Yo, Barry, today’s the day. The Supremes are going to rule on the Affordable Care Act, or as some people call it, Obamacare. You put in a lot of work, Barry, and I’m sure you feel “They Just Keep Me Hanging On.”
Well, “I Hear a Symphony” on how to really make health care affordable: get rid of the administrative burden: “It’s Nothing but Heartaches.” We spend twice the money on health care than does any other first world country, and our health care’s no better. Most of that excess moolah is spent on administrative costs: pushing paper in a digital world. Or more precisely, giving it away to insurance companies in the form of administrative costs.
“Stop In the Name of Love,” all this paperwork. Some people think admin costs are 35% of health care costs, but no one knows for sure because “Ain’t No Mountain High Enough.” Sure, electronic health records will help.
But they should work like this: a doctor sees a patient, electronically signs the chart, generating a bill to the insurer which is posted and paid overnight. American Express does it, Visa does it, MasterCard does it, all over the world in every curency and your bill is ready, correct and on your desk.
But the insurance companies say “You Can’t Hurry Love. Credit Card admin costs are $500 a year for a good card and 5% or so from the merchant, assuming you pay off the bill every month. A billion dollar mutual fund runs on 1%. And health care runs on 35% — no wonder there’s fraud! It’s so Byzantine, it’s easy to conceal it.
Those insurance people say “You Just Keep Me Hanging On.” But they are the ones hanging onto our premiums. They don’t pay because they want the float on it. They take in the premiums, keeping them “Back in My Arms Again. They aren’t going to pay “For Better of For Worse.
So they kick those claims back, saying you missed putting in the middle initial of someone who doesn’t have one. You resubmit with NMI as the middle initial, but you can only put it one letter. That’s a two-hour phone call.
Then, when you’ve solved that, they have to “Do the Hustle” and “lose” the claim for a while. By the time they find it and pay it, you are six months older and close to a heart attack from the stress, but all they say is, “You’re Uptight, Everything’s All Right.”
Barry, if the Supremes say this was “A Little Too Much Too Soon,” just remember being the President of the United States can leave you with “Nothing But Heartaches.” And if they let it all stand, well, the insurance companies are going to be singing, “He’s My Man.”