Even the basic is so expensive

Submitted by hummingbird on Mon, 02/04/2008 - 07:08

My father in-law died 2 years ago. He left my mother in-law well off. He was not a rich man.he was a factory worker till he retired and he raised cattle also. he worked himself to death I think.He dies the year after he retired. Dies of a heart failure out in the fields running cattle.He had it fixed so that when he died every bill he owed was paid for.Then he left her a huge policy besides. Now my hubby if he passed away tomorrow I would be in the poor house...lol No insurance at all to pay for anything.What does a person do when to have insurance Even the basic is so expensive it is a choice between feeding the kids and having insurance?

Posted: 03 Feb 2008 10:28 Post Subject:

Your father inlaw probably took out the option to have the insurances on his bills also, sounds like he was a smart man, she is lucky to have a man be so organized.

Posted: 04 Feb 2008 07:21 Post Subject: similar things may work for you..

Now my hubby if he passed away tomorrow I would be in the poor house...lol No insurance at all to pay for anything.

A very true household picture for many like us!
I have a friend, who has opted for a family benefits program offered by her credit card company. The company is just charging worth $7 a month for the purchase-benefit program that helps controlling her regular purchases. Later on, I've hard that she's been offered with a health program by the same company which is worth $14.95 only! (I say 'only' since this time it is an annual pay cycle). Why don't you try searching for such programs!
Do keep in touch, Brenda_livelife

Posted: 04 Feb 2008 07:24 Post Subject: how abt term life ??

My dear, if I'd been on your situation, I'd have gone for a term life policy! I pay premiums for all those years that I can & that too a lower one, isn't it!

Posted: 04 Feb 2008 07:41 Post Subject:

Your father inlaw probably took out the option to have the insurances on his bills also, sounds like he was a smart man, she is lucky to have a man be so organized.

I agree :) a pretty smart move by your father-in-law.

The premium rates have gone up over the years, hence, when your father-in-law had taken out his policies the rates were not as high as they are now. Moreover, I feel that he had planed things pretty smartly as according to you he wasn't a wealthy man either. It's also to keep in mind that their lifestyle was also much simpler than that of ours.

Posted: 05 Feb 2008 01:31 Post Subject:

yes, My mother in-law did lots of canning and was a wiser of sorts.Still is to some degree. She does a lot of sewing and has worked most of her life .A very skilled person she is.

Posted: 17 Feb 2008 09:21 Post Subject: rates life insurance


I do know what you are talking about when you say either or eat or pay insurance. But you have to ask one question -- If your husband passes away tonight -- Where will you live, what will you eat tomorrow?

If you want you can contact me at mdonaldson[at]insurer.com and I can look at some rates that you and your husband can afford, I can also show you an opportunity that will help pay your bills -- I know you have kids -- I have 4 and a husband that is disabled -- I am the taxi cab, med driver and mom and dad in one... I can do it and so can you!!

Email edited - Evan

Posted: 17 Feb 2008 09:51 Post Subject:

I can also show you an opportunity that will help pay your bills

Please elaborate by providing complete details. IE..Name of company and specifically the nature, objectives and outline of this "opportunity."

I'm not trying to be abrasive...but it is important that readers of this Forum be very weary of certain types of offers.

Posted: 18 Feb 2008 03:45 Post Subject:

No insurance at all to pay for anything.What does a person do when to have insurance Even the basic is so expensive it is a choice between feeding the kids and having insurance?

What do you consider basic to be? Your mortgage, college, general living expenses, etc., etc.?

I don't know your families finances so please do not take this wrong way. Find a way to obtain some sort of life insurance policy on your husband before something happens. You can go the cheaper route (depends on the carrier) and obtain a term insurance product after a paramed has been completed OR you can opt for a non-paramed product. Just make sure the company you choose is financially sound.

I take health, disability, life and LTC insurance very seriously as some of my closest family members have had their lives changed due to lacking one of the aforementioned products. I rate the importance of insurance in this order and recommend you get on the ball and conduct some research. to see what options you have.

1) Health insurance
2) Accident insurance
3) Disability insurance
4) Critical Illness
5) Life Insurance

Most people only have one type of insurance if you read the stats on the internet and in various publications. Although there's nothing wrong with not buying other types of insurance, it's important to realize that the sacrifice you make now could help you down the road. Term insurance is ungodly cheap these days, and besides getting into a BTID debate, I believe it's better to have something in place than nothing.

I have no business relationships with the first two links, although I do sell (it's not my link) Fidelity Life when warranted.

http://www.term4sale.com/ (Quotes on Term products)

http://www.life-line.org/build/insurance_needs_calculator/index.php?pt=lfinc&m=1 (Online life insurance estimator)

https://sec.fidelitylife.com/Quote/ (cheapest non-paramed product on the market I've come across to date)

There is no question that feeding the family is more important than insurance. Instead of finding ways not to buy, if obtaining life insurance is important to you and your husband find a way to make it work.

Links deactivated as per forum rules

Posted: 20 Feb 2008 04:16 Post Subject:

Policies can be had fairly cheap after a little searching. If $15-$20 a month is the difference between feeding your children or protecting their future, feed them obviously.

Posted: 22 Feb 2008 06:10 Post Subject:

I will look into it. Hopefully I can find something that will work. Thanks

Posted: 26 Feb 2008 12:57 Post Subject:

One major thing I tell anyone who is taking out any type of loan is to be sure to get all the insurance. The biggies are the disability and death. They really aren't that much when spread over the life the loan. My father-in-law passed a few years agoand had a huge amount of loans..not one with any death insurance. After beating herself into the ground trying to hold two jobs, she finally had to let the bank foreclose. I know these days it is very hard to fit any extra money into ones budget but think of life insurance like you would electric or heating. It is a must. Can you imagine being that mother-in-law and in the end losing everything you have and starting over at a later age. We all splurge at least $20 a month if we really think about it. In this day and time why not splurge on a policy. It will help put your mind at rest. That alone is worth it.

Posted: 27 Feb 2008 04:42 Post Subject:

You are right .In fact I will start looking into right away.Maybe pay yearly with a tax refund. Some insurance is better than none.It certainly isn't going to get any cheaper by waiting.I don't think any of the company's we have dealt with offered any insurance with the loans .Seems like I remember them saying you have to do that separately now.That most companies don't even offer the death insurance anymore.I know years ago every loan we had,had it, now I don't think any of them do.

Posted: 28 Feb 2008 12:12 Post Subject:

Yeah I heard of some places not doing the death and disability insurance with loans now. I really think that is a shame they quit. The problem is these days it takes two people working in a household to even afford the basics. So when gets sick or worse dies and there is no insurances it ends up being a really sad story. They have to deal with how to make paymants on top of the death or illness. Hope you find insurance thats affordable. Good luck.

Posted: 28 Feb 2008 12:39 Post Subject:

It is a good idea to have insurance in place if you have family that will have to pay the bills with out your income, weather it be a one or two income household, it is one gone. fireyone you have experienced first hand what can happen, it is devastating. Loss of a loved one and then loss of your home on top of it, what a shame. How is your mother in law today, did she move out?

Posted: 28 Feb 2008 07:40 Post Subject:

She isn't doing too well. She had to let the house go to the mortgage company after a two year struggle to keep it. She was just getting sicker and sicker with the stress. It was a sad day because all the kids had grown up in that home and even though it wasn't much, to them it was home and the place that held the last memories of their father. My mother-in-law now lives in an old school house. The elderly couple that lived there renovated a couple rooms into two apartments. They live in one and one of their children use to live in the other. When they heard of her hard time they offered her the place at low monthly cost. It doesn't have any heat except for electric heaters she purchased from Wal mart. It is definately undesirable. Since the foreclolsure and some other bills went on her credit record she can not just go rent anywhere because of the credit check. This was her only option.There isn't much family to help out. Most live in double wides with children. It isn't only her. My sister-in-law is mentally handicapped and she goes with her since she really doesn't have the capacity to live on her own. So its simply no just taking in one..They have been turned down for any type of financial aid because of her income and the sister-in-laws SSI. Neither amount to much in this economy. Plus she is still paying creditors a good part of her income. The ones she can't are constantly harassing her for payment. I don't mean to go into such detail but it gives good reason for a person to get insurance even when it seems immpossible to fit in these days. I am going through this with car insurance. I am finding ways to fit in higher coverage just in case I was ever to injure someone. I consider myself a too safe driver but its not always that. Roads around here get bad and there is always that one time.

Posted: 28 Feb 2008 11:31 Post Subject:

I guess you have to ask yourself how aware your mother in law was about the situation before her husband passed away, was she involved with everything financially or did she choose to turn a blind eye, you should not finance outside your means these days, you have to stay with in a budget that if something would happen to one, the spouse would be able to pay the bills that are left behind. It is a good idea to spend the few bucks and get the insurance.

Posted: 29 Feb 2008 12:30 Post Subject:

It is important when you have debt that you have the tools in place to make sure that things are taken care of if something should happen.

Posted: 29 Feb 2008 01:25 Post Subject:

She was aware of the massive debt they had. I must say she aquired a good part of it. She has never been able to handle her own finances and her daughter even goes as far as taking care of her checkbook for her. Still in all some of their biggest debts were through first and second mortgages and another for home improvements. None had ANY type of insurance. My father-in-law had been sick with diabetes for years. I guess she never thought he would pass although many signs were there.

Posted: 29 Feb 2008 04:32 Post Subject:

Sometimes it is hard to face reality until it slaps us right upside the head, bang and before we know it our whole world comes crashing down. I keep our bills so that if one of us would lose our jobs we would be able to afford to make and have some left over, I never let our bills go above like a 3rd of our income. Just don't see the sense in having a lot of unnecessary things, if you want it then save up and pay cash for it and then you don't have the monthly bill to go along with it. We have not financed any major purchases besides a car last year and I can't wait to get it knocked out along with the mortgage, 4 years left on the car and another 10 on the mortgage and then all the bills will be paid off, with the exception of the ones, the forever bills like utilities. It has taken a while to adopt this mind set, it has been tough staying in this mind set, but I am keeping it. If I want something, I will save for it, then I don't pay a bunch of money in intrest either.

Posted: 29 Feb 2008 05:56 Post Subject: insurance

Of course, I'm looking for Life Insurance, for my son. Whole Life, if I can find it (and afford it). He's the 'love of my life', like ANY child should be. Good Life Insurance I can count on and can build 'cash value'. Anyone have suggestions?

Posted: 29 Feb 2008 07:21 Post Subject: See if this one works!

Hi sdchargersfan,

My brother has the L-98 Whole Life policy from Metlife.
This policy seems to have that power to generate tax-deferred cash values.
The premiums are quite flat throughout. You may try out this one!


Posted: 29 Feb 2008 09:00 Post Subject:

I think, life policies for the children are available in plenitude now-a-days and often they are also quite cheap. You can ask your existing agent about such policies or can do a bit of comparison shopping before purchasing one. And yea, the premium is likely to remain constant for any standard whole-life policy during its tenure.

Posted: 29 Feb 2008 12:44 Post Subject:

There definately are alot of policies out there now with different ranges of coverage. My best advice is to look around, compare coverage and prices. Good Luck.

Posted: 29 Feb 2008 02:35 Post Subject: insurance

Thanks, ya'll, for all of the advice. This is a small town, I live in, but..I'm sure I can do some research, and see what's 'right for me.' KBernstein..with Metlife?...does it matter what state you live in? Are they a 'nationwide' source?

Posted: 01 Mar 2008 02:37 Post Subject:

Not sure there. I'm from PA and I know Met life is around here. You should be plenty busy trying to find one. There are plenty out there. Hope we all helped you.

Posted: 01 Mar 2008 03:01 Post Subject:

Wow! That story sure makes one wantb to run out and buy insurance.talk about the forever bills. They are electric,phone+internet,water +garbage,(ours is seperate) Some have gas,(I have all electric)cable,Then you have health insurance,home insurance and vehicle insurance after all that there isn't much left after food .lol Thats without any loans or mortage.

Posted: 01 Mar 2008 03:57 Post Subject:

Funny Hummingbird that you mention this. My husband was just paid today and as we were walking around Wal Mart just getting the groceries, perscriptions and wiperblades..just what is needed not wanted. We ended up on this very subject. I mean by the time we got out of there $112 later ,went on down for gas $62 and grabbed a cheapo meal at Mc Donalds $12, it all quickly added up. This is day 1 with 13 more to go and already we have spent $200 plus the bills that had to be paid. I think it is crap to only bed able to afford basics and for some people they can't even do that. Is it any wonder half the world is on prozac?

Posted: 03 Mar 2008 03:06 Post Subject:

Right and you forgot to figure in the insurances all of them if you want to be covered.Then there went the old paycheck. Yes, it is a shame when living expenses takes everything .We never go into Walmart without spending over 100.But the IGA which is only 5 miles form our house is too expensive.

Posted: 03 Mar 2008 05:28 Post Subject:

I can agree with you there about waving bye bye as soon as the paycheck come. Wal mart is the closest to us so that is pretty much were we shop. I try not to go more than once a week because even if it is just a couple items you always see a couple more and so on. We did get a Sams Club membership lat year. Don't know if you heard of it but it is a big discount warehouse. We go to it about every three months and it does help out alot to buy frequently used items (t.paper,shampoo,soap and so forth) by bulk. At this point every penny really does help. I'm really glad they passed that economic stimulus package, that is going toward insurance.

Posted: 03 Mar 2008 06:51 Post Subject:

Oh Economic stimulus, I get to pay taxes with mine, so it ain't stimulating me at all. Seems everytime that I get an extra buck, somebody wants two.

Posted: 04 Mar 2008 11:07 Post Subject:

Boy isn't that the truth. Sometimes I feel like I am soo depressed over these rising prices on gas that are causing everything to go up. Being winter doesn't help, makes ya feel more glum. I guess just keep hoping for the best. You know what I don't get about the whole economic stimulus thing? If your child is 17 you do not get a credit for that child. I mean most kids are still in school past that age and you still have expenses on the child so why cut it at 17 instead of 18. Not trying to sound greedy here but every little bit definately helps this way.

Posted: 04 Mar 2008 01:01 Post Subject:

17? When did that happen? I have a daughter who will be 17 this month you mean next year we won't b able to claim as a dependant?d nothing about this.

Posted: 04 Mar 2008 09:05 Post Subject:

It won't effect your stimulus rebate because she was still 16 in 2007 tax year. you will definately get the $300 credit for her. As for income tax for this coming year, that is where it changes.They changed that a few years ago acccording to my tax guy. Once a child reaches the age of 17 you can claim them but you do not get the child tax credit of $1,000 anymore. I know it is such crap. I couldn't get a child tax credit for my son this year or last. His birthday wasn't until Nov. 27, but since he turned 17 in that tax year and even though he was only 17 for 1 monmth in that year I couldn't get the credit.
I asked why they did that and I was told that alot of kids graduate by that age. Well its still crap cause they would go to school for most of there time being 17 and you still have to support them so why not get the credit? If you haven't got your taxes done yet or can call your tax person ask them about this. It won't effect you until next year at this time.Believe me I was stunned myself last year. That extra $1,000 credit sure would have helped.

Posted: 05 Mar 2008 12:32 Post Subject:

I thought the stimulus gave 1,200 for a couple and 300 each dependant child right? I have 2 dependant children .Does that mean we get 1,800.00? My tax lady has nver mentioned any of this to us. She is only in the 10 th grade and will have 2 more years of school after this year. SO we can claim her as a dependant but not get a child tax credit? That is bull crap! All the ways to keep you behind .No wonder we are heading for a recession. As if the hign price of gas hasn't cause enough problems. financially.

Posted: 05 Mar 2008 01:53 Post Subject: taxes

I'm a single, mom. I think mine is $400.00, or so. The money, for my son, will be $300.00. Talking about insurance........Life Insurance premiums may not be TOO bad. But, Health Insurance...OMG!!....i don't care what kind you want to get, it's STILL very expensive.

Posted: 05 Mar 2008 11:04 Post Subject:

Do they have any kind of health insurance plans where you are from? Here in PA they have a program called Blue Chips for kids, offered by the state. It is not welfare of any kind. It is for all kids without insurance and they base how much you pay by how much you make. The only thing you need to qualify is you can't have any other type of health insurance avilable to you through work. I know people who pay hundreds of dollars a month to cover their family members.

Posted: 05 Mar 2008 03:05 Post Subject: health

yes, 'Fireyone', they do have Blue Chip. But....when I looked into it, 'they' said there was a waiting list a MILE long. I din't think there was a waiting list, for this kind of Insurance. I inquired, about this, recently.

Posted: 05 Mar 2008 06:04 Post Subject:

We have KChip I have that for our kids. You pay a small premium every moth and a small price for each prescription.Never heard of any waiting list though.

Posted: 05 Mar 2008 07:24 Post Subject:

Sounds like you have it all covered then. MY kids are covered through my husbands health insurance blue cross. It is pretty great coverage but those co-pays and 20% add up quickly. Last year alone we paid almost $2,000 in those costs. It sucked but hey et least there was coverage.

Posted: 06 Mar 2008 04:01 Post Subject: health

I thank you for ya'lls advice and comments. I'll check into some other things, for my son. Now that I think about it, maybe it was the Chip Basic, for adults, that has a waiting list.

Posted: 06 Mar 2008 10:59 Post Subject:

The adult basic has a really long waiting list. I know this cause my mom just went through this. I think she waited about a year. Recently she had some high blood pressure problems causing her nosebleeds and headaches. She went to the hospitol and they treated her then released her since she had no medical. The same day she had to go back and they finally kept her but couldn't run alot of tests cause of the medical expenses. It could of killed her. She just got approved a few days ago. There are also hospitol related programs that help pay the bills if you meet the income requirements.

Posted: 06 Mar 2008 09:12 Post Subject:

I could have gotten help for my hospital bills but I didn't met the deadline to bring in the paper work. I mean whos thinking of thoses things when you are at a hospital. It would not cover the dr though.I fine it odd that people can actually tur you away and refuse to help a person because they don't have the mony for all that stuff. If each dr took one name from a hat each dayand saw them free ,that would take care of a lot of medical needs.

Posted: 06 Mar 2008 11:21 Post Subject:

Good point there but unfortunately most docs are only concerned about there bottom line also. My docs office offers a sliding scale on fees if you haven't any insurance. On your other medical bills you can pay $10 a month and they will let you be. The only thing that sucks there is whether it is a surgery or just a hospitol stay they don't send one bill they send about five seperate one. One for each doc, one for e.r.,one for med supplies and by the time you pay each of them $10 each you end up paying out an extra $50 a month. Just went through thbis when I had surgery last year.

Posted: 07 Mar 2008 03:04 Post Subject:

Wow! Wish Ihad your doc. I made arrangement to pay 25 each to the hospital and doc bill. As it stands Ithe hospital quit sending me a bill and so i didn't send payment and they called and left a messege.I called back and they said they musty have called by listake becasue they had no record of me oweing them anything. Then the same day I got another hospital bill. I also got a letter saying for me to pay the doc bill immediately even after i had made arrangements to pay them monthly.Thing is I have to come up with the 50 to pay them now.Right now I don't have it.But I want to keep it out of collections. Maybe I am on th wrong board. You think? No docs here have a sliding scale,I wish.

Posted: 07 Mar 2008 03:58 Post Subject:

I had a hospitol do this same thing to me. I had to go to the ER and when I got the bill I started making $10 payments. they sent me a letter that they didn't except partial payments and that I had 30 days to pay it in full or they turn them over to a collection agency. I called them and they said they simply did not handle there own billing unless paid in full and it was procedure to let a collection agency do this. Well a couple months later I heard from the collection agency (the first ten I paid was never taken off) and they said they would except ten a month and remove the first ten I said I paid. so sent in next payment and the next month recieved another letter from collection agency demanding no payment had been made at all (there went $20 so far). Few months later got a call from the next collection agency and told them the story, said they would send me out a payment book so that I could keep track of payments. Never got the book and they never got another payment. I don't use that hospitol anymore. If you can't afford the 25 try sending them 10. I am pretty sure that as long as you are sending 10 they can't turn it over or you can call and ask. most people can't afford sending in 25 on a bunch of seperate bills.

Posted: 07 Mar 2008 06:53 Post Subject:

I could have gotten help for my hospital bills but I didn't met the deadline to bring in the paper work. I mean whos thinking of thoses things when you are at a hospital. It would not cover the dr though.

Your financial planner, CPA and/or insurance agent SHOULD be thinking about things like this, as long as you keep the lines of communication open. I've had people take my advice and call me BEFORE any surgery and/or medical costs are completed (excluding emergencies) that saved them several thousand dollars. On the other hand, I've also had clients call me AFTER the fact.

My latest call entailed a situation where a doctor was "lab happy" and ordered "13 tests" including blood work and 1 MRI' for somebody was currently has a HSA. Long story short, the bad news she now has a $900 bill due, which she is paying off at $10 a month. The good news is that she is in great health and can deduct contributions to her HSA off her taxes (less money to Uncle Sam is always a good thing) and decide to use the HSA to pay for the health care costs or let it sit and pay out of pocket.

I fine it odd that people can actually tur you away and refuse to help a person because they don't have the mony for all that stuff.

How exactly is it odd? What type of business could sustain their operations if all they did was offer free information, advice and products, without anything in exchange?

I'll tell you how...they set up a non-profit organization and THE REST OF US help sustain the business through our taxes. Business 101 would dictate that business would go out of business if they didn't receive cash infusions and/or assistance.

If I invite you into my house and offer you a glass of juice, but you see an expensive bottle of wine and want a glass of that instead, should I be forced to give a you a glass of wine? I might just do that, but that would indicate the fact I'm a nice guy and not seeking to produce a profit.

If each dr took one name from a hat each day and saw them free ,that would take care of a lot of medical needs.

The average cost to see a doctor in most areas is right around $60 a visit. Guess how much is cost 30 years ago before x-rays, blood tests, mammograms, PSA testing, etc. were invented, marketed and used.

I have nothing against providing charity work because I do that myself, I just do not think people should take advantage of someones generosity.

Posted: 08 Mar 2008 01:07 Post Subject:

I see your point there. I am thankful that my hubby changed jobs and now has world class benefits. I think helping others during a hard time or them getting help through programs isn't a bad thing. A lot of people work and can never get help like the ones that lie around collecting free checks every month. So I am glad that their are programs to help the working person.

Posted: 08 Mar 2008 02:02 Post Subject:

I see your point ,but helping one person will not break a Dr.It is called feelings. When I go into an office and see nothing but signs plastered everywhere about paying your bill upfront,I get a cold feeling like when they look at me they see dollar signs instead of a person.Like money just walked in off the street...lol If they had a sliding scale for people who had no insurance would even be better.I remember when I would go to the Dr and the Dr I went to gave you medicine in his office and charged you like 34 or 40 dollars for all.It just makes me uneasy when I see a Dr whose FIRST consideration is whether you can afford to pay.Should not the patient still come first.I mean here you are sitting there in a hospital bleeding and they give you these financial papers to fill out. How cold does that sound?

Posted: 08 Mar 2008 06:31 Post Subject:

I see your point ,but helping one person will not break a Dr.

I agree with you with a caveat. Many doctors will work out a payment plan for people with limited incomes AS LONG AS YOU ASK. I worked out payment plan with a physician when I needed to see somebody for an ear infection. I don't think I ever had one before and do not wish to experience it again as it was very annoying and discomforting.

The difference between what I did vs. the average consumer, is that I knew I could receive equal treatment at a fraction of the cost by visiting an urgent care center. So I sucked up the pain and discomfort for 2 days for the clinic to open up again and waited about 2ish hours in the waiting room. My bill at the time was right around $200 retail plus another $50 for medication. We settled for somewhere around $120 in 3 equal installments of $40 a month, once I told him I was an uninsured and poor college student.

Had I not asked I wouldn't have gotten the 40% discount and that same visit would have cost me a minimum of $500 at an emergency room in most areas. One thing I didn't know about at the time were resources I could have used to obtain cheaper medications, which would have saved me about 35% off the medication costs. Live and learn!

Anyone who meets certain guidelines is entitled to Medicaid, which will greatly reduce medical costs and/or provide free care.

The number of primary care physicians in practice has been declining in recent years due to the fact that it's becoming increasingly difficult to maintain a practice with the current private and government medical system.

I highly doubt doctors go into business and rack up $100,000+ in educational expenses to earn $40,000 per year. If that was the case, what is the financial incentive to become a physician and attend medical training, internships, etc. for a 8-12 years, when an undergraduate degree earns people a median $48,000 a year (Department of Labor stats).

When I was deciding to pursue my Doctorate in Psychology I estimated my costs (just for education) would be about $80,000 at end of my training. Double that number with living expenses factored in for 3-5.

At the rate of $300 (what I pay a month now for my education loans) a physician would be able to pay off his education loans in 28 years, whereas it will take me about 22 years if I don't increase payments. In the meantime, we both need to pay living expenses, business expenses, and most importantly, enjoy life with friends and family and HOPEFULLY save up some money for retirement, since I don't think Social Security will be available down the road unless major changes (increase in taxes) are implemented.

Medicare doctors even have a worse time surviving when the government reduces eligible expenses. According to http://www.ama-assn.org/ama/pub/category/211.html there are approximately there are approximately 900,000 International Medical Graduates (physicians who come to the US from another country). Using the common 47M of uninsured as a basis. If every one of those physicians saw 1 patient per year, they would be able to help 1% of that demographic. Using a conservative $50 p/ visit the doctors would provide $45M in FREE health care. That is certainly doable, but isn't that what Medicaid is for? Why provide additional care for no cost when all of us are already paying for that through taxes. That goes against the basic principles of macro level economics.

Patient satisfaction is largely determined by being friendly and nice patient vs. being affluent. Wouldn't you agree that you normally get better service and enjoy life when you're cordial. I could be wrong, but I do not think that physicians are cold people, as they could easily have chosen a different profession.

Here's a test you can do that might be fun. Schedule an appointment with a recently licensed therapist (doctorate level) and a primary care physician...then visit that same person (if he's still in business) in 5 years and see if you notice any changes in his demeanor and ask the following question, "Was it worth it?"

Many doctors will work out a payment plan for people with limited incomes AS LONG AS YOU ASK. I worked out payment plan with a few physicians when I came out of the military and did not have health insurance. The difference is that I visited an urgent care center because I did research and knew that going to the emergency room would cost me approximately $900 dollars. My bill at the time was right around $200 retail. We settled for $120 I believe once I told him I was an uninsured and poor college student. Had I not asked I wouldn't have gotten the 40% discount and that I can respect.

One of my cousins owns one of the largest private practice in MD and he also teaches at Georgetown. Despite the fact that most people would think somebody at his level would be smug and snobbish, he is one of warmest people I have had the pleasure to meet.

Having money doesn't bring you happiness. Not having money creates unhappiness, so the key is to obtain a happy medium.

Posted: 09 Mar 2008 12:20 Post Subject:

You make some very good points here Salpro. I am not demeaning the medical field at all and relize it does take a lot to beome a doctor. I have been with my prmary care physician for 15 years because she treats me like a real person. She has a sign in her office that she would like you to pay the office fee in full UNLESS you need to make other arrangements. I feel some people probaly do take advantage of this making it harder for the folks that really need it. I have always had some type of insurance. My mother on the other hand works two jobs to survive and can not afford or qualify for any type of medical in the past. She was very appreciate of the sliding scale offer from the dear doc.
I also believe that people do get better care when they are cordial. I've also ran into docs who are so rude that you wonder why they ever got into a field that deals with people everyday. Bottom line here....We all come from different fields and different background...we can not always understand the others...so you were right on cordial does matter.

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