How Will the Current Economic Meltdown Impact Healthcare?

September 22nd, 2008 by Nick Jacobs Leave a reply »

Not long after the attacks of 9/11, the pundits began to attempt to discern their impact on our every day lives. No one fully understood the domino effect of these actions both nationally and internationally. Who could have predicted the over negative blows on all forms of air travel; the economic spin down, the billions in investments needed or reportedly needed to protect us; and finally, the breakdown of our personal freedoms?

Similarly, as we watched the large investment and mortgage related financial institutions begin their minute by minute trip into no- man’s land, we could only shudder with concern over things like pensions, business investment opportunities, ownership of our homes, and the future of our overall economy. As our government began to move from deregulation to government control and ownership, the hollow words of the past certainly rang out like a clapper-less bell.

Allow business and industry to be free, deregulated, uncontrolled, and we will all be better off, or will we? As we see the results of the cheaters, the liars, and the snake oil salesmen, it becomes abundantly apparent that left unregulated our current business culture is filled with those who don’t play correctly, ethically, or reasonably. As the great grandson of prominent and trustworthy Quaker merchants, it pains me to observe the obvious corruption, corner cutting and lack of ethical conviction present in today’s business world. It is reminiscent of Henry F. Potter from “It’s a Wonderful Life.”

How will this impact your health? The slide has already begun. As reported in the Wall Street Journal by Vanessa Fuhrmans, “As the credit crunch threatens to throw the economy into a deep slump, Americans are already cutting back on healthcare spending, a sector once thought to be invulnerable to recession.” Visits to physicians, purchases of prescription drugs, and preventive tests are all measurably decreasing. Some people are cancelling their own health insurance to cover the costs of gasoline and consumer goods. Others are just avoiding what they know to be appropriate medications and screenings.

Quest Diagnostics reported in this article that the number of tests ordered for the uninsured fell 8% in the second quarter compared with their normal 1% quarterly growth. OB/GYN visits, according to the same article, dropped 6% in the first quarter alone this year.

It’s not just the uninsureds who are cutting back. “A recent analysis of claims from 250,000 people in several dozen mid-Atlantic employer health plans suggests even people with coverage are cutting back on care.” They reported nearly a 19% cut back in elective knee surgeries, a 6% decrease in pap smears, and a drop in prescriptions for anti-depression of 29%. Actually, that one was the most mystifying for me. It would seem that there would be exponential growth in this area.

This particular snapshot of the future also presented this query: “What’s next: Doctors and health-policy experts worry that by delaying care in the short term, patients will end up paying more in the long term if their health deteriorates.” Deregulated health care which will lead to deregulated health?



  1. Mike says:

    I think people will be looking to work more to help make ends meet and cover the costs that are on the horizon with winter around the corner.

    Discretionary healthcare spending is likely to slow down when families and individuals realize less disposable income and start to make choices between healthcare, food, rent, utilities, etc. This could be a bad winter for many.

    As far as the antidepressant market goes I think people are more afraid of the future than depressed. Or as I said before are making choices between health and other necessities. For those 47 million uninsured a 30 day prescription of Zoloft (which often requires insurance company authorization) costs $120.00.

    With respect to health care being recession proof – I don’t see it and I was surprised by all the press I read that said healthcare would be immune to such things. My healthcare system just laid off and scrubbed 169 positions/people. Mass General in Boston is cutting 200 jobs – up the road from me, and many other hospitals in the greater Boston area are having trouble and have had layoffs. Healthcare is far from recession proof as well as the jobs within healthcare.

    Finally, I agree with your thoughts on regulation, I share your disappointment.

  2. Simon says:

    It is an old article, almost the year has passed from the day when this article was posted. And we can try to see the difference between those two periods. The fact is that Health care system continues to suffer. Maybe Obama’s health care reform will help a little bit, but only maybe. To my mind people don’t have to save their money on health. Because health is the most important thing that we have. It is more important then cars, tv’s, houses, or other similar things. I would never save money on health. I hope everything will go in the right way in the nearest future. Big thanks for the article author!

  3. I have learn a few good stuff here. Definitely value bookmarking for revisiting. I wonder how much attempt you put to create this kind of great informative website.

  4. helpful post, very valuable, thanks in part a lot!

  5. phentermine says:

    Each of the 16 adults was deemed overweight, as made evident by a
    BMI exceeding 25. The swelling was uncomfortable and frightening enough that I stopped
    taking the phentermine for several days while I waited for the swelling to
    dissipate. Once it has reached a reasonable level, and the danger to your health has
    been reduced, then you might be put back on a normal diet
    and the pills stopped.

  6. In the 1970’s, a little over a decade later, it became available as Phentermine hydrochloride which began being produced under the Fastin.
    Oz had one of his trademark goofy supersized displays to show how
    Qnexa works — a giant brain hovering over a giant red slip-n-slide of
    a tongue — by explaining how the tongue sends signals back to
    the brain and vice versa. perfect shape, try this for once in order to
    see good outcomes.

  7. Each of the 16 adults was deemed overweight, as made
    evident by a BMI exceeding 25. Today, you can also buy Phentrarmine online, and proclaims to bear
    fruit without any diet pill significant side effects.
    This can help in losing unwanted weight according to this program.

  8. You easily get to know about the complete range of the products available.

    You have to be cautious about the dosage as Phentermine also comes in Fifteen milligrams, Thirty mg along with 37.
    Once they stop running, the pain goes away almost

  9. phentermine says:

    Not only is it illegal to buy Phentermine on-line, but Phentermine can also lead to difficulty breathing, partial
    closing of the throat, swelling of the confront, hives,
    confusion, headache, moodiness, shaking, dry mouth,
    constipation, insomnia and substantially far more. You have to be cautious about the dosage as
    Phentermine also comes in Fifteen milligrams, Thirty mg along with 37.
    You will not be given Adipex or phentermine pills for cosmetic weight loss purposes – that is weight loss just to make you look better.

Leave a Reply