Wednesday, September 14, 2005

We're Fifth of 232!!

That headline is the VERY bad news--the Milwaukee-Waukesha area is the fifth-most-expensive for hospital rates of two hundred thirty-two surveyed metropolitan areas in the USA.

Wow. Rates here are 57% above the national average. Wow.

That's the upper 2% for hospital costs.

Reason: "lack of competition." This according to a study requested by Congresscritters Barrett and Ryan (Barrett is now the Mayor of Milwaukee), reported by the Business Journal.

It gets worse. Eight of the 10 highest-physician-cost cities in the USA are in Wisconsin, with LaCrosse being the most expensive. Here, Milwaukee/Waukesha ranked 16th of 319 areas.

Lemmeesee, heah, now, Gomer. We got, ah, well, we got Aurora, the McDonald's of health-care, with a facility on every major intersection. Then we got Covenant, second but trying harder. Then we have that Waukesha outfit, ProHealthCare, which has nothing to do with major-league sports, I think.

Then there's Children's, first in costs by a country mile.

Related topic: a few months ago I rumor-blogged that hospitals in this area were about to go to a "cash-up-front" method of payment--no more of that pay-the-deductible-later crap. Seems that they have a hard time collecting.

Shock! Surprise!! Gasp!!! First they charge in the upper 2% in the country--then they complain that people just aren't paying.

Hell--we have People with Guns after us for the 4th-highest TAXES in the country. No hospital-collection type compares.

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