Yeah, I agree with Howard Fineman. You got a problem with that?
Read his Newsweek article about his experiences being admitted to an Argentinian hospital and how he believes we should be focused on the costs of health care in this country.
His bill for a hospital stay with dehydration in Argentina: About $1500. Similar hospitalization in the US: $10,000 to $15,000 – if he was lucky. Money quote: “Most Americans have no idea how much their health care really costs, nor do they know how well it really works ….”
We desperately need price transparency in our health care system.
Look at the four systems in Pennsylvania that I reviewed in a previous post. If one hospital cost 4 times as much as another hospital for treating the same medical problem, would that affect anyone’s decision on where to go for medical care?
One commenter to the article noted that “Health services are often urgently needed and the consumer doesn’t have the time or inclination to shop around.” If people shop around for weeks to find the best deal on a car and spend all Sunday morning going through newspaper ads to find the cheapest head of broccoli at the grocery store, I have no sympathy for those who “don’t have the time or inclination” to research where they would want to go if their life was on the line or if they needed specialized surgery.
Regardless of what health care reform measures are taken, we still need to be educated consumers with our most important assets – our lives.