Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Article I read on price of health care

This is different than my previous posts, but I think it is still relevant.

As someone who has seen the patient side of health care and will hopefully see the physician side of health care (God willing), I found this interesting.

Here are some memorable quotes:

Consider this: For every dollar the nation spends on health care, 50 cents is wasted.

Wow. Crazy numbers. I have no words.

"The old belief that better care is more care, turns out it's just not true," James says. "The big problem. It costs you money. Most of these savings go back to insurers or the government, those windfall savings. We're nearly always financially punished every time we save money."
"Under a fee-for-service payment system the incentive is to do more. To generate more fees. And yes, the fundamental structure of payment today is based on paying for the unit of service. So we've had a lot of discussion around how to turn those incentives around and pay not based on volume but pay on value, quality and cost," he says.

I can definitely say that I was most likely given unneeded things (equipment, procedures, therapy) while in the hospital. I can also positively say that I (well, mostly my insurance) was charged unnecessarily. “More fees” were generated all the time. I really wish things could be turned around so payments can be attributed to “value, quality and cost”.

Experts say a higher price does not always mean better quality of care. It can pay to shop around for treatment services on your own; however, only a handful of states provide easy access to information on how much medical procedures cost

It may seem silly to “shop around” for healthcare... but if that's what is necessary, then go for it. It's quite sad that those involved in the huge health care field (physicians, nurses, therapists, hospitals, insurance companies, drug companies, equipment companies, etc.) take advantage of those who are ill/injured and actually need quality care. The patient does not come first; cost and convenience do.

1 comment:

  1. Oh and before I get blasted for this post by those more knowledgeable and those involved in the health care field (including a few of you all "following" this blog), this is only my opinion bases on my recent experiences. I am not sure how things are in general, although the news article seems to shed light upon that. Sorry, just a disclaimer.