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September 5, 2008

Sick, without a co-pay

Filed under: health care, health insurance — neosurya @ 14:11

Being sick sucks…

Have a temperature that see-saws between 99 and 101; Went to a doctor today. This is probably the first time I have paid for a doctor in India with money I have earned.
It was 100 rupees for the visit, and approx 100 rupees for the medicines.

For the same thing in USA, it would have been $10 co-pay. The actuals would have been between $200-400. A significant part of the cost is towards paperwork and the manpower associated with the insurance, administrative and legal overheads. A few interesting articles on overhead costs in the US health system: 1, 2.

An extract from this blog: “UnitedHealth Group (UNH) had a “medical loss ratio” of 81.73%; i.e. for every $1 million of premiums that it took it, in spent 81.73% (roughly $817,000) reimbursing claims. This left it with with a little over $183,000 to cover advertising, marketing, underwriting, salaries, etc.—plus profits for investors.”

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