Surprise medical bills: who loves them?!

Democratic Leadership Showed This Week That It Can’t Be Trusted With Health Care Reform
By Jordan Weissmann
Slate, 2019-12-18

Finally, some unity: In a country divided along stark partisan lines, just about everybody in Washington seems to agree that Congress needs to protect Americans from the scourge of surprise medical bills, the unexpected and sometimes crushing charges hospital patients face when they unknowingly receive treatment from a doctor who doesn’t accept their insurance. Democrats. Republicans. The president. They all say something ought to be done. And for a moment, it appeared as if lawmakers might actually move on a bipartisan proposal dealing with the issue before the end of this year.

Those hopes have now died. Thanks to a last minute dispute between House Democrats, surprise billing legislation was cut entirely from the massive, year-end spending measures that passed this week. Capitol Hill won’t tackle the issue until next year, if ever.

This is a debacle.
Despite overwhelming public desire for a fix,
Democrats appear to have caved to
the lobbying efforts of hospitals, doctors, and private equity groups,
raising questions about
their willingness to put patient interests above those of their donors,
and whether their leaders in the House can be trusted with any significant health reforms going forward.


[A brief aside about myself: I have been trained as a mathematician and worked as a military intelligence officer.
In both fields of work, emphasis is placed on the search for patterns,
and when such are found, trying to find the cause of such patterns.
Further, as an American citizen who has been observing the changes in America during the period I have been observing it, since, say, 1955,
the changes have been so great that it seems extremely important to try to discern the cause(s) of those changes.

One change has been the radical, extreme, growth in the extent to which the health care sector devours the American gross national product.
The percentage was something like 3% back in 1950;
in 2019 it is nearing 20% and still rising.
While some of that is due to an aging population, the percentage change in that is nothing like a 6 to 1 ratio.
So why does health care eat up so much of the American economy,
at the expense of other, IMO, far more worthwhile efforts,
such as trying to find less polluting ways to provide the power we consume,
and, perhaps, subsidizing potential more costly but less polluting ways to generate that power.
So why are we spending so much on medicine?

Well, the article above certainly gives a vivid example of why efforts to tame the rise in health care costs fail.
And it even points out the actors that caused this particular effort to fail:
hospitals, doctors, and private equity groups

Now, as I said above, both scientists (such as mathematicians) and intelligence officers like to, and indeed often have the duty to, seek underlying causes.

So, in an effort to do that that will doubtless be criticized,
let me merely ask a question:
Is there an identifiable demographic group (or groups)
that is vastly over-represented in
both the medical professions and the private equity funds?

Further, one (certainly myself) may wonder
just why
private equity funds should be opposed to reining in surprise medical bills?

I can't think of a single reason, other than that
there is a certain group whose members ask themselves the question:
"Is it good for [our group]"?

Is it not so?

I am not happy with this line of argument;
I very well understand the objections to it.
But why the hell does the argument seem so valid?
Why do some very powerful people so disregard the broader national interest?]