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Problems of Illness and Health Care






(b) Today people survive illnesses, conditions, and injuries that would have killed them a generation ago. i. Infants born prematurely who would not have survived a generation ago are kept alive today in hospital incubators. ii. Individuals with HIV/AIDS are living longer today owing to the availability of new (and expensive) drugs. iii. Individuals with kidney disease are receiving dialysis treatment and kidney transplants. iv. Persons with heart disease are undergoing bypass surgery and other treatments that are extending their lives and their medical expenses. Costs of Hospital Services, Doctors’ Fees, and Medical Technology (1) High hospital costs and doctors’ fees are factors in the rising costs of health care; the average visit to the emergency room costs a little more than $1,000. (2) The use of expensive medical technology, unavailable just decades ago, also contributes to high medical bills. Cost of drugs (1) The U.S. pays 81% more for patented brand-name prescription drugs than Canada and six Western European nations. (2) The high prices that Americans pay for prescription drugs party explain why the pharmaceutical industry is among the most profitable industries in the United States. (3) Manufacturers argue that in other countries, where governments regulate prices, consumers pay too little for drugs. (a) U.S. drug prices are high claim drug-makers because of the high cost of researching and developing new drugs. (b) But most large drug companies pay substantially more for marketing, advertising, and administration than for research and development. High Costs of Health Insurance (1) From 2000-2006, health insurance premiums grew by 87 percent, far outpacing inflation (18 percent) and wage growth (20 percent). (a) In 2006, the average annual premiums for employer-sponsored coverage were $4,242 for an individual and $11,480 for a family. (b) Workers contributed, on average, $627 annually toward the cost of individual coverage and $2,973 toward family coverage. (2) With the rising cost of health insurance, companies are increasing the employees share of the cost, decreasing the benefits, or not providing insurance at all. (3) The cost of health care to businesses also affects the prices that consumers pay for goods and services. Costs of health care administration (1) Health care administration expenses are higher in the U.S. than in any other nation. (2) 15% of the money paid to private health insurance companies for premiums goes to administrative expenses, compared to only 4% of public insurance programs such as Medicare and Medicaid. (3) Insurance companies and for-profit HMOs spend between 20% and 30% of their budgets to cover the costs of stockholder dividends, lobbyists, huge executive salaries, marketing, and wasteful paperwork. Consequences of the High Cost of Health Care for Individuals and Families (1) One study found that medical bills were a contributing factor in about half of all U.S. bankruptcies. (a) Ironically, many individuals who cannot pay their medical bills also cannot afford to file for bankruptcy, which can cost more than $1,000. (b) Some individuals and families cope with medical debt by taking out home equity loans, cashing out retirement accounts, and using credit cards.


Solution manual understanding social problems 6th edition mooney  

solution manual understanding social problems 6th edition mooney. Full file at

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