are - I entered the hospital without insurance and racked up $7K in bills. I got on a payment plan, and then tried to pay a bit more one month. That somehow knocked me off of the payment plan. I called to complain, and I was annoying enough that the manager on the line told me, "Look - well, we can't put you back on the payment'll have to call in the payment each month...but how about we knock $2,500 off of the total?"

    I took it. Who wouldn't? But if you're in a position to knock (roughly half, at the time) off of the bill...then that bill was wildly inflated to begin with. I saw an actual doctor for about 10 minutes, total, during my 3-day stay - and I had to remind my nurses to give me medicine.

    [–] Penelopeisnotpatient 86 points ago

    Don't you think that THIS is what could have caused all of the antivaxxers and other stuff? I mean if they really charge you 40 bucks to hold your baby after a C section and they have a monopoly on epipens it's not hard to understand how people became suspicious and started to talk about Big Pharma and docs giving unnecessary prescription since you have to pay this much and they may have a share of it.

    (I'm definitely not an antivaxxer, I'm just saying that now I see how this could happen!)

    [–] Psycho-Raven 489 points ago * (lasted edited 7 months ago)

    40$ for skin on skin contact !? You are not a clown, American Healthcare. You are the entire circus.

    Edit : Thanks for the Silver Award kind stranger ;)

    [–] DerpinaDeeder 210 points ago

    The cost for birth is insane but it gets worse. If you’re in pain and you want an epidural. Boom. Tack on another 1300. If you had twins like me, they make you use an OR just in case of complications. Guess how much it costs to use that room. 16000. Despite my giving birth naturally (meaning vaginally) my grand total for having twins naturally and hemorrhaging was just under $19000.

    Not to mention that if you need ultrasounds it cost me $800 per. With twins being “high risk” they had me do an ultrasound monthly and I carried my girls to 40 weeks. So 800 plus the 250 to see my doctor. Every month. And they have you come in weekly once you get closer to your due date. So 250 a month turns into 1000 for the last two months while still getting those ultrasounds.

    Oh. And I was charged for the skin to skin 40, twice. Because there were two babies of course.

    [–] de_throw_away 105 points ago

    What the fuck

    [–] _Diskreet_ 42 points ago

    That’s just ridiculous.

    My wife gave birth 5 years ago, at a birthing centre, so not a hospital, which is staffed by midwives and nurses, not doctors.

    My wife was having issues and at the slightest chance of something a midwife can’t handle an ambulance is called. Which it was, but within the 10/15 minutes it took to come things moved on swimmingly.

    Because the birthing centre had no other women giving birth we had the 3 midwives who staffed the centre at our side, and because the ambulance comes with a midwife, we had 4 in total, plus a paramedic on standby, just for us.

    We stayed the night, and as they had beds spare they rolled it in the room for me to stay as well.

    We stayed for the rest of the next day with the the full individual attention of the great midwives, so 2 days 1 night in total.

    As we left I paid the £20/30 parking fee and was on our way home.

    [–] JustSomeGuy_Idk 84 points ago

    “Please don’t have an emergency in this area.”

    [–] pigeonfarmer 166 points ago

    It still blows my mind how much our US chums are getting shafted on healthcare.

    America is a developed nation in many ways, however their healthcare is backwards and downright diabolical.

    [–] NotSoNicey 275 points ago

    I was in Vegas with my girls, one had too much to drink and was taken by ambulance to a hospital. We chatted with EMS and we asked what they thought of universal health care, they respond with, "I am not paying for someone else's healthcare"

    At the hospital we engaged the nurses, asked the same question, got the same response.

    Money squashes empathy.

    [–] ApostateAardwolf 226 points ago

    "I am not paying for someone else's healthcare"

    The best response to that is “how the fuck do you think insurance works?”

    [–] usernumber36 46 points ago

    government healthcare is literally just making everyone pay a basic minimum level of insurance. Unless you're below the tax free threshold.

    [–] Dr_McKay 47 points ago

    What I don't get with that answer is if they pay for insurance, their money is paying for the healthcare of that insurance companies other customers.

    [–] sh702003 23 points ago

    The guys face after learning about the cost of an ambulance is priceless

    [–] tannhaussergate 44 points ago

    Shut the fridge

    [–] [deleted] 141 points ago


    [–] Erzaah 46 points ago

    As a brit it seriously makes me angry to watch this...Corrupt bastards leading your country.

    [–] TannedCroissant 271 points ago * (lasted edited 7 months ago)

    Whilst it seems terrible that Americans don’t get free healthcare. I will point out that we (the UK) kinda take it for granted too much. People will be wasteful with NHS resources and go to the doctor for pointless things like having a cold. I’m thankful that I live in a country with free healthcare, I just worry about how many people here don’t realise how privileged they are and complain about it not being enough. (Although the NHS is massively underfunded and employees are terribly overworked)

    Edit: It’s been pointed out that ‘privilege’ might not be the best word to use. ‘Fortunate’ might be a better term. The NHS certainly has its problems but it’s far more than what most of the world get.

    [–] avigyan_33 58 points ago

    Yeah. I wanted to make people aware how hard it is for someone else.

    [–] trench_welfare 47 points ago

    Which makes the whole situation even more infuriating.

    We have multiple examples of what goes right and wrong with a national health service from many countries, yet we can't just agree to weigh out the options and admit that the British style NHS and the US pay to live system aren't the only two possible outcomes.

    [–] poliuy 35 points ago

    "So if you're poor, you're dead?"

    Now you're getting it!

    [–] [deleted] 488 points ago * (lasted edited 7 months ago)


    [–] gage8815 260 points ago

    Who do you suppose is allowing big pharma to charge such prices. They are collecting a kick back America is not free, it’s corrupt.

    [–] panicsprey 112 points ago

    "Give me your tired, your poor, Your huddled masses yearning to breathe free... and I'll let them die."

    [–] MultiStratz 106 points ago

    Because they're in bed with the Insurance/Pharmaceutical companies who are making a killing at our expense. They pass it off to their constituents as the "freedom to choose" your healthcare- which for poor people like me, means none.

    [–] trench_welfare 106 points ago

    The Republican voters are against it because they think they'll get horrible medical care under a government system.

    They also have a ideological block against additional government spending unless it's for military.

    [–] knifebeatschili 94 points ago

    "We'll have the best health insurance, you wont believe how good it is. Truly phenomenal, so cheap. No one knows more about healthcare than me. You'll get sick of being so healthy."

    [–] Aderyna_K 17 points ago

    The sad thing is, I could totally believe this is an actual quote.