Last week I talked about a Dave Ramsey blog where he touches on several of the things i’m writing about. The post is about 5 money problems we didn’t have 50 years ago. The second thing I thought i’d comment on is his #3: Health Care Costs.
Where I was respectfully critical of his thoughts on guaranteed retirement. It wasn’t so much the guaranteed part via defined benefit plans, but the fact that retirement, in my opinion, was still a problem back then if 59% of the population don’t have the guarantee. This next one, the one that this post is based on is Health care. The insanity of escalating healthcare costs is something I think we are very much aligned on. There are several reasons:
One is wages: As an example, I have a friend who is a physician and who probably makes 5 or 6 times my salary. She works her tail off, always has, and probably deserves much more than me, but 5 or 6 times? The reason she can command so much is that the system is designed to limit the number of practicing physicians.. a system that was put in place decades and decades ago. Salaries are just the first example that comes to mind. There is technology costs, the over reliance on the insurance system, defensive medicine, the costs of drugs.
There really isn’t a magic bullet to getting rid of these costs. Yes, the Health Savings Account will help but the macro situation of insanely inflated health care costs isn’t going to change any time soon. It took a century to get here and it’ll take a century to get out of it. In the end, for your average working professional t’s the health lottery. If your healthy you won’t have them other than your regular insurance bill. If your not healthy, if you have diabetes, or some other chronic disease you will spend and spend and spend.
I wish there was some magic pill we could take to lower healthcare costs.. but those pills aren’t cheap.