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Monday, June 27, 2016

Why Is There No Price Transparency in Healthcare for Patients?

There is virtually no price transparency in healthcare for patients. This creates hidden monopolies helped along by the gag orders in contracts. Patients need to be empowered with price transparency and product transparency. One frequent argument I get is that healthcare is too complex to provide price transparency. "People say things are complex when they want to avoid the truth." - Character: Elise Wassermann. Actor: Clémence Poésy. The Tunnel. Sky Atlantic and Canal. Season 1 episode 2. Aired 2016/06/26 in the USA on PBS. http://www.imdb.com/title/tt2711738/

Thursday, April 21, 2016

We Need Treatment Transparency. We need TREATMENT SCORES.

We need treatment transparency. We need Treatment Scores. The Treatment Score represents the net treatment benefit for the patient. Why haven't we had Treatment Scores before? It was a difficult problem that had to be solved!


Follow TREATMENT SCORES on Social Media:
Twitter:
https://Twitter.com/TreatmentScores
Facebook:
https://Facebook.com/TreatmentScores
AngelList:
https://angel.co/treatment-scores
Blog:
http://TreatmentScoresBlog.com
Website:
http://TreatmentScores.com

DISCLAIMERS:
You must consult your own licensed physician, or other licensed medical professional, for diagnosis, treatment, and for the interpretation of all medical statistics including Treatment Scores. Treatment Scores are for educational purposes only. Treatment Scores may be incomplete, inaccurate, harmful, or even cause death if used for treatment instead of consulting a licensed medical professional. No medical advice is being given. We DO NOT CLAIM to cure, treat, or prevent any illness or condition. Nor do our services provide medical advice or constitute a physician patient relationship. Contact a physician or other medical professional if you suspect that you are ill. Call emergency services (call 911 if available) or go to the nearest emergency room if an emergency is suspected. We are not responsible for any delays in care from using our website, our services, or for any other reason. We are not responsible for any consequential damages of any nature whatsoever. We make no warranties of any kind in connection with our writings or the use of TreatmentScoresBlog.com or TreatmentScores.com. Treatment Scores are about what happened to patients studied in the past; they do not predict the future.

COPYRIGHT:
Copyright © 2016 Treatment Scores, Inc.

Tuesday, September 8, 2015

Free Speech in Medicine

Free speech is an essential right of free people in a Republic such as the United States of America and in democracies around the world. But what does free-speech mean when it comes to economics? What does free-speech mean in healthcare?

Free speech in economics means price transparency and product transparency. Price transparency means knowing the price of a hamburger before you buy it.

Product transparency means knowing the quality of the hamburger before you buy it. The quality may be demonstrated by having pictures of the hamburger on the menu, or by having advertisements that show pictures of the hamburger. Essentially, one way or another, the customer knows the quality of the hamburger at McDonald’s versus the quality of the hamburger at Johnny Rockets’ restaurant.

When it comes to buying a computer we have excellent price transparency and product transparency. The price is clearly listed and the product specifications are often listed in great detail. You know exactly how much RAM you’re getting and how big your hard drive will be.

When you buy something on Amazon.com, you are given the price, and you also have product transparency via product ratings. Indeed, the product ratings and comments are one of the most popular features on Amazon.com.

When you buy things in a country with free speech you are freely given the price in advance and you are allowed to educate yourself about a product as much as you want before you buy it. There is transparency.

We want free-speech in medicine. Many organizations have recently started to provide price transparency in medicine. It’s a great movement. It empowers patients. I have listed some "price transparency" websites near the end of this post.

But, we also want more product transparency about medical treatments. What patients need to know is all the possible treatments for a diagnosis and the “absolute net treatment benefit” for those treatments. The patient needs to be able to see the statistics themselves, and the patient needs to be able to give weight to the statistics based upon their own personal preferences. We believe that besides the standard medical review article, we need review articles that attempt to quantify the science of medicine behind medical treatments on an "absolute net treatment benefit scale."

We need to get away from the relative value that we often see in hyped up articles, which can be 75%, 50%, or 25%, when the absolute value of the treatment is only 1%. The 1% absolute value is much more important to the patient, to you, and to me.

We want to help you to educate yourself as much as you can about medical treatments. In order to do this we have created an educational website:
http://TreatmentScores.com

Are you smart enough to do evidence-based medicine? The website http://TreatmentScores.com provides you with four free tools:

1) Diagnosis Tool™
2) Treatment Organizer™
3) Treatment Score Calculator™
4) STAR™ Block page = STatistic and a Reference page.

Using our tools and our tutorial page you can learn to quantify the science of medicine behind medical treatments. You and your loved ones need this!

Register at http://TreatmentScores.com and start learning now.

TreatmentScores.com is an early alpha website. You should register and go to the tutorial page:
http://treatmentscores.com/tutorial.php

TreatmentScores.com provides you with do it yourself educational tools, to organize and study the medical literature, and eventually we hope to have “hands on” mentoring, teaching, forums, FAQs, and so on.

We need smart people that care about treatments. We need health writers and bloggers that can do evidence-based medicine. We need skeptics that want to separate the science from the hype.

The Harvoni Example
I saw a TV commercial on Harvoni as a treatment for Hepatitis C. It sounded too good to be true. I was skeptical. So I decided to look up the medical studies and find the statistics. Using the tools at TreatmentScores.com I was able to find medical studies, pull out the statistics that matter and organize them. What I found is that the statistics are better for Harvoni for hepatitis C than for the old "Gold Standard" with interferon for hepatitis C, but remember to always consult your own licensed physician for diagnosis and treatment.


Remember, the URL for the Treatment Scores website and its tutorial is:
http://treatmentscores.com/tutorial.php
It's an educational experience that everyone should learn to do.

Price Transparency Websites:
4sightHealth
http://4sighthealth.com/

Clear Health Costs
http://clearhealthcosts.com/

Castlight Health
http://CastlightHealth.com

Clear Choices
http://www.clearchoicescampaign.org/

Clear Health Costs
http://clearhealthcosts.com/

Compared Care
https://www.facebook.com/comparedcare

Compass Professional Health Services
http://www.compassphs.com/

Costs of Care
http://www.costsofcare.org/

Estimedd
http://www.estimedd.com/

Fair Health Consumer
http://fairhealthconsumer.org/

Free Market Medicine
http://marketmedicine.org/

Free Market Health Group
http://www.freemarkethealthgroup.com/patients/

Guroo
http://www.guroo.com/

Health Care Bluebook
https://healthcarebluebook.com/

Health in Reach
https://www.healthinreach.com/search/

PriceMDs
https://www.pricemds.com/

Pricing Healthcare
https://pricinghealthcare.com/

SpendWell
https://www.spendwellhealth.com/

Surgery Center of Oklahoma
http://www.surgerycenterok.com/

DISCLAIMERS:
YOU MUST CONSULT  YOUR OWN LICENSED PHYSICIAN FOR DIAGNOSIS AND TREATMENT. USING TREATMENT SCORES CAN BE HARMFUL OR DEADLY. Treatment Scores, Inc. does not provide medical advice. We provide educational tools. We think patients need to learn to organize and rate the science of medicine behind treatments; we are NOT rating the treatments themselves. These are two different things. We help you review the medical literature and quantify the science of medicine behind treatments, but you cannot use this information to treat yourself or others. We make no claims about accuracy; we claim ZERO ACCURACY. IN FACT, WE CLAIM INACCURACY, because we are letting everyone use our tools, because the medical literature is complicated, errors, typos, misunderstandings, and because the medical literature is full of flaws. You must see your own licensed medical professional for diagnosis and treatment. We are an educational exercise, not medical guidelines. We are looking at the past medical literature; we cannot predict how treatments will work for you or anyone else going forward into the future. Choosing a treatment also involves clinical experience, making the right diagnosis, and knowing all about someone after a medical history, physical examination, and testing. Our tools cannot know these things. In addition, the medical literature can be wrong. We specifically DO NOT CLAIM to cure, treat, or prevent an illness or condition. Nor do our services provide medical advice or constitute a physician patient relationship. Contact your physician if you suspect that you are ill. Call emergency services (call 911 if available) or go to the nearest emergency room if an emergency is suspected. We are not responsible for any delays in care from using our website, or for any other reason. We are not responsible for any consequential damages of any nature whatsoever. We make no warranties of any kind in connection with the content of this post.

Saturday, March 28, 2015

Ebola in Africa: Science and Treatment Transparency

You should have more power in healthcare. You should be free to choose your own treatments. In order to have "shared decision-making" so that you actually can share in making decisions with your physicians and nurses, you need to know the "science of medicine" behind your treatment options.

My physician friends and I have developed software to help you study the science of medicine behind medical treatments. Our tools will help you to create a list of treatments for a diagnosis, and then will help you to rate the science of medicine behind each treatment. We want to move these tools on to the web and on to mobile devices.

To get started doing treatment transparency, we have launched an IndieGoGo campaign and are asking for your support:
"Ebola in Africa: Science and Treatments"
http://igg.me/at/EbolaAfricaScience
Please watch the video this link takes you to!

You can help us create treatment transparency by sharing the link above on social networks or by donating $5 or more. Once we have worked on Ebola, we want to move on to other diseases like breast cancer, prostate cancer, colon cancer, pancreatic cancer, heart attacks, strokes, etc., and on to less deadly diseases like toenail fungus and lacerations. You name the disease or injury and we hope to be working on it soon.

The revolution in healthcare must start from the bottom up. Patients must get involved. How can we have patient-centered care if the patient doesn't have access to the facts? Did you know that one of the "popular" treatments for Ebola in Africa was proposed by a physician, but when we tracked down the medical literature on that treatment we found zero scientific evidence to support it? That's just wrong. That's NOT evidence-based medicine.

On the other hand, there seems to be a very important treatment for Ebola in the medical literature that not enough people know about. We must make a list of every possible treatment for Ebola and we must study the science of medicine behind all those treatments.

DISCLAIMERS: We are organizing and rating the science of medicine behind treatments, we are NOT rating the treatments themselves. These are two different things. We help you to review the medical literature and quantify the science of medicine behind treatments, but you cannot use this information to treat yourself or others. We make no claims about accuracy, in fact, we claim ZERO ACCURACY. We are an educational exercise only. You must see your own licensed medical professional for treatment. We are an educational exercise, not medical guidelines. We are looking at the past medical literature; we cannot predict how treatments will work for you or anyone else going forward into the future. Choosing a treatment also involves clinical experience, making the right diagnosis, and knowing all about someone after a medical history, physical examination, and testing. Our software system is not designed to know all these things. In addition, the medical literature can be wrong or biased. SO YOU MUST SEE your own physician or other qualified medical practitioner to help you choose a treatment or treatments.

Tuesday, November 25, 2014

Price Transparency in Healthcare

We desperately need price transparency in healthcare.

You should know the price of a pill before you swallow it.*
You should know the price of a test before you have it.
You should know the price of a procedure or operation before it is done to you.

The only way you can spend your money wisely, your insurance company's money wisely, or Medicaid or Medicare's money wisely, is if you know what things cost.

Knowing prices empowers patients to get more healthcare for their money. Below is a list of entities that have to do with price transparency in healthcare, or that are displaying prices.

Clear Health Costs
http://clearhealthcosts.com

Compared Care
http://comparedCare.com

Estimedd
http://www.estimedd.com

Fair Health
http://fairhealthconsumer.org

Free Market Medicine Association
http://marketmedicine.org

Health in Reach
https://www.healthinreach.com/search

Healthcare Bluebook
https://healthcarebluebook.com

HealthPons
http://www.gethealthpons.com

Health Care Cost Institute (HCCI)
http://www.healthcostinstitute.org

My Health My Price
http://MyHealthMyPrice.com

PokitDok
http://PokitDok.com

PriceCheck
http://blogs.kqed.org/stateofhealth/2014/06/23/share-your-bill-make-health-costs-transparent-in-california/

Pricing Healthcare
https://pricinghealthcare.com

Self Pay Patient LLC
http://www.theselfpaypatient.com

Snap Health
http://SnapHealth.com

Surgery Center of Oklahoma
http://www.surgerycenterok.com/pricing

Theranos
http://www.theranos.com/test-menu?ref=for_providers

Understanding Healthcare Prices: A Consumer Guide
http://www.hfma.org/consumerguide

Castlight Health
http://CastlightHealth.com

CPR Price Transparency
http://www.catalyzepaymentreform.org/how-we-catalyze/price-transparency

Costs of Care
http://www.costsofcare.org

*(The phrase "...the price of a pill before you swallow it..." first came from Dr. Steven Kagan as far as I am able to determine.)