QA問答：在美國，如果有人付不起醫藥費怎么辦？What happens to someone in America if they cant afford their medical bills?
2022-03-14 wuhaowsh 12165 0 1 收藏 糾錯&舉報
What happens to someone in America if they cant afford their medical bills?
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it is not about not being able to afford medical insurance! In 1996 my 44 year old wife was diagnosed with Colon cancer. 44 years old. non smoker a very healthy lifestyle and suddenly after a slip in the bathtub she had an xray of her back because she thought she has hurt it. While she was being treated with radiation her insurance premium came due. When I trie to pay it the cancelled her policy calling it a preexisting condition. At the time I was the CEO of a highly respected children’s mental health hospital. We had the very best insurance money could buy then. her treatment was topped and she died a few weeks later. I lost my wonderful wife, our home, cars and everything else I had worked for my entire professional life. We had just finished personally building the home we expected to retire in on a beautiful island in Washington State. I wound up moving to an apartment.
I would like someone from the Right who screams “Socialism” (meaning “Communism”) when asked why they are against any form of a national health care system defend your experience as being appropriate. I thank you for sharing. It is these real life experiences that will hopefully one day bring Light to the hearts and minds of the Right.
The NHS is NOT socialist it was the brainchild of none other than Winston Churchill, it is like Police, Government, armed forces and the like a Socialised system paid for by taxes for the benefit of all.
PS Nye Bevan was the health minister in Churchill’s wartime government, and fought him tooth and nail to stop Churchill bringing the NHS into existence during WW2.
Sorry for the loss of your wife, my Late Fiance Marichu died Of Brain Cancer 2 yrs ago she was only 41 yrs old I loved her Sooo much. Before the brain cancer she had breast cancer 4 yrs ago I emptied out Most of my 401 k retirement account to pay for her Surgery and her Chemo treatments And blood transfusions for almost 1 yr. She got Healthy again but then got this Horrible brain cancer, the US govt penalized me thousands of dollars for early withdrawal even though it's medical emergency this is a DISGRACE period. Many millions of Americans even with Health insurance if U get serious disease can Wipe U out Financially. That's why we need Universal healthcare for all Middle class and Poor Americans just like in Canada, Australia and European countries even third world Country Cuba has Universal healthcare for all its Citizens. Bernie Sanders is the main politician to support this. The problem in USA is many politicians in both political parties are Corrupt Elitists who are all in Bed with the big Insurance and Pharmaceutical companies.
You are exactly correct. New Zealand is like Canada. if she had been here she may still be alive. here everyone is treated equal. I moved over 20 yrs ago and passed all my medical and immigration stuff to become a citizen. 8 yrs after being here I fet unusually sick and went to see my doc. I was told I had 8 months to live! I was the director of th oldest hospital in the country. I was told I needed a liver transplant! Whaat?! Turns out when I was 17 I left America to both avoid going to Vitenam and to continue my studies. I moved to Mexico. My minor was Anthropology and I was stomping through the Yucatan jungle in sandals and tee shirts. Dumb youth. I contracted malaria. Not a fun time but got over it. That was 1967. It took from then to 2007 for it to show up. I never knew it damaged livers. Anyway I received a new liver, my wife was flown to Auckland where I was in hospital and put up in a 4 star hotel for 3 months to be with me. All our airfares were paid for. No expense was on us except food. I have had a knee replacement and that was free as well. Don’t tell me docs are inferior with universal healthcare. It is a two pill cure. it is free here but 5 yrs ago the same medication in the US was $80,000 per pill!
Thank you very Much for your comments Robert, I'm glad your Happy in New Zealand. Yes seems like U have Very good Universal healthcare in New Zealand as well just like your neighbor country Australia. I actually on my Late father's side have distant relatives from Queensland Australia but I had never met them. His side of family is mostly from Sicily and Austria but some migrated to Australia.Yes in the USA they brainwash everyone that if we have Universal healthcare their tax rates will go up to 70 percent and the medical care would be inferior.Thats what happens when Bernie Sanders campaigns for Universal healthcare in USA. Maybe someday we will have in USA, you take care always God bless.
Unfortunately most people in the US believe to the point of being brainwashed that the “Land of the Free” is better than anywhere else in the world. Look at the way trump has consistently repeated his “false truths” (called lies in most parts of the world), and US people just suck it up. Even people elected to uphold the integrity and honour of their Government can’t bring themselves to call him on his dishonesty. And the people just lie down and take it.
The wonder and awe that the rest of the world once had for everything USA is quickly turning to mockery and derision
My dad had colon cancer a few years back, he and his brother were diagnosed at the same sort of time. It was such a miserable time, I can’t imagine losing your home and property too. It seems like a lottery in America, healthcare is great so long as you don’t need it. If you do you could lose everything. My dad and his brother are both clear now, my dad only went to to doctor with indigestion and they diagnosed him within a few days and had him in for surgery a week or two later, he was so frail when he came home, he looked his age for the first time in his life snd he had a hole right through him where they removed his bowel etc . He wouldn’t have accepted any treatment if it would have cost us our Home, I know what he’s lik, but it didn’t cost us a penny, except for new Pjs and slippers and stuff to take in to hospital.
USA is so cruel to her own people. And the worst thing is the people fight for the system they have, so scared of being perceived as socialist, but why are police and fire depts not considered socialist then? I’m so sorry you had the experience you did, but I really admire your bravery and perseverance in trying something completely new - more than once, and thriving.
A lot of people just die.
A lot more suffer with treatable conditions for years with a low quality of life. This limits their ability to contribute to society through work.
Some will try to pay out of pocket and then experience crippling debt for the rest of their life.
All in all? The system sucks for most people who can't afford care and are not quite destitute enough to be in Medicaid.
You die. But before you too do you lose your home, your children’s college fund, everything your family has earned and worked for for 20 years. And you leave your spouse and children a legacy of crushing debt that will ruin their lives.
I have a friend who had breast cancer. The cost of radiation treatment, chemotherapy, and eventual mastectomy were so obscenely high that she could not have paid it off in 3 lifetimes. She had to file bankruptcy. A young couple were trying to cope with the expense of the birth of their first child when they get pregnant again. After the birth of their 2nd child, they had to forego buying a starter home and instead filed for bankruptcy. The for-profit American healthcare industry is harming people whether they have critical illness or just ordinary medical expenditures like childbirth. And of course, prescxtion drugs are so high that many people are rationing their medication, such as insulin, thereby endangering their own lives.
Filing bankruptcy appears to be the only answer for many. The only way to get out of this bottomless pit is to get government-negotiated healthcare and pharmaceuticals for everyone. It is already being done with Medicare and VA. It is just a matter of making Medicare for All a reality through Congressional legislation.
It varies significantly depending on where you live.
In most Democratic and swing voting states, Medicaid has been expanded to include the overwhelming majority of people who make 150% of the Federal poverty line and lower.
Basically all of the states that are blue on this map have viable public healthcare systems for the poor.
Above the 150% poverty number, ACA subsidies tend to come into play. If you are at the lower end these ACA subsidies can pay for up to 50% of your premium.
Even still, in many rural areas insurance plans are too costly. As an example, my self-employed housemate gets a subsidy which makes his otherwise $450 /month premium closer to $280 /month in the Pittsburgh region. His friend who is also self-employed and makes roughly the same income, pays $600 /month after subsidies for a similar plan in Weirton, WV (30 miles away from Pittsburgh.)
So in many areas people make too much to qualify for Medicaid, but even with ACA subsidies, can only barely or can't afford the premiums.
Nevertheless, the poorest do qualify for Medicaid in the expanded states, and many people are happy with their ACA subsidized plans.
Ultimately roughly 30% of the population is uninsured or underinsured and they span the whole range of the bottom 50% of the population by income.
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You die, it is as simple as that. Most go into bankruptcy to get healthcare which is not the thing to do, but strangely they love their dear departed. CHRISTIAN CONSERVATIVES cannot understand this, it boggles their minds that someone would value the life of a loved one over the ALMIGHTY DOLLAR! They are appalled by this and strangely say they are PRO LIFE! They will tell you how they find life sacred as long as someone else if footing the bill!
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To be honest, it varies wildly. It all depends on who you are, where you are, and what is wrong with you. White with credit, chances are good. Anything else, you might as well go home and die.
Need to rename “Healthcare” to “Dollar care” because in the grand scheme of things, that is all the hospital is interested in. Don't get me wrong, the doctors and nurses definitely care and sympathize with you. But the hospital still rules.
I assume this means after treatment and when the bill comes?
They don’t pay. After a few “overdue notices” it will go to a collection agency.
Collection agency will call several times a week..More letters..They might try to call some of your close relatives to see if they know where you are. Meanwhile, your credit score will tank. If you had plans to take out loans (car, mortgage, small business) you will get denied or a very high interest rate.
There are some options that can be done from here:
-You can initiate contact with the collection agency and negoiate a settlement. If it’s under $5k, they’ll prob make a settlement offer (like if you owe $700, they’ll settle for a one time payment of $450). If it’s higher than that, they’ll push hard for to get payment plan going.
-Continue to be delinquent, your credit will continue to drop, but after 3 to 5 years (again, pending how much you owe) it might be forgiven.
There were two times in my adult life when I went without healthcare insurance. One was when I changed jobs, the other was between when I retired and Medicare kicked in. During both periods if I had had a serious accident or a serious illness, I would have been wiped out financially, so the whole time I was in that state I was on tenterhooks, as it were. Just crosses my fingers and hoped for good luck.
Worst case scenario one can get some care through emergency or charity services but it isn’t much.
I hate to be vague but much depends on how much you owe and to whom. Some providers will work with you, allowing you to pay what you can afford per month. If you fall behind they'll turn your account over to collections. If its a large sum that's owed I've known providers turn an account over after 90 days. Some people accept charitable donations. There was a collection taken for one of the staff at a local filling station to help with her cancer related bills. This us a common occurrence. So you see there us no fixed rule, and it us true that huge medical bills on top of a mortgage payment, car note etc is enough for people to file for bankruptcy.
I had medical bills I definitely couldn't afford to pay. Even with a decent paying job today I still can't afford it. I didn't pay them, and it went against my credit worthiness which if you have a better credit rating you can get things, home, car,etc., at a cheaper rate. So not paying your medical bills hurts that the most. But in laymans terms nothing happens except for that. Depending on how serious the care you are needing. I suppose you could be sued. And if that were the case we wouldn't have the judicial arena to handle all the cases. The population who can't pay their medical bills is astronomical.