Opportunities for Cost Reduction of Medical Care: Part 3

Monte Malach; William J. Baumol

Disclosures

J Community Health. 2012;37(4):888-896. 

In This Article

Conclusions

This publication is a compendium of the many current opportunities to reduce the cost of medical care by using less expensive but effective therapeutic processes, by abandoning therapeutic misadventures, and by more appropriately and thoroughly evaluating new therapies before FDA approval for release is granted. Furthermore, there has been a rush to approve new drugs and procedures by pharmaceutical companies and prominent physician practitioners. This is exemplified by bariatric weight-loss surgery, which is conducted without sufficient documented physiologic evidence of safety, benefits, and outcomes for patients.[93]

Unfortunately, these problems are magnified and enabled by the continued predominance of medical specialists and subspecialist physicians, who focus on treating a single element of a patient's medical problems. Thus, the training of more broad-based internists and family physicians is both more economical and necessary to address the medical care needs of the whole patient.[94]

Finally, it is important to remember that newer medical treatments are not always better but are almost always more expensive.

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