The Way Healthcare Should Be

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This is an except from a New York Times Magazine story, August 16. Healthcare in France costs a small fraction of what we pay in the U.S. It simply doesn't have to be this way. Why do we continue to let ourselves be screwed by the insurance and hospital industries? Get the full story at http://www.nytimes.com/2009/08/16/magazine/16lives-t.html?ref=todayspaper.

Meanwhile, my husband’s heart and lungs were examined inside and out. He and his cellmate were both suffering from pneumonia, not heart attacks. They were given antibiotics.

At 2 a.m., when we were discharged, I offered my MasterCard to the surly gatekeeper. He said they would send us a bill. The doctor apologized for having to bill us, but we were not citizens, after all.

Six months later, the bill arrived. For X-rays, an EKG, 10 hours in the emergency room, a doctor, a cardiologist, technicians, nurses, drugs and even the surly gatekeeper, we were required to pay $220. I might put up with a lot of ugly bureaucrats for that.

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