This post is about a side of home bread baking that I’ve not spoken to many people about: cost.
If you dip into the bread baking section of social media you’ll be amazed by the artisan works of edible art. Professionals and amateurs alike post photos of loaves beautifully decorated with ivy patterns or artistic folds; videos show time-lapse views of skilled dough shaping and loaf preparation.
I appreciate those skills, and continue to try to learn them, but this post isn’t about that. This post is about home baking loaves of sandwich bread to support a family, and how much that costs, with probably more detail than is necessary.
My backstory and detailed cost breakdown will follow, but here’s the point:
Baking loaves of wide-pan wheat-white-oat bread myself cost us up to $3.80, lasting a week and a little longer.
Buying bread ran us $3.57 per week, but could be up to $5.57 without cheap bread options. (I’ll explain.)
“Caring for those who cannot afford health coverage”
Published 30 Nov 2017 | swissinfo.ch
by Tony Ganzer and Geraldine Wong Sak Hoi
“…Health care in the United States has prompted aggressively partisan debates about the role of government in social services, about costs, and even about taxes. Most skirmishes don’t include extended bipartisan recognition of the people who fall through the cracks of the American patchwork system, and the threads by which some of them are barely hanging on.
Even with implementation of the Affordable Care Act, or Obamacare, there are still 28 million non-elderly uninsured people in the country. Although Obamacare expanded health coverage and assistance for millions of people, it doesn’t equate to universal coverage. Cost is a big reason why people remain uninsured, and for some, a lack of legal immigration status prevents getting insurance. Others without insurance faced a problem of making too much money to qualify for subsidies on the insurance exchanges, so they opt to roll the dice without insurance rather than pay full price.
A major group helped by the ACA are those too poor to have insurance through an employer plan or through the open market. Medicaid is the main public program available to help low-income or some disabled individuals (it covers 62 million people). A similar program called the Children’s Health Insurance Program, or CHIP, helps cover children. Part of the ACA allowed for states to expand Medicaid coverage, opening up Medicaid to people who weren’t initially eligible. But states weren’t forced to expand the program and could structure it to their preferences, which has led to a disparate system…”
“Do American and Swiss patients get what they pay for?”
Published 16 Nov 2017 | swissinfo.ch by Tony Ganzer and Geraldine Wong Sak Hoi
“Health care doesn’t come cheap in the United States or Switzerland, and depending on your situation, the bill can vary widely. Are Americans and the Swiss getting top-quality care for their money?
Several readers wanted to know how much residents in the two countries pay for health care, in terms of public and private contributions, and whether the quality of care justifies the costs.
We’ve already given a primer on the health care systems in each country, and how many different insurance options US residents have depending on how much they make, what they do, and how old they are.
What does it cost, and why?
US healthcare spending is a whopping 17% of GDP, or more than $9,000 per capita. (Some estimates put the cost per person over $10,000). By comparison, Switzerland spends about 12% of GDP, at more than $6,300 per capita.
One reason for the higher cost in the US is that variety in coverage we mentioned before. With so many different insurance options and programs, there are lots of opportunities for increased administrative costs, and variety in how people might interact with health care services. It’s more expensive for someone to just go to an emergency room than deal with a doctor visit, for example. The EMTALA Act requires that the public have access to emergency care regardless of ability to pay. But that was meant to enable a patient to be stabilized and not as a general health care solution.
In some ways the Swiss health care system before reform looked a lot like the core of the US system. What changes did Switzerland make?
The biggest reasons for higher health care costs in the US might be linked to two things: prices and patients.”