Over the last several decades, the healthcare industry has moved away from a not-for-profit model to a for-profit model. As a result, even lifesaving and necessary treatments have been priced out of reach for many people. The cost of treatment for diabetics has risen by $2841 every year between 2012 and 2016, putting the cost of medically necessary insulin out of reach for some patients. In addition, hospitals have started to run on such razor thin margins that they have to “order on demand” when supplies run low, which has led to the drastic shortage of PPE we are seeing in the wake of COVID-19. The social impact of mixing business and medicine has never been so apparent. Will we be able to find a way forward after COVID-19 runs its course?
Between 2009 and 2016, the cost of an EpiPen rose from $100 to $600. That may not seem like a lot, but when you consider that children with anaphylaxis are supposed to have one at home, one at school, and one with them at all times at minimum and they have to be replaced yearly, the cost adds up quickly.
Americans are ignoring medical advice and rationing life saving medication at an alarming rate. More than half of Millennials and GenZers avoid going to hospitals or the doctor, which leads to 125,000 avoidable deaths each year as well as 10% of hospitalizations.
Every year, 26,000 American adults die as a result of lack of access to healthcare, and that number is growing rapidly in the wake of COVID-19. Learn more about the social impact of mixing business and medicine below.