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Archive for April 14th, 2008

Seriously ill? Need costly drugs? Go broke and die

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Has the financial tipping point of life vs. death finally arrived? Do you now need to be financially healthy (meaning rich) to ease suffering from or survive diseases such as multiple sclerosis, rheumatoid arthritis, hemophilia, hepatitis C and some cancers (such as metastatic breast cancer)?

The lead story in the print edition of today’s New York Times reports this chilling fact:

Health insurance companies are rapidly adopting a new pricing system for very expensive drugs, asking patients to pay hundreds and even thousands of dollars for prescriptions for medications that may save their lives or slow the progress of serious diseases.

With the new pricing system, insurers abandoned the traditional arrangement that has patients pay a fixed amount, like $10, $20 or $30 for a prescription, no matter what the drug’s actual cost. Instead, they are charging patients a percentage of the cost of certain high-priced drugs, usually 20 to 33 percent, which can amount to thousands of dollars a month.

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Written by Dr. Denny Wilkins

April 14, 2008 at 5:45 pm

Posted in Uncategorized