We’re all aware of the emphasis on healthcare spreading through Capitol Hill. This morning, I read an interesting article by Steven Pearlstein, a business columnist with the Washington Post, dealing with what he feels is a major source of the problem – doctors. He writes that:
If we really want to fix America’s overpriced and under-performing health-care system, what really matters is changing the ways doctors practice medicine, individually and collectively.
Growing up, I thought of doctors as infallible individuals always capable of devising the most efficient route to diagnose and treat their patients; however, time has proven otherwise. It’s a bit disconcerting to know how much waste exists in the medical system. Defensive medicine (better known as “CYA” treatment) is largely responsible, but so is the general trend towards preventative measures. With all the money being poured into pharmaceutical companies and medical technology, I think there’s a growing rift in how “cost effective” doctors are. There’s a fine balance between utilizing the latest techniques versus the cost of said techniques (for the doctor, the patient, the hospital, etc.) which has yet to be obtained.
Though I strongly agree with Mr. Pearlstein, it’s difficult to propose a feasible resolution for such a widespread problem. Any thoughts?