Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Are consumers getting gouged on health-care?

Are consumers getting gouged on health-care?
By RussBritt

This is the second installment in a four-part series.

LOS ANGELES (MarketWatch) -- Look around the health-care world, and the almighty dollar can rear its head just about anywhere.

It’s often seen in the balance sheets of biopharmaceutical giants, where net margins are double or even triple that of a normal, healthy corporation. Finance gets injected into the medical system when doctors are able to charge triple what Medicare’s fees are by staying out of public health programs and keeping their true expenses under wraps....

Karen Ignagni, chief executive of America’s Health Insurance Plans, the industry’s trade group, has frequently criticized the pricing on Sovaldi, saying it is putting a significant burden on insurance carriers. She worries that more specialty drugs like Sovaldi are scheduled to start coming through the pipeline in coming years via what she calls the “opaque wall of innovation.”
“The question is, what are we paying for?” she said....

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