Tuesday, March 17, 2009
No Wonder Medicare is Broke
I wouldn't have believed this if I hadn't seen it with my very own eyes. A doctor I practice with send a Medicare patient (that means over age 65 with their health care covered by you and me paying taxes!!!) to a medical supply store to get a carpal tunnel splint. Even though we carry these splints in the office, we don't supply them to Medicare patients because Medicare will never reimburse us the $22 fee for the splint. So we have to send the patient to an ortho supplier, which is a hassle for the patient but what choice do we have?
This splint doesn't require fitting. It comes in small, medium and large and just "velcros" together. The patient got a copy of the bill to Medicare....drumroll...$900.00. Yes, $900.00 for a simple wrist splint.
Medicare will not pay the entire amount but the supplier knows they will get a HUGE portion of that charge. What if they only get 1/2? Folks, you can't make this stuff up. The waste and crazy payment systems are killing us. They bill it BECAUSE THEY CAN!
No wonder our health care system is broken.
Posted by Toni Brayer, MD at 6:16 PM