Why should this concern us? Well because DaVita is/was the sole provider of dialysis on the west side of the Sound. This puts all our kidney healthcare from a Doctor owned corporation to the largest payer of insurance claims in the world. What could be a downside? Well, remember that the main problem today for patients is getting payers to agree to pay. This drives a huge growing segment of the market, diabetes and the related kidney failure that accompanies it in it’s final stages, into the hands of the people deciding who pays. I can’t tell you how many horror stories I’ve heard of medical providers having to fight over procedures, some life threatening, with mid level clerks on a phone line somewhere, who simply follow guidelines and won’t pay for certain procedures, despite the medical providers insistence. And there is no appeal process.
Do you want some minimal wage desk jockey with no medical training telling you that you can’t have a life saving procedure that your doctor insists is needed? That’s what this merger moves us even closer to. You can bet your bottom dollar that Senator Mitch McConnell will never have to face that kind of choice. We need single payer and it needs to be managed by the government. We cannot continue to rely on for profit businesses to determine what they will pay for when it comes to our health. That used to be and should be your doctors choice.
- The Federal Trade Commission on Wednedsay approved UnitedHealth Group’s $4.3 billion acquisition of DaVita Medical Group but imposed some conditions.
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