The Cost of Neglect

“Health insurance has as much to do with being healthy as life insurance has to do with being alive. If you rely on an insurance companies recommended plan for your health care needs we hope you have good life insurance.”- Unknown

In my last article I examined the physical effects of neglecting the warning signs and symptoms that lead to degeneration of the body. Today I want to look at some of the staggering monetary costs to patients and the effects on our overall economy under the current model of our healthcare system.

Unless you have been living under a rock you have to have noticed a severe increase in the cost of your insurance premiums and deductibles. Premiums have risen 19% over the past five years, to $7,000 for a single person in 2017, and to nearly $19,000 for a family and, out-of-pocket costs, which include deductibles, co-pays and co-insurance, has grown 66%, more than twice the growth rate in wages during that period.

Employers paid nearly $665 billion in 2016 in health-related costs. This is such a drain on our economy and businesses that business leaders Jeff Bezos, Warren Buffett and Jamie Dimon of Amazon, Berkshire Hathaway and J.P. Morgan Chase are creating a company to provide their employees with better quality health care at a lower cost, without regard to profit incentives.

Health care spending continues to become a larger share of the U.S economy and at the federal level is a driver of U.S. debt. National health spending, which includes spending by federal and state governments, the private sector and individuals, has risen from just 5% as a share of the economy in 1960 to 17.9% in 2016 to the tune of $3.3 trillion in 2016, or $10,348 per person. It is a drain on us, all the way through retirement. In fact the average 65-year-old couple retiring this year will need about $280,000 to cover health care in retirement.

So what are we getting for our money? Well, according to the World Health Organization the United States consistently ranks at the bottom of all measured categories of health except for acute care. We out spend all of the other countries on health care by a HUGE margin but our outcomes fall way behind. We need to look at more efficient and cost effective ways of improving our health and dealing with some of the costliest health issues and this is where chiropractic thrives. There are numerous studies that prove the cost effectiveness of chiropractic to traditional medical treatment.

In a study Arnold Milstein, MD, MPH and Niteesh Choudhry, MD, PhD, of Harvard Medical School concluded, “When considering effectiveness and cost together, chiropractic physician care for low back pain and neck pain is highly cost effective, represents a good value in comparison to medical physician care and to widely accepted cost-effectiveness thresholds.” Basically Chiropractic gives you the best bang for your buck!

Chiropractors, by correcting and restoring misalignments of the spine, allow the patient to heal properly from the inside out and is shown to be a very cost effective way of maintaining proper health thus saving millions of dollars. So it begs the question, do you want to pay a little now, or suffer and pay way more later?

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