It’s the Last Month that Costs the Most

So many interesting and intelligent people are regulars at the cafe. It is a pleasure to know them and to provide them with their sustaining coffee and bagels. Today one of our regular customers, Greg, stopped by and we began to chat about his life. He said he used to be a physician’s assistant for the federal government, then he left the job and spent a few years building his own house.

But he’s decided to get back into the field, and was looking for a job that would let him work part time. The conversation led to the subject of healthcare, that is always tied into the subject of jobs and how many of us need to have jobs to get the health insurance. He told me that 90% of the health care expenses in the US go to cover our oldest citizens in the last month or two of their lives. And that in Canada, even though the government spends almost a trillion less per year, their people live two years longer than us. And in Cuba, it’s a tiny fraction of our budget yet Cubaneros live even longer than Canadians. It’s the high tech machinery that keeps old sick people living much longer that really adds up to the biggest bucks, he said.

I am now pricing out health insurance for our company and was glad to find Fallon Health, a new entry into the local health insurance market. They offer many of the same doctors, but their premiums are hundreds less than Blue Cross. It is nice to be able to pass along companies that compete and are trying to offer lower cost remedies to this universal problem.