Health insurance in bygone days was HEALTHIER!

Our terrific commenter and friend, Mal, wrote this in a Comment on Friday and I wanted to share it with all of you who didn’t see it.  We were talking health care and, finally, in a response to FB, who said some of us paying our own way might be a better way to attack healthcare, Mal wrote these two comments:

“FB, you’re spot on. It was much cheaper before everyone had coverage. Example….between May 1955 and Jan. 1962 we had 4 children with no insurance. The hospital was $35/day, the OBGYN charged $250 FOR THE ENTIRE 9 MONTHS, and the anesthesiologist was $80, which was very cheap even for that time, and all would take payments w/o interest. No sweat. Everything went to Hell after we began having medical insurance.

Oh! And those that needed extra costly procedures usually got covered by family, friends, or the church. It became a community problem.”

How many of you think we could ever go back to that again?   How about doctors who didn’t charge interest and waited for the payments to be made as their patient could afford to pay?  How about the community (church, family, friends) all helping a family in need? How about how everything was cheaper before coverage?

Interesting that shrinking churches today are in situations where they simply haven’t the congregation money to help families in their communities like they used to.  A lot of the shrinking has been ‘blamed’ on the way the media and schools so insult and belittle faith….Machiavellian?  Forcing families toward GOVERNMENT?

Mal’s family didn’t need GOVERNMENT…..

Do you think most Americans would EVER accept actually paying for their own medical needs?  I believe premiums alone for many families and employers are higher than the average needs of a family or an employee, don’t you?

Let’s talk about Mal’s comments…..doesn’t that sound like a BETTER WORLD TO YOU?

And THANK, Mal!



This entry was posted in health, interesting!. Bookmark the permalink.

29 Responses to Health insurance in bygone days was HEALTHIER!

  1. Kid says:

    In 1968 I broke my leg and was in the hospital for a month and a half, two othepedic surgeries to fix it, 250 shots of morphine (by good looking nurses), total cost 1800.00.

    Yea, health insurance is a part of the problem the same way universitiy costs are absurd becuase government guarantees the loans. Lawyers are the other 50% of the problem.


  2. Do you think most Americans would EVER accept actually paying for their own medical needs?

    Even though it is explicitly not within the enumerated powers of the Federal government….our society has become so used to the illegal entitlement, that they [writ large] will never accept paying for their own medical needs. There’s really no argument against Single Payer anymore……


  3. Is Medicare a “Single Payer”?


  4. skudrunner says:

    Health insurance is the single largest contributor to the rising cost of medicine and the secret money transfer to the the medical community. How much does it cost to have a broken leg set in a hospital. Depends on the hospital, the surgeon, the insurance company and the location. What a hospital and doctor would bill you as a private payer is not even close to what they get reimbursed by insurance, Crazy system.
    By providing comprehensive low deductible insurance people lose the desire to find a more cost effective method of seeking care.Hit your thumb with a hammer and off to the ER you go. Little to no out of pocket and a $3000 bill to the insurance company.
    The problem we face now is it is difficult to take back free stuff and the media is in a frenzy condemning a plan they have not even seen. I don;t remember the media all in a uproar over obamacare before they saw it. That’s right it had to pass before anyone saw it.

    We live in interesting times.


  5. Kid’s broken leg today, assuming it were not complicated but required surgery, might cost around $20k, which sounds horrendous but is less than $2.9k in 1968 money. So that’s a rise of 60% on top of inflation, but what are you getting for your extra money? Maybe you can leave hospital sooner (and hence less time off work, assuming your job is possible on crutches), perhaps your surgery would leave less of a scar, and you might need less exposure to strong painkillers. And, fingers crossed you don’t need it, but if complications arise we can handle them better than we could in the ’60s.

    But I expect lawyers are sucking something from the system too.


  6. Imp says:

    Mal…I remember when gas was 17 cents a gallon too… 🙂 And my uncle with 9 kids used to full up 4 shopping carts with food for less than $100. Lasted him 2 weeks.


  7. Mal says:

    Imp, how about .07 cents for regular, .09 for ethyl (1930’s Depression).


  8. Mal says:

    Two more points……reimbursement by Medicare takes many months and costs of running it has to be enormous and factored in, also.


  9. Kid says:

    convergentsum, Don’t mean to come back at you but according to this quick search referfence, it would cost 1,723 / day based on Pennsylvania, as that is where it was.

    The drugs would add to that of course. So 45 days just average for-profit hospital comes to 77,535.

    Lower leg was crushed in two places, broken in 3 more and ankle brooken in 2 places…. They wouildn’t let me out of bed and on to crutches for a month and a half.


  10. geeez2014 says:

    For some reason, it hit me harder than usual today as I watched the news that the White House is in the health insurance business and what the heck are they doing in it? (I can be a late learner :-))

    I’m with CI on this…..single payer is looming. How the heck much more COULD it cost? Why not put a tax on everyone, something that could offset the huge cost of single payer?
    Let’s not forget: SINGLE PAYER ISN’T CHEAP AND IT IS NOT FREE! SINGLE PAYER, AS IT IS IN GERMANY, SCANDINAVIA, FRANCE, ISN’T ONLY SINGLE PAYER. THEY STILL HAVE PRIVATE HEALTH INSURANCE AND , TRUST ME, IT IS EXPENSIVE. A healthy woman in her thirties who I know pays $1000 a month for her ‘free German healthcare’.
    Americans WILL PAY…their taxes, too, will have to go up to 40-50%.

    skudrunner and the rest of us are right: It is DIFFICULT to take free things back…. good luck, Mr. Ryan and Trump.


  11. geeez2014 says:

    JMB is right; MEDICARE IS SINGLE PAYER. Do you know I’m such a Republican that it makes me feel guilty now that I get it? “why should my gov’t pay for THIS?” I swear I do. Other times, I think “thank GOODNESS I don’t have to PAY for this!” 🙂

    Mal, thanks for this terrific subject….I long for those days………!!! Self reliance, not feeling like we’re fleeced in medical care!….

    Kid; COSTS are absurd……probably 10% probably actually pays for THE PRODUCT…the rest goes to overhead of hospital construction, equipment, paperwork people, etc…


  12. geeez2014 says:

    WOULDN’T IT BE A GOOD THING IF THE REPUBLICANS CONSTANTLY HIT HARD ON THAT AS AN ASIDE TO THIS WHOLE HEALTHCARE SITUATION? “Remember, most of us can’t afford a rise of 20% in our taxes to pay for single payer…. we are doing the best we can to avoid that”…???


  13. Kid says:

    An executive I know in Canada says after paying through the nose in taxes for single payer in Canada, if you want to get anything that even looks like healthcare in Canada, you have to buy private insurance.

    Google Problems with NHS (The national health service in England) It is a disaster.

    Z, Costs are absurd. Add lawyers. Though states could do something about that as Texas did with firvilous lawsuits.

    Again I say that the government pays for all sorts of people who fall through the cracks. Thinking pre-existing condition people here. We could go back to what we had and have some supplemntal plan to cover those who fall through the cracks and pay a lot less than what we will end up with. I just don’t see HC as being complicated. The lawyer lobbies must have some real power.


  14. geeez2014 says:

    Spicer’s actually doing quite well at the presser right now on healthcare and why Obama’s was wrong…”Older people don’t need to pay for maternity care”..etc…
    Hitting Pelosi for “If you want to know what’s in it, pass it first”…and the difference in this situation

    Oh, did I mention today how much I can’t stand Pelosi? ( I hate to use the word ‘hate’)


  15. geeez2014 says:


    I totally agreed with this Rep King on his comments about immigration…and, by the way, I AM “somebody else’s baby”. He’s right; “it’s the CULTURE not the BLOOD…if you take babies of immigrants into our country and they’re raised in Western culture homes, they’ll be every bit as welcome and American and productive, etc., as any of us”. They just don’t listen to the words beyond the ones they want to ATTACK!


  16. Kid says:

    Z, I’m inclined to hate pelosi, but I’m more inclined to look upon her as a moron with a physically defective brain that ought to be in a home somewhere. Add many others.


  17. If you want a quick comparison of the effect of insurance on cost, go to a vision center. Check out the sale price. Notice the sale price is not available if you are using insurance.


  18. Baysider says:

    My father in law took pigs and chickens in payment at times and waited until slaughter time to collect. In the health sharing ministry I belong to they help you negotiate the price down. The biggest tip: tell the hospital you are a cash pay customer and get their cash discount upfront. I’ve not had to use thIs, but they say that’s usually 40%. They then put it into member reimbursement at a greatly reduced price.

    The single payer at Medicare drives us crazy! Straight Medicare? Then get your ur medical device at the doctors office. A helper insurance plan? Drive across town to get it!


  19. Mal says:

    Baysider, and your father-in-law doctor probably had a better track record in analyzing and curing his patients using simple, logical methods than today’s “specialists”.


  20. Mal says:

    ……………and he made house calls, too, I’ll bet!


  21. skudrunner says:

    Politicians and the media love to categorize medicare as an entitlement, it makes all the other free stuff look better.
    I have paid for medicare most of my life and still pay for it now that I am eligible. It is a prepaid health insurance plan not an entitlement and I have no issue using something I have paid for.
    England has a two tired healthcare system, National where everyone receives the same poor service and paid for insurance if you can afford it and want better care.
    Canada has no private insurance and physicians cannot accept private patients so everyone is treated the same. The difference is people with money can go across the border and get good treatment without the wait.
    My question to anyone is how can the Republican proposal, which no one has seen, cost 14 million people their coverage when only 14.r million are on obamacare?


  22. Imp says:

    Mal…”Imp, how about .07 cents for regular..” Ya got me with that one! Back when a new car cost $750?


  23. geeez2014 says:

    Skudrunner…WHY is GRAVATAR needed? I click on your name and can’t find your blog, and that’s that. Do you still HAVE your blog?

    I get so weary of seeing these GRAVATAR pages which I simply don’t understand…is there a way to get into a blog thru it??


  24. Mal says:

    $750 for a new car sounds about right, Imp. Women worked as clerks at the 5 & 10 cent stores for $12 -$15 per week so it all made sense for that time.


  25. Baysider says:

    @Mal … he did — ‘farm calls’ actually. And he served as the ‘ambulance’ to get urgent patients into the hospital.


  26. geeez2014 says:

    When I was a little girl, till I was 8 or so, our pediatrician came to the house….
    He once came into my room, after dinner, and started pushing on my stomach and saying “Oh…you had meat loaf!” I was stunned! “HOW DID HE KNOW!?” “and peas and mashed potatoes!”
    It wasn’t till a few weeks later my mother told me that, as he came in, he asked her what I’d eaten! I thought he had supernatural abilities.
    I still do, actually 🙂


  27. skudrunner says:

    Don’t have a blog and never did. I clicked on and saw the gravatar which I still don’t know what it is.


  28. Mal says:

    The story about you doc as a little girl made me laugh, Z!


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s