A new analysis by the New York Times says there are millions of poor Americans stuck in a health care limbo. Their income too high to qualify for Medicaid, but too low to qualify for federal help in the new health exchanges under Obamacare. Dr. Drew Pinsky joins the panel to discuss what this means.
In partnership with Time, CNN's Drew Griffin reports on why medical bills in the U.S. are so exorbitant, and who in the health care industry is making off with a small fortune.
CNN's Drew Griffin and Time magazine investigate what's behind the high cost of medical bills in America. They find a family who was charged hundreds of thousands of dollars for items used during treatment at a hospital, like the paper cup that holds a patient's pills.
Last March Bob Weinkauf found himself in the ICU struggling to breath. After four days of treatment, the hospital was telling his wife Becky that insurance would not even come close to covering the costs of his care. She says she remembers shaking after the conversation, unsure of what to do.
Weinkauf's bills, totaling about $474,000, were listed in broad categories with few details about the specific charges. He decided to find out what exactly made his hospital stay so costly. The answer was in the price tag of every little or big item he touched or was given – tissues, a urine bottle, a cup he spit in, and most other services and supplies he needed.
When you see a hospital bill for close to half a million dollars right there in front of you, it makes you realize the extraordinary cost of getting sick in America, especially if you are underinsured or, of course, have no insurance at all.
It’s not headline news that health care is wildly expensive but taking a detailed look at what many hospitals actually charge for even the smallest items is truly eye-opening.
Our segment tonight on AC360 is the first of a planned two part series we produced in conjunction with a special edition of Time Magazine, called “Bitter Pill.” Correspondent Drew Griffin and I worked with Time Contributor Steven Brill to track down patients like Bob Weinkauf from this Dallas suburb whose bill from two hospitals while recovering from a horrific lung disease was $474,000.
Jim Acosta and Dr. Sanjay Gupta report on the political and medical implications of a measure in the health care law that restricts doctors from collecting data on patients' gun use.
CNN's Jim Acosta reports on a little-known measure in the 2010 Affordable Care Act that restricts doctors from collecting data about their patients’ gun use. The provision is entitled "Protection of Second Amendment Rights" and the language was pushed by the National Rifle Association.
It was Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid who included it in the health care bill. One Democratic source says it was a way to appease the powerful gun lobby and was seen as a "benign way to make sure the NRA didn't get involved."
Reid has a history of supporting second amendment rights and courting gun owners in his home state, Nevada. The Senator's staff told Acosta that his views on gun control are changing and differ from his beliefs when the legislation was passed.
Dr. Hsia wants to change the market-driven approach to U.S. health care because she believes patients aren't protected from financial ruin, which should be a guaranteed part of the system. Her interview is part of AC360's series "What Keeps You Up at Night," which focuses on election issues.
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