An Arm and a Leg

An Arm and a Leg

Latest Episodes

An actor walks into a doctor’s office…
July 24, 2019

Researcher Saul Weiner has been sending fake patients — actors, wired for sound — into real doctors’ offices, to learn about what actually happens, especially: How well doctors really listen to their patients.

Whoa, this medical device is spying on me. In my sleep. So my insurer can deny me coverage.
July 17, 2019

That’s the rude awakening Eric Umansky got when he called the company that provided his CPAP machine — a device that helps him breathe at night. He got mad. And he got even, in a way: Eric is an editor at the non-profit newsroom ProPublica,

The insane, surprising history behind insulin’s crazy price (and some hopeful signs in the wild)
July 10, 2019

The price of insulin is iconic — doubling, tripling, multiplying like crazy, for medicine Type 1 diabetics can’t live without. To understand it, we went back almost 100 years and dug up a story of sweaty Canadian researchers — swatting away flies and d...

Coming next week: The price of insulin
July 03, 2019

As we started working on season two of this podcast, there was one topic that seemed like we just had to look at: insulin. … and I wondered:  There are stories about insulin prices everywhere.  Would we really have something to add?

Why are drug prices so random? Meet Mr. PBM
June 26, 2019

I filled a prescription recently, and the drugstore said they wanted more than 700 bucks… for an old-line generic drug. My insurance ended up knocking that down, but it was WEIRD.  And it meant a big homework assignment for me. Luckily, I got help.

How much for an MRI? Well, that depends…
June 19, 2019

This week, we look at three MRIs with four different price tags, and an enormous range.   The first two price tags come from listener Liz Salmi, who has been living with brain cancer for more than a decade. Liz gets MRI scans twice a year,

To get paid, hospitals get creative
June 12, 2019

Hospital bills are too high, and insurance doesn’t cover enough. Turns out, that’s a crisis for hospitals too: more and more of us aren’t paying those bills, because we can’t. So, they’re getting creative about collecting — and offering discounts.

We thought we had adulted properly
June 04, 2019

Caitlin and Corey Gaffer got a surprise letter from their insurance company — saying they were being dumped for non-payment. Except, as far as they knew, they were paid up. As it turned out, they’d made a couple of small mistakes,

We’re back! Here’s a taste of Season 2, launching June 4.
May 23, 2019

Hey there! We’ve been working hard on season 2. We hope you enjoy this preview — there’s so much good (and frightening) stuff ahead.

Is it ever appropriate to fudge a little? (Season One, episode 8)
December 19, 2018

Bari Tessler is a little famous as a “financial therapist,” but even she gets rattled by the price of health care. Also: What my family is doing for health insurance next year. This is our Season One finale.