I was going to fix the link in my last post but now that there is a reply I'll create a new post.
Health insurance companies routinely delay payments to medical providers and not because they are slow, it's because they profit from it.
|Insurance companies have often accused doctors of submitting incomplete and inaccurate claims and justified the delays because of the time needed to discover fraudulent claims. But some states found plans guilty of and penalized them for intentionally delaying payments in order to profit from the "float". For instance, as early as in 1999, United HealthCare paid Georgia $123,000, and Coventry HealthCare of Georgia (formerly Principal Health Care of Georgia) and Prudential HealthCare Plan of Georgia - nearly double that amount.
And the delays are in some cases believed to have caused unnecessary deaths.
|Bill Ackley had health insurance through his job as a public school teacher. But as his life hung in the balance, his insurance company questioned the necessity of a potentially life-saving treatment doctors prescribed and, for a time, refused to pay.
After months of appeals to overcome the "bureaucratic roadblocks," Ackley finally received approval for the treatment he sought. But to his daughter Erinn, the delay just might have cost her father his life.
"Dad was finally transplanted 126 days after the first transplant request [but] he never returned home," said Ackley.
This is of course assuming you are lucky enough to even have health insurance and not have it denied because of a pre-existing condition. Slightly OT, but in some states if you are a victim of domestic violence and have sustained injuries from it, you can be denied coverage.
|Eight states, the District of Columbia, Idaho, Mississippi, North and South Dakota and South Carolina, have insurers who follow the practice of declining coverage to the victims of domestic violence, including half of the largest insurers in the country.
Some of these companies need to be read the riot act IMO - they are not about preserving our health, they are about making a profit off of health care. I don't see how things could be much worse than they are frankly.
I agree that we as a nation could be doing a lot more for our own health but I think that this is not how our system is set up. Diagnostics and screening, preventative health care are often not covered. The strategy we seem to have adopted in the US is to party on, and not do anything until we are really REALLY sick and then try to fix it with pills or expensive equipment.