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Old 04-06-2016, 06:12 AM
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In England, whether I break a leg or have an aggressive brain tumour, I can go to hospital and get the treatment I need and nobody hands me a bill at the end. This is funded by national insurance contributions, a small tax that covers health and a state pension when we retire.

My understanding of the US is that either you guys either buy insurance or get it as part of an employment deal. And if that brain tumour isn't covered by your insurance plan it's 'fuck you'.

Is that how it works?

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Old 04-06-2016, 08:14 AM
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Well, you're not totally fucked. You can always gamble away (I believe that's the the only legitimate way to get rid of assets quickly) everything you own and file for welfare, in which case the state or county you're in may foot the bill.

If you don't have adequate coverage for something as serious as a brain tumor, it'll probably cost you everything you own, and then you'll end up broke and on welfare anyway, so you might as well give the money to the casino and live it up a little while you still have some motor control.
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Old 04-06-2016, 09:04 AM
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The NHS' finance sources are a bit complicated, but the simplest way to understand it is that it's funded from general taxation. "National insurance" is the name of a kind of tax. With all due respect for Wyf's otherwise excellent presentation, the link between national insurance and the NHS was severed a few decades ago. The actual cost of the NHS to the taxpayer is approximately US$3,500 per capita in England, Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland.

In addition, those English people who are of working age and not exempted by reason of low income have to pay a charge for each prescription. Personally I'm in employment and have high blood pressure that means I take three kinds of tablet a day. I pay the maximum charge: approximately US$180 per annum for an NHS card that I can show in the chemist for free prescriptions.

I also pay for my glasses and a small charge when I visit the dentist. I would pay for eye tests as well, but my employer covers the cost of those as a staff benefit.

As I understand it, in the US, the hospital will do whatever is necessary to save your life even if you can't pay. Bankruptcy may be your best option afterwards, but the brain surgeon would not refuse to operate to remove your tumour.
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Old 04-09-2016, 08:25 PM
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You're close, Non. In the Emergency Room they will do everything possible to save your life, and bill you afterwards. Once you are stabilized, you will need to show ability to pay before they go any farther.

If you are broke and on the street, they will sign you up for welfare right there. If you have an income or assets, they won't do shit until you pony up (or gamble everything away, etc...).
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Old 04-10-2016, 01:58 AM
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See? Tweaked.
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