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A couple of comments on healthcare in America

December 17th, 2013 · No Comments

After returning from Taiwan I finally signed up for new health insurance, and found the website working well. I ended up buying a policy that costs about $100 more than my current policy and has a higher deductible ($5500). There’s no copay for doctors; I pay everything until I reach the deductible, then the insurance company pays 100%. This will likely end up costing us more per year, but it has the huge benefit of eliminating any pre-existing condition waivers, and eliminating the “lifetime maximum”. I did have the option to keep my current policy, but feel the extra cost is worth it to get the improved coverage. And there was also an HMO option that would have been a couple of hundred dollars cheaper, but we like our doctors and prefer a PPO plan. Anyway, Medicare is only 2 1/2 years away.

While in Taiwan we talked with Gisele’s brother, who has lived in both the US and Taiwan. He much prefers healthcare in Taiwan. He describes friends who have live in the US but have dual citizenship. When they have major health issues they find it cheaper and faster to buy a $1000 round trip ticket to Taiwan and get healthcare there. Waiting times for diagnostic tests and surgery are generally much shorter there, and the doctors are excellent. On the other hand, income taxes are much higher.

While we were there, Devon had some congestion problems so he went to see an ENT specialist. With no appointment, he walked into the clinic, took a number, and in about 5 minutes he was called in. 20 minutes later he walked out with medication, all for about $1, including the medication. For the rich, and for cutting edge technology I’m sure the US has the best healthcare in the world. But for most people and most situations, many other countries are far superior.

Tags: Family Updates · Opinion

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