08 January 2007

Joe Paduda on HC economics

Joe Paduda, who for some reason does not agree with a single-payer system for healthcare, gives some cogent basics on healthcare economics. His four key principles (lifted straight from his page):

1. Physicians are the "consumers". They make the decisions on most expensive, important procedures. Few patients have the time, expertise, intellect and wherewithall to research which treatment plan is best for them personally.

2. Most of the procedures performed in the US have not been proven to be effective for the conditions for which they are prescribed. And almost none have been proven to be cost-effective.

3. Most of the dollars are spent on people who spend a lot of dollars. (75% of health care dollars are spent on 15% of the people) Once these folks have emptied their pockets to cover their deductibles and copays, their health care is free. Which doesn't do much for consumerism.

4. There is very little good data available on "quality."

Following his essay is a good comments thread.

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