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Response to NNN0LHI (Reply #45)

Sat Apr 21, 2012, 06:18 PM

47. That was a lot more common in the early to mid 80's.

By the late 80's our local Catholic hospital had become a lot more mercenary--to the point they were offering lines of credit with preferred lenders. They were encouraging patients still in the hospital to apply for a line of credit with a lender that you'd then have to repay with interest over time. The big change that came about was the corporatization of hospitals and the move away from locally owned hospitals. The bean counters got involved and suddenly hospitals were terribly interested in the bottom line. You'd see payment plans a lot more often in the smaller community hospitals and in the teaching or religious hospitals, but not so much in the larger "chain" hospitals.

If you stop to think about it, there was a time when families had "major medical" coverage and medical bills were something you paid when you went to the Dr's office. Hospitalization was just about the only thing covered, and even then there were deductibles that could be kinda steep. Medical costs were a lot lower then, so it took something pretty drastic to pile up a bill that big. Now, one trip to the ER can leave most folks in serious financial straights even with insurance. Prior to the times of "major medical" it was an even larger difference. Hospitals were where poor people went to die, and hospital billing was a lot more compassionate because hospitals really were institutions of public charity. Those days are long gone, and the public policy of exempting hospitals from taxation because of their charitable activities is, now, finally under scrutiny.



Laura

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NNN0LHI Apr 2012 #45
LineLineLineLineNew Reply That was a lot more common in the early to mid 80's.
davsand Apr 2012 #47
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2QT2BSTR8 Apr 2012 #35
happyslug Apr 2012 #42
truedelphi Apr 2012 #49
upi402 Apr 2012 #51
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slackmaster Apr 2012 #52
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