How to Fix the Health-Care ‘Wedge’

Discussion in 'Healthcare/Insurance/Govt Healthcare' started by Skull Pilot, Aug 5, 2009.

  1. Skull Pilot
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    Skull Pilot Platinum Member

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    Arthur B. Laffer: Obama’s Health-Care Proposals Won’t Make Health-Care Better - WSJ.com

     
  2. mskafka
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    mskafka Silver Member

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    "An effective cure begins with an accurate diagnosis, which is sorely lacking in most policy circles. The proposals currently on offer fail to address the fundamental driver of health-care costs: the health-care wedge."

    I will agree with this point, Skull. Your PCP sees you for say: increased urinary output...polyuria, or too many pee-pees. So, "what is going on here?", the practitioner thinks. Does this woman have bladder cancer? (she should see a urologist, let's refer her) Is it ovarian cancer? ( she should see a gynecologist, referral), Is it diabetes? (refer to an endocrinologist).

    Okay, let's say worst-case-scenario, nothing can be determined from the above referrals. Thousands upon thousands $$ by the way. Now the next challenge is getting the physicians/specialists to communicate with each other. Along with the 70 other patients they've seen that day, they have to keep up with this woman's data. Unfortunately, the odds are great that somewhere along the line, errors will be made. Someone will leave (unintentionally) some vital information out of the patient's record. Maybe she will get frustrated and begin to think that it is all in her head. Or maybe the physician will, and the patient will be given a psychiatrist referral.

    The peeing continues, and 5 years later she has had enough. The PCP she sees finally does a more thorough exam and history. Maybe he/she isn't as overwhelmed with patients as the last PCP was. And so, she is diagnosed by a simple test of diabetes insipidus. Finally.

    So my point is to reiterate your quote on accurate diagnoses. This indeed, is an issue. There is a name for it, but I don't recall what it is. That is a name for specialists focusing only on their specialty, and ignoring, or not having time to address the other issues that the patient has, and maybe finding the missing pieces of the puzzle. This is supposedly why Mayo Clinic is considered to be somewhat cutting edge, in that their physicians of all specialties put their heads together and diagnose the patient with a collective knowledge. All of them in a figurative round-table discussion, and not sending the patient to and fro to different clinics and hospitals in different cities. Records are trasnferred and information is lost. So the woman is written off as crazy, instead of discovering the cause of the problem.
     
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    Last edited: Aug 5, 2009

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