Friday, July 25, 2008

An "F" for US Healthcare

Rosemary Flanigan, PhD
Program Associate
July 25, 2008

The Center’s John Carney has sent the staff the Executive Summary of the Commonwealth Fund's July 2008 scoreboard report, Why Not the Best?

It is bleak reading: "Across 37 core indicators of performance, the U.S. achieves an overall score of 65 out of a possible 100. . . ." (When I was teaching, I saw 65 as an F!) Access significantly declined, efficiency remained low.

But what I need your help to understand is in the summary: "The Medicare program could potentially save at least $12 billion a year by reducing readmissions or by reducing hospitalizations for preventable conditions."

HOW DO YOU DO THAT? I can't get into the hospital (except for the ER) without a doctor's order--are we Medicare types to be talked OUT of readmissions?

And though my condition is "preventable," I nevertheless have it (like burning myself accidentally or developing a smoker's hack) and does this say I'm not going to be admitted?

I think the entire population runs to hospitals too easily and knocks on the doors expecting to be admitted but why is Medicare being targeted here?

What do you think? Share and view your comments by clicking on “Comments” below.

Links:

While the U.S. Spends Heavily on Health Care, a Study Faults the Quality, New York Times, July 17

Why Not the Best? Results from the National Scorecard on U.S. Health System Performance, 2008, Commonwealth Fund

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1 Comments:

Anonymous Joy Weydert said...

A "novel" idea has come up--having doctors spend more time with their patients up front to deal with the problems and concerns and prevent unnecessary tests and hospital admissions.(It must have come from a rocket scientist!)
Please read http://www.nytimes.com/2008/07/21/business/21medhome.html?th&emc=th
Joy Weydert, MD

Friday, July 25, 2008  

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