Linked by Thom Holwerda on Thu 1st Mar 2018 00:51 UTC
Apple

Apple is launching a group of health clinics called AC Wellness for its employees and their families this spring, according to several sources familiar with the company's plans.

The company quietly published a website, acwellness.com, with more details about its initiative and a careers page listing jobs including primary care doctor, exercise coach and care navigator, as well as a phlebotomist to administer lab tests on-site.

This new primary care group - a group of clinical staff that is run independently from Apple but is dedicated to Apple employees - will initially only serve Apple's employees in Santa Clara County, where its headquarters are located. Initially, it has two clinics in the county.

Scrip healthcare.

This is insanity.

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RE[2]: Yeah but...
by galvanash on Thu 1st Mar 2018 05:51 UTC in reply to "RE: Yeah but..."
galvanash
Member since:
2006-01-25

That said, this is BS. Apple employees are paid pretty well, Apple even offers a health plan to their employees (as most large corporations do) and all around the San Francisco Bay Area are world class hospitals and medical centers.


World class yes. Cheap? Not really. Sure, there are some inexpensive clinics, but they generally targeted at treating basic health issues (cold, flu, minor injuries, etc.), not preventative care - they almost all suck for that. Every time you go to one its a different doctor, there is no time to do thorough exams, you wait 2 hours for 10 minutes of time with a doctor, etc. Good preventative care is actually hard to find and is expensive when you do.

The point (and incentive) for Apple to do this kind of thing is to offer preventative care that is cheap and convenient to improve the overall health of their workers, which will lower their healthcare premiums for times when they need actual treatment at a UCSF or Stanford Medical.

There is no real incentive for conventional medical practitioners like these to do things to proactively keep people healthy - they make money by treating patients, not trying to keep them healthy. What Apple is trying to do in no way replaces the need for conventional treatments, it is simply a way to try and reduce them (and thus save money on premiums for themselves and their employees).

Also, San Francisco is like 45 minutes away from Cupertino. That isn't exactly convenient... I'm sure there are a good number of Apple employees closer to San Francisco, but most of them live south of Cupertino, not north.

Edited 2018-03-01 06:02 UTC

Reply Parent Score: 5

RE[3]: Yeah but...
by avgalen on Thu 1st Mar 2018 09:43 in reply to "RE[2]: Yeah but..."
avgalen Member since:
2010-09-23

The point (and incentive) for Apple to do this kind of thing is to offer preventative care that is cheap and convenient to improve the overall health of their workers, which will lower their healthcare premiums for times when they need actual treatment at a UCSF or Stanford Medical.

Setting up your own medical healthcare center to reduce healthcare cost? That only makes sense if outside healthcare is really expensive and you require a lot of it (having very unhealthy employees).

No, this is not for reducing cost of healthcare, it is for HR/recruitment purposes. "Here at Apple we not only pay you a good salary, we also take care of the health of you and your loved ones"

...however when my wife was being recruited by Apple and she asked them about daycare their answer was "We give you a big bag of money, you take care of daycare yourself"

Reply Parent Score: 3

RE[3]: Yeah but...
by Alfman on Thu 1st Mar 2018 15:14 in reply to "RE[2]: Yeah but..."
Alfman Member since:
2011-01-28

galvanash,

World class yes. Cheap? Not really. Sure, there are some inexpensive clinics, but they generally targeted at treating basic health issues (cold, flu, minor injuries, etc.), not preventative care - they almost all suck for that. Every time you go to one its a different doctor, there is no time to do thorough exams, you wait 2 hours for 10 minutes of time with a doctor, etc. Good preventative care is actually hard to find and is expensive when you do.


I think we have the worst of both worlds here, health care that is both extremely expensive, and crowded/impersonal/rushed.

There is no real incentive for conventional medical practitioners like these to do things to proactively keep people healthy - they make money by treating patients, not trying to keep them healthy. What Apple is trying to do in no way replaces the need for conventional treatments, it is simply a way to try and reduce them (and thus save money on premiums for themselves and their employees).


The whole thing's a mess. Between hospitals, pharmacies doctors, labs, insurance companies, the costs even for basic needs have skyrocketted. It really doesn't have to be this way, there is so much unnecessary overhead! Yet as a consumer, you can't really fight the middle men because they've made it so damn expensive to pay a provider with your own money.

https://www.npr.org/sections/health-shots/2018/02/16/585548181/an-ou...

While the $17K bill for a $100 test is ludicrous, unfortunately overcharging individuals is not all that unusual. A relative was billed $35k for giving birth at the hospital without insurance, this is not what the insurance company pays for the same service. On our bills, we see both the price that we would have had to pay in cash versus the price the insurance company itself actually paid. Low and behold, if your paying as an individual you can expect to pay 4-5 times more what the insurance company pays.

With deregulation being the norm, such price discrimination is totally legal and insurance companies are laughing all the way to the bank, they know damn well just how much it would cost consumers and employers to boycott them and instead pay bills directly.

So I am in full agreement with you that apple opening their own medical facilities may be an effective way for them to boycott this corrupt system, but it's obviously not a scalable model that most employers could follow.

Also we can't ignore Thom's point that putting even more health care into employer's hands will have negative consequences for consumer choice. I'm already annoyed that under our insurance plan today, they will no longer be covering recurring prescriptions unless we go through the pharmacies of their choosing. Obviously this was part of some backroom deal that we weren't privy to. It just sucks that employers are making health care decisions on behalf of employees and patients. I'd much prefer a system where employees got vouchers instead such that we could buy into policies of our own choosing.

Reply Parent Score: 4