X-Message-Number: 13855
Date: Tue, 06 Jun 2000 20:20:28 -0500
From: david pizer <>
Subject: Re: CryoNet #13842 - #13849

Reply and clarification

>Message #13844
>Date: Mon, 05 Jun 2000 11:50:42 -0700
>From: Jeff Davis <>
>Subject: cryostats and economics of scale
>In line with Dave Pizer's comments on the effects of suspension costs on
>the growth and accessibility of cryonics, I would like to offer the
>following, though it is by no means a new idea.  Part of the expense of
>suspension stems from the cost per patient of their cryostat and of the
>liquid nitrogen replenishment requirement arising from boil-off.


Thanks for these ideas.  I hope they will be considered.

The ideas in Jeff Davis' posting may be very good.  I am not an engineer
and I do not know that much about what he is describing other than it
sounds reasonable.  I understand that CI already uses bigger dewars.

But I do want to clear up one critical point.  I am *not* arguing that
there has to be some breakthrough that Alcor is missing before they can
lower their prices. I am *not* saying that if Alcor fixes some technical
problem then they can reduce their prices.  
My argument is that Alcor can reduce their prices for what they are
delivering *now* and come out better off in the long run than if they keep
the high prices.

I am saying that Alcor does not have to invent some new device.  Alcor does
not have to win the lottery.  All Alcor has to do is lower its current
prices for what they presently deliver and the added volume and more
reasonable public appearances will make things better for Alcor financially
and in membership growth and other important areas without having to do
anything else.

My claims are:

1.	The present prices do not have to be so high for Alcor to come out. The
prices were figured using liberal figures and then doubled because ....  I
don't know why they doubled the figures.  My guess is that they thought
more (money) is better. But some times more money prices your product of
service out of reach from what would be your consumers.  Especially the
cash sale cases of which the future will be mostly made up of.  So my
conclusion is that the present high prices are not helping Alcor as the
board thought they would when the board set the prices so darn high.  It
isn't working.  Alcor is still very tight on finances.  Membership growth
is very slow.  Alcor misses most of the suspensions that are being done.
Alcor is falling behind.  None of us Alcorians want to see that continue.

2.	The public appearance of a more reasonable priced suspension would make
Alcor not look like such an elitist organization.  (Another huge increase
in public appearance would be to offer a brain suspension rather than the
whole head).

3.	The added volume of doing a lot more suspensions at a reasonable price
would end up making Alcor more money than just doing one or two a year at
the higher prices.  Too high of prices are costing Alcor money.

4.	Doing more suspensions would mean that Alcor would get better at doing

5.	Doing more suspensions would mean that Alcor would get more members.
Relatives of patients tend to join up.  They make some of the best members,
most loyal and tend to donate additional funds and labor.

6.	A more reasonable priced suspension would mean that more of our fellow
humans could have the benefit of cryonics.  

Alcor is set up for memembers.  That is not where the cryonics business is

I believe that most of the prospective suspensions in the future will be
people who are not signed up a long time in advance; What are commonly
called "last minute" cases.  These are people who did not sign up years ago
and have found themselves in a terminal condition.  These are people who
did not plan ahead.  These are people who will not be able to get life
insurance. They will have to write a check if they are to get suspended.
When you have to write a check all at once, rather than make insurance
payments, the price is even more critical in your decision.

One of the problems with this is that last minute cases have always been
considered the ones with the most potential liability or be harder to do.
This may or may not be true.  I remember BIG trouble from relatives in the
Dick Jones case.  He was not a last minute case.  In that case, Alcor lost
over a million dollars to the relatives (not of Alcor's previous money, but
money of Dick's that might have gone to Alcor except for litigation with
the relatives).

On the other side, Alcor had a patient's sister (a last minute case) sue to
have her sister unfrozen.  The monetary cost (in the sister case) to Alcor
was a lot less than the Dick Jones case.  My point here is that there is
potential risk in *all* cases.  But if the future volume of cryonics is
going to be mostly last minute cases, (people who were not signed up for a
long time ahead), than Alcor should be learning how to deal with these
cases so they can be comfortable in accepting them and have the proper
terms and conditions set up in advance so they can take them.

I hope the Alcor Board will consider the items I have raised and also Jeff
Davis' suggestions along with all other suggestions on how to make cryonics
more successful.

I hope others will submit their suggestions on either side of this
important issue so we can leave no block of ice unturned.

Dave  Pizer

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