This quote is from an article on the weird world of medical purchasing. A cloth sling can be purchased on line for $7 or your insurance company can pay $83 and give it to you with a $25 co-pay. Do we see the logic or lack of logic here?
In case you missed it there has been a lot of hoo-hah recently on high medical costs, most of which has focused on the costs of prescriptions, tests and other medical adventures. But a big area that has been overlooked is that of 'durable medical goods, orthotics, prosthetics and supplies'.
The way I understand it (with my tiny chemo brain) is that insurance companies negotiate prices for these with medical suppliers which include all kinds of middlemen each wanting their cut. Patients haven't really cared because most of the time these were covered by insurance and they only had to pay their co-pay, if anything.
Along came the internet and hard financial times and people start shopping around and online for things paying a new found interest in the price of an item. So that sling that the insurance company paid $83 can now be had for a mere $7 online. This makes me think of the proverbial government purchase of a toilet for $2000 or a box of paperclips for $50.
Methinks its time for insurance companies to renegotiate those deals as part of their plans to cut costs. They might also want to look for their missing common sense.