22 hours ago
Saturday, August 4, 2012
So - knowing most tab tests are done by machines and not even by real trained people with jobs - why so much? One blood draw, program the machine and send the results. I don't think lab tests cost this much when done through a regular insurance plan, why so much for one where I am paying out of pocket before my deductible is paid? A doctor asked and answered this question:
I can think of at least two reasons an insurance company might price services so outrageously high on certain policies. First, that would punish anyone who buys inexpensive insurance with a high deductible (both of these patients did). Second, they keep you from finding out how much (little) medical service really cost. Patients with high deductibles pay for most of their own medical care. The insurance companies make sure that these patients see a much higher price than the “real” price that they could pay. Just as with generic prescription drugs, insurance companies, not providers determine the price of everything. They can hide their real costs, and punish you for not buying a more expensive plan.
I have to admit I didn't realize that the insurance companies were quite so devious.
I did know that they spend a lot of money touting tort reform as an answer to high medical costs when legal costs are actually only 2% (mostly for their own lawyers.). But I didn't know that the highest cost for insurance companies - 56% of their expenses - is for product design, underwriting and marketing.
So the design and marketing of my high deductible plan is the reason my out of pocket/pre-deductible blood tests are so outrageous.
Wow. That is twisted.