Wednesday, September 2, 2015

Big Pharma


Matt E. was a kid from the Mary Davis Home who stayed with us a while back when I was working there.  I offered and the court deemed acceptable that we would take him in an attempt to introduce a normal family situation into his life.  His family was so screwed up that they all appeared on the Springer Show once.  If you don't know about that show, then consider yourself lucky.

On some weekends he would have visitation rights to spend time with his aunt, an Irene N. from Stronghurst.  We met at McDonald's in Monmouth for the handoff and she was a very nice lady - loved her nephew, was kind and supportive.  

In one of our conversations she intimated to us that she couldn't take him full time, because she was financially unable to.  In fact she was having a very tough time deciding whether to use her available funds for food or medicine. 

I was reminded of Irene when I recently went to Walgreens to pick up some medication prescribed by my ENT doc about my nasal problems.    




As you can see both of these sold retail, in total, for almost a thousand dollars.  The antibiotic in the first picture was $265.99 for 10 pills.  TEN!  

The one below was some goop I mix with water for a nasal flush for $806.09.  That lasts for a month.  

Now I don't pretend to know anything about the American medical system in general or the pharmaceutical industry in particular.  I do know that my insurance picked up the bulk of the costs and that is a very good thing.  I also know that deductibles have skyrocketed since Obamacare.   Back in the good old days (Before Obama) you could expect low deductible but high premiums.  Now you get unbelievably high deductibles with high premiums.   Something is wrong with our medical system.  

Most industrial Western nations have a universal medical care system.  Our neighbor to the north has free medical services but most Canadians have supplemental policies for dental and eye glasses.    In Sweden the country pays 97% of patient costs while Dental services are free for children and young adults until age 19.  In England medical services are free.  In Norway services are free after a 2040 krone deductible.  That amounts to about $250.00 US dollars.  Germany has universal coverage free for all citizens.  
With the deductible for my recent surgery I could have bought 4 Icebear Wave 50cc scooters, and all the bills aren't in yet.  

Irene either had no insurance or a pretty lousy policy.  She chose food in the Fall of 2002.  She died on January 21, 2013 after being unable to afford her medication.  There was something wrong with our medical system back then, and I fear there still is.  

   

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