The Cost of COVID-19

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In my last post, I urged people to wear masks to reduce the spread of COVID-19 (especially the Delta variant). What I failed to mention to those who resist masks (and/or vaccinations) is the COST of the virus.

Several reports have indicated that the recent Delta variant doubles the risk of hospital admission.

And in case you’re unaware …. hospital stays involve beaucoup bucks.

In fact, according to my online research, hospitalization costs for COVID-19 patients from 21-40, without insurance, averaged about $68,261. For people from 41-60, this increased to $78,569. Fortunately for the folks who have Medicare, the costs are considerably less, but since many depend primarily on Social Security, their finances suffer as well.

Yes, many people have insurance through their employers and that will definitely help with medical costs. BUT … there are also scores of people who are currently unemployed because of the virus and thus are bereft of any insurance.

As I indicated in one of my previous posts, I recently had a brief (3 days) hospital stay (not COVID-related). My hospital-only costs were around $26,000. OTHER costs (the procedure itself, various doctors involved, lab tests, etc.) brought the total up to around $35,000. Fortunately, with Medicare, this amount was significantly reduced and thankfully, I had some savings.

 Now consider that the average hospital stay for COVID-19 for all ages is 22.4 days — just over three weeks. (I will leave it to each reader to calculate cost.)

So go ahead. Leave off your mask! Reject the vaccine!

Just be sure you have the finances available when your declared independence comes back to haunt you.

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Image by Peggy und Marco Lachmann-Anke from Pixabay

32 thoughts on “The Cost of COVID-19

  1. Excellent addition to your previous post Nan! Bravo! 👏

    And not to mention, as most business owners already painfully know—if they’re restaurant, bar/pub, or in the nocturnal hours of operation, ala movie/entertainment theaters, etc.—the horrendous cost to avoid bankruptcy and not feed your family from your owned, hard earned business! 🤦‍♂️

    Liked by 2 people

  2. You know, as a Canadian with full access to whatever medical care my doctor deems appropriate – including specialists – I didn’t even think of this element of financial hit getting sick costs so many Americans… even if much of it is covered by insurance. With minimum wage less than half of what it if for Canadians, how many millions of Americans are taking a HUGE risk beyond health not getting vaccinated. I cannot imagine the poverty that would result from long hauler Covid.

    Liked by 5 people

    • You are hitting only the very leading edge and tip of the proverbial iceberg Tildeb. And Nan’s two posts still doesn’t cover the entire “iceberg” of huge, sharp problems below the surface of the frigid waters!

      You mentioned “long hauler Covid” and I’m presuming you mean those victims—from/by general negligence of the Conservative public & defiant anti-vaxxers—who contract the permanent lifelong health effects of being infected by COVID’s long-haul issues like for example inflamed heart muscle problems, lung-breathing problems, and brain problems to name just three of many complications. These are LIFELONG problems one will have until they’re deceased!!!

      Compare all these financial hardships, economic hardships, and worst of all families who have lost loved ones to this (avoidable) viral death. And what are anti-vaxxer’s and anti-maskers asinine reasons for being defiant and unconcerned for public safety and health? 🤦‍♂️😔 How many deaths so far has this (avoidable) virus taken now, or bankrupted, or handed $100+ grand 22-day hospital bill to ONE PERSON?

      Liked by 2 people

      • Of course you know the standard response, albeit unspoken, is: “That’s not going to happen to me!”

        It’s always “the other guy” — with the rote reaction: How sad. Too bad.

        Liked by 1 person

        • You would think the history of vaccinations in the US would stand on its own merit to convince more people it was in their best interests to get vaccinated ASAP.

          I mean, in 1901 over 40,000 people contracted smallpox, over 200,000 in 1921 people contracted diphtheria, in 1952 over 21,000 people contracted polio. In 2012, the number of people who contracted smallpox, diphtheria, and polio combined was… zero. Vaccinations work.

          With herd immunity from Covid through vaccination programs, this result regarding Covid and all its variants of concern could be equally true of the US. All it takes is a couple of needles to put a stop to another 600,000 Americans DEAD from this disease. This is a no brainer.

          So the ‘hesitancy’ today regarding the efficacy and safety of vaccines screams CON JOB. And the belief in the con job in spite of today’s connected world to humanity’s accumulated knowledge about vaccinations screams IDIOT. Ignorance is no longer a legitimate excuse.

          Liked by 1 person

      • Yeah, I was surprised at myself for not really grasping the financial risk Nan pointed out (or funeral expenses Steve raises). I was focused solely (myopically?) on the medical information which, by itself, is a no brainer on the side of vaccinations versus Covid. I really do enjoy having my framework given a shake from time to time and be reminded that there’s often a bigger picture I have not seen than the focal point I have. Much gratitude, Nan.

        Liked by 2 people

  3. So it makes sense to me that for those unvaccinated people who think the vaccine is more dangerous than the disease will choose not to get vaccinated. It also makes sense to me that half the population has lower than average intelligence. I think these two are linked.

    If we can mandate no smoking in various venues and services for reasons of known health risks, then surely we can mandate vaccinations for those same venues and services for exactly the same reasons of risk. I do not see why this is contentious when Covid is factually tens of thousands of times more dangerous than second hand smoke.

    Liked by 4 people

    • Shockingly to some, I suppose, no ICU beds are dedicated to a stream of victims who have been subjected to outdoor second hand tobacco smoke. Not one. Not anywhere. The actual health risk is negligible. The offense, however, is disproportionate.

      This is not the case for Covid.

      Yet the amount of anti-smoking legislation and all the rules and regulations outlawing and fining smoking in prohibited places including the outdoors in many locales is ubiquitous. And most people are just fine and dandy with both this assumption that such rules are needed and the massive overreach to impose them.

      Well, there seems to me to be a significant disconnect between the reasons based on health risks for justifying these no smoking rules and regulation and the utter failure of using the same risk assessment using health for justifying anti-Covid rules and regulations.

      But then, I’ve always maintained that anti-smoking rules and regulations are usually reasonable but are taken to the extremes by those who mistake morality about smoking in place of health risk reasons. Let’s not make the same mistake with Covid and make it into a moral issue when vaccinations and mandating them are based on and justified by known health risks far, Far, FAR greater than second hand smoke.

      Liked by 2 people

  4. And another reason why universal health care is needed in the States, and anywhere else that does not have it. What right does anyone have to deny health care to a sick or injured person. When money is more important than life, there is something wrong with the system.

    Liked by 2 people

    • This notion you have that no one has the right to deny health care to a sick or injured person is actually an inversion of individual autonomy, in that you lose autonomy when you believe others have the right to demand you to provide something like health care for them. Now maybe this was simply a manner of speech and not an accurate reflection of what you think. But it is important, I think, to clarify here.

      To own your own autonomy, you have the right to choose your own actions/beliefs/opinions/preferences/whatever, which then justifies being responsible for the consequences. When you invert this order, you are actually removing the justification for being held responsible. That’s not good and carries with it significant social costs.

      Now, I know there will be confusion about this because of the subject – health care for all – seems to justify the inversion. But in fact it doesn’t. When health care becomes a ‘right’ rather than a service provided and largely paid for by others, we lose sight of the actual and very real costs made by many on our behalf and so feel no obligation or gratitude when they are provided. We expect service! Where’s my service? Give me my service! This is the sense of ‘entitlement’ we hear about and experience all the time and, in nutshell, removes the virtue from those offering it. The belief of entitlement leads to ingratitude and selfishness and division. (Anyone with teenagers going through this entitlement phase understands why such ingratitude is not pleasant or a bonding experience; it severs ties.)

      I understand and agree that universal health care is both a virtuous idea and virtuous when implemented for so many and so I am deeply appreciative to live under this protective umbrella and receive it when necessary. But I also understand that I incur a debt living under this system not just to the providers of universal health care but to the very system itself that produced it – and gladly accept my small part paying for it. If I believed I was simply owed this service, that it was my ‘right’ to have access to universal healthcare, I would not understand either this personal debt I incur having access to it or have this sense of appreciation and gratitude for those who came before to set it up for my benefit. I would simply feel entitled. And I think this sense is a vice.

      Liked by 1 person

      • You can turn a nything into an argument, can’t you. You are lying on the road, bleeding to death if you do not get help. In Canada, the pick you up, take you to a hospital, and work to save your life without a thought for how much money they can gouge you for.
        In the States, they care about whether you can pay for the emergency service. If they don’t think you can pay for transport you arelikely to die before you get the help you need.
        What part of this is about autonomy?
        We all pay for our health care through our taxes. We pay taxes even when we do not need health care. The thing is, we know it is there when we need it. Millions of Americans do not know that!
        So, Tilbed, next time you need health care, go ahead and refuse it. I will respect your right to do so. Me, I will take what is offered, and thank whoever is involved in my care. And I will be damned glad I will not be receiving a bill for hundreds of thousands of dollars because some fool drunk driver decided to get behind the wheel of a car. Yes, health care is a right, or we are not humane humans. The rest of what you took the time to say is pure bullshit.

        Liked by 1 person

    • Good point!!

      Google tells me that the median cost for a funeral and burial is about $9,135. This doesn’t include a burial plot or transportation of the deceased.

      So yes. One more reason to consider getting that vaccine or wearing a mask.

      Liked by 1 person

  5. It has never bothered me to wear a surgical/KN-95 mask.

    Back in the day, (oh god, there he goes) I wore an oxygen mask for 8 to 15 hours (including breaks) at a time (2,000 hours total). It was mandatory. I would lose my job if I did not follow all the (safety) rules (or my life). My freedom was not affected.

    When I got my first CPAP, I wore it all night without a problem. More good health (stopping breathing during the night sucks, in an ironic sort of way).

    Got my shots (may need a booster sometime). I play keep-away from me with others. I wash my hands often. I only kiss my wife. I love strolling through the grocery store as one of the (now few) masked people trying not to kill anyone including me (my country is now code red – again).

    It costs me nothing other than a few bucks for the masks.

    I don’t even want to know what my three hospital stays and two ER trips over the past year cost insurance. I’m afraid to look. My insurance is great. I wish everyone had it.

    Liked by 1 person

      • Does your insurance pick up everything? Or just a very large portion? Maybe you should share the name of the company? Not that it will change the mind of “certain” people, but it might help those who recognize the consequences of this virus.

        Like

        • I have seldom had to pay anything.

          But don’t laugh (or do if you want). It’s called “socialism”: Medicare and Tricare for Life (I’m retired military). I also have access to VA medical care. I only use that for some things not covered by the two primaries (i.e., hearing aids) or just because they do a better job. Now I just need to stay alive. To wit, I wear the mask.

          Liked by 1 person

          • My other-half has access to VA medical care so I’m familiar. As I mentioned in my post, Medicare was a real life-saver for me with my hospital stay.

            Amazing how few truly understand what “socialism” can do for the average individual.

            Liked by 3 people

  6. I would love to see a law passed that would allow insurance companies to deny COVID coverage to any adult who refuses vaccination. Sure, the anti-vaxxers would have the freedom to be an idiot if they want, but they can pay for it out of their own pocket when the “hoax” virus puts them in the ICU. I expect the insurance companies would also appreciate a law like that.

    Liked by 3 people

  7. I have been – repeatedly – told, that the lockdowns, restrictions and recommendations to limit the pandemic do a havoc on the economy, cause unemployment and therefore are too expensive for the society. But how does one calculate what is too expensive? I never get any intelligable response when I answer with a question of what would it cost for the society, if we did not have the lockdowns. What if we simply let the disease run it’s course through the population? What would the monetary and economic costs be like then? All I get, is that it is just a nother flu, or who cares what happens to grannies, who would die anyway from some other reason.

    It is the same type of people who once loudly declared that AIDS is just a gay plague, so they do not need to wear protection, who now say, COVID-19 only kills old ladies. The underlying thought process (if you can call it that) is based on a fascistic set of values, that are the result of cultural indoctrination and garbled thinking, that is confused what are the facts about reality, to provide room for preassumptions and biases. A person hindered in this manner on their thinking skills has all the more reason to be more scared about stuff – any stuff at all, coming from beyond their own field of personal experience – be it a foreigner, or even a person of different perplexion, all the way to reports about a pandemic.

    Liked by 2 people

  8. A family friend, fully vaccinated got covid , ended up the hospital and died of covid in May . My family got covid 3 weeks ago from other fully vaccinated family members. They were no better off than we were. 10 days of fevers and pneumonia by day 6 for both vaccinated and non vaccinated. Your hate and lack of concern for others who didn’t vaccinate is disgusting and sad. I’m living in a high covid area and I have NOT seen the benefit yet. The only benefit I see of vaccination is to make people approve of me and get a pat on the back from the media and medical field. Have mercy on all people. Help them wether they are vaccinated or not. I’ve seen deaths and sickness with vaccinated and no it’s not less- it’s horrible and scary. Have some mercy on all people , they have reasons for decisions just like you do. Love others , no judging , and I hope you all stay safe

    Like

    • I’m sorry for your friends and family. There are always exceptions to every rule, but as related to this virus, the odds are far more favorable to those who are vaccinated.

      I resent your comment — Your hate and lack of concern for others who didn’t vaccinate is disgusting and sad.— as the topic of this post was primarily related to hospital costs should a person become infected and require hospitalization. Perhaps you need to read it more carefully before you make accusations.

      There are many who will continue to resist wearing a mask and/or getting vaccinated because it’s their “right.” (!) But what so many continue to overlook is these precautions are more to help others, i.e., individuals who are susceptible to the virus and who, like your family friend, may die as a result.

      Liked by 1 person

    • “My family got covid 3 weeks ago from other fully vaccinated family members. They were no better off than we were. 10 days of fevers and pneumonia by day 6 for both vaccinated and non vaccinated.”

      This implies the claim getting Covid “from other fully vaccinated family members” isn’t the whole story. So I checked our area. Of all those in the hospitals in ICU suffering complications, 53 not vaccinated, 4 with one dose, 1 vaccinated. This included 3 kids under 12. Outside of ICU but still in the hospitals, 68 unvaxed, 6 with one dose, 11 fully vaccinated.

      So nobody who understands this virus is claiming vaccination is a protection from getting or spreading Covid. Neither is masking. But both play an important role in reducing the RISK; masking reduces the droplets inhaling and exhaling so it slows the rate of concentration which, for most of us, is short times spent in social contact with others. Masking reduces the risk in these settings. It doesn’t eliminate it.

      Concentration of virus hanging in the air will cause contagion. So, who is contributing? The vast majority of those contributing are unmasked, unvaccinated people. But even vaccinated people, even people wearing masks, can contribute if their bodies have not killed the virus but are reproducing it. And this is about 8% of fully vaccinated people, most of whom will suffer symptoms but survive. This gets more complicated if vaxed people who are positive and don’t kill the virus (versus those who become infected but create antibodies that do) ALSO have other chronic conditions (obesity is by far the most common and the biggest risk factor for complications). That’s why Covid is such a risk: highly infectious, no symptoms for several days for carriers, and EVERYONE is susceptible. Vaccination reduces all of these risks but by no means eliminates them.

      So I think this local numbers accurately reflects the overall risk and allows us to understand whether we are doingour best on behalf of others or if we are adding to the risk all of us face: not getting vaccinated significantly increases the likelihood of getting sever symptoms, as well as spreading it before becoming ill makes getting out and socializing too difficult. But these numbers also points out that vaccination does not eliminate the risk. In fact, I suspect in two years time every one of us will test positive for Covid, meaning our bodies have been exposed and we’ve produces antibodies regardless if contact was through a vaccinated person or not. But I will bet you dollars to donuts (in fact, we’re all risking our lives in this unfolding experiment) that vaccinated people will fare far better than unvaccinated in overall numbers. And that’s ALL we can do: do our part protecting others as best we can and reduce our risks. Beyond that, we have no control. So achieving herd immunity – meaning at the bare minimum chance for herd immunity requires 85% of the ENTIRE population to be fully vaccinated before the numbers of infected people drop low enough to make encountering the virus highly unlikely. But, unlike many other viruses, Covid can and does reside in animal pools including cats and dogs and so that’s why I think we will encounter Covid and so vaccination is the only game in town to reduce this risk the most. And even then… yup, a percentage will get quite sick.

      This is why disinformation about Covid, disinformation about masking, disinformation about vaccination is SO reprehensible. It’s really our only defense.

      Liked by 1 person

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