Decoding Your Medical Bill

It’s not always easy to understand the rising costs in health care these days, let alone the bill from your recent visit to the doctor. I’ve read some interesting materials recently and here’s some things that really caught my eye about health care costs:

The average American Family spends nearly $20,000 per year on annual health care.

Not surprisingly, the next eyebrow-raising statement follows suit:

Over half of personal bankruptcies are linked to medical bills.

When trying to explain the high cost of healthcare for American families, it’s easy to point fingers; to try to find blame. Maybe Americans are just too unhealthy.  They drink too much. They smoke too much. They weigh too much. Although these are contributing factors to health issues, they are not the only culprits in America’s skyrocketing health care costs crisis.

So, what are some of the other reasons health care costs are so high in the US?

Decoding health care costs is not always easy

Maybe we should delve a little deeper into some of these:

  • Are hospitals overcharging?
  • Why are outpatient costs increasing?
  • Are some doctors are overpaid?
  • Have we considered if insurance companies are charging too much?
  • Why are there so many uninsured patients and is that driving up the costs of healthcare?

I agree that Whole Foods CEO, John Mackey, had a point when he said that people should take accountability for their personal health. However, blaming the blight of our bloated healthcare system on patient’s unhealthy choices is like blaming the the deaths on the Titanic for not having enough life boats. Yes, they should have had more life boats…so there’s merit to the argument. But there were a whole host of mistakes and problems that night, one of which was a massive iceburg they failed to navigate around.

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