Video. The True Cost of Healthcare. Ripping Off A Nation

The following talk on runaway healthcare costs is from a lecture given by Dr David Belk. The 54 minute video is below.

Example One. Amlodopine is used to treat high blood pressure. It costs the patient $10 a month to buy through his insurance carrier. Without insurance Walgreens sells a 90 day supply for  $12  and Costco charges $28.95 for a year. Most brand name medications are 100 times more expensive than their generic counterparts.

The doctor did not say but the Mayo Clinic lists these side effects for Amlodopine: Swelling of the ankles or feet. Less common: Difficult or labored breathing. Dizziness. Fast irregular pounding or racing heartbeat or pulse. Feeling of warmth. Redness of the face, neck, arms, and occasionally, upper chest. Shortness of breath. Tightness in the chest and Wheezing. Rare: Black, tarry stools.  Bleeding gums. Blistering, peeling, or loosening of the skin. Blood in the urine or stools. Blurred vision. Burning, crawling, itching, numbness, prickling, “pins and needles”, or tingling feelings. Chest pain or discomfort. Chills. Cold and clammy skin. Cold sweats. Confusion. Dark yellow urine.  Cough.  Diarrhea. Dilated neck veins. Dizziness or lightheadedness when getting up from a lying or sitting position.  Extra heartbeats.  Extreme fatigue. Fainting.  Fever. Itching of the skin. Joint or muscle pain. Large, hive-like swelling on the face, eyelids, lips, tongue, throat, hands, legs, feet, or sex organs. Numbness and tingling of the face, fingers, or toes. Pain in the arms, legs, or lower back, especially pain in the calves or heels upon exertion. Painful or difficult urination. Pale, bluish-colored, or cold hands or feet. Pinpoint red or purple spots on the skin. Red, irritated eyes. Redness of the face, neck, arms, and occasionally, upper chest. Redness, soreness or itching skin.  Shakiness in the legs, arms, hands, or feet.  Slow or irregular heartbeat. Sore throat.  Sores, ulcers, or white spots on the lips or in the mouth. Sores, welting, or blisters.  Sudden sweating.  Sweating, Swelling of the face, fingers, feet, or lower legs.  Swollen glands. Trembling or shaking of the hands or feet. Unsteadiness or awkwardness. Unusual bleeding or bruising. Unusual tiredness or weakness.Weak or absent pulses in the legs. Weakness in the arms, hands, legs, or feet.Weight gain and Yellow eyes or skin.

The above side effects are also a cost of the healthcare system. I have elsewhere suggested that drug companies not be allowed to conduct trials. These are expensive and less than useless because they allow the Pharmaceutical companies to fudge the data. I would test all drugs against known home remedies. For example, I would test all existing diabetes drugs against 5,000 IU of Vitamin D3 and two doses of cinnamon daily. The drug companies would supply the drugs and the alternatives to the hospitals who choose to participate. If the drugs fail to beat the alternatives, I would then allow the drug companies to sell their products but only at a fair market price and without insurance company subsidies. That will kill Big Pharma really quick.

Dr David Belk is focused on costs rather than alternative treatments. He says that if you buy generics, you will pay more using your copay than if you bought these same drugs paying cash.

Some Brand name drugs without generics can run up from thousands of dollars a month to more than ten thousand dollars. The Drug companies extend their patents through the courts.

He suggests that you talk to the doctor about costs to see if there is an alternative Brand that does have a generic equivalent.

Office Visits: Dr Belk says most doctors have no idea how much they get paid for an office visit. That is because each insurance company the doctor bills has a different schedule of payments in convoluted fashions. Most office visits cost about $80. Doctors over bill their insurance companies to make sure they are paid the maximum that each individual company will allow. If you pay cash for a doctor, you will need a schedule of fees in advance to avoid being over charged.

Hospital Billing: Hospitals want to guarantee they will be paid the maximum allowed so they bill up to ten times what they hope to receive. They discount the final bill to get it down to what the insurance company was finally willing to pay.

Diagnostic Tests: A Comprehensive Metabolic Panel can be charged $179 by the hospital when they only expect to get paid $15. A Lipid Panel can be charged $68 when they only expect $19 on the final bill. A Complete Blood Count can be charged $51 when the hospital only expects to be paid $10. An Echocardiogram can be billed $4,361 but will be settled between $317 and $291. An Exercise Stress Test can be billed at $1,182 but will be settled for $123. An MRI is often billed for about $3,500 initially but settled at between $578 and $654.

Because we use insurance to pay for everything the Insurance companies are in complete control of everything so they can tell us whatever they want about the cost of healthcare. People with high deductible insurance are intentionally over billed by their insurance companies. Malpractice has been dropping in cost over the past ten years. Most clinical doctors in Dr Belk’s area of California pay $3,000 a year for Malpractice insurance.

We have fewer hospitals today than in 1985 despite having 30% more people and the age of the average person having risen 6 years. Because we have stricter standards for admissions most hospitals where he lives have vacancy rates (empty beds) running about 50%.

Medical treatments are more efficient and actually cost less. So where is all that money going? He suggests we stop using hospitals and insurance for services that can be provided elsewhere until they are willing to treat cash customers fairly.

I would suggest that hospitals be required to post prices for tests, drugs, procedures and doctor visits. Reform health insurance to allow Health Savings Accounts for patients to pay cash. This will eliminate paper work and drive down costs overnight.

Dr Belk does say that one of the few things more broken than the healthcare system is our politics. American politicians are neither leaders nor followers. They have to be dragged by their hair to get them to do anything. He sees no hope of change until everyone in America becomes really angry and a sufficient number of us have done our home work to fully understand the sources of our problems. His website has more information and is being updated continually.

I would suggest that since America has more obese people and the most toxic diet in the world that we also change that. I would make dangerous vaccine additives illegal along with Fluoride, MSG, Aspartame, Bisphenol A and a few other things like GMO food though it will take awhile to weed the latter out of the agricultural system. The US ranks 72nd in health out of 191 countries. In infant mortality America ranks number 49. I will have to address this in a future article.

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About horse237

I have decided to share two of the visions I had as a child. When I was eight, I had a vision of a future war that killed 99.5% of the world's population. When I was 16 and living in the projects, I had a vision of my future. I was to live in complete obscurity until it came time to stop WW III. When I was about ten, I had read a bio of Nikita Khrushchev which said he survived Stalin by playing the bumbling fool an old Russian peasant trick. I decided to do the same as I had already learned that we did not live in a democracy. The other vision I had when I was in third grade was of the Mind of God and how it interacted in the creation of the world we see. I believe you and I were born at this time precisely so we would have an opportunity to stop this war. As for my personal info, I grew up on military bases and in housing projects. My legs atrophied from starvation as a child. My second step-father died in prison. I used to have to rub my skin to simulate human contact. They did not feed me when I was a child. I do not fight in their wars as an adult.
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13 Responses to Video. The True Cost of Healthcare. Ripping Off A Nation

  1. Sargon says:


  2. Pingback: The True Cost of Healthcare. Ripping Off A Nation |

  3. Nature's Path says:

    Monopoly healthcare through insurance provides a perfect economic model for the money junkies to place a chokehold/monopoly on an economic event and grab the vig off of the monopoly/chokehold by controlling all sides of the therapeutic options. Not only do they control the healthcare insurance, they also control the therapies that are used upon their approval. A rational approach to cost control would be preventive health, but too often preventive health care falls within the same false paradigm as the sickcare option. That’s not to say that US healthcare does not do certain things right- e.g. catastrophic healthcare, the “House” model of healthcare, but the overall approach has been one which makes our health far worse, on balance.
    Obamacare is precisely the wrong approach at the wrong time, but in essence, Obamacare is nothing more than a tax to bail out the insurance companies and their ill-conceived leveraged positions in the derivatives market. It has nothing to do with health, only to make it worse.
    If you want to see how this “banker scam” is operated just read G. Edward Griffin’s “A World Without Cancer” or just review the following video and see how the Rockefellers and their minions, using tactics similar to those learned in monopolizing the oil markets, were used to commandeer control of the cancer therapy industry.
    It is rather instructive.

    That the Rockefellers, Wall Street and the City of London banks have controlling interest in a number of pharmaceutical concerns should not be lost on anyone, given the chokehold that has been created for both providing supply (at horrendously marked-up monopoly rates) and limiting demand (through their ownership of the health insurance companies). In essence, the average person is squeezed from both sides.

    Becoming extremely informed about nutrition, natural remedies, etc. would do much to provide a person with the means to navigate and/or limit one’s involvement with a completely corrupted healthcare system.

    • Nature's Path says:

      You should also review the video: Cancer the Forbidden Cures. This will round out some of the inforrmation. Also, video rebel had a wonderful post a few weeks ago. Review that, it had great information.

      • horse237 says:

        Thanks for responding. We are very close to societal collapse. The good news is that we will not be able to continue to afford what we are doing.

        I used to work in a non-medical capacity at a Harvard research lab when I was in college. I really do not like the FDA and the way the government selects what they think needs funding.

  4. David Belk says:

    Thanks for posting my video. Obviously I couldn’t address every problem our current health care system has in one 54 minute talk. Instead I focused on an aspect no one else appears to be addressing much: The cost of most of the products of health care are far less than most people would think and the prices we’re often quoted for these products are entirely artificial.

    I recently completed a nine year study of the financial records for most of California’s hospitals. The results are at least as eye opening as what I presented in my video. Here they are for anyone who is interested:

    • Nature's Path says:

      As a first step, an important piece.
      It addresses horrendous misallocation of resources, even within the approved paradigm.
      Video Rebel correctly broadens the paradigmatic construct, which has to be broken wide open. Cost savings will come from many approaches, different and varied sources.
      So many issues to address, in so little time.
      Thanks for the good work.

  5. serious says:

    A first cousin with whom I was very close, died of breast cancer during the 1970’s, and one of her daughters is now suffering from it. One of my brothers has prostrate cancer. I definitely want to read Griffin’s book, and will review the video. Thank you so much for this instructive and helpful report, vidrebel.

  6. The old enemies were fascism, communism, imperialism, racism. The present ones are the megabanks, megacorps and bigpharma. I have read the 200 page patriot act and that and other laws would call their economic warfare against Americans treason.

  7. Pingback: Links 162 | Cindy's Zone 2

  8. healthcare claims says:

    people always want quality realiable and cost efficient healthcare but in the originality some thing is missing……

  9. Pingback: Obamacare Deductibles Will Get Us To Mike Judge’s Idiocracy In One Generation | Video Rebel's Blog

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