60% of Anthem’s 2021 revenue was subsidized by American taxpayers: Wendell Potter

Filed Under: Costs, Health plans

60% of Anthem’s 2021 revenue was subsidized by American taxpayers: Wendell Potter

“When I was growing up, it seemed that everybody who had health insurance had a Blue Cross plan,” Wendell Potter writes over at his Substack. “Every state had a Blues plan, every one of them was a nonprofit, and their policies were comparatively cheap and comprehensive. That seems downright quaint when you consider what has […]

In 2021, 72% of UnitedHealth’s $222.9 billion revenue came from taxpayers: Wendell Potter

In 2021, 72% of UnitedHealth’s $222.9 billion revenue came from taxpayers: Wendell Potter

“As I noted in my last post, UnitedHealth Group made more profits last year than any health insurer has ever made for its shareholders — and considerably more than Wall Street financial analysts had expected,” Wendell Potter writes over at his Substack, Wendell Potter NOW. “Investors were so impressed they rushed to buy shares of […]

Medicare offers universal health insurance to seniors. Why would Manchin change that? | Center for Health Journalism

Filed Under: Costs, Health plans, Patients

Medicare offers universal health insurance to seniors. Why would Manchin change that? | Center for Health Journalism

“So much help for seniors hangs in the balance as Democrats whittle away at the massive legislative package in Congress,” Trudy Lieberman writes for the Center for Health Journalism. “If by some chance Medicare recipients get new benefits to help pay for dental, vision and hearing services and lower prices for their costliest prescription drugs, […]

The new hospital transparency rule: The deadline for posting price lists is on Jan. 1, so how did they do?

The new hospital transparency rule: The deadline for posting price lists is on Jan. 1, so how did they do?

The new federal price transparency law is rolling out Jan. 1, 2021, mandating that hospitals have to list prices on their web sites. Describing the new rules, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services say on their website: “Hospital price transparency helps Americans know the cost of a hospital item or service before receiving it. […]

Coronavirus (Covid 19) and telemedicine: Will my insurance still cover my appointments?

Filed Under: Costs, Health plans, Patients

Coronavirus (Covid 19) and telemedicine: Will my insurance still cover my appointments?

Many of the country’s insurers are bringing back patient fees for telemedicine visits after waiving them for several months because of the coronavirus crisis. But how much you’ll have to pay and when you’ll have to pay it depends on which plan you have. Throughout the pandemic, insurance companies have varied widely on what they […]

How much does Medicare cost? Well, it depends.

How much does Medicare cost? Well, it depends.

So I recently went on Medicare, and wanted to put down some thoughts in case they are of assistance to anyone else. I suggest that anyone who’s doing this consider their own specific circumstances very carefully; I am not a licensed insurance broker, and I am not making recommendations here — rather, I am telling […]

How to negotiate for lower medical bills if you are uninsured or underinsured: Reddit

Filed Under: Costs, Health plans, Patients

How to negotiate for lower medical bills if you are uninsured or underinsured: Reddit

I noticed this piece on Reddit, and found it intriguing. I wrote to the author, who gave us permission to reproduce it here. Hey everyone, I used to work in medical billing/finance and have a pretty good understanding of how the billing system works. I have successfully used this knowledge to negotiate my medical bills, […]

Private health insurance costs are skyrocketing: Axios

Private health insurance costs are skyrocketing: Axios

“The cost of private health insurance is out of control, compared to Medicare and Medicaid,” Drew Altman of the Kaiser Family Foundation writes on Axios. “You see that clearly if you take a long-term view of recently released federal data on health spending. This is why the health care industry — not just insurers, but […]

Opinion | Democrats are having the wrong health care debate: The New York Times

Opinion | Democrats are having the wrong health care debate: The New York Times

“As this week’s Democratic debates made clear, the party is divided on how to improve health care for Americans,” Ezekiel J. Emanuel wrote over at The New York Times. “Bernie Sanders, Elizabeth Warren and others are for a single-payer Medicare for All system. Joe Biden, Pete Buttigieg, Amy Klobuchar and others want an incremental approach […]

Even researchers don’t know which doctors Medicare Advantage covers: The New York Times

Filed Under: Costs, Health plans, Patients

Even researchers don’t know which doctors Medicare Advantage covers: The New York Times

“If you try to use Medicare Advantage, figuring out which doctors are available (and where) can be exceedingly difficult, if not impossible,” Austin Frakt writes over at The New York Times. “Medicare Advantage is the government-subsidized, private alternative to the traditional public Medicare program. It has had strong enrollment growth for years. That growth has […]