Tuesday, September 9, 2008

Health Insurance and Russian Roulette

If you're having trouble paying for health insurance, going uninsured and praying that you don't get sick might seem like a viable option. So might turning to prayer in lieu of medical treatment. Apparently, it's a good idea to pray for treatment if you're trying to be seen at a hospital without medical insurance. And right now, about 47 million Americans are trying to do just that.

The University of Illinois at Chicago studied 3 types of hospitals and how they provided care. They looked at a public hospital, a not-for-profit hospital, and a private hospital to see how they handled self-pay patients. According to the researchers, all three types of hospitals had policies for accepting uninsured patients, but none of their practices matched their policies. In fact, it was often left to the front line staff to decide whether or not a patient would be turned away from care.

It's getting to the point where the only way you can receive competent, affordable healthcare is if you trained to be a doctor yourself. Even then, you'd have to take out student loans for the education.

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The header image is adapted from a photo taken by Bill McChesney and used under a creative commons license.
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