Saturday, November 15, 2008
Fly away surgery
I like this idea. It's certain to catch on. Apparently workers for the Wisconsin company Serigraph can have their copays and coinsurance waived for certain elective operations. All they have to do to qualify is hop on a plane and fly half way around the world to a "fancy tourist hospital" in India for the surgery. Now that sounds awesome. I can't think of a better way to recover from a hernia repair or a knee replacement than to fly coach on Continental for 14 hours.
And what about the part-time workers and the new guys with half benefits? What happens if they need a lap chole? Do they also get the tourist hospital treatment? Or do they have to settle for a voyage across the Atlantic on a wooden raft to Bangladesh for bare bones surgery at some open air tent-hospital in the jungle where they give you a piece of bamboo to bite down on instead of anesthetic?
Now I'm all for globalism but there's a point when too much of anything starts to tip matters into the realm of the absurd. What we see here is yet another bad consequence of the forced coupling of health insurance to employment.