2/14/2009

What a waste of money

This stimulus package is filled with wasteful spending. Take the money on electronic health records, money that will supposedly make the system much more efficient. Here is the problem: if it paid to make these investments, why wouldn't the insurance companies and doctors already be doing this? They want to make money, and if the benefits outweighed the costs, wouldn't they find it in their interests to do this?

In the legislation passed late Friday, Congress approved spending about $19 billion over the coming years on electronic health records and an additional $1.1 billion on research comparing which treatments work best for a particular disease. . . .

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8 Comments:

Blogger JFA said...

Let me disagree on the form of your statement. Money is nothing if they can print it as they want.

But money is a machinery that links into people's efforts.

It's not a waste of money, it's a coercive waste of the lives of each member of The People who is not cashing in on the little scheme.

They have us dig holes in the ground and fill them up insted of spending the time playing with our children, or our toys. To them, making us toil instead of happiness is an end it itself. They understood that a long time ago, long before they created the Federal Reserve in the early thirties.

And the descendents of that sadistic mentality keep the racket going.

Beside, there is no entity today currently available that qualifies for the legal definition of 'money'. Debts can not be paid, only discharged. The pieces of paper in your pocket are not warehouse receipts but are NOTES, an unconditional promise to pay. The question no-one seems tho have tought asking for the last eighty years is: who is the real obligee, toward whom, and what is there to pay?

2/14/2009 2:27 PM  
Blogger Martin G. Schalz said...

Dear Dr. Lott.

It does not pay to create electronic health records. What I see, is the following excerpt from the link you posted.

"Some Republicans took exception to that vision on Friday. They focused their criticism on a new federal council that will coordinate what's called comparative-effectiveness research — when doctors and statisticians sift medical records to determine which treatments work best for a particular disease."

and this quote too.

'Republican lawmakers claim the council will become a "government rationing board" that will make life-and-death decisions about which treatments doctors will be able to use.

"Congressional Democrats are using the cover of an economic crisis to advance an agenda that will destroy the doctor-patient relationship and set us on a course for government-administered health care," said Rep. Tom Price, R-Ga., a doctor.'

In a previous post, on a different subject, the above is almost exactly what I stated about methotrexate.

From dealing with medical problems these past few years, I have discovered that information exchange between doctors is iffy at best, and needs to be dealt with, but not in the fashion the government wishes to do.

The solution to that problem is very simplistic, because the cause is very simple. Information is sent to the refering physician, not every doctor one is seeing.

The following is what I have personally observed.

My primary care physician refered I, to a rheumatolgist. Said rheumatolgist then refered me to a pain management specialist. Pain managament doctor orders MRI's, and then treats me. Pain management sends records back to the rheumatologist. That's where it stopped.

The treatment that the rheumatologist performed was transmitted to my primary care doctor, but not the treatment nor test results of the pain management doctor.

Therin lies the problem. On a whim, I took my MRI films and findings to my doctor. Surprised I was to discover that she knew nothing of these tests.

This does not warrant government takeover. Each specialist does have different concerns and needs to deal with them. I only need one physician to see the entire picture, and that would be my primary care doctor, not some government hack who lacks the personal touch, nor understands me as well as my doctor does.

My solution was to be darn sure that every doctor I see knows what is going on. Not everyone can do this, but a simple change of mindset in the medical community will achieve information exchange that benefits the patient.

I hope many folks read this, and learn from it.

What I should do, is get off my lazy butt, and point out this problem to the AMA, instead of blogging here...

2/14/2009 9:18 PM  
Blogger Electricfunk said...

and an additional $1.1 billion on research comparing which treatments work best for a particular disease. . . .

Oh dear god, don't they understand that different people respond differently to the same treatment for the same disease sometimes?

2/15/2009 12:29 AM  
OpenID forthesakeofscience said...

[i]an additional $1.1 billion on research comparing which treatments work best for a particular disease[/i]

Better healthcare. How dreadful.

2/15/2009 8:03 PM  
Blogger TooMuchTime said...

Electricfunk, you are under the misguided belief that Universal Health Care has something to do with your health.

It has nothing to do with care; it has everything to do with control. The government wants to run everything. That's the problem. How someone reacts to medications is irrelevant. The government files that under "your problem."

2/15/2009 8:47 PM  
Blogger John said...

“[i]an additional $1.1 billion on research comparing which treatments work best for a particular disease[/I]”

If it was only so. It is one billion to find out what treatments are most cost effective in extending the life span. This sounds so good but what it means is if you are in your seventies or eighties there is not much that will greatly extend your life span so lets just let the old people die without more than palliative care.

For example taking an aspirin daily for most of your adult life is a very cost effective treatment for preventing cardiovascular disease instead of prescribing a brand name statin for lowering cholesterol. Of course that does not help as much if you happen to have cardiovascular disease but it is sure more cost effective.

My understanding is that most national heath insurance programs work very well for everyone between twenty and fifty. Of course most people between twenty and fifty do not need much health care. All national heath insurance programs try to control cost. The first thing sacrificed is all those past their prime working years who A are no longer contributing and B the cost of treating their old worn out bodies is rising rapidly. This is great until you are past fifty.

2/16/2009 9:48 AM  
Blogger Martin G. Schalz said...

Does anyone have the phone number for the Soylent Corporation? I'm sure they have the solution to our medical dilemas.

2/16/2009 1:44 PM  
OpenID forthesakeofscience said...

what it means is if you are in your seventies or eighties there is not much that will greatly extend your life span so lets just let the old people die without more than palliative care.

Do you have any idea what you're saying? This plan does not entail sacrificing the elderly in order to generate some numbers. That would only superficially satisfy the description of "comparing which treatments work best for a particular disease". Such a notion is absurd at best, insulting to every medical professional at worst.

2/18/2009 1:45 AM  

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