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  • The Difference Matters: Dick Morris Interviews Jan Iverson April 15, 2014
    Jan Iverson speaks to Dick Morris, on April 14, 2014, about citizen-led efforts to hold Hillary Clinton accountable for the Benghazi cover up.
  • Arkansas Surgical Hospital Ranked Among Most Affordable in Statewide Study April 14, 2014
    San Francisco (April 9, 2014) – NerdWallet Health, a website that empowers consumers to make better decisions about healthcare and insurance, has found the ten most affordable hospitals in Arkansas – and North Little Rock-based Arkansas Surgical Hospital ranks sixth. …
  • Costa Rica Vacation & Medical Check-up Special April 11, 2014
    5 Days and 4 Nights Package to Costa Rica is available for $1899! It includes over 25 individual laboratory tests and scans to provide a thorough Biochemical assessment of your health, as well as 2 day tours in the area! …
  • MediBid Safe From Heartbleed Bug April 10, 2014
    As I’m sure most of you have heard, an encryption flaw in the OpenSSL cryptographic software library has inadvertently caused one of the biggest security threats ever seen on the internet. The OpenSSL cryptographic software library is used to secure …
  • Dr. Jeffrey Gallups Interviews Ralph Weber about MediBid April 9, 2014
    MediBid does what the government and politicians have been unable to do — offer low medical costs and choices.  MediBid was initially developed for Canadian patients on medical waiting lists.  Employers were interested in the model to provide benefits for …
  • The three most dangerous poisons to never eat, drink or inject again April 5, 2014
    Episode 2 of “Awakenings” with the Health Ranger reveals the 3 most insidious poisons you should NEVER eat, drink or inject again! Hear more episodes of Awakenings at NaturalNews.com
  • How to live GMO-free – Awakenings with the Health Ranger April 4, 2014
    Important tips on how to live a GMO-free life. Get Monsanto out of your food and off your back!This is episode 1 of the Health Ranger’s new series “Awakenings.” See more Awakenings episodes at NaturalNews.com
  • The Road to Serfdom is Paved with Good Intentions April 2, 2014
    by Marilyn M. Singleton, M.D., J.D. What do TSA groping, NSA data-mining, and mercury-laced fluorescent light bulbs have to do with keeping your doctor? They are the products of seductively entitled but flawed laws. As Daniel Webster said, “good intentions …
  • The Patient Physician Relationship Under ObamaCare April 1, 2014
    AAPS Capitol Hill Briefing: March 27, 2014 Currently there is a lot of discussion regarding health care exchanges and access to insurance. However, insurance is not care. Even if the exchanges are eventually fixed, they cannot assure access to care. …
  • After three years, Edison woman’s life is getting back on track March 31, 2014
    Debbie Pasnak suffered several broken bones in a fall, but Medicaid denied her the medical procedures she required for treatment. Medicaid kept her waiting for surgery in hospitals and rehab centers for three years. Eventually, her friend told her about …
  • If You Like Your Scam, You Can Keep It: the Attack on Out-of-Network Doctors March 28, 2014
    by G. Keith Smith, MD A patient who wanted to have a procedure at our facility asked us to file insurance. We discovered that if she had her surgery at our facility rather than at an “in network” hospital, her …
  • Doc discovers Obamacare’s shocking, dirty secret March 26, 2014
    by Lee Hieb, MD I am being impacted in many ways by the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, or, to give credit where credit is due, “Obamacare.” But the most stunning attack on my person came this month in …
  • Webinar: MOC Update, Paul Kempen, MD, PhD & Ken Christman, MD March 26, 2014
    Learn more at http://ChangeBoardRecert.com. “MOC, MOL, OCC and now C-MOC Beyond mere Board Certification” Presented March 23, 2014 by Paul Kempen, MD, PhD with intro by Ken Christman, MD.
  • Free Markets in Healthcare Aren’t “Broken” – Just Not Allowed to Work March 24, 2014
    by Elizabeth Lee Vliet, MD Democrats excel at “message discipline”—sticking to talking points whether their script is factually correct or not. Repeated often enough, the script becomes “truth.” Democrats’ script says: “The U.S. healthcare system is broken. Free-markets didn’t work; …
  • 2014 03 23 13 02 MOC Update March 24, 2014
  • A Better Way to Save $1 Trillion March 21, 2014
    Cutting back on national medical spending would save money, but the quality of patient care would decrease and waiting times would increase.  These are the problems other countries are having.  Money is saved by creating a free market in medical …
  • Secrets to blocking mercury: Top foods that capture dietary mercury March 19, 2014
    Mike Adams visits The Robert Scott Bell Show and reveals a number of botanical strategies to block absorption of dietary mercury!
  • When Health Care Providers Compete March 19, 2014
    Vicki Burns needed a hip replacement and didn’t have insurance.  Her husband discovered MediBid and submitted a request for surgery.  She received her procedure – all-inclusive – for $30,000 less than her local hospital quoted her.  MediBid’s price transparency creates …
  • Hung out to dry by big insurance, a patient finds a better way March 17, 2014
    Perry Hunt lived over a year in pain waiting for hip surgery. Days before his surgery, he was told his insurance would no longer cover the procedure and the hospital bill would be $100,000. Perry cancelled the surgery and went …
  • Two Words That Cost Medicare Patients Thousands March 16, 2014
    From Dr. Vliet’s Radio Show: “Medicare Under Attack,” America’s Fabric, March 16, 2014: “More and more hospitals are keeping patients in the hospital under the designation “under observation” without telling patients that this can mean thousands of dollars in out …

Shopping around for surgery

At MediBid, we feel that the solution is really straight forward. The third party payer model has more medical bureaucrats (MediCrats), than it does medical professionals. Furthermore, it is based on a model with hides and increases the real costs. In order to bring down costs, transparency and access is required, and that’s what we do at MediBid. In order to get actual pricing, all you need to do is click HERE to create a request.

http://www.economist.com/node/21546059

Shopping around for surgery

Companies try to make health-care costs transparent

AMERICANS spent $2.6 trillion on health care in 2010, a staggering 18% of GDP. Yet few of them have the faintest idea what any treatment costs or how it compares with any other treatment. Prices vary wildly and seemingly without reason (see chart). Insurance terms require a dictionary. For most Americans, buying a procedure is akin to choosing a house blindfolded, signing a mortgage in Aramaic, then discovering the price later. Slowly, however, this is changing.

The past decade has seen a shift in how people pay for medicine. Americans’ health spending is growing at a slower pace. This is partly because of the downturn, but not entirely. The rate of growth fell every year between 2002 and 2009, note David Knott and Rodney Zemmel of McKinsey & Company, a consultancy. There are many reasons for this—for example, many costly drugs have lost their patents. But spending habits also seem to be changing.

Most American workers receive health insurance through their employers. They typically shoulder the costs without realising it. The more a company spends on health insurance, the less is left over to pay wages. Now employers are trying to give staff an incentive to think hard about costs.

Under “consumer-driven health plans”, workers must cough up part of the price of any treatment before their insurance coverage kicks in. Most have an untaxed account to spend on health; they think twice before depleting it. In 2006 only 10% of workers had to pay at least $1,000 before their insurer picked up the rest of the bill. By 2010 that share had more than tripled.

General Electric (GE) shifted its salaried employees into consumer-driven plans in 2010. It urged them to shop around for bargains, but they found this nearly impossible due to a lack of information. “People started saying: ‘If you want me to be an active consumer, I need to know prices,’” explains Virginia Proestakes, the head of GE’s benefits programme. When employees asked doctors for prices, the doctors were baffled. They had no clue how much different insurers paid for the same procedure, or what share a patient would pay. A recent study by the Government Accountability Office (GAO), a public watchdog, reported similar problems.

Barack Obama’s health reform requires hospitals to list standard prices each year, and more than 30 states have either proposed or passed laws to promote price transparency, according to the GAO. None of these measures has come close to solving the problem. Few provide enough data to allow people to shop around.

So private firms are having a go. GE, for example, hired Thomson Reuters, an information firm, to show employees the cost of different services. Thomson Reuters analyses prices from prior purchases—by workers at GE and other firms—to show the cost of a given procedure at different hospitals and clinics.

Another company, Castlight Health of California, has made transparency its sole mission. Working with big firms, Castlight assembles data from past transactions so that employees can shop for doctors online and read reviews posted by patients. Castlight wants to do for health what Travelocity did for air travel, explains Giovanni Colella, the founder. Mr Colella’s co-founder is now the chief technology officer for Mr Obama’s health department.

These plans face several obstacles. Health care is more complicated than flying. A traveller knows she wants to get from A to B, and that more or less any airline will get her there in one piece. So it is easy to rank air tickets by price. By contrast, someone with a heart problem may be unsure whether to pop pills, operate, change his diet or do nothing. Informed medical decisions require a tonne of information.

To make matters worse, health insurers are reluctant to share data about costs, says Bobbi Coluni, who leads Thomson Reuters’s consumer-health unit. If an insurer has a contract to pay one hospital $7,000 for a caesarean and a contract to pay another hospital $10,000 for the same service, and this information leaks, the first hospital will lobby for a higher price. GE’s contracts with insurers stipulate that GE owns the data from workers’ past health purchases. But such agreements are rare.

Despite this, greater transparency seems inevitable. Smart insurers are hawking their own tools. Cigna uses Thomson Reuters’s technology to support its “cost of care estimator”. Aetna, another insurer, offers a sophisticated web tool that patients use more than 67,000 times a month. Meg McCabe of Aetna hopes that consumers will soon be able to use their smartphones to enter symptoms, find doctors, compare prices and schedule an appointment.

Such experiments will serve insurers well. If Mr Obama’s health law stands, millions will soon shop for insurance on new exchanges. The easier the plan is to understand, the more people may pick it. A fully transparent market is years away. But a bit of sunlight is creeping in.



At MediBid, we restore market forces to medical care. Doctors get to set their own rates based on their training, experience, and outcomes, and patients get to shop for medical care across state lines and international borders. Many times with MediBid, you will find procedures that are more effective than procedures allowed, or covered by health plans. Transparency and competition are the only way to achieve reasonable costs. Many of our employer clients offering group health insurance through MediBid save $5,000 per employee per year. Those are substantial savings. Patients are saving an average of 48% vs. insurance discounted rates, or 80% vs. retail. Contact us for more information.
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