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“Healthcare costs are sky-rocketing!”

“The percentage of the U.S. GDP devoted to heath care costs is the highest in the world.”

“The cost of Medicare is unsustainable.”

For most of us, the cost of healthcare (i.e., the dollars required by the system to produce and deliver care) isn’t what brings us the most anxiety.

It’s when we’re patients or helping a loved one find care that so many of us are deeply concerned about the price of our healthcare: what we – personally, individually  pay to acquire the services, drugs and devices we need.

We hear news stories about people who delay needed care, split pills and skip treatments because they just can’t afford them. We hear that more of us are going to a retail clinic in a Walmart to check out a bad cough because of convenience and lower prices. We watch family members and neighbors slip into bankruptcy because they can’t pay the medical bills from their car accident or their cancer treatment. We see jars of pennies at the corner 7-11 with a sick child’s face and a plea for help with unpaid hospital care.

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